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7 Ways to Change Undesirable Spending Habits

By Charles Hopkins Published 04/21/2006 | Finance
Many people dream of retiring with a healthy bank account but few people actually achieve it. This is largely due to lack of discipline in building up their retirement fund and poor spending habits. While building a retirement fund requires time, you can accelerate the process by making incremental but positive changes in your spending habits.

Here are seven ways that you can change your daily lifestyle for more positive results in your spending habits:

1. Do more walking than driving. If you can reach your destination within ten minutes by car, consider leaving the car behind and walk instead. You will save money on gasoline and parking fees. This can easily add up to a few thousand dollars a year.

2. Use a bicycle if the destination is within 30 minutes by car. This helps promote blood circulation in your body and also reduces environmental pollution. You can also save on gasoline and parking fees.

3. Bring your own coffee to office. Many people like to drop by a Starbucks or similar coffee outlet and end up spending a few dollars or more on a cup of coffee. You can potentially save many dollars dollars each week just by making your own coffee at home and bringing it to your work place in a Thermos. Besides, who knows, it may taste better than the coffee from Starbucks! If you really cannot live without Starbucks coffee, consider getting a Starbucks rebate card. You can use the rebates to redeem free Starbucks coffee after you have accumulated enough points.

4. Dine at home more frequently. You can experiment with different recipes and save some money at the same time. In addition, you are honing your cooking skills and this could be very useful for the home dining experience.

5. If you are a smoker, start reducing the number of cigarettes you smoke each day. Over time, you may be able to quit smoking completely. Besides saving money by not buying any more cigarettes, your health will also improve and this means a huge saving in your medical bills.

6. Have you ever noticed how much time you spend sitting in front of the television? The longer you sit, the worse it is for your blood circulation. Besides, the time you free up can be used for more useful tasks such as teaching your kids or learning a new skill.

7. If you are an avid reader, use the public library whenever possible. There is no need to buy the latest books from bookstores like Borders unless it is in a category that does not fit into a public library. The public library will usually acquire popular titles after some times. Learn to be patient.

These seven ways are a good start for changing unhealthy spending habits. However, you should continue to research and incorporate more healthy habits that contribute to the building of your retirement fund. By re-investing the money saved from using these tips, you will be many steps ahead of your peers and closer to your retirement goals.