By : Lidia Staron
Save. It’s what all financial experts tell us. We certainly don’t know what lies in the future and in order to be financially secure, we have to save, save and save.
Well, saving is easy especially if you have a steady income.
But what if you don’t?
What if you are a freelancer, a part-time employee, or a budding entrepreneur who don’t have a regular paycheck?
Saving Money When You Don’t Have a Regular Paycheck
It’s really challenging to balance your monthly cash flow when you have a steady stream of expenses but unpredictable income. However, saving money without a regular paycheck is definitely possible. Here’s how you can get started.
Get organized – separate all your savings goals.
You probably have three or more savings goals – one for your child’s education, another for travel, and another for health and emergencies, for example. While you can keep all of them in one savings account, it can be difficult to keep track of all your savings goals this way and there’s a big chance that you may overlook one or two. The best route is to get organized. If possible, consider opening separate saving accounts for each of your goal. This way, you can easily keep track of your savings. Or, you can create a financial journal wherein you write down how much goes to which savings goals for easy reference.
Pay yourself a regular salary
Depending on how long you’ve been freelancing or working part-time, you should be able to calculate your average monthly income. This will give you a ballpark figure of how much you should pay yourself. Better yet, do it by percentage. For instance, commit to paying yourself a salary of 20% of your earnings for the month. This way, regardless of how little you earn for a specific time period, you still have something to deposit in your savings account.
When it comes to savings, a little goes a long way. Never underestimate a few bucks of savings that you can do on a daily or weekly basis, depending on what suits you. As your budget adjusts to the savings and you see your money grows, you will be more motivated to save more and increase your savings threshold.
Make your unpredictable expenses more predictable
The biggest drawback of not knowing your expenses is the possibility of overspending. Take time to list down your monthly expenses so you have a clear idea of how much you should set aside beforehand. What are your fixed monthly bills? Start with your personal expenses then make adjustments for unexpected expenses or miscellaneous. This way, you won’t end up securing another cash advance just to cover the bills you missed.
Pay your bills a month in advance
Although paying your bills on the due dates gets the job done, you would absolutely have less worries and stress knowing that you’ve settled all your bills for a certain month way in advance. You’ve probably experienced this a lot of times before – losing all your money on expenses even before the next paycheck arrives or not really having the chance to enjoy your money because every time money comes in, it simply passes through your hands down to your credit card dues, mortgage, or electricity bills. When you get to receive your income whole, you are much more in control of spending it and allocating it to both your savings and expenses.
Just because you don’t have a regular paycheck doesn’t mean you can’t save at all. What you need to do is really commit to prioritizing savings over unnecessary spending. Getting more organized with your cash flow, paying yourself a salary, micro-saving, identifying your monthly expenses, and being ahead of schedule when paying your bills are among the best strategies to be more in control of your finances. Even more, you get to save money not only for the rainy days, but most importantly for your future.
About Lidia Staron
Lidia Staron is a part of Content and Marketing team at opencashadvance.com. She contributes articles about the role of finance in the strategic-planning and decision-making process. You can find really professional insights in her writings.