Summer is such a special time – especially after the long winters we tend have here in Simcoe County. For anyone who’s been trying to focus on reducing debt or saving up to buy a home, the temptation to spend money during these precious warm months can really put a damper on those financial goals. Weddings to attend, vacations, fishing trips, day camps for the kids and all the concerts and activities going on can quickly take any budget way off track. Here are several easy ways to stick your budget – while still having a terrific summer to remember!
Make a plan & prioritize
Make a list of the essential summer activities you and your family need to commit to and set a budget for each activity. When you’re organized and have things on a schedule, there’s less chance for last minute surprises that take a bit out of your bank account. Another good tip is to watch for sales at the grocery store and stock your cupboards and freezer with summer goodies so you aren’t tempted by eating out as often. Although you may have to say no to a few invitations or events that just don’t work for your budget, people who know you have an important financial goal will understand.
Re-discover your town
You don’t need to travel far and wide to have a great time and make special memories in the summer. Here in Simcoe County for example, we are lucky to have so many great beaches, parks, forests, festivals, fireworks, air shows, and other events that are low to no-cost! Be a ‘tourist’ in your own town and take advantage of the many things to see and do. You can pack your summer (and your picnic basket) with endless enjoyment…without having a scary credit card bill at the end of it all.
Turn your home into a summer oasis
You can entertain at home by hosting pot-luck BBQs, games nights, bonfires, and making your yard or deck a special oasis where you and the kids can enjoy good ol’ fashioned fun! Get out the sprinkler, tent, soccer balls and so on, or better yet, hit up some garage sales and see what kinds of games, puzzles, camping gear and more you can find for a mere few dollars!
There are some terrific free apps to make use of that you can easily download on your phone. These handy apps can track your spending, give warnings to prevent blowing that budget, and give you encouragement and progress updates to keep you motivated. When you’ve got financial goals, making use of all the help you can get is always a good idea.
Find ways to make extra money
If you’re hoping to pay for something special this summer but just don’t have the extra funds, put on your thinking cap and find clever ways to make some extra money. For example, do you have unused vacation or sick days you’ve banked up that you can cash out? Have you considered having a garage sale or selling unused items online? Maybe there’s a part-time job you can do the odd evening or weekend to help fuel your summer fun! It’s all up to you, just make sure you save time for some much-needed rest and relaxation; after all, that’s what summer is all about.
Reaching your financial goals is possible – by having a clear strategy, keeping your credit score in good shape or saving for your down payment, you can still enjoy all the fun things life has to offer without feeling like you’re missing out. If you’re working towards buying that first home or have other financial objectives that are important to you, come talk to me. As an experienced mortgage broker in Barrie, I don’t just find the best mortgage solutions for my clients, I help them make a financial plan and reach those goals! Connect with me today to setup an appointment at (705) 315-0516 and let’s get started!