Rising interest rates are putting a strain on consumer finances across the country, and no one is sure whether inflation has finally calmed down or not. Whatever you think about economic policy, there is no denying that we’re all struggling to adjust right now.

While conditions are certainly not ideal, getting ahead is still possible, and that is especially true if you are willing to trim your personal budget. Let’s look at six minor adjustments you can make today to help yourself get out of debt over the winter!

Stop Shopping Online

It’s a proven fact that spending money is much easier when you do your shopping online. If you force yourself to physically go into a store to purchase something (those running shoes or that new decoration for the living room), then you are much less likely to spend money on things you don’t REALLY need.

Eliminating the things we WANT but don’t NEED is one of the easiest ways to stop the bleeding from our budgets, and it can have an immediate impact on our bottom line today!

Cancel Streaming Services

Speaking of bleeding money, that is what all those streaming services are doing to your bank account each month. Force yourself to take the time to identify all of the services you subscribe to and add up the total cost.

You’ll want to cut that number in half as soon as you see it, and if you write down all of those services, you’ll have the road map for how to do it right in front of you!

Cook at Home

Restaurant dining is another costly element of the average personal budget today. We all love the convenience of eating out, but with the cost nearly doubling over the past few years, it isn’t as feasible as it used to be.

Learning how to throw together a quick crock-pot meal instead of ordering out just a few times each week can make a significant impact on your budget, and it might even help you stick to that diet, too!

DIY Home Maintenance

Many of the home maintenance expenses on our budgets are necessary. You have to have someone cut the grass, and you don’t want to let that plumbing issue get any worse before you address it. However, thanks to the power of YouTube, there are very few home maintenance tasks that the average person can’t handle on their own!

Cutting out the handyman’s labor cost makes almost any home improvement project much more affordable, so make an effort to schedule some home maintenance time and watch that part of your personal budget shrink.

Cut Back on Vacations

Cutting back on your vacation expenses is one of the most obvious ways to trim your budget, but it is also one of the most difficult places to do so. Let’s be honest. We all need those vacations.

For many of us, taking time off away from home is the whole reason to work in the first place. However, those vacations might not need to be as luxurious as we would ultimately want them to be. See what you can do about reducing the luxury items on your next trip, or plan a STAYcation instead and watch the saved dollars add up in your bank account!

Make & Review a Budget

Each of the first five ideas for trimming your budget mentions a specific line item, but you won’t see the impact of any of this effort if you don’t have a personal budget in the first place! Don’t allow yourself to make that mistake.

One of the biggest reasons that most consumers don’t have a written budget is that it’s intimidating to forecast expenses. Don’t let this hold you back. Jot down some rough estimates so that you have SOMETHING to start with, then take the time to refine those estimates each month based on results. Over time, you will find your budget becomes a more and more accurate representation of your financial life.

These options encouraging you to monitor and reduce spending are not good for the national economy, but don’t worry about that, because most people aren’t willing to do them. But like Dave Ramsey frequently says, you have to live like no one else so that one day you can live like no one else.