Nowadays, more than ever, saving money is vital. We’re forever hearing about how household debt is at an all-time high and people generally seem unable to be able to deal with money. Fear not — we’ve put together some top tips for saving cash and clearing down those debts.
1. Look at your mortgage
1. Look at your mortgage
Most of us are scared by our mortgage, and are certainly not particularly keen to go shopping around for new deals, but you could save thousands by swapping. If you can’t face swapping, can you overpay? This could save you tens of thousands of pounds in interest and have your mortgage paid off early.
2. Clear (or shift) credit card debt
If you can pay off credit card debt, do it. If you’ve money sitting in your savings account, throw it at your debt. Put simply, having £10,000 in a savings account at 2% might earn you £200 a year in interest, but that £10,000 on your credit card at 16.8% will cost you around £1,680 in interest each year, so your savings are actually costing you nearly £1,500 a year.
3. Cut car costs
Got a gas guzzler? Opt for a cleaner car and your road tax will plummet, and your insurance will likely follow. That’s not to mention fuel costs! You can cut costs even further by opting for a 0% car finance deals is one f even if you decide you’d like to stick with a bigger car.
4. Use a shopping list
Many of us simply head to the shops without a list, and this tends to result in impulse buys. Supermarkets cream hundreds of pounds a year off of us by doing this. You can reduce the effect even more by shopping online and ordering only what’s on your list, keeping expense to an absolute minimum.
5. Shop around at insurance renewal time
Insurance companies punish loyalty, and by taking a few minutes to shop around using a price comparison website could save you hundreds of pounds a year. It’s incredibly easy and can yield huge savings.
6. Stop keeping up with the Joneses
The reality is, they’ve got that nice car and go on all those nice holidays because they don’t know how to handle their money and are in a bigger mountain of debt than you are. Don’t give in to temptation to try and keep up. If they really have that much more money than you do, why are they living in the same-size house as you?
7. Cut down on your drinking and smoking
It’s bad for you and it’s incredibly expensive. You can save hundreds and thousands of pounds a year just by cutting down a bit, and what’s more — you’ll feel much healthier too. Which reminds us…
8. Cancel that unused gym membership
You’ve been twice since you took it out, so why are you still paying £30 a month? You can save hundreds of pounds a year by cancelling this and other unused memberships, and by cutting down your drinking and smoking and eating healthier (cheaper) foods, you’ll won’t need to pound the treadmill as the pounds will be falling around your feet (as will those little gold ones).
9. DIY it
Do you really need to get someone in to fix that leaky tap? There are hundreds and thousands of DIY tips online, enabling you to carry out even the most seemingly impossible of tasks with ease. You can save hundreds of pounds a year and tart your house up at the same time.
10. Take advantage of cashback cards
If you really must spend on a credit card, spend on one which gives you cash back for doing so. Reward credit cards are lucrative business, but make sure you pay off in full each month or the costs outweigh the benefits.
11. Sell your old stuff
You can make a fair bit of money by tidying out your loft and selling stuff you don’t use any more. Old books, mobile phones, DVDs, CDs, clothes — anything sells on eBay, and it’s cash in your pocket which you wouldn’t otherwise have, and space in your house which you wouldn’t otherwise have.
12. Do the supermarket step-down challenge
Buy only premium branded goods at the supermarket? Try normal brands. Usually buy normal brands? Try supermarket own brands. Keep stepping down until you actually taste the difference — most of it is exactly the same and sometimes you might even prefer the ‘lower’ brand!
13. Switch energy suppliers
There are big savings to be had here, as the energy market is so competitive nowadays. Again, all you need is a few minutes and a price comparison website. The savings can be substantial, and the whole process is no hassle at all.
14. Learn to say no
Do you really need it? Then don’t buy it!