Want to Spend Less Money in 2023? Do These 5 Things

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KEY POINTS

  • The start of a year is a good time to reassess your spending habits. 
  • There are steps you can take to make it easier to curb your spending -- and grow your savings.
  • Live on a budget, automate your savings, and change your shopping habits to save more in 2023. 

These moves could be your ticket to slashing your spending.

Are you spending too much money on a regular basis? If you're constantly running up against your credit card limit, and you frequently have to carry a balance forward into the following month, then it may be time to reevaluate your spending habits and try to cut back. And the start of a new year is a great time to implement changes that help you curb your spending and boost your savings. Here are some moves you can make to spend less in the course of 2023.

1. Stick to a budget

For many people, a budget can be a huge wake-up call. Once you're on a budget, you may have an easier time identifying areas where you can spend less. Or, you may be motivated to slash some expense categories altogether. 

If you've never followed a budget before, you should know that there are different budgeting apps you can use to make the process easy. Play around with a few until you find the perfect one.

2. Shop with cash instead of credit cards

When you're tempted to buy something out of the blue and have a credit card sitting there in your wallet, completing that purchase doesn't tend to be much of a challenge. But one way to take impulse buys off the table -- and reduce your spending on the whole -- is to get into the habit of shopping only with cash. 

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Of course, to pull this off, you'll need to make shopping lists ahead of time and estimate the cost of your purchases so you bring enough money with you. But if you're willing to make that effort, you may find that you end up spending much less at stores.

3. Ban the practice of shopping out of boredom

Many people spend their evening hours browsing the internet when they're trying to wind down, or when they don't have anything better to do. But shopping online to fill up free time is a practice that could end up costing you a lot of money. 

A better bet? Don't do it. Instead, find other ways to occupy your time. That could involve getting into a new podcast, streaming service, or novel you borrow from your local library.

4. Find a savings partner to keep you accountable

Spending money can bring you joy if you're buying things you like. And so you may need extra motivation to cut back on spending. That's why it pays to partner up with someone who has similar goals. If you enlist the help of an accountability buddy, you can work to keep each other in check. 

5. Take the option to spend a chunk of your paycheck off the table

The less money that lands in your checking account, the less you'll be able to spend. You can always set up an automatic transfer from your checking account to your savings to try to limit your spending, but let's face it -- banks make it easy to transfer that money right back if you're really tempted to use it.

Instead of setting up an automatic transfer to a regular savings account, arrange for money to land in a 401(k) plan or IRA each month. These plans effectively force you to leave your savings alone by penalizing you for early withdrawals. If you want to limit the amount you spend, locking your money up in an account you can't touch without serious repercussions is a good bet.

Cutting back on spending isn't an easy thing to do. But these moves could help you achieve that goal -- and close out 2023 feeling really proud of yourself.

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