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How to Live Below Your Means Now and in the Future

Stop the bleeding, learn how to live below your means today! Sometimes it feels like there is a constant stream of money floating away, out of your pocket and into the waiting hands of countless obligations. Obligations that seem impossible to avoid. Let’s admit it, many recurring costs we face each month are sadly unavoidable. We all pay very necessary bills, things like car payments, rent, and medical insurance. It’s the costs that we tend to throw on top of those things that get us in trouble.

My mother used to say that the key to having money was to always take what you think you can afford and then set your budget 20% lower. What my mother was pointing out with her advice was the simple principle of knowing how to live below your means. It’s the idea of living on less than you make. In New Mexico and the rest of the US, we have the good fortune of living at the edge of technology. It’s a blessing and a curse. New stuff offers real conveniences.

The problem is that every new product, every new tech gadget, every must-have toy that will “change your life forever” is flashed before your eyes every waking minute. It’s pretty easy to fall under the spell of all of that programming.

Before we know it, the things we wanted, became the things we needed, and we were spending way more than our paychecks could afford. See our tips below to learn how to change. And if you need money urgently today, try a title loan.

Tips to Live Happily and Below Your Means

Stop buying stuff you don’t need

Yes, the first key of knowing how to live below your means is to stop buying all that stuff! I know it sounds simple but sometimes you have to get over the head with a 2x4 to get the idea to sink in a little. Most of the time that 2x4 comes in the form of a gigantic credit card ill that threatens your ability to pay the rent. Easier said than done? Maybe at first glance, but that’s the key, knowing how to live below your means is all about slowing down and becoming more mindful about your purchases. It all starts with a plan, a plan based on solid observation.

In other words, how much do you spend every day, and what are you spending it on?

Create a spending plan and stick to it

The last question on how to live below your means is a great place to start creating a realistic spending plan. I like to call it a spending plan instead of a budget because it seems like the word budget carries too many negative vibes with it.

Grab your smartphone and start a memo. Use an app that is super accessible. Most smartphones have a NOTES app which I find that works best for this exercise. If you don’t have a smartphone, don’t worry, just grab a pencil and paper.

For the next three days, I want you to record every purchase you make throughout the day. What you bought and how much you spent. Don’t wait till the end of the day to record your purchases or you will lose the effect.

After the three days are up take a look at your list and chew on the results for a bit, this is the beginning of your 100% authentic spending plan. I like to draw this exercise out for about a week because the data you gather helps to make a better plan.

Put your plan together, allotting money for everything you will definitely need to get by during the month. Once your plan is complete take a look and see how your spending numbers match up with your income.

Make sure your monthly spending plan comes in at least 20% lower than what you make. That includes things like savings and retirement (you should be spending money here every paycheck). Look for ways to reduce discretionary expenditures first and then look at how much money you could save. The money you can save by eating at home instead of grabbing something on the run. The money you can save by going to the dollar movie for a fun night out.

Think of the money you could save by canceling unnecessary internet subscription services. There are lots of ways to save money every day without breaking a sweat, and when it comes to those big purchases, things like appliances, furniture, or a new car...

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Sleep on it!

That’s right, probably the single best thing you can do to start learning how to live below your means now and in the future is just to put the purchase off for another day. We’re not saying you should stop paying your bills but when it comes to other purchases, it’s ok to sleep on it.

Chances are, “deals like this” will come around again and again and again. So, never fall for the high-pressure sales tactics. In fact, if you feel too much pressure it’s a good indication that should drop out.

Getting through today to get to tomorrow

Sometimes we find ourselves in the grip of overwhelming financial stress. Emergencies like car and home repairs or medical bills and the like tend to crop up out of nowhere leaving us with heads spinning wondering what to do next.

Fortunately, in New Mexico, short-term lending options are available from the team at if you are looking for car title loans New Mexico has them available to the public, offering temporary financial security without a lot of Hassell.

Just fill out the form in the upper left-hand corner of our site at, and a title loan representative will reach out to you shortly to answer all of your questions.

All you need is your car, a clear title, and a government-issued ID. Our representative will set up a time to meet you at the office. Once a simple inspection of your car has been completed and the simple forms completed, you’ll be out the door with cash and keys in hand.

At the end of the day, you have a friend to lend a helping hand during tough times. The team at is here for you.

When trying to live below your means, you may find that it can be stressful and difficult. Once you get a grip on your necessities and find satisfaction in what you can afford, you will be happier and less stressed. Getting to that place may take some doing, so if you need some emergency title loan money, don’t forget that New Mexico Title Loans is here to help.

Note: The content provided in this article is only for informational purposes, and you should contact your financial advisor about your specific financial situation.

Daniel Dewitt

Daniel Dewitt is a lifetime blogger with a finely-honed ability to break down, analyze, and interpret economic trends for the layman. He's fiercely invested in spreading financial literacy and helping everyday people gain the tools they need for their own economic success.

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