On the blog today, welcome new guest contributor, Samantha! Samantha is a media relations specialist for Caliber Collision. Today she’s sharing: How to Save Money for a New Car.
Saving for a new vehicle can seem extremely daunting, but by planning ahead and working hard, it can easily be done. By following these simple tips, you will be able to save money in unexpected ways. Every dollar you are able to save reduces your interest expense which adds money to your family budget when you look at the big picture. So pull out your calculator, grab some pen and paper, and let’s start saving!
When saving, sticking to your budget is crucial and the best way is to eliminate everything you can live without. You should take whatever you use to track your money (bank statement, credit card statement, money journal, etc.) and categorize your spending into the following:
- Eating Out
- plus whatever other categories make up your family’s budget.
Next, highlight each transaction to the corresponding category, and you will easily be able to see where your money is being spent. You need to decide what matters most to your family, and each family will have different priorities as to which areas they would rather cut. Some families would rather reduce their clothing and entertainment expenses while others would rather reduce their travel budget. Find what works best for your family and stick to it!
Once you pay off your vehicle, you should start placing the money allocated for your car payments into a saving account for a new car. When the time comes to buy a new car, you can then pay cash to avoid hefty interest rates or at least place a sizable down payment on your new ride.
Cut frivolous spending.
Frivolous spending eats up more of your budget than you think. Of course, reducing your spending does not mean you have to sacrifice on your family’s lifestyle; you just need to think outside of the box for ways to maintain your current lifestyle while spending a lower amount of money. Instead of spending $40 at the movie theatre, check out a movie at your local library; and, perhaps you can make a crock-pot meal rather than spending $30 at a fast food place after a busy day. Impulse buying is definitely a no-no, and watch out for buying something just because it is on sale (how may pairs of yoga pants do you actually need…even if they are on clearance?).
You will be surprised at how much money you can save by simply thinking outside of the box and controlling your money.
Find a side job.
Side jobs are a wonderful way to save money, and if you can, you should place all of these earnings into your new car fund. For teenagers saving for their first car, great options are babysitting, lawn care, and tutoring; and for adults, you could work as a direct sales representative, cater for special events, or freelance in your industry. Even if you cannot leave your home regularly, plenty of side jobs are still available to you. Most importantly, find an area you are passionate about and start looking for a way to plug in.
If you have stellar graphic design skills, you could open your own online shop with invitations, blog headers, and other custom features, or if you enjoy crafts, you could open a shop featuring calligraphy work, selling hair bows or making some other good.
Sell items you no longer use.
Chances are you have quite a few items around your house that you are no longer using. You should gather them up and either have a yard sale or sell them online. Look through clothing, dishware, small appliances, books, movies, toys, closets, your attic and garage, and any other area that accumulates items. If you have not used the item in the past 6 months, you probably will not miss it; and you will make money to put toward your new vehicle. With technology at our fingertips, using apps like Poshmark, ThreadUp, Carousell, eBay, and OfferUp will help you sell items from the comfort of your own smartphone.
Check for rebates and deals.
Of course, you might have to buy a vehicle earlier than expected, but if you can, you should time your new car purchase to when dealerships are offering huge incentives and rebates. This will lower your total cost which means you have to save a lesser amount of money. A win-win for your savings account!
Collect your loose change.
It would take a lot of nickels and dimes to pay for a new car, but every little bit makes a difference. Set a jar on your counter and empty your pockets each day. You and your family can watch the collection grow, and once you have filled the entire jar, you should roll the contents so you can finally see how much money you accumulated. You will be surprised by how much money you will save this way.
Carole here! Want a “New Truck Fund” money jar like the one above? Here’s a link (this post contains some affiliate links for your convenience. Click here to read my full disclosure policy.): New Truck Fund Money Jar. Or, want a piggy bank for yourself or someone special? Here’s a link: Piggy Banks.
Back to Samantha – If you start saving now, you will have a sizable amount to place toward your next new car, and do not be intimidated by the amount you need. Instead, focus on fixing your everyday habits so that saving money becomes second-nature and watch the money start to roll in. It will all be worth it when you are able to purchase your new vehicle using your saved funds.
Samantha handles media relations for Caliber Collision, and in her spare time, she enjoys swimming, traveling, baking, and playing with her puppy, Emma. She likes to make a difference in her local community by volunteering at several organizations.
Want more ideas for saving money? Check out these posts from Toot Sweet 4 Two’s archives:
You May Also Like:
Your (Ridiculously Easy) Financial To-Do List by Suze Orman from Oprah.com
How to Start a Budget (When You Suck at Budgeting) by Rosemarie from The Busy Budgeter
How We Save $1 Million Dollars and Became Financial Independent at 30 by Amanda and Travis from Budgets Are Sexy