Americans Are Cutting Back on These 5 Things in Order to Invest More Today. Should You?

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  • If money is tight, you may have to give certain things up to free up funds to invest with.
  • Doing so could mean setting yourself up for a more financially secure future.

A modest sacrifice now could help you grow a lot of wealth for later.

This year, a lot of people have had to hit pause on their IRA or brokerage account contributions due to inflation. So if you're one of them, you're in good company.

But investing money gives you a chance to grow it into a larger sum over time. And investing even a small amount of money today in an IRA or brokerage account could mean ending up with a giant pile of cash when you're older.

In fact, you'll often hear that it's important to fund your IRA consistently to help ensure that you have enough money to live comfortably in retirement. So skipping out on even a year's worth of contributions could negatively impact you down the line.

Now if money has gotten very tight for you, you may need to give up certain luxuries in order to keep investing. But that's a route worth taking. And you won't be taking it alone. According to a recent Wells Fargo survey, Americans are giving up these specific expenses in order to free up more money to invest.

1. Entertainment

We all like to stay busy and occupied. But if you're willing to swap movie theater outings with borrowed DVDs from a friend or your local library, you can carve out more cash for investing purposes.

2. Personal spending, such as clothing

You may have no choice but to spend money on work attire. But if you need money to invest with, it could pay to cut back on non-work clothing -- especially if you already have a pretty well-stocked wardrobe.

3. Restaurant meals

Dining out can be a very fun thing to do. Not only can it serve as a social outlet, but there's something to be said for getting to try new foods and not having to clean up in the kitchen afterward. But restaurants commonly charge notoriously high markups on the meals they serve. A dish that costs you $30 in a restaurant might cost you just $6 to prepare at home. So if you're willing to cut back on dining out for a bit, you might make good headway in funding your IRA.

4. Travel and vacations

It's nice to explore new places and get a break from the daily grind. But if you're willing to go the staycation route instead, you can free up a nice chunk of cash and put it to work in the stock market.

5. Online subscriptions

Many people subscribe to services like streaming content, and that can be a nice way to escape reality and enjoy your downtime. But if you're willing to cut back from, say, three streaming services to just one, you can take the money you're not spending and invest it instead.

These days, it may be harder than usual to find money to invest with due to inflation and its impact on living costs. But if you're willing to cut back on some non-essential spending, you may find that you're able to pad your brokerage account or IRA nicely. And while it might take a while to reap the benefits of doing so, you're apt to be thankful down the line for having made that choice.

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