5 Money Saving Tips In Your 20s You Never Thought You'd Follow, But Do Now
Life comes with a lot of little surprises. Your best friends may throw you a party on your 25th birthday, full of confetti and cocktails. Your significant other may get down on one knee and propose during a cozy dinner at home. You may win a trip to Europe after calling into a radio contest, or find an extra few French fries at the bottom of your take-out bag. It's all beautiful and exciting, because these scenarios are unexpected. There are some money saving tips in your 20s that you never thought you'd follow, and things you'd never thought you'd do, too. Spoiler alert: You followed them and did them all. *Cue the gasps.*
You see, you always knew you needed to focus on your finances. And now, you're feeling grateful that you did. You're grateful that you worked towards a career, developed a savings account, or decided to stay in on a Saturday night to avoid overspending. It paid off in the long run, or should I say, the present. You're feeling the rewards of your decisions right now.
Sure, you may have been a little disappointed or frustrated along the way. Your FOMO kicked in the second you saw your best friends dancing until dawn all over social media. But, you learned a beautiful lesson along the way — one you'll like learn more than once: Working on your finances and following these five money saving tips is well-worth it.
1. Saying "No" To Going Out On A Saturday Night
Back in college, you lived for the weekends. You spent your entire week at the library, working away on your latest assignments and getting your essays turned in on time. Then, Saturday came along, and you were free as a bird to dance until dawn with your best friends.
You never expected you'd eventually turn down these opportunities to save a little money. But, you've found that the easiest way to build up your bank account is to ditch the local restaurants and bar scenes. Instead, you find enjoyment out of staying in and watching movies, or snuggling up with your pup. Girl, same.
2. Tracking Your Living Expenses And Where Your Money Goes
Growing up, you may have had one dream for your 20s: That, one day, you'd move and live on the West Coast. You would get a loft in your favorite city, and drink iced coffee in the sunshine every day. Not to mention, you'd run into celebrities casually walking their dogs on the sidewalks.
But, as you got older, you realized that it's expensive AF to go across the country or to get an apartment of your own — let alone a loft in Los Angeles like the one in New Girl.
So, you moved into your own place, then began tracking your living expenses and where your money goes. You figured out how much you should spend on food, entertainment, and the cable bills, and cut costs where you could.
3. Living At Home Longer Than You Originally Planned
On the contrary to moving out and being on your own, you may have lived at home longer than you originally planned in your 20s. You stayed in your hometown in your childhood room, just to save a little a money.
Living at home taught you to be more financially independent and really helped you put your priorities in place. Not to mention, it gave you some quality time to spend with your parents and siblings, and made you really appreciate where you grew up.
Now, you may have that apartment on the West Coast or in New York City, and feel better than ever. That's because you didn't rush yourself and created a budget that will work for now, and for the years to come.
4. Surrounding Yourself With Resourceful Friends
In your 20s, you've learned to be very resourceful. You've gotten good at buying items that aren't single-use, and finding many purposes for a mug or a bowl. It's helped you save a lot of money every day.
You learned these skills, though, by surrounding yourself with the right people. You may have grown apart from the friends who found every reason to spend money, or couldn't see the value in getting creative and being grateful for what they have.
In the moment, it felt like the worst thing, well, ever. (Friendship breakups are never easy.) But, you may have learned that it was also necessary to your finances and growing as a person in the "real world." You started hanging out with other people, and found new friends who appreciate making brunch at home or staying in on a Friday night — the Monica to your Rachel, if you will.
5. Paying Your Bills On Time
Your 20s has been the decade of realizing that your parents were right when they gave you advice. They told you not to spend a bunch on money and rack up bills on your credit cards at the mall. They told you to collect coupons or deals where you could. You wouldn't trade those pieces of advice for anything in this world.
But, possibly the most important piece of advice was this: Pay your bills — your rent checks, car payments, and the five dollars you owe to the dentist — on time. Don't let the late fees and charges pile up, and take care of them as soon as possible.
So, you've followed it. You've taken a dive head-first into your finances, and scheduled your payments so that they're never a few days past due. It's kind of a surprise to you that you actually followed these tips, but it truly worked out for the better.