Q Hello Cookies! I
just saw your television show for the first time and loved it! You helped a mom
find an extra $900 each month to help her and her daughter save for their
futures. I'm a single girl with my own six-year-old business. I don't make a
ton of money and finances are always a bit tight, but I want to pay off my line
of credit and put some money away for emergencies. How can I do this without
causing myself more stress?
A It's easier than
you think to find money without changing your lifestyle or creating stress. The
simplest way to do this is to uncover hidden money that you already have in
your life. Some common places to find that extra cash include:
Bank fees: Review your bank statements and find out how much
you are paying in fees and service charges. Find a bank account that fits your
spending habits or switch to a no-fee account. We've found that many people are
paying $20 to $50 every month.
.>> Hidden money uncovered: $20-$50 each month.
Your Phone: For long distance calls, the most affordable
rates are often achieved with phone cards. By using these phone cards in
combination with your cellphone, you can get rid of the cost of a home phone
line, which saves at least $30 a month.
.>> Hidden money uncovered: $30 each month.
Car: Take a minute and ask yourself, "Do I really need
a car?" Two of the Smart Cookies have gotten rid of their cars and are
saving $600 a month.
But if you do need a car, there are still ways you can cut
back to save money and help the Earth at the same time. Can you walk or take
transit to work? If so, you can scale back your insurance, spend less money on
gas and save approximately $100 or more a month.
.>> Hidden money uncovered: $100 each month.
Groceries: Be smart about your grocery shopping. It sounds
simple, but shopping with a list and shopping once a week instead of every two
weeks can save you money and cut back on food that is going to waste.
Also, consider cooking a veggie meal once a week and getting
your fruit and veggies from a local market, not a chain store.
By following these simple rules, we each save an average of
$50 a month.
.>> Hidden money uncovered: $50 each month.
Keep in mind that depending on your spending, you can find
even more hidden money in your life!
In order to stop throwing money away in interest, use the
largest portion of your newfound money to pay off your line of credit. Put the
remaining cash into a high-interest savings account and give yourself the peace
of mind you deserve!
If you have questions for the Smart Cookies or want to share
your confessions, please e-mail smartcookies @metronews.ca.
Don't forget to check us out this Wednesday on W network in
our new time slot at 9 p.m.
The Smart Cookies show you their way to financial freedom.
If you want to be smart, rich and fabulous, you have come to the right place!
Tune in Wednesday night at 9 p.m. EST/PST on the W Network. Be sure to visit
smartcookies.com to get new money tips and sign up for our newsletter.