2017 (Monthly) Money Saving Challenge
This is the month where IRAS will come knocking on your door (well, not quite literally) for tax payments. If you're lucky to get some form of subsidies and tax grants, then remember to put those straight into your savings, or to pay off some more debt. Don't forget to track how much you've paid this year, so you can try to reduce your tax liabilities for next year later on.
Now that you've successfully completed the Coffee Challenge, how about going on a cafe fast? Each time your friends propose going to a cafe for a meal, suggest the local hawker or coffeeshop instead. I love Singaporean food, don't you?
Otherwise known as the Spend & Save challenge, the idea here is to save $1 for every $1 you spend. Your biggest expenditure this month will probably be on your June holiday travel, so be sure to challenge yourself to put that same amount back into your savings (and grow it for a future holiday!)
With half a year left to go, how much debt do you have left to repay? Perhaps take this month to evaluate your debt and consider if refinancing will make more sense and give you more savings in return.
I studied previously in the U.S. after taking a student loan for it. If you're in a similar situation, or you're thinking of going for further studies in the U.S. and will have a student loan to service, there are companies like Earnest who help evaluate and lower your rates, including customized payment plans that can fit into your profile.
With the Coffee and Cafe Challenge successfully completed, try staying away from all alcohol-related activities (happy hour drinks / clubbing) this month! With the high taxes in Singapore, alcohol isn't cheap and you'll find that your savings will be significantly boosted once this is out of the equation. You'll also be rewarded with a flatter tummy by the end of the month!
After our May challenge, I trust that you've garnered a better appreciation for local food and takeaways? This month, try to see if you can spend even lesser on takeouts (maybe try bringing your own meals). Take the money saved to repay even more of your debts.
See if you can go without shopping for an entire month! This only refers to items that you would buy for your personal use - makeup, clothes, shoes, bags, etc. You already have plenty of these anyway, and there might be better sales next month if you need to stock up!
Instead of blowing your budget on Christmas gifts for your loved ones, how about making handmade presents instead? They're not just cheaper, but also infinitely more thoughtful. Here are more tips for reining in your Christmas budget!
Good luck saving, and be sure to update me on how you're faring!