7 Ways To Ball On A Budget

7 Ways To Ball On A Budget

The secret to a financially stable life
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Want to live the high life but you can't quite afford it? No problem! Use these 10 tips and you'll be stacking cash in no time.

1. Set a Budget

I’ll start with two main savings tips. After all, how can you ball on a budget if you don't know what your budget is? First and foremost, write out your income and expenses. Then determine how much you should be saving, and finally, how much is left for ballin’.

We all understand the importance of saving so I’ll spare you the lecture. Just remember that saving today means you’ll have more fun and more security in the future.

There are several ways to get started. Programs like Mint and YNAB can help you out. Check out this review of apps for personal finance management.

2. Sell Your Car

In some cases, this is obviously not possible. If you commute an hour to work every day, your car is pretty crucial to keeping a job. But those living on campus or in the city, consider selling your car. Let's face it, cars are expensive. There's a reason so many Millennials are foregoing them altogether.

There is no “going cheap.” You have a large initial purchase price, plus insurance, maintenance, gas, and if you drive like me, tickets. Say you spring for a pricier car, you get all of the above plus payments (and interest fees). Stop pouring money into a car you hardly use, especially if you’re paying for parking.

While it's not possible in all locations, selling your car and opting for public transit, walking, biking, ride-sharing, and the occasional ride service can save you bundles for your new ballin' lifestyle. Be cautious not to become dependent on Uber or Lyft. At an average of $12 to $15 per ride, they add up!

3. Online Couponing

Now's the fun part! The rest of these tips are for saving while you spend.

If you haven't heard of Honey, this will be your new favorite Chrome extension. If you're a promo code hound, this is the end of your Googling for discounts. you're a promo code hound, you'll appreciate this browser plug-in. When you enter a check-out screen for any online retailer, Honey automatically scours the web for coupons then tries them all for you. You just sit back and watch as it reports back if any, and which, codes worked.

I really love Honey because it works on websites you might not expect it to. Aside from big names, like Macy's, GAP, Best Buy and Target (which are covered with Retail Me Not), Honey will work for many more obscure websites. I recently shopped at a small online bead store, and Honey worked its magic to save me $10 — which I will, of course, promptly use this Friday night. Honey only works for Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Opera (sorry Internet Explorer users).

If you shop online, you'll want to keep a tab open on Retail Me Not. This site allows users to post coupon codes for thousands of online retailers. The best part is Retail Me Not now has an app for both Android and iOS devices that allows you to pull up coupons to use at stores and restaurants. 20% off my Spicy Italian Pizza from Papa John's? Don't mind if I do! Aside from promo codes and coupons, Retail Me Not alerts you to limited time sales, like Starbucks' 3-5 p.m. Happy Hour on Macchiatos.

Coupons for online shopping are lifesavers, but learn to use websites with city-specific coupon pages too. Groupon is a great example with all of the "Things To Do" pages, but there are dozens of other sites too. Ballin' is about experiences as much as it is material items. In fact, reports like this one from CNBC suggest that Millennials are far more likely to spend on events, trips and other memory-makers than objects.

4. Thrift Store Shopping

Macklemore may have made “poppin' tags” at thrift stores popular, but I've been shopping these deals for years. Luckily for you, these second-hand stores are no longer looked down upon. They are now rightfully appreciated for the sanity and savings they provide to those trying to ball on a budget. Why pay full price for trendy clothes and accessories when you can buy something that was only worn a handful of times? We all know the big boys like Goodwill and Salvation Army, but there are up-and-coming second-hand stores in almost ever town. Some catering to upscale brands and fashions like Uptown Cheapskate, Plato's Closet. There's even online thrifting these days.

Learn to use the PoshMark app. A lot of second-hand stores take donations or offer a pittance for clothes you try to sell. With PoshMark, you're likely to get a better deal when selling your own name brand items. Use it to shop too. You'll save up to 70 percent on Nike, Michael Kors, Louis Vuitton, Coach and other popular brands.

5. Ibotta

You have to buy groceries, right? If you visit Wal-Mart or Target regularly, the Ibotta app will refund you with cash or gift card rebates. You can trade the cost of your paper towels and spicy Cheetos for a night on the town. Just scan your receipt and start earning rewards.

6. Student Discounts

Never be shy to ask about available student discounts. You would be surprised where they apply. Restaurants, movie theaters, amusement parks, clothing stores and other retailers want to help youngins like yourself out. Here you can check out up to 100 national-chain stores that provide student discounts.

7. Side Hussle

Our last tip for prospective ballers is to engage in a side hustle. Whether you complete online surveys for extra cash or freelance your photography skills, there are several ways you can earn cash on the side. These side hustles can grow naturally out of hobbies and can take as little as five to ten hours a week. You will appreciate the extra effort when you're livin' it up every Saturday night.

Popular Right Now

A Letter To My Go-To Aunt

Happiness is having the best aunt in the world.
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I know I don't say it enough, so let me start off by saying thank you.

You'll never understand how incredibly blessed I am to have you in my life. You'll also never understand how special you are to me and how much I love you.

I can't thank you enough for countless days and nights at your house venting, and never being too busy when I need you. Thank you for the shopping days and always helping me find the best deals on the cutest clothes. For all the appointments I didn't want to go to by myself. Thank you for making two prom days and a graduation party days I could never forget. Thank you for being overprotective when it comes to the men in my life.

Most importantly, thank you for being my support system throughout the numerous highs and lows my life has brought me. Thank you for being honest even when it isn't what I want to hear. Thank you for always keeping my feet on the ground and keeping me sane when I feel like freaking out. Thank you for always supporting whatever dream I choose to chase that day. Thank you for being a second mom. Thank you for bringing me into your family and treating me like one of your own, for making me feel special because you do not have an obligation to spend time with me.

You've been my hero and role model from the time you came into my life. You don't know how to say no when family comes to you for help. You're understanding, kind, fun, full of life and you have the biggest heart. However, you're honest and strong and sometimes a little intimidating. No matter what will always have a special place in my heart.

There is no possible way to ever thank you for every thing you have done for me and will continue to do for me. Thank you for being you.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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6 Reasons Crocs Are The Superior Shoe

Recent debates have come to light and it's time to set the record straight: Crocs are the superior shoe.

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Long time Croc enthusiast Athena Schnorr states, "Crocs have always been there for me in the rough times, the good times, the bad weather, the good weather they have quite literally kept me afloat"

The days of sacrificing fashion over function are over. Crocs are bridging the gap in the fashion industry, but incase you aren't convinced here are six reasons why Crocs are superior to any other shoe.

1. Crocs Are Highly Functional 

Crocs are undervalued for their supreme functionality. I can not count the times I have needed to jump in a rain puddle, take a quick walk, or bounce along throughout my day without the hassle of lace and what better shoe than an easy and colorful Croc? Crocs offer wonderful support without the hassle of worrying about getting your feet or shoes permanently stained.

2. Crocs Are Water Resistant

They say April showers bring May flowers, but May actually has brought storms with rain equivalents feeling like a tsunami. Nothing ruins a day faster than wet socks and soggy shoes as you hike uphill to class and start your day. Crocs are made of supreme rubber material that hinders any challenge the rain could present. To make things even better, once it's time to dry your shoes off from the rain Crocs rise to the challenge and dry off in a jiffy, making them ready to wear again at any moment.

3. Crocs Offer Convenient Sports Mode

Some might argue that Crocs aren't the most reliable fashion statement because of the exposed heel. After all, how would you run through the summer with an exposed heel? Thank goodness for sports mode. Kick your Croc clogs into action by switching the front facing band into the down and locked position. Spots mode is the solution to all your problems.

4. Crocs Come In a Variety of Colors

In these trying times, self expression comes in so many forms and is so vital to our daily lives. Croc offer a wide variety of styles and colors that are bound to suit the needs of any individual. School colors, family matching, his and hers, even sparkly white crocs for your wedding day. There is no limit to the color Crocs can sport, and even better, they will match every outfit.

5. Crocs Can Be Decorative

Following on the coat tails of self expression, crocs offer a variety of customizable options for individuals to express themselves. Crocs are known for their accessories, Jibbittz. Jibbitz come in so many shapes and colors, that regardless of your age, are sure to please.

6. The Best Is Yet To Come

By now, I know it can be hard to believe, but the best season of Crocs are yet to come. Crocs are launching their newest addition to the rubbery life savers- fanny packs. That's right, something that was already great, just got even better. In their newest line, crocs will be adding small fanny packs to the sports mode straps on Crocs. By the looks of it, if Crocs keep improving their line, the best is yet to come.

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