(NC) The pandemic has caused everyone to play closer attention to their finances, taking stock of where every dollar goes. Make your money work for you in the new normal by following these tips and tricks for savvier spending from Vanessa Bowen, money coach and accountant.

Make and maintain a budget
A recent survey found that four in five Canadians are planning or taking steps to better manage their finances. Creating a household budget is one of the best ways to do this. Although it may seem like a chore, by dedicating just a half hour a week to reviewing where your money goes, you can ensure you are the one controlling your money, and not the other way around.

Spend smarter
As people look more closely at their financial situations, they’re also becoming more skeptical of unnecessary fees and are looking for ways to minimize or eliminate them. With the recent increase in banking fees from most major banks in 2021, this can be a good place to start.

Review your monthly fees and service charges. If you’re getting charged for a place to keep your money, look for no-monthly-fee banking options, like the PC Money Account. This account rewards you for everyday purchases and bill payments, which means you’ll be making money instead of losing it monthly.

Create an emergency fund
The last year has taught us that anything can happen. To ensure you’re more financially secure for the unexpected with your job, home or something else, be sure to have an emergency fund. Ideally, try to set aside about six to 12 months’ worth of your salary to rely on should you need it.