How to save money during quarantine?
April 08, 2020
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The quarantine is going to have an unexpected effect in the pocket of many Americans. Some expenses may increase - like groceries, since you are staying at home 24/7 - but many of them will decrease as well. While this time, you will not be getting your Starbucks every morning, not your midday meals outside or the after office drinks with your coworkers. You will also be saying goodbye going to the cinema on the weekends or your night sessions at the gym. Cutting off these activities could help you save some good bucks.
If you want to focus on saving money during this quarantine, the first thing to do is to establish how much you usually spend in recreational activities and how much of that money you could put towards savings. This means that your savings may come from cancelling memberships that you will not be able to use, cutting off expenses from places that you will not be able to go, not living the lifestyle you usually manage.
As a result of this, we suggest separating that money in a different savings account in order to identify how much you were really able to save during these months. By putting it in a different account, you will not only be able to monetize savings but also separate it to have an emergency fund different from the one you usually have. This should be seen as an extraordinary amount of money that can cover whatever you want: emergencies, due debts, a large purchase, investment on a small business or stock market, etc.
To get a good savings account that will help you maximize the earnings on it, you could take advantage of the good savings accounts that many financial entities are currently offering. To check out more about these accounts, click here.
Since saving is not as easy as it sounds, we give you some advice to facilitate your financial decisions during these years:
Do not overbuy food when doing grocery shopping
Your grocery bills are probably going to increase during these days because most people will have to prepare their meals at home. A trick to get more out of your groceries is to make a weekly menu, which will stop you from buying more than you need. This will also allow you to go less to the supermarket and have less risk of contagion.
Additionally, many people will start eating more at home because of anxiety and boredness. To this, it is important to keep your mind busy and avoid buying excess food on a whim. Another good trick is to not go grocery shopping when you are hungry!
Avoid online shopping because you are bored
Right now, online shops are are continually knocking on the door. They are also offering a lot of promotions, discounts and benefits for the online shoppers. It is understandable that brands are making their greatest efforts to maintain their business. However, it is important to be a rational consumer and assess if you really need those items right now. Avoid buying because it is at a good price but analyze if it is a real need instead. Ask yourself this question, are you shopping because it is necessary or because you are bored?
Claim the refund of cancelled services/activities/events
The gym membership, a cancelled flight, the entrance to a festival that will not happen… There are many activities like those that will not happen. Under these circumstances, you have the right to get a refund for all these types of activities. Be aware that some companies will not offer cash refund but will apply different measurements. Contact them to make sure you are getting for what you paid somehow!
Have a responsible consumption at home
Spending a lot of time at home should not mean spending more money. However, some utility bills may increase. The key to contain the increase of your water, energy and gas bills is to make a responsible consumption.
Make sure to take some small actions in order to avoid your extra spending:
- Do not turn up the thermostat too much. For each extra degree, between 7% and 10% more energy will be consumed.
- Turn off all the devices that you are not using. Even when you have them in stand by, it is wasting some energy that could be saved.
- Doing your laundry with cold water or not having the temperature of the fridge too low will help you use less energy.