Saving money is difficult at the best of times, but more and more of us are now trying to find other ways to build our savings and spend less money every day. We know that it’s much easier said than done, but with our top favourite ideas, you’ll see your savings growing in no time at all!
- Set yourself a budget
Spend a bit of time creating an outline of your income along with your typical outgoings. A spreadsheet is a very popular way to organise your finances clearly, as you can easily see each section and add in the different tabs to split the different amounts up, and you’ll probably spot ways that you can reduce your spending right away in certain areas.
Start with the essential outgoings, like rent or the mortgage, your council tax, any insurance, costs that you can’t put off. You can log these in your spreadsheet and look at what you’ve got left over for the month that covers your utility bills, the weekly food costs, and any other payments that you need to make. Often, there are multiple ways that you can cut these costs right down – look into changing your utility providers which can lower your monthly rates, or start meal planning and prepping every week so you can reduce your weekly food costs and save money there.
If you’re not quite sure where you should start, a good option is to just log how much you spend and what you spend it on for a month; often, we don’t see what we’re spending all of our money on, but once you can clearly understand where your money is going you can look at how you can reduce in those areas, especially if you find that you’re making a lot of impulse buys.
- Do some research
From time to time, homes need a bit of updating, and if you’re looking to do some decoration on a low budget, you’ve still got several ways that you can carry this out. By doing the work yourself, you can lower your costs; especially if there are jobs that you can handle yourself.
A really popular way to decorate on a tight budget is to lay new vinyl flooring. Wooden patterns in dark grey shades are a very desirable option, but there are all sorts of patterns and colours that you can decide between to find the one that will suit your home and your decor the most. Doing this is a really clever way to make your house look more attractive, too, especially if you’ve been asking “how can I sell my house fast?”. You can get your house ready for sale on a surprisingly low budget, and you can find all sorts of helpful suggestions online to inspire you and find the perfect design for you.
- Cancel any unnecessary subscriptions
A huge amount of us are signed up to various subscriptions, so whether you’re using Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, Sky, or any other service that has a regular monthly cost, you can look at how to reduce this amount. Some families share profiles that help to reduce costs, or you can switch to a lower-priced subscription instead. While this saving doesn’t seem like a lot at first glance, it will quickly add up over time and become more noticeable!
Don’t forget that some of these subscriptions will still be able to save you money, though, especially if you use a platform like Amazon Prime and you regularly ordered items that you need, which would end up costing more in delivery fees if you cancelled it. Make sure that rather than just cancelling your subscriptions, it will save you some money to do so and you’re not going to make things harder on yourself. Instead, assess what you’re ordering and how regularly you’re buying them, and decide if you really need these things or if you could be saving money by buying less instead.
- Look out for bargains
A lot of the time, buying items is inevitable, but you can almost always find a few ways to reduce the cost by looking around and buying those things that you need when they’re on offer. There are several times a year where big sales will hit and prices drop dramatically, especially around the Christmas season, close to Easter, and Black Friday and Cyber Monday at the start of November. If you know that you’re going to need or want to make a big purchase in the near future, like some new furniture or maybe white goods, trying to shop during these prime sale times will help to save you a good amount of money.
In some cases, you just aren’t able to pick and choose when you replace things, especially if something essential has broken down on you. If this happens and you can’t find a good sale to take advantage of, you can look at online sites that will automatically crawl for discount codes when you buy things, like Honey. This is an easy-to-use browser add-on that will pull any codes that you can use when you go to checkout, which will help you save money without doing a thing!
- Save up your change
There are various apps that will do this for you, especially with more and more of us going cashless and no longer carrying cash around. These apps will round up when you buy things to the nearest dollar and put the change directly into a savings account. At first, you’ll only see a small amount here and there, but when you buy things every day, this quickly adds up.
You can also increase the amount that goes into your savings account by rounding up, so if you spend $6 for example, the remaining $4 goes into your savings. If you’re looking to save more money faster, this is a popular option; but make sure that you’re not being too restrictive, as long term, this won’t be a sustainable method.
The key to being able to save money is to find ways that work best for you. If you’re losing motivation, try to focus on what you’re saving for this will spur you on and keep those savings growing!