30-Day Money/Debt Challenge

The 30 Day Money/Debt Challenge:

Day 1: Setup a monthly auto transfer. Whether it is $1, $2, $5 per day or $20 per week, based on your circumstances set your amount, and try the deposits for one month.

Day 2: Don't spend more than $10 today. Just try it. You can still go grab a coffee, just don't buy lunch out, or go to Target today. This can help you prepare for a no-spend day in a few weeks.

Day 3: Watch a movie. Don't spend money by going to the movies. Watch one of your favorite movies today at home.

Day 4: Review your insurance. Do you have the best rate for your car insurance? Are you overpaying for an option you don't need? Call your insurance company or chat via their app.

Day 5: Cook at home today. Stop eating out, just for today. One 2015 study found consumers spend about $1,100 each year on takeout! Try it for one day first. Then next month, try it for one week, then one month and so on.

Day 6: Make a grocery list. Sounds simple, right? Write a grocery list before you step inside the store, try to only buy what is on your list.

Day 7: Prepare to have a no-spend day next week. That means spending nothing at all for just one day!

Day 8: Skip Starbucks, Dunkin' Donuts, Dutch Bros., or whatever your favorite coffee shop is, for just today.

Day 9: Review your budget. Create one if you haven't already.

Day 10: Make two monthly payments today. If you’re carrying a credit card balance, try to make two monthly CC payments. Parting with more money than you have to may feel difficult, but the faster you can pay off your debt, the better. Even if it is just an extra $5 or $20 this month, it is a start.

Day 11: Put some change into a mason jar. Whatever you find in your pockets, or your car, when you make a purchase and receive coins or dollars, place it into your savings jar, no matter how small.

Day 12: Cancel your unused subscriptions Whether it’s a forgotten Netflix account, Starz free trial, magazine subscription you forgot about, these subscriptions can drain your bank account. Most people can typically save between $10 - $30 per month by canceling.

Day 13: Have a no spend day today. Just for one day: don't buy coffee, a soda, lunch out, gas, etc.

Day 14: Try a spending tracker. Not sure where to start? Here are 12 free apps, along with tips.

Day 15: Clean out your closet. You never know what you'll find, and what you might be able to sell!

Day 16: Sign up for a free trial. Wait, didn't I just cancel unused subscriptions? Yes, but try a different free trial at a gym, or Spotify, or Hulu, Amazon Prime, or another subscription. Just make sure to cancel before your trial is up.

Day 17: Ask your credit card, student loan company, or cell provider issuer to remove a late fee. Ask them to do it as a one-time courtesy. If you ask your credit card issuer for a clean slate, you could save up to $38 for each late fee it refunds.

Day 18: It's a $10 spend day again!

Day 19: Negotiate your cable bill. Call your cable provider and ask if you are on the best plan, or if they are running any promos. If calling your cable company and asking for a discount sounds intimidating, the free subscription-tracking app Trim will negotiate with your cable or internet provider on your behalf to lower your monthly bill.

Day 20: Tax your weekend spending. If you indulged in drinks and dinners out his past weekend, take half of what you spent and put it into your savings account.

Day 21: Prepare for tax season. Tax filing season starts on January 23, and there's no time like the present to get your paperwork in order.

Day 22: Review your student loans. I know, who the heck wants to actually see how much they owe in student loans? This is a good day to login and make sure you are up to date, or even call your provider, see if you qualify for a better repayment plan or even loan forgiveness.

Day 23: Go through your items you cleaned out. You cleaned out your closet, so take the next few days to go through your items, see what you can sell, donate, or at least better organize.

Day 24: Read a book. No matter the topic, whether it is a personal finance book, a romance, a thriller or something else, use Kindle Unlimited to search for free options. See if you have a book laying around that you've meant to begin reading, or even head to your local library or bookstore and start looking for a good book.

Day 25: Setup a payment plan. Having trouble paying a credit card? Call your credit card company and ask them to set you up on a payment plan that you can afford.

Day 26: Sign up for Ebates. Shop on Ebates for everyday essentials at places like Target and Walmart and earn money while doing so; or plan for bigger gifts or purchases and earn up to 10% cash back at Neiman Marcus and Bloomingdales.

Day 27: Go online to your favorite store and just browse. Just place items into your shopping cart, but don't actually complete the purchase. If you sign in, often you can save your cart and revisit it in 30 days to see if you actually want to buy the item/items.

Day 28: Do a $20 spend day today.

Day 29: Choose a Savings Challenge and start it on the first of the next month.

Day 30: Make a long-term money plan. Knowing where you want to go and how you want to get there will help keep you on track when you might otherwise be tempted to change course.

Day 31: Take a deep breath — you’re done for the month. See if you feel better about your money choices. See if you have saved money over the month, or if you have just become better aware about where your money is going.