No, this is not a post on the famous rap song, nor am I recommending that you follow any of the lyrics from the Tupac or Master P songs. However, I am often asked the question: “How can I get more out of my paycheck?” There are plenty of things you can do to stretch those dollars in your pocket.
A few years ago there was a Wall Street Journal survey1 that asked “If you were to face a $2,000 unexpected expense in the next month, how would you get the funds you need?” Only 24.9% of respondents reported being certainly able to come up with $2,000 in 30 days for an unanticipated repair or expense. It begs the question you should ask if you have the emergency reserves for these expenses.
Here are a few things you can do to prepare for that unexpected expense:
- Know the difference between wants and needs
- Pay off credit cards (you probably do not need the item if you can’t pay the bill at the end of the month)
- Pay yourself first
- Reduce grocery bills
- Reduce phone / cable bills
- Clip (and USE) coupons
- Save your pay raises, don’t spend them
- Shop smarter (especially big ticket items), learn to negotiate
- Learn to say “NO“
Let me know what Your Smart Money Move is for turning 15 cents into a dollar.