No matter where you may be on your journey, know that anyone can turn their ‘financial life’ around and begin saving money. Sometimes, all it may take is taking the first step in the right direction, getting things moving in your favour. However, stepping in and proactively saving cash in the first place can be life-changing on its own. These money-saving tips may take just a couple of minutes while others require continuous effort. However, overall, they’re straightforward and simple—anyone can do them.
With that mind, here are the best ways to save money that you need to know.
Get Rid of Debt Fast
Monthly debt payments on either a credit card or loan are among the most significant hurdles in saving. It essentially robs you of your income. So, what better way to save money fast than getting rid of your debt? The quickest way you could pay off your debt is using the ‘debt snowball method,’ where you gradually pay off your debts, starting from the smallest to the biggest. This money-saving strategy is more of a behavioural change rather than numbers. Once you’ve set a routine yourself and dealt with your credit cards or loans, you’ll be freeing your income in no time—allowing you to save and make money to your fullest potential.
Negotiate Rates With Credit Card Company
If you’re paying high interest on your credit cards, remember that you could save money as long as you’ve been making your payments on time. You have the right to negotiate your current interest rates with your card provider and transfer your balance to a different credit card, which can potentially help you save hundreds. You can start by contacting your credit card issuer at the number on your credit card’s back and telling them of your request.
However, if you don’t make progress with the credit card company, you can avail for balance transfer credit cards and find one with a 0% annual percentage (APR) that could save you more money in interest over time.
Create a Grocery Shopping List — And Stick to It
One of the simplest yet efficient ways to save money is to shop or buy things when you have a list. That’s because when you visit a store without one, you’ll likely end up making impulse and unplanned purchases—all of which costs a lot of money. That’s why creating a list before you go grocery shopping is crucial as it not only helps you stick to buying items that fit your needs but also helps you avoid purchasing things you might waste. So, always make a list, stick to it, and only buy or get the items you need.
It’s also best to take advantage of a cash-back reward card. Just make sure you pay off the monthly balance to get back some of your money. Additionally, make sure to check for your day-to-day needs and see if you could cut back the cost on food and other items.
Move Bank Accounts
If you’re making monthly payments for your checking or savings account, you will benefit and get a lot of use from researching the latest banking offers. That’s because some of the best banks offer excellent sign-up bonuses by merely opening an account and setting up a direct deposit. Meanwhile, others offer attractive interest rates to new consumers as well. Although interest rates aren’t at the ideal levels or free like they once were, it’s still worth looking. You may find the best deals that could help you make the most out of your checking or savings accounts. You can find some of the best offers online.
Cut the Cost of Your MOTs
Not many car owners know this, but you can cut back on your Ministry of Transport (MOT) costs. The average test fee of MOT test fees is around £55 set by the government for car MOTs, but numerous services shops and centres often offer half-price deals, helping you save money in the process. Use this to your advantage and always check out what’s on offer around your area before booking an MOT test, you may find a hidden deal. You can also use your internet-enabled devices and check for the latest updates from the MOT and see if there are any price changes or credit card deals.
One of the easiest ways to save money is by giving name brands the boot and cheaper generic brands. That’s because in most cases the only thing notable about these things is their expensive marketing—and that’s about where it ends. You can cut the cost by going for cheaper generic brands of medicine, staple food products, and cleaning items and get the same quality and satisfaction you’d get from name brands. Plus, consumers who use generic drugs and other things saved more than thousands every year. So, the next time you go shopping, go generic for a cheap and successful shopping trip. It’s also wise to shop online to compare the price of particular items and get more savings.
Organise a Free Overdraft
Most banks and financial institutes changed their overdraft fees last year. While you won’t be penalised for going into unarranged overdrafts, you’ll see charges around 39.9% equivalent annual rate (EAR) for going overdrawn. Fortunately, many bank accounts offer free authorised overdrafts to a certain amount. Use this to your advantages and save big by organising a free overdraft. Although there are several options to choose from, Provider First Direct can be an excellent choice as they provide a £250 interest-free overdraft for their first accounts.
Automatically Save Money
Out of all the money-saving tips out there, one of the best ones that always help you save money in substantial amounts is by setting up your bank account to automatically transfer funds from your checking account into your savings account in a specified period. This strategy is free and ensures you get to save money even in a small amount every month. You can arrange this online or by contacting your bank.
However, if you’re not too keen about the idea, you can set up direct deposits to automatically transfer 10% of your paychecks into your savings every time. Doing this helps you get more savings every year.
Get Car Insurance Refund for Free
Some car insurers offer refunds to customers since most people nowadays don’t drive their vehicles as much as before. You can claim anywhere between £20 and £50, helping you make money and cut the costs. Plus, it’s 100% free. However, if your insurer doesn’t offer refunds, you can call them or go online and ask them to reduce your annual mileage to get a cheaper premium if you find yourself driving less nowadays.
Skip the Coffee Shop
People can spend over thousands every year in buying drinks from a coffee shop alone. Instead of spending £4 on your coffee every day, you can cut back on the money you spend by making coffee yourself. Even when you shop and buy a bag of local beans from your neighbourhood coffee shop and making it at home can help you spend less in the long run. Shopping for an online coffee subscription is also one of the best ways you could save money while getting quality coffee you deserve. Plus, when you buy the beans online, you’re free from any additional fees that a brick-and-mortar shop adds to their price range.
Reduce Energy Expenses
Not many people know this, but you could save money on your electricity bills by making a couple of small tweaks to your house. You can start by doing things like taking faster showers, fixing leaky pipes, and installing dimmer switches or LED lighting fixtures. If you have the cash or credit for it, shopping for energy-efficient appliances is a great way to save money and add value to your home. Following these tips can save you so much money, cutting your bills’ price in half or more.
Check Insurance Rates
When you ‘check’ your insurance rates, you could save up to £515. You can do this by having an Endorsed Local Provider (ELP) check your insurance rates, helping cut back costs and reduce the amount of money you spend on insurance policies. Use this strategy to check all your policies, ranging from car insurance to personal injury, helping you make sure you get the most out of your money. You can also check your insurance rate online, helping cut the cost of paying professionals to do it.
Before you bring out your cash or credit cards and buy or shop for a new backsplash or fancy lighting fixtures for your house, see if you can do it yourself. Use your handyman skills and online tips to your advantage and cut the cost of buying things that you can make yourself. Plus, you don’t need to pay someone to do something you can likely do independently. However, if you’re the type of person that can’t do any handy work, asking a friend or family member to help you is a good choice, so you don’t need to spend money or waste your credit cards’ balance on replacement drywall.
Additionally, instead of going to the shop and buying items for the project, check to see if you can borrow them. Out of all the money-saving tips to use, this can help you save, get some money back on your card or wallet, and add value to your home.
Eat at Home or Pack Lunch
Although buying lunch or spending £5 or so for food a couple of times per week may seem harmless at the time, all this unnecessary spending can accumulate to a big bill at the end of the month, even if you buy cheaper food or meals. That’s why cutting back your spending habits when it comes to food could save you a lot of money. Plus, buying a week’s worth of groceries for the same price can help you make more meals. So, for your next grocery shopping trip, make sure to shop and buy the food you may need, including things like produce, meat, or canned goods. Get as much as your budget allows you and use it to your advantage, helping you prepare healthy meals while saving a lot.
Finally, the final advice of food-saving tips to remember is when you have the chance, eat at home. Use your home and get the most out of your kitchen and food by cooking and eating at home. You can also use the internet to your advantage by opting to buy ingredients online and have it delivered to save you money on diesel and other expenses along the way.
Always Ask About Discounts
Besides checking for the price tags before you spend your cash, check to see if they offer any discounts. You’ll never know if you can cut the cost until you ask—and you should always do. So, the next time you go shopping either for food or other things like movie tickets, check to see if they offer any ‘special discounts’ for students, seniors, military or AAA members. If they don’t, ask if they offer loyalty cards, discount for credit, or get the prices down. The best part about this is that it’s 100% free and it may help you find good and cheaper deals on items you want to buy.
These discounts when you use them right, you can save thousands every year, especially if you find yourself compulsively buying things you need and don’t need. Take advantage of these tips and find the best discounts possible.
Take Advantage of Your Retirement Savings Plan
If your employer offers a retirement savings plan, use it to your advantage to get the most out of it. Talk to your HR department to set up an account to help you make money in cheaper ways. However, keep in mind to wait until you’re debt-free to use the offer to your advantage, save money and get paid more year after year. That’s why the moment an employer offers you a good retirement deal, use the opportunity and get the most out of it by contributing as early as you can to earn more and in the process. You can find yourself keeping thousands every year by acting fast. You can also ‘buy’ other retirement plans to add more to your annual earnings.
Try Doing a ‘Spending Freeze’
Make use of your motivation to save money by going on a ‘spending’ or ‘buying’ freeze, which involves not buying nonessential items for a week—or month. Use the opportunity as a ‘contentment’ challenge and save big. While you’re at it, take inventory of what you’re grateful for each day, helping you subside your cravings of shopping and the desire to spend money on unnecessary things.
You can make your ‘spend’ freeze challenge work by preparing meals with the food you have and avoiding shopping on physical stores and sticking to online ones to avoid impulse buying—and use your motivation to say no to anything unnecessary.
Embrace and Master the ’30-Day Rule’
Avoiding succumbing to instant gratification is one of the most crucial rules of saving money. Waiting 30 days or a month to decide if you want to buy something you saw during one of your shopping trips the other day is an excellent way to implement the approach. That’s because after a month has passed, the initial urge you had to spend a lot or buy something could subside as well. Plus, giving yourself 20 minutes to contemplate an item’s price can help you make a better decision in the long run.
If you want to buy something on your shopping trip, waiting a while can help you get a better perspective on whether it’s worth the money or not. Plus, this money-saving tip can help you find better deals in 30 days—and can help you keep your hard-earned cash, saving you thousands every year.
Stop Collecting and Start Selling
Out of all the money-saving tips, this one not only saves you money but it also lets you earn. If you need to save money and like to buy and collect things in the past, it’s time to let your collection go. As much as it took a lot of your time and money, it’s time to get everything back and get the most out of your ‘investments.’ You can find collectors selling their items online on websites like Craigslist or garage sales for a fraction of their original cost. If you want to avoid this and get the most of the things you’ve collected over time, selling them as early as possible can help you reach the funds you need.
You’ll only start saving money when you find the willingness to learn and master ‘good’ money habits, prioritising your future needs than your current wants. You don’t need to line up everything before you begin saving—and there are many practical ways to save money and breathe some fresh air into your budget. With a couple of tweaks to your spending habits, like the money-saving tips mentioned, you’ll be saving a lot of money in no time.