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At the beginning of the month, it's easy to tell yourself that you'll cut back on eating out or swear you'll forgo Ubers and take public transport instead. But then, a friend asks you to grab drinks or you get caught in the rain walking home, and all those good intentions go out the window. Luckily, there are lots of great ways to save money and still allow yourself those little luxuries that are just so hard to say no to. Aiming to save an extra $300 a month is a great place to start. While that amount may sound insignificant, by depositing $300 a month in an average savings account with an interest of .06%, those savings add up to $18,027.58 in 5 years. Just like most things worth doing, saving money is about building good habits over time.

Paypath has compiled a list of helpful tips to get you started on your journey to a healthier bank account.

Use A Cash Back Reward Credit Card For All Spending

Money Crashers

A cash back credit card can be an easy way to make a little extra money each month. Cardholders can make a purchase knowing exactly how much they will earn back, and there's no complicated point systems to figure out either. By putting all your purchases on a rewards credit card, you save at least 2% of your monthly spending. If your average spending is $1,000 per month, you can save $20 per month with one of these cards.

Get Organized

Grammarly

It can be easy to spend unnecessarily when you can't find that extra jar of peanut butter you swear you had or can't quite remember if you paid the electric bill and end up with a late fee. An organized home can help you use what you already have, and an organized calendar or planner can help you pay bills on time. It's also important to come up with a system to help you keep track of your spending to help you avoid spending more than you planned to.

Buy Used, Sell What You Don't Need

Marriott Traveller

Vintage style is trendy right now; plus, shopping used can help save you money. Need a new pair of work pants? Head to your local Goodwill. While finding something you love might take a little more effort, the price tag will make it worth it. Additionally, we all have those items in our closet we haven't worn in years, and selling them to a vintage shop or an online thrift store can help you save a little extra each month.

Be Conscious of Your Utility Use

Amazon

A great place to start in ensuring that your electricity use isn't getting out of hand is by replacing all your light bulbs with LED light bulbs. This can provide substantial savings, since they use 90% less energy than standard light bulbs. Additionally, always remember to turn off your lights when you leave the room, and instead of using air conditioning when the weather starts to get warmer, try opening a window.

Be a Smarter Shopper

Take the time to compare prices before making a significant purchase, or even wait for annual sales. While convenience is great, waiting a little while to get the best price on something is worth it.

Give Up One Coffee per Week

Prexels

If one or two Starbucks runs are a part of your daily routine, you may not notice just how quickly those $4 coffees add up. Even just making coffee at home one morning a week can add up to significant savings. This can also apply to cutting one drink a week if you usually drink two cocktails every time you head to your neighborhood bar.

While major savings may require drastic lifestyle changes, an extra $300 a month is within anyone's reach!

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Over two years into the most momentous event in our lives the world has changed forever … Some of us have PTSD from being locked up at home, some are living like everything’s going to end tomorrow, and the rest of us are merely trying to get by. When the pandemic hit we entered a perpetual state of vulnerability, but now we’re supposed to return to normal and just get on with our lives.

What does that mean? Packed bars, concerts, and grocery shopping without a mask feel totally strange. We got used to having more rules over our everyday life, considering if we really had to go out or keeping Zooming from our living rooms in threadbare pajama bottoms.

The work-from-home culture changed it all. Initially, companies were skeptical about letting employees work remotely, automatically assuming work output would fall and so would the quality. To the contrary, since March of 2020 productivity has risen by 47%, which says it all. Employees can work from home and still deliver results.

There are a number of reasons why everyone loves the work from home culture. We gained hours weekly that were wasted on public transport, people saved a ton of money, and could work from anywhere in the world. Then there were the obvious reasons like wearing sweats or loungewear all week long and having your pets close by. Come on, whose cat hasn’t done a tap dance on your keyboard in the middle of that All Hands Call!

Working from home grants the freedom to decorate your ‘office’ any way you want. But then people needed a change of environment. Companies began requesting their employees' RTO, thus generating the Hybrid Work Model — a blend of in-person and virtual work arrangements. Prior to 2020, about 20% of employees worked from home, but in the midst of the pandemic, it exploded to around 70%.

Although the number of people working from home increased and people enjoyed their flexibility, politicians started calling for a harder RTW policy. President Joe Biden urges us with, “It’s time for Americans to get back to work and fill our great downtowns again.”

While Boris Johnson said, “Mother Nature does not like working from home.'' It wasn’t surprising that politicians wanted people back at their desks due to the financial impact of working from the office. According to a report in the BBC, US workers spent between $2,000 - $5,000 each year on transport to work before the pandemic.

That’s where the problem lies. The majority of us stopped planning for public transport, takeaway coffee, and fresh work-appropriate outfits. We must reconsider these things now, and our wallets are paying

the price. Gas costs are at an all-time high, making public transport increase their fees; food and clothes are all on a steep incline. A simple iced latte from Dunkin’ went from $3.70 to $3.99 (which doesn’t seem like much but 2-3 coffees a day with the extra flavors and shots add up to a lot), while sandwiches soared by 14% and salads by 11%.

This contributes to the pressure employees feel about heading into the office. Remote work may have begun as a safety measure, but it’s now a savings measure for employees around the world.

Bloomberg are offering its US staff a $75 daily commuting stipend that they can spend however they want. And other companies are doing the best they can. This still lends credence to ‘the great resignation.’ Initially starting with the retail, food service, and hospitality sectors which were hard hit during the pandemic, it has since spread to other industries. By September 2021, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported 4.4 million resignations.

That’s where the most critical question lies…work from home, work from the office or stick to this new hybrid world culture?

Borris Johnson thinks, “We need to get back into the habit of getting into the office.” Because his experience of working from home “is you spend an awful lot of time making another cup of coffee and then, you know, getting up, walking very slowly to the fridge, hacking off a small piece of cheese, then walking very slowly back to your laptop and then forgetting what it was you’re doing.”

While New York City Mayor Eric Adams says you “can't stay home in your pajamas all day."

In the end, does it really matter where we work if efficiency and productivity are great? We’ve proven that companies can trust us to achieve the same results — or better! — and on time with this hybrid model. Employees can be more flexible, which boosts satisfaction, improves both productivity and retention, and improves diversity in the workplace because corporations can hire through the US and indeed all over the world.

We’ve seen companies make this work in many ways, through virtual lunches, breakout rooms, paint and prosecco parties, and — the most popular — trivia nights.

As much as we strive for normalcy, the last two years cannot simply be erased. So instead of wiping out this era, it's time to embrace the change and find the right world culture for you.

What would get you into the office? Free lunch? A gym membership? Permission to hang out with your dog? Some employers are trying just that.

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Did you hear about the Great Resignation? It isn’t over. Just over two years of pandemic living, many offices are finally returning to full-time or hybrid experiences. This is causing employees to totally reconsider their positions.

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