How to save money on a low income

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. This is how we stay funded and these commissions are what keep our site going. Please support us by purchasing through our affiliate links.

When you have started to struggle financially, it means that you have to take things more seriously. This will greatly help you to save more money even if your income is low.

It might seem very complicated, but it isn’t.

It’s easy for people who can earn six income figures to save more, it doesn’t mean you cannot do it.

Almost all of us struggle with our finances. Right? But don’t let a low income come between you and your saving goals. 

Luckily there are some creative ways that will help you to save more money.

Sometimes you just need to think a little bit outside the box to get a clearer picture of where you are and how you can find ways to make it work.

You might be thinking that it will be a challenge. Right?

Not really!

It’s all about how you approach it. If you take it as a challenge, you will save more, but in the long run, it may backfire. You will get fed up and will spend more. You don’t want to be in that situation. 

What I can suggest is that you make the journey smoother and enjoy every bit of it. You will see it will be much more comfortable and fun. When we are excited about something, we usually perform much better, and it doesn’t feel as if it’s a task.

moneyThe following personal finance tips and strategies can help you save more money, even on a low income, and you will get results very fast.

But don’t forget to take one small step at a time. I can assure you, this way, the transitions will be much smoother.

So let’s get started.


Best ways to save money when your income is low


1.Reduce your accommodation costs

Accommodations are very costly nowadays, and it’s where you should start. 

You can find a smaller or cheaper property to start with or shift to another town where the cost of living is not high.

Now, if you don’t want to change your town, you can find a smaller house or even an apartment. You can also rent part of your home or a room with Airbnb.

You can use this additional income to either pay part of your mortgage or even put it in your savings account.


And what if you can make a drastic change in your whole lifestyle and live a more simple life?

If you like new challenges and you are a bit more adventurous by nature, you can choose to shift or build a tiny house for yourself. 

The tiny house movement is becoming more popular noways as many people can understand that having a bigger house doesn’t necessarily mean more happiness. Maybe this can be an option for you.


2.Get out of debt as soon as you can

If you have an obligation, you know how well it can hold you back to achieve your goals or even live a peaceful life.

I have heard it somewhere, but I can’t remember well, people who are in debt are the modern slaves.

I mean, no offense to you, but this is how people in debt are living nowadays. I have been in debt during my twenties, and now that I am in my early thirties, I feel much more relaxed and peaceful. Maybe debt is your source of worries and stress.

I would highly suggest that you cancel all your credit cards as soon as you can. Why would you even want to pay interest, which is around 17 %, for stuff which is not crucial for the time being?

Do think about that for a while. Try to calculate how much money your credit card is charging you.

I am sure you will be stunned when you do the math for 1 whole year. Do give it a try. Believe me. It will open your eyes.

Unless you can justify a credit card purchase is saving you money in the long term, then you want to get rid of your credit cards altogether. If it’s that difficult, what I can suggest is just don’t carry your credit card with you whenever you are going out.

Pro Tip: Anything that charges you money every month that you do not need has to be eliminated from your budget.


3.Build a budget for you

I know the word budget may sound scary or even dull. Well, I won’t say that budgeting can help you. I am telling you that it will help you a lot. 

I used to run away from that for too long. I thought it was not significant. But deep inside, I was afraid. Yes, you hear it well. I was scared that I won’t be able to live the lies I have been telling myself.

It’s effortless to spend money when you don’t have a plan to manage it. With budgeting, you will have an overview of your spendings and will be able to see where you are spending too much.

If you are not able to manage your budget and want to get help, you may try a tool called Truebill. It will keep track of your spending and subscriptions.

Do check it out.


4.Automate your savings

I know how difficult it can be for you to try to save money. The truth is that it sounds boring when you think about it.

But, if you are not able to do it yourself, maybe you can get some help? Sometimes you should force yourself to make a significant change in your life.

What can you do then?

Create another account with your bank and make them do an automatic money transfer to the end of the month when you are receiving your paycheck.

You can start with 5 % every month. And 5 % isn’t a lot. Usually, it’s advisable to save 10 %. But you can start at 5 % so you won’t feel a sudden change in your income.


5.Try the cash envelope method

If you haven’t heard about the Envelope system, then it’s time for you to try it. It will make you realize how much you are spending. I am sure it will open your eyes to your harmful spending habits.

cash enveloppe

It’s a way to track precisely how much money you have in your budget for a month.

Each month you put a specific amount of money in envelopes to pay your bills, expenses, or groceries.

You can learn more about it here.


6.Manage your food spending better

Do you keep track of the amount of money you spend on food? I am sure you don’t. Hey, who the hell keeps track of that. Right?

We are constantly bombarded with advertisements that tempt us to go to a restaurant or to go out to eat. It’s a way of living, they say. But do we need to go out that often and spend that much money?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average household spends over $3000 on food away from home. It may not sound too much for you, but hey, what can you do with $3000, instead of spending it on food?

I let you think about that for a few minutes.

So, have you got an idea? Yes, you are right. With $ 3000, you can do a lot of things. You can even start an online business with that money. 🙂


7.Get a handle on grocery expenses

You surely don’t want to overspend on groceries. With proper planning, you can cut down your expenses to half. If you spend $1000 per month on groceries, wouldn’t you want to save around $500 per month?

If yes, then you can try these to help you:

  • Make a menu plan for a whole week. Then when you go to buy your groceries, stick to the plan, and don’t buy anything else.
  • If ever you see there is a sale in your local store, you can try making a weekly meal menu based on what is on sale.
  • Avoid buying soft drinks or anything that you don’t need.
  • Learn to prepare food from scratch instead of buying pre-made or processed meals.


You can also try to buy your groceries online. It might sound counter-intuitive when you want to save money.

But if you haven’t tried it before, why not give it a try? Well, let me list some benefits of doing your shopping online below. Maybe this can help you make a better decision.

Benefits of shopping online:

  • You can see exactly how much money you are spending when you add stuff to your shopping cart. If ever you exceed your budget, you can see what you can omit.
  • Often when you visit supermarkets, you will feel tempted to buy other stuff as they are right in front of you. Have you ever gone through that?
  • Since you will buy online, you can buy stuff for one whole week. This will also prevent you from making mid-week visits to small shops nearby. Often those tiny shops amount up to grocery overspending.


8.Reduce your entertainment cost

This is an area of your life where you can make a lot of changes. Maybe you must be thinking that entertainment must cost a lot of money. But it doesn’t have to be this way. 

I used to think like this. I admit I was wrong.

Some of the most fulfilling experiences have been hanging out with family and friends where you don’t need to spend that much. And I appreciate those moments now. It has made me such a better person, and I cherish every moment.

Living this way can have a significant overall impact on your happiness. 

Below are a few entertainment options that can help you without breaking your budget:

  • Watching movies at home with your families and friends.
  • Hosting dinner parties instead of you having to go out often.
  • Try different activities like hiking, swimming, riding a bicycle, walking in the park, or camping.
  • Practice cooking with your partner or family members.
  • Explore free places, like free museums.
  • Set a once-a-month entertainment outing date and use Groupon deals or other coupons to save money.


You can do some research in your area to find free activities that you can enjoy.


9.Go to the library

If you are an avid reader, then a library can be an excellent place for you to find entertainment. You will meet like-minded people there and can even form great friendships with some people. Who knows, maybe you can find the love of your life there. 

If you are like me and at times love to read from the comfort of your own home, then you can check the Internet Archive. It has a collection of 4 million books that you can have access to.

You just have to create a profile, and you are good to go. The great thing about it? It’s free, and you will have around 14 days to read a book. 

So give it a try. I am sure you will love it.


10.Take care of your health

You were not expecting me to put health on this list. You must be thinking about what health has to do with how much money I can save. Well, healthcare is expensive. Right?

But unfortunately, there are not many ways to cut down on healthcare insurance. So it’s best to keep yourself healthy so that you can enjoy a better quality of life.

There are a few ways to practice preventive healthcare, and they are:

  • Exercising regularly, even if you can walk for 3o mins per day
  • Eat the right kind of food and stay away from sugar and fast foods as much as you can. You can enjoy fast food once in a while. There is no big deal about that.
  • If you have the habit of smoking, then maybe it’s time to quit. I know it’s difficult, but you can decrease it first. Then you will see it won’t be difficult for you to stop.
  • Getting a fair amount of sleep every day. 7-8 hours per day is a must.


11.Increase your income

There will be times when you won’t be able to save much if your income is low. Well, maybe it’s time to start earning more money.

There are plenty of freelance jobs available where you can earn a pretty decent amount of income from home. I would highly suggest you read the below-related posts.

If ever you want to create your own business and want to get away from your 9 to 5 job, then you can read the below article.


12.Buy only when it’s necessary

Can you imagine how much your budget suffers when you buy on impulse?

We are always pressured to buy all kinds of stuff we don’t need. Whether it’s a new tv or the latest mobile phone with all the bells and whistles.

Do you need the latest stuff? For how long will it keep you happy? These are the questions you should ask yourself before buying anything.

I know it’s very tempting at times, and even I am not able to maintain my disciple. But hey, we are humans, and we learn from our mistakes. Right? 


13.Sell some of your belongings

Have you ever wondered how much stuff there is in your house, which you don’t use or use very rarely?

I will suggest that when you have some time, just take a paper and pen and write down everything you have in your house. When you have finished, put a tick on the items you haven’t used in the last 6 months.

It has been said that if there is stuff in your house which you haven’t used for more than 6 months, it means you don’t need them. Well, that’s a piece of good news, you can sell some of that stuff.

You will be surprised to know what people are ready to buy. So go ahead, make that change and save that money for future endeavors.

Recommended: Best frugal living tips


14.Buy second hand

Do you need all the latest things in your life? The latest mobile phone or even the latest gadgets?

I don’t think so. What do you think? 

The latest smartphone is a luxury, not a necessity.

You do not necessarily need the fastest PC or laptop, especially for essential tasks.

I have read it somewhere, but I cannot clearly remember where ordinary people buy new cars, and future millionaires buy slightly used cars.

That had a massive impact on me. Believe me. I was always someone you loved all the latest stuff. But having struggled for a long time, I realized that it was time to make a change.

Instead of buying new gadgets, I will use that money more smartly. Well, I was able to start this blog with just that small change in my life.

Do you want to start your blog and make your future better?

Recommended: The top 10 most profitable blog niches


15.Stop using your card to make purchases

Let me ask you a small question. If you are not able to see the money that you are spending, how will you keep track of that?

When you are spending cash, you can see where your money is going. Spending using cards is very easy. How many times will you write down your purchases when you buy from the card?

It just doesn’t happen. Right?

credit cards

When you don’t have enough, it’s better to use cash for all your purchases. This will help you to control your expenses.

As a bonus, you can keep the change in your savings jar. How happy will you be, seeing money being accumulated in your savings jar?

Your grandma was right. It’s an excellent way to save money 🤑.



Final thoughts: How to save money on a low income

Do you have any suggestions that you want to add to this list? I would love to hear from you.

Saving money is not as difficult as you may think. It can be discouraging at times and prevent you from reaching your income goals.

I will suggest that you start with one tip at a time. Try it for one month, and when it has become a habit for you, try the next one.

I hope this post will help you save more money for you to reach your financial goals.

If you liked this post, please don’t forget to share it with people you care about. They can benefit from it too.

See you soon!

Leave a Comment