One of the most difficult things for people to do when attempting to pay off debt or start saving more is to cut out the unnecessary spending.  For many people this type of unplanned spending quickly uses up the majority of their extra money each week so they are unable to pay down debt, start saving for retirement or their children’s college or even for a family vacation.  Learning how to avoid debt as a result of unnecessary spending is an important skill which just about everyone would benefit from.  There are several tips and tricks which have been proven effective to help get people to have more control over their finances in this area.

Make A Budget

This is the first thing anyone should do when attempting to get their pointless spending under control.  Whether you do it monthly, or before each paycheck or at another interval which makes since for your situation, it is important to budget your money properly.  By writing down exactly where every dollar you make is going to be spent you are going to cut out any unplanned spending.  For most people, when they are planning their spending ahead of time they will be less likely to have pointless spending planned in.

Use a List While Shopping

When you do go shopping make sure to have a full list of everything you need to purchase.  Commit to yourself or your spouse that you won’t buy anything that is not on the list as this is often where pointless spending comes in.  The majority of this type of unwanted spending is done on impulse because something catches your eye or it is on sale so you feel you should get it.  Having a list to hold you focused to just what you need is a great way to ensure you’re not going to get distracted and buy something you don’t want or need.

Plan for Pointless Spending

For some people their problem is that they are spending too much of their money on things they don’t really need.  That does not mean they should automatically cut out all ‘fun’ spending though.  For many people the pointless spending is on things like a fancy coffee or a snack or something like that.  If you plan ahead of time and budget money for these things they are no longer pointless, but luxury.  If you were spending $100 per week on pointless spending, you can cut that down to $25 of planned ‘luxury’ spending per week.  This can help you stay committed by knowing that you can spend it however you want! It may seem difficult at first, but once you realize the potential to live a debt free life, it will become easier.