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Note: Today we have a guest post written by Angela Pearse, a blogger for Zumper.com.
If you’re wondering how to save money on rent, then you’re not alone. Rent prices have increased exorbitantly to the point where it’s not uncommon to spend 30% of your income on a monthly lease.
Renting does have a few benefits over owning a home, namely you don’t have to spend money on maintenance or repairs. You’re also not fixed to one abode, if you want to move to a different location or an apartment that offers cheaper rent, you can.
Getting ahead isn’t that difficult if you have the know-how, check out these tips for how to save money on rent, as well as managing money.
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1. Look for ways to discount your rent.
Unlike paying a mortgage, you can negotiate on your rent to keep costs down. The best approach for doing this is before you sign the lease:
– Does the apartment have a car park you don’t need? Offer it to your landlord to rent elsewhere in exchange for discounted rent.
– Are there any less attractive elements of the apartment or building that you could use as leverage to negotiate a lower rent?
– If you can afford it, offer to pay a few months upfront for a discount, but repay your savings each month so you’re not out of pocket.
And when you re-sign for another fixed period:
– If your landlord wants to increase the rent once your lease is up, you don’t have to accept it, but be prepared to move out if they aren’t prepared to negotiate.
– Offer to sign an extended lease for a discount in rent, the stability of having a good tenant can make a landlord keen cut you a deal.
2. Make a budget and stick to it.
This is easier said than done if you’re not used to having a set amount to spend each week and tend to live paycheck to paycheck. But it’s a good idea to start a savings habit sooner rather than later. A budget gives you peace of mind knowing that all your bills are covered and how much you have to play with each week or month. It also gives you more control over your money and where it’s going.
Not sure how to budget? Follow these tips for creating a basic budget:
1. Write down your income from all sources over a month:
2. Write down your regular expenses by looking over bills and receipts:
– Utility bills
– Gym membership
3. Minus your expenses from your income.
What’s leftover is the money that you can divvy up to spend or plan to put aside for certain savings goals. The beauty of a budget is that you can calculate exactly how long it will take you to reach those savings goals, whatever they may be.
Need more budget help? These money saving tips can help you ‘trim the fat’.
Related post: How To Save Money By Redeeming FREE Gift Cards and CASH Online (Amazon, Walmart, Starbucks, Visa, and more!)
3. Automate your savings.
If you’re hardwired to spend rather than save, then set up an automatic payment from your chequing account into a savings account on the day you get paid. If the money has been removed immediately then you’ll feel like you’re not really trying to save. You won’t be tempted to go on a shopping spree for clothes you don’t need or have an expensive night out on the town with nothing to show for it except a hangover.
This is not to say you shouldn’t treat yourself, it’s important to spend a little now and again, so you don’t feel like you’re working for nothing.
4. Spend less on food.
By cutting back unnecessary spending on food, including your weekly grocery shop, you might be surprised at how much you can save. These tips will give you some good pointers on how to save money on groceries:
– Don’t shop for random items and hope to cook a decent meal; plan a menu and create a list of ingredients before you shop.
– Look out for items you need that are on sale or discounted.
– Include 1 to 2 meat-free meals as an affordable alternative.
– Eat local produce that is in season, avoid expensive imported goods.
– Never shop on an empty stomach.
– Resist buying items that aren’t on your list.
– Buy cheaper, generic brands for food staples like flour, sugar, oil, butter etc.
While you don’t have to track every cent religiously, being aware of what you spend and looking for ways to save money on rent and bills can help you build wealth, and meet your financial goals, whether it’s travel, a new car, or even just a rainy day account for emergencies.
Angela Pearse is a blogger for Zumper who frequently combines travel with freelance writing. She’s passionate about Art Deco hotels, historical novels, Netflix, hiking and healthy living.
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