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Mini Financial Challenges for Making Better Choices

Smart money management is all about choices. Choosing the more affordable or financially savvy option keeps you on track. So, we’ve rounded up mini financial challenges that can encourage you to take the budget-friendly route. Are you up for the savings?

Long-Lasting Investment Pieces vs. Trendy Clothes

Maximizing your wardrobe is all about carefully curating your closet. Rather than buying fast-fashion pieces, invest in versatile clothes designed with the quality and style to outlast the latest trends. You’ll save more in the long run by choosing high-impact basic items you can mix and match for dressier and casual ensembles. If your closet has a high turnover rate, start to rebuild it with fine-tuned shopping and neutral colors. Over time, you’ll start to spend less by avoiding those bargains and impulse purchases.

Meal Prep vs. Lunching Out

It’s no secret that eating lunch out every day is a costly habit — and preparing lunch at home is the better option for your wallet. Meal prepping requires some extra time and effort, but it’ll benefit your budget! Dreading the preparation? Check out these tips:

  • Make it into a Sunday ritual! Grab a coffee and enjoy the process.
  • Jam out to fun music or turn on a podcast while cooking and prepping.
  • Look online for easy and simple, yet tasty, recipes with minimal ingredients.
  • Crank up the crockpot and let the slow cooker do the work for you.

Reusing vs. Buying New

Stretch your dollars further by reusing, rather than buying new. This can mean checking books out from the library, borrowing items from friends and family and giving old furniture or clothes new life by upcycling. Also, there are so many options and apps that make it easy to buy reused:

  • Consignment stores offer discounted, pre-worn outdoor gear and attire.
  • Marketplace apps and sites serve as a “value exchange” marketplace for buying and selling a variety of previously owned items.
  • Many websites sell refurbished electronics ranging from smartphones to laptops and even vacuum cleaners.

Keep in mind, you can also make money selling your own used items on sites and apps like these.

Saying No vs. Saying Yes

Learning to say no can have a real impact on your finances — and it’s hard! There’s pressure to say yes to a dinner date, group trip or happy hour, plus who wants to miss out on the fun? But sometimes you have to make small sacrifices so that you stay committed to your big goals. People might miss you in those money-spending social settings, but you’ll feel good knowing you’re holding onto more of your money. One way to still keep your social life is to set up a FUNd category in your budget. Then, pick and choose what to join in on, as long as you spend within your set limits.

As you embrace these financial challenges by investing in versatile clothing, meal prep, buying reused and saying no, you’ll start to develop a more frugal lifestyle. Choosing the more affordable option may become a habit in other financial areas too. Every opportunity to save, no matter how little, makes a difference!

Curious about the differences between credit unions and banks?

Learn more here.

The material presented here is for educational purposes only, and is not intended to be used as financial, investment, or legal advice.