Saving money in 2018: Tips to keep you on track

Updated: Jan. 4, 2018 at 4:29 PM CST
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LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Saving money is something that tops many to-do lists, especially around the new year. It is one of the most common resolutions every year.

"I think all of us know what we should do. It's that, in that moment when you have to make a decision, do you have the personal discipline to delay purchasing the item that you really, really want and I think that's hard for all of us to do," said President of AimBank in Lubbock Jonathan Hill.

Hill says his first tip for saving money in the new year is to set your priorities.

"You define what's important to you. And as you're making decisions throughout the year financially, you can say, 'does this financial decision get me closer to a priority that I've already set?' or 'does it get me further away from that priority?' And if it get's you further away, it's easy to walk away from that decision, and say we're not going to do that right now."

His second tip comes as a recommendation; to take advantage of financial software like budgeting websites and apps. If you're a visual person, having software that allows you to see what it will actually cost you to purchase an item and how long it will take you to pay for it, may help you in making a smart decision on the purchase. Hill says the software and personal discipline is the key to it.

Hill's top pics for the software are Mvelopes and Mint and YouNeedABudget.

Mvelopes is a website based on the traditional envelope style of saving. Once you put away the money, it's gone. There is a way to test drive the software for free.

Mint has a free version of budgeting that also allows you to pay your bills and manage your money. The program allows you to create budgets, and see suggestions based on your spending. It will also track and pay bills and send alerts and schedule payments.

You Need A Budget is Hill's top recommendation for software.

"The one thing I like about this website is that it does have a very good support system and has classes you can take to learn how to do use these tools a little better if you need to."

But that particular software can cost you more than $80 per year.

Hill thinks it is worth spending money to save money in this instance. "I personally think it's worth it. And the cost is very minimal to websites like this. Especially if you actually do use it. And in most circumstances, you'll end up saving the first month what you would have spent the whole year with the software if you stick to it."

"The key to this is consistency. It's a marathon, it's not a sprint. And if you make a mistake, it's okay, just keep going. Get up and do it again. Really, finance is no different than anything else in life. Consistent commitment to it makes a difference long term."

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