How to Stop the Paycheck-to-Paycheck Cycle

How to Stop the Paycheck-to-Paycheck Cycle

Ever catch yourself counting down the days until your next paycheck?

Maybe you decided to take out a store credit card for the 20%-off shopping day and the bill just came in. Or maybe your “check engine” light is on and you’re dreading the repair. Either way, that paycheck can’t come fast enough—and might not be enough.

For 78% of Americans, living paycheck to paycheck is a way of life, an endless cycle of money going out almost as soon as it comes in.(1)  Kind of like a revolving door you can’t exit, it keeps you from getting where you want to go. But it doesn’t have to be that way anymore. Here’s how you can escape for good.

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Pumpkin made of leaves

October Challenge: Scare up Some Extra Cash for Halloween

Something wicked this way comes: the tendency to overspend on Halloween. Spooky spending trends are on the rise in America. In fact, those who celebrate the holiday pay an average of around $86 on candy, celebrations, costumes and cards.(1) It’s scary how quickly your money can vanish before your very eyes. But it doesn’t have to.

You can have a fun fright night without financial fears. To keep from raking up bills that will haunt you, try out some of these quick money-saving and money-making tips.

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October budget reminder animation

Seven Commonly Missed Expenses for October

The new season is falling into place. (See what we did there?) Halloween, Thanksgiving, and all the autumn activities: they can become a lot. A lot of awesome, yes—but also a lot on your wallet, if you aren’t ready. But you’ll be ready for all of it—the leaf-crunching and apple-munching, pie-baking and costume-making. How? Just remember these seven items when you set up October’s budget.

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9 Small Changes That Can Lead to Big Budget Savings

9 Small Changes That Can Lead to Big Budget Savings

People usually think that a big difference in your money only comes from making a big lifestyle change.

While selling your house or working an extra job can produce huge results, there are several other ways to give your money a positive kick in the budget. You’ll barely notice these small changes, but you will notice the additional cash.

Check out these nine small spending adjustments that can give you big outcomes:

Join Loyalty Programs. According to the 2015 Colloquy Census, there are roughly 3.3 billion customer loyalty memberships in the United States. Sign up for loyalty programs and you can score deals on restaurant meals, airline tickets and more. Start by visiting the websites of your favorite restaurants or clothing stores and see if they mention perks for frequent shoppers. If you simply need to sign up for a loyalty program, then go for it! Just avoid anything that’s based on getting a credit card.

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6 Ways Your Budget Can Save You More Money

6 Ways Your Budget Can Save You More Money

Your budget is made of three types of expenses: fixed, flexible and fun.

Fixed expenses are things like your mortgage payment, medical insurance, car tags and property taxes. There’s not a whole lot you can do about these. You need them, so you pay for them.

Then there are flexible expenses like cell phone service, grocery money and gas allowance. You need these too, but you have a little more control over how much you use each month. And the fun expenses? Well, you know what those are—your favorite restaurants and an occasional beachside getaway.

But what if you want to make room in your budget for something else? Maybe you want to plan an extra trip, or just put date nights back into your life. Here are a few ways to free up more money for the fun stuff you want to do.

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