10 Things You Shouldn't Do When Trying To Save Money (2024)

Let’s face it. We all make unnecessary purchases every now and then. We want something, we buy it. But in order to save money, we need to sacrifice certain things in our lives.

Maybe you will miss them, maybe you won’t. It’s up to you to decide what is worth sacrificing for you to save money for your end goal.

Knowing how to save money is a skill that will be forever useful, so these tips will help you just do that!

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10 Things You Shouldn't Do When Trying To Save Money (1)

Here are 10 things you shouldn’t do when trying to save money.

1. Go on a Pricey Vacation

If you’re trying to save money, or don’t have much money to spend, it doesn’t make sense to spend it on an expensive vacation even though you know it would make you feel really good.

If you have time off coming up from your job, instead spend your holiday at home with your friends or family, or find something local nearby to visit.

2. Pay For Entertainment

Bars with friends, watching a movie at the cinema, laser tag. It all sounds fun but in the end, is it worth the financial struggle?

Nights out like this should be a rare commodity, not something that’s done every weekend.

Entertainment can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be.

There are a lot of free things to do for a no-spend weekend. Like having a movie marathon or going hiking.

Even consider cheaper options for fun activities such as BYOB nights at your place or having a barbecue where everyone brings their own food to grill.

3. Ignore your Bills

Ignoring your bills won’t make them go away. Instead, they’ll pile up and make you more stressed out than you originally were.

Your bills should be a priority, even if it sometimes hurts to pay them.

Although, when it comes to paying your bills, it shouldn’t be so hard.

If you feel like you’re paying too much and it might not be worth it, see if you can cut back somehow like removing cable TV, or getting a different data plan for your cell phone.

4. Pay Unnecessary Bills

With the above being said, take a look a what you’re paying and ask yourself if you need them.

Are you paying for cable or magazine subscriptions that you don’t really need? Are you paying too much for electricity or going over your data on your phone?

Go through your monthly expenses and see if there’s anything you can just cancel to get rid of any unwanted bills.

5. Buy Expensive Gifts & Clothes

If someone’s birthday is coming up, or Christmas is around the corner, don’t buy the best gift you can think of if it’s going to put you in financial trouble.

Remember that it’s the thought that counts, so even a card with a little DIY gift will be more meaningful than a gadget they may never even use!

The same goes for clothes. You can buy a lot of clothes secondhand that will save you so much money. Shopping secondhand has a lot of perks, not only to your wallet!

READ MORE: 9 Reasons Why You Should Start Buying Secondhand Clothing.

6. Continue Bad Habits

Do you smoke or drink every day? If you’re hurting for cash, cigarettes, and alcohol only make things worse, even though it feels they may help us get on with our day.

If you don’t think you can quit cold turkey, consider reducing your intake to at least reduce your spending.

Keep in mind there are many different types of bad habits.

Do you stress-eat?Are you a compulsive shopper?

Find out where most of your money goes and see if you can find a way to reduce the spending towards it.

7. Buy New Books

10 Things You Shouldn't Do When Trying To Save Money (2)

You shouldn’t have to go and buy new books whenever you want to read.

You can go to the library or you can find free eBooks all over the web instead of buying new books.

My favorite places to get free books:

Bookbub. Receive free or on-sale eBooks daily to your email, based on your preferences for genres of books.

Audible. Get 2 free audio books when you sign up for a free 30-day trial with Audible. Just get your two free books after signing up and then cancel your subscription before the trial ends. You can still access your books even if your plan is canceled.

Kindle. Sign up for a 30-day free trial with Kindle and get unlimited reading for a whole month!

Other alternatives would be to read some articles online (like this one) or maybe even consider rereading an old favorite.

There are a lot of things you can stop buying to save money, which can help you even more.

8. Pay Others to do What you Can Do Yourself

There are many things we pay for to get done that we can simply do ourselves, like getting food at restaurants and fast food places.

You shouldn’t pay someone to make your food for you. Especially considering that the money could have fed you for a couple of days instead of just that one meal.

Cook your own food, make leftovers for your work lunches, and your wallet will thank you.

Other examples are hair or nail appointments, tanning salons, car washes, or paying someone to cut your grass or clean your house.

Ask yourself if you can do yourself what you’re paying this person to do for you.

9. Upgrade What you Already Own

Want to upgrade to a new car, a new apartment or house, new shoes, new clothes, a new computer, etc? Ask yourself, “Is it necessary?” or “Do I need this now?”

If the answer is no, you shouldn’t buy it.

If you already have something that works just fine as it is, don’t upgrade with the sole purpose of wanting something better.

Unless of course, the reason you’re trying to save money is to upgrade said item, then go for it! You’ve reached your goal.

10. Be Unproductive in your Spare Time

If you have free time, especially if you have a part-time job, consider getting another job to make some more money.

If the idea of having two jobs scares you (I mean, one boss is scary enough) you can always look online for jobs where there is no commitment and you work as much or as little as you want, such as transcription jobs like Rev.com.

I’ve made a lot of money with them, and you get paid in USD so that works out nicely for a Canadian like myself considering the conversion rate.

If you’re hurting for cash, you should use whatever time you have to try and make more income. Whether it be actually working, or studying to improve your skills, use your time wisely.

I hope these little frugal-living tips were able to provide you with some insight for your money-saving journey.

Saving money is rewarding and liberating and it can be super easy if you just put a little thought into it.

Want more money-saving tips? Check out my post 22 ways to save money when going green.

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10 Things You Shouldn't Do When Trying To Save Money (2024)


10 Things You Shouldn't Do When Trying To Save Money? ›

The 10% rule of investing states that you must save 10% of your income in order to maintain a comfortable lifestyle during retirement. This strategy, of course, isn't meant for everyone as it doesn't account for age, needs, lifestyle, and location.

What is the 10 savings rule? ›

The 10% rule of investing states that you must save 10% of your income in order to maintain a comfortable lifestyle during retirement. This strategy, of course, isn't meant for everyone as it doesn't account for age, needs, lifestyle, and location.

Why shouldn't you save all your money? ›

You don't want to keep your money at the bank because: It just degrades in value due to inflation. Your money isn't “working” for you. You can invest your money into growth assets rather then it sitting there.

Why saving money is not enough? ›

Not only for the survival needs after retirement, but to keep ready for unforeseen eventualities in life – which is full of uncertainties – one needs to save money. While saving money is essential, it's not enough, as inflation reduces the purchasing power of money over time.

What is the 20 rule for money? ›

Budget 20% for savings

In the 50/30/20 rule, the remaining 20% of your after-tax income should go toward your savings, which is used for heftier long-term goals. You can save for things you want or need, and you might use more than one savings account.

What is the 15 savings rule? ›

The 50/15/5 rule for spending and saving provides guidelines that could make budgeting a little easier. It allocates 50% of your income to essential expenses, 15% to retirement and 5% to short-term savings. The 50/15/5 rule could be a good approach for folks who want to prioritize saving.

Is $20,000 in savings good? ›

Having $20,000 in a savings account is a good starting point if you want to create a sizable emergency fund. When the occasional rainy day comes along, you'll be financially prepared for it. Of course, $20,000 may only go so far if you find yourself in an extreme situation.

Is it good to save $1000? ›

You'll often hear that it's good to save 15% to 20% of your income for retirement. Many people can't swing that, but even if you sock away $1,000 a year, that sum can go a long way. The more years you can save even just $1,000, the better off you'll be in retirement.

Do most people not save money? ›

The most recent figure, from September 2023, shows that, on average, Americans are saving 3.4% of their monthly income.

Does saving money make you richer? ›

A savings account won't do much to help you grow your net worth. Investing in tax-advantaged accounts can go a long way toward helping you save the money you need to be wealthy. You should take advantage of 401(k) and IRA accounts and buy assets that will help you earn generous returns.

What is the 70 20 10 rule for savings? ›

The 70-20-10 budget formula divides your after-tax income into three buckets: 70% for living expenses, 20% for savings and debt, and 10% for additional savings and donations. By allocating your available income into these three distinct categories, you can better manage your money on a daily basis.

What is the 60 20 20 rule for savings? ›

Put 60% of your income towards your needs (including debts), 20% towards your wants, and 20% towards your savings. Once you've been able to pay down your debt, consider revising your budget to put that extra 10% towards savings.

What is the 50 30 20 rule for savings? ›

The 50-30-20 rule recommends putting 50% of your money toward needs, 30% toward wants, and 20% toward savings. The savings category also includes money you will need to realize your future goals.

What is the 30 20 20 savings rule? ›

Key Takeaways. The 50/30/20 budget rule states that you should spend up to 50% of your after-tax income on needs and obligations that you must have or must do. The remaining half should be split between savings and debt repayment (20%) and everything else that you might want (30%).


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