Having trouble making ends meet? It is something not a lot of people thought they would have trouble doing but with a tough economy and many jobs not keeping up with inflation, it seems that finding ways to stretch the income you do earn is key to survival.
Whether you get paid weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly, it certainly is important that you are working to make the most of what you earn. Here are some ways you can stretch your family’s dollar each time you get a paycheck:
Check in With Human Resources
If you have been at the same job for a long and consistent period of time, you may be missing out on some savings simple due to changes in your own life. First, analyze the amount of withholdings you have listed. Perhaps one of your children no longer live with you or maybe you just had a baby. Whatever the reason, go back and check with your payroll administrator and see where you stand. This is also important if you have been getting larger income tax returns back each year. You want to adjust your withholding to make sure you pay enough in to not have to pay taxes but not so much that you are losing out on your monthly income that could potentially improve your current budget.
Check in With Your Insurance Policies
If you have medical or other types of insurance through you job, you may want to take some time and see what has changed over the years. Go over you coverage plan and make sure it is still relevant to your current lifestyle. Your benefits representative may be able to provide less expensive options for your family’s medical coverage than what you presently carry.
Switch to Direct Deposit
Like the old adage states “outta sight, outta mind“…your paycheck is better left to direct deposit than leave you with cash in hand. Check with your payroll department for the procedure to set up a direct deposit of your paycheck. You should have options for splitting up several small deposit each pay week into other accounts besides your checking account, such as a savings account or Christmas club.
Get Matched With Your 401K
Talk to your human resource department about your 401k plan. If you are not putting in as much as you can afford, you might be missing out on a great company match, where your employer matches each of your own contributions. Any money that is put into a 401K is also on a pre-tax basis, so your paycheck will essentially be hit with lesser taxes.
Take Advantage of Company Benefits
Different companies provide different benefits, depending on their individual policies. It is never too late to investigate what your company is offering, even if no one else is doing it. Read through your current employee manual and see what kind of benefits you have been missing out on. For instance, some companies will reimburse you for college tuition, stock discounts, free gym memberships, and more.