Learn from your stay-at-home savings
You might be eager to do some retail therapy as stores reopen. Before you hit your favorite shops, take a look at your checking and credit card accounts. You’ve likely spent less money shopping and dining out. Maybe you’ve saved on gas, grooming and dry cleaning.
Take a look at your pre-pandemic spending and saving habits vs. your stay-at-home habits. Make a list of ways you can continue savings habits into the future. For example, you might:
- Cook more meals at home and take leftovers for lunch when you return to work.
- Enjoy a new perspective on weighing needs vs. wants before you buy.
- Consider spending less on “fast fashion” or disposable goods and opt for items that will last.
- Adopt a low-maintenance style that requires less upkeep on hair, nails and dry cleaning.
- List the expenses you know will resume and “need” purchases for the coming season.
- List the concerts or sporting events you planned to attend this year and how much you would have spent on tickets or related travel and lodging.
- Cancel subscriptions to apps, games, magazines, etc. that you aren’t using.
Once you have a list of where you can save and a plan for where you will spend, stick to your monthly budget. Use the savings to bolster emergency savings, build your nest egg or pay down debt faster.