After updating my budget this month, I learned that I was spending entirely too much and needed to make some changes. I had been spending more than I was bringing home for many months. My bank accounts needed a quick infusion of cash while I worked on diagnosing my spending pattern and reverse the current trend. Here are the methods I used to reduce monthly spending and increase income to the tune of $3,045 in a matter of days.
- Delay Car Loan Payments – I have always overpaid by $12 on my monthly car loan payments. Over a few years, this has resulted in my loan being paid 4 months in advance. I called the bank which owns my loan and verified I was paid in advance and they did not need an additional payment for 4 months. This move deferred spending of $1000 over 4 months.
- Split Bills – Depending on the company you are paying, a bill can be spread across multiple months. I opted to pay half of my $384 insurance payment in October and the other in December. The service charge for this was only $2.00, which was worth it to me.
- Cash in Savings Bonds – I gathered $1000 worth of U.S. Savings Bonds which had been given to me as a gift over two decades ago and deposited them in my bank account through a teller at the bank.
- Sell Stock – This method was certainly the least creative of the group. Nonetheless, it was a great way to transfer $900 to my bank account. It took a few days for the money to post to my Scottrade account and the subsequent check to arrive at my home.
- Sell Unused Items on Cragislist – My patio furniture had been through a few seasons, and I wanted to replace it anyway. I sold the furniture on Craigslist over a weekend, picked up a quick $100, and won’t have to shovel around furniture on my deck this winter.
- Cash in PNC Points – Reward programs are great, but it’s important to realize that the points they offer may expire. I slowly accumulate points through my accounts at PNC Bank, mostly through automatic bill payment. Since these points were expiring soon, I cashed them in for gifts to use during the holidays worth $45.
There you have it. $3,045 in savings and deferred payments in only a few days. It’s important to note that not all of the methods listed above actually saved me money. Rather, some of the methods just deferred or reduced periodic payments, which allowed some much-needed financial “breathing room” for my bank account. Regardless of how well my particular methods may apply to your financial situation, the process of identifying liquid assets and converting them to cash can be followed by everyone. Let me know your tips for finding quick cash in the comments!
Notes: Featured images (mixed cash), courtesy of stopnlook.
Category: Personal Finance