9 Money Moves People Who Make Less Than $60,000/Year Should Make This Year
There’s a lot of financial advice out there. But when it comes to managing your money, most things are not one-size-fits-all. Most of these decisions depend on your personal situation — your income, your expenses, your debt.
If you’re making less than $60,000 a year, the way you handle your money should be tailored to match that. But this can easily become overwhelming — what goal do you attack first? Budgeting? A savings plan? Debt repayment?
We have nine money moves you should make if you make less than $60,000 a year.
1. Make Sure You Have a Budget
No matter how much money you make, the first thing you should do is create a solid budget. It’s important to first get a clear idea of where your money is going, then create a plan and stick to it.
We get it, though. Budgeting isn’t fun. But you don’t need to spend hours on end playing with complicated Excel equations. The 50/20/30 budgeting method makes it super easy. It’s one of the most straightforward budgeting strategies, and it offers a lot of flexibility.
Here’s how it works:
- 50% of your income goes toward essentials.
- 20% goes toward financial goals.
- 30% goes toward personal spending.
Once you get the hang of it, you can tweak the ratios to fit your specific situation. Some people like to put more toward their savings, while others need a bit more for expenses. Take some time to find what works best for you and your goals.
2. Ask This Website to Pay Your Credit Card Bill This Month
If you have credit card debt, you know. The anxiety, the interest rates, the fear you’re never going to escape…
And the truth is, your credit card company doesn’t really care. It’s just getting rich by ripping you off with high interest rates. But a website called AmOne wants to help.
If you owe your credit card companies $50,000 or less, AmOne will match you with a low-interest loan you can use to pay off every single one of your balances.
The benefit? You’ll be left with one bill to pay each month. And because personal loans have lower interest rates (AmOne rates start at 3.99% APR), you’ll get out of debt that much faster. Plus: No credit card payment this month.
AmOne won’t make you stand in line or call your bank, either. And if you’re worried you won’t qualify, it’s free to check online. It takes just two minutes, and it could help you pay off your debt years faster.
3. Cancel Your Car Insurance
If you want to free up some extra room in your budget, one of the easiest places to start is to cancel your current car insurance.
In most places, it’s straight up illegal not to have it, so you’ve probably accepted that you’re going to pay through the nose for it. But you don’t have to.
A free website called The Zebra will do the shopping for you — in just two minutes.
All you have to do is enter basic information about your car and driving history, then The Zebra compares prices from more than 100 companies to find you the best price.
The Zebra says it saves its users up to $670 a year.
If you find a policy you like, you can sign up online instantly.
4. Add up to $225 to Your Bank Account This Month
Now that you’ve made your monthly budget, you might decide you could use a little extra income. Heck, who couldn’t?
You might not want a full-blown side gig, but a website called InboxDollars will pay you up to $225 a month just for watching videos from your computer. One minute you might watch someone bake brownies and the next you might get the latest updates on Kardashian drama.
All you have to do is choose which videos you want to watch and answer a few quick questions about them afterward. Brands pay InboxDollars to get these videos in front of viewers, and it passes a cut onto you.
Unlike other sites, InboxDollars pays you in cash — no points or gift cards — so you can put the money directly toward your monthly expenses. It’s already paid its users more than $56 million.
It takes about one minute to sign up, and you’ll immediately earn a $5 bonus to get you started.
5. Turn Those Crumpled Receipts Into Free Gift Cards
What do you usually do with your receipts? You check out, they hand you a mile-long piece of paper, and you frantically stuff it to the bottom of a grocery bag. Pretty worthless.
But a free app called Fetch Rewards will turn them into gift cards. It partners with tons of brands to give you points for every grocery receipt you share. Then you can exchange them for gift cards to places like Amazon, Walmart, Chipotle and dozens of other retailers.
And it’s perfect for those of us who don’t want to put a ton of work into this. All you have to do is send Fetch a photo of your receipt, and it does everything for you. No scanning barcodes or searching for offers — and you can use it with any grocery receipt.
When you download the app, use the code PENNY to automatically earn 2,000 points when you scan your first receipt. Then start snapping photos of your recent receipts to see how many points you can earn without a single trip to the store!
6. Leave Your Family $1 Million
If you make less than $60,000 a year and support a family, life insurance probably isn’t at the top of your list. But have you thought about how your family would manage without your paycheck after you’re gone?
No matter your income, now’s a good time to start planning for the future by securing a life insurance policy. And you don’t have to have millions of dollars to make this a smart move.
It doesn’t have to be difficult, either. With a company called Bestow, your application shouldn’t take more than about five minutes — and you could leave your family $1 million. Policies start at just $5 a month.
You can change or cancel your plan at any time. Plus, the security of knowing your family is taken care of is priceless.
If you’re under the age of 54 and want to get a fast life insurance quote without a medical exam, pushy sales calls or even getting up from the couch, get a free quote from Bestow.
7. Keep Getting Your Paycheck — Even if You’re Forced to Miss 3 Months of Work
Have you ever thought about what’d happen if you became too sick or hurt to work?
The truth is, more than 25% of employees will be forced to miss work because of a long-term ailment (90 or more days), according to the U.S. Social Security Administration. If you don’t have disability insurance, that means no paycheck.
To make sure you and your family are financially covered if you get in a car accident, have a heart attack or injure your back (the list goes on), you’ll want to secure disability insurance through Breeze, the first fully-online provider.
With Breeze, you can get a policy for as little as $9 a month. That’s less than the cost of today’s lunch. Plus, there’s no paperwork. The application process only takes about 15 minutes.
With Breeze, there are no hidden fees, and you can customize your plan to fit your income and your budget.
It takes just 30 seconds to get a free quote.
Now you can sleep easier knowing you’ll keep getting your paycheck — even if you have to miss work.
8. Download This App to Get Up to $500 in Free Stock
If you feel like you don’t have enough money to start investing, you’re not alone. But guess what? You really don’t need that much — and you can even get free stocks (worth up to $500!) if you know where to look.
Whether you’ve got $5, $100 or $800 to spare, you can start investing with Robinhood.
Yeah, you’ve probably heard of Robinhood. Both investing beginners and pros love it because it doesn’t charge commission fees, and you can buy and sell stocks for free — no limits. Plus, it’s super easy to use.
What’s best? When you download the app and fund your account (it takes no more than a few minutes), Robinhood drops a share of free stock into your account. It’s random, though, so that stock could be worth anywhere from $5 to $500 — a nice boost to help you build your investments.
9. Cut Your Cell Phone Service to as Little as $5 (and Bring Your Own Phone)
How long have you been with your cell phone company? Probably a while, right? Which means you’re probably paying way too much.
But we found a discount wireless company called Tello that offers plans starting at just $5 a month. How much are you paying now? Exactly. Imagine cutting that to just $5.
Tello operates on Sprint’s nationwide network, offering 4G LTE data everywhere Sprint does. It lets you choose a wireless plan based on how many minutes and how much data you want, and you can even use Tello’s coverage tool to see how strong its network is where you live.
You can bring your own phone (Tello works with any Sprint-compatible phone), or buy a new one through them. Even better — there are no early termination or activation fees, no contracts or phone-exclusive plans, no tricks of any kind.
If you decide you don’t like it, you can always just change your mind. See how much you could save here.