It’s been months or even years since you’ve been on a decent vacation. Your limited budget, however, requires you to save in advance before taking a holiday. Unfortunately, even after cutting back on unnecessary expenses and limiting your spending, the amount you’re setting aside pales in comparison to what you need for your trip. Unless you’re going to spend money you don’t have or give up on your travel plans altogether; you have to find a reasonable way to reach your vacation savings goal.
There are some expenses that you can’t get around from housing and transportation to food and clothes. While prioritizing a vacation over your basic needs isn’t ideal, there are ways to lower these costs that will free up some extra cash.
Saving Money on Rent
Most people know that you can save money on your mortgage by refinancing, but what if you live in a rental property? While you might assume that your monthly rent amount is set in stone, there is room to lower the costs. If your lease is up for renewal, you can try negotiating a lower rent with your landlord. Foregoing, certain amenities are another option to lower your rent. For example, if your landlord was considering an update in the kitchen or bathroom of your rental home, you can opt-out in exchange for a reduced rental rate.
Lastly, bartering with your landlord could work to your advantage. Offer to handle any property issues under $200, do your lawn maintenance, or use your handy skills to complete simple maintenance jobs for other tenants. This reduces the out of pocket expenses for the landlord allowing them room in the budget to offer you a lower rent.
DIY Car Repair and Maintenance
Owning a car is convenient, but also expensive. Even if you don’t have a car note, you’re still financially responsible for the upkeep, which can quickly drain your budget. If you have the necessary experience, tools, and equipment, you can reach your vacation savings goals by performing your car maintenance, repair, and updates. As mechanics and automotive experts charge an arm and a leg for labor, you can save yourself hundreds of dollars each year by doing it yourself.
Labor costs aren’t the only way to save money on your car maintenance and repairs; you can also save a ton of money by purchasing your auto parts. You can find everything from a Fiesta ST exhaust system to brake pads and air filters for an Impala LTZ online for a fraction of what you’d pay at an auto shop.
DIY Home Maintenance and Repairs
Keeping up with the health, safety, and functionality of a home isn’t cheap. From the rooftop to the foundation, regular tasks must be carried out to ensure your place remains intact. While there’s no getting around these costs, you can lower them significantly by doing your home maintenance and repairs.
There are resources like online courses, how-to guides, and instructional videos you can use to learn how to do everything from changing the air filters in your furnace to clearing the gutters. A word of caution, however, trying to complete jobs beyond your area of expertise could cost you more than it’s worth. Anything that could put you in harm’s way or require advanced knowledge should be left to contractors.
Produce Your Own Food
Coupons, shopping for store brands, and using lists are effective ways to save on the cost of groceries, but feeding your family is still expensive. You can lower these costs and dedicate more to your vacation savings goals by growing and conserving your food. Starting a garden that produces the fresh fruits, vegetables, spices, and herbs your family needs to survive costs a lot less than weekly trips to the supermarket. It doesn’t hurt that it’s also a lot healthier for you.
Many people set money aside to take a holiday, but few reach their intended goal. If you’ve already considered common tips like cutting back on spending or eliminating unnecessary expenses from your budget but continue to miss your mark, you may need to dig deeper. Using the strategies mentioned above to save on your essential monthly costs, you can find more money and reach your vacation savings goals faster.