I just signed another year-long lease (!) in Brooklyn, which also means I wrote a bunch of checks and experienced several panic attacks. But then I reminded myself that I’m (usually) smart with my money, and have even been able to save a few bills while living in NYC.
I’ve decided to start being even more conscious of where my money’s headed, especially since rent is going up and I don’t want my lifestyle to change. Here are the rules I try to live by, along with some money-saving ideas I want to embrace more whole-heartedly:
-treat yo self (wisely). Figure out what purchases matter most: a) $12 cocktail, b) $12 movie, or c) epic $12 sandwich. “None of the above” can’t always be an option!
-cook, cook, cook! Holy moly does this make a difference. It’s no secret that cooking will save you money, especially if you go after the foods that’ll last forever. I tend to make a ton of quinoa and throw random veggies and beans in the mix. I’ll fry up and egg or two and bam: dinner. For a week.
-stop drinking so much. Alcohol is so expensive in nyc, and it makes me mad. The only solutions I can come up with are drinking less, having guys buy you drinks, or living off of 3buck chuck. Find a balance between the three.
-take the subway. True statement: I think I’ve been in a cab twice since I moved here. Unless in a dire situation, cabs are pretty stupid. Just take the train! (Especially if you already pay for a monthly ride.)
-wash your own clothes. This one I’m pretty excited about. I tried allowing myself the luxury of dropping off my laundry this past year, but I don’t really think it was worth it. So once I move in to my new apartment, I’m going to stock up on detergent, a couple buckets, and a drying rack, and deem Sunday as laundry day. I’m stoked.
-live with friends. Find a friend, split the bills.
-get off groupon. These sneaaaky daily deal sites make you believe you’re “saving” money by purchasing an 85% off Native American pottery class in soho. Lies!
-take advantage of free shit. Coffee maker at work? Skip starbucks. Want to see live music? Find a free concert. Need to hard chill with a giraffe? See when the zoo has free admission day.
-carry (enough) cash. I find when I have cash with me, I spend it. (Hello, seltzer.) However, I also find that when I’m in a cash-only situation, I head to the nearest atm (Hello, withdrawal fee.) Try to figure out how much money you like to hold on to, and hold on tight!