Setting yourself up for financial success doesn’t have to mean total revamp of your finances. If you can't make a big dent in your monthly expenses, like refinancing your mortgage or selling an unneeded vehicle to eliminate a car payment, look for lots of little dents that can add up:
- Save $10 a week by having one less fast food meal and to-go coffee; or rent a DVD instead of going out to the movies - that might save about $500 a year.
- Lower the thermostat in the winter by 1 degree and save 3 to 5 percent on your utility bill - saving $5 a month equals $60 a year.
- Drive slower. Every 5 mph you drive over 60 mph costs about $0.24 per gallon of gas. Properly inflate your tires, keep the engine tuned and cut out aggressive driving habits and you'll save even bigger bucks.
- Shop around for better home and car insurance rates, and consider raising low deductibles. (Just make sure your coverage has kept pace with inflation.)
- Balance your checkbook. Overdraft fees can really add up, so make sure you keep an eye on your accounts. We can help make this easier with online banking and free overdraft protection.