Every single one of us wants to save money. This is a universal truth! Sadly, many of us just don’t know how to save money, how to start saving money or even where to put it once we have saved it. So, for all of the would-be savers out there this guide is for you. We have compiled a list of some of the best money saving tactics so that you can learn more about saving and about how to start saving – it really is simple once you know how! Without further ado, let us begin!
Budget, Budget, Budget
This is a simple point and has been given as advice regarding money saving for a very long time. However, it is still not really followed and many people overlook it as a tactic. Making and then sticking to a budget is a really important (and more often than not the first step) towards effective budgeting which itself is more often than not the first step towards saving money.
The best practice regarding budgeting is to first take your total income for the month, and write this figure down. This will be your starting point. From this figure you deduct all of your essential outgoings, (mortgage payments, rent payments, utilities bills, mobile phone contract payments etc) and then deduct all of your living expenses (amounts spent on food, travel, etc) and the resulting figure will be your total amount of expendable income. If you can match this up with the 50/30/20 rule of thinking (this rule says that of your total monthly income you should spend 50% of it on what you need to spend it on, 30% on what you want to spend it on, and 20% into your savings) then you are doing well.
Once you have your resulting figure (with everything deducted), split it by week (by 4), and you have a weekly budget! Stick to this budget as rigorously as you can, keep receipts and track your spending so that you do not overspend, anything left over at the end of the month can go straight into your savings.
Switch Your Accounts
You can switch a whole host of different accounts now and new laws and legislation keep getting passed that make it easier to switch. Your new prospective provider will also, almost always, handle the entire switch for you so all you need to do is submit your application. So what can you switch?! You can now switch the following accounts with little to no fuss:
- Your internet provider. Switching internet provider can mean that you end up paying less per month and you may also get yourself a higher broadband speed. Your new provider may also be offering an attractive incentive for moving across; incentives can include vouchers for certain stores and pre-paid debit cards of varying amounts. Be aware you may need to wait a week to two weeks before your new service is active, and you may also be charged an early exit fee/exit fee by your current provider (which may outweigh your overall savings) so check your contract before you switch.
- Your electricity/gas supplier. Switching electricity/gas supplier has been in the spotlight for some time now with the inherent processes themselves having endured extreme scrutiny. Now, switching suppliers has never been easier, all you need to do to is make your application and your new provider contacts the old one on your behalf and handles everything for you; in some cases they will also pay the exit fee for you! You will usually be kept in the loop about the development of your switch and you will also be given the change to reverse it. New providers such as Bulb and Octopus offer 100% renewable energy!
- Your current account. Switching current accounts is also easier now more than ever, and banks are starting to offer more and more incentives for switching as they try to attract more new customers. By transferring your current account you could also secure yourself more favourable terms on overdrafts etc. Remember also you can have more than one current account – it is an urban myth that you can only have one!
As you can imagine, being savvy with switching can save you a lot of money in long term.
Use Groupon, Freecycle – Don’t Buy New!
If you need a new piece of furniture, a new TV or bed frame, before you spend thousands on a new item first check if you can get it second hand for a much better price. There are so many sites out there today that specialise in the recycling of goods! If you do not want to pay a thing then freecycle is the perfect option just be quick as things will go fast. For the larger items of course eBay is always a safe bet, but other sites such as Shpock and Gumtree can also provide an excellent range of second hand goods at a fraction of the price. Groupon often have a wide and diverse selection of interesting offers and deals that range from days out to sofas, and practically everything in between! If you have got the bug for some new clothes then again eBay is a solid choice but other app-based companies such as Depop sell only clothes and are arguably much easier to navigate and less congested as a result.
Sell Your Unwanted Items!
This is an extension of the point above. If you have things of value that you no longer use clear out your clutter and make some money at the same time! Put things on eBay, Gumtree or Shpock and generate some extra cash whilst clearing up space in your home.
The ability to save money on a regular basis can be easier said than done, even when you budget correctly because life does have a habit of throwing you a curve ball from time to time and if you are not prepared you need cash quickly to get you through. LoanPig can help you with a short term loan or if you just need an instant payday loan quickly until your next payday. Apply now and let us take those little life headaches away for you.