I’d consider myself as someone who is particularly good at saving money and budgeting when I need to. At the age of 26, I had saved a deposit for my house and I now own my own home (stay tuned for more information on this).
I have met an incredible amount of people who have not been able to save money. I truly believe it’s all about looking at where your priorities really lie, and assessing your financial expenditure on a daily basis.
Below are my five top tips to help you save some extra pennies. If you are seriously looking into saving some money, I do not think that these changes are particularly difficult:
1. Shop weekly at a large supermarket
I know a lot of people who buy their dinner from a local convenience store on the way home from work. You wouldn’t believe how different the price is on the products that are in the same chain of store, but in a larger supermarket. At the end of the day, it is in the title of the store, you are paying extra for the CONVENIENCE of it being right on your doorstep. If you plan your meals for the week and buy all of the ingredients from a larger store, I can guarantee you will be saving a few pounds each week.
2. Do you really need that Starbucks?
One thing I never do is go to coffee shops, maybe once at the weekend to treat myself, but never during the week. Yes, ok, it may taste delicious, however if you are really trying to save some money, this is one of the main things you should be cutting back on. If you have coffee in your home or at work, why are you spending tens of pounds each week at a coffee shop just around the corner? It’s the same as point 1, you are simply paying for the convenience of someone preparing it for you! What I usually do is take a flask with me, everywhere. I’m a green tea drinker, I’ll always take one in a flask when I’m on the go.
3. Give yourself an allowance for the month
One thing I do is allow myself money for every aspect of my financial expenditure. For example, I allow £60/week for fuel, £50/week for food and £70/week for general weekend entertainment and socialising. Everything I allow for is always OVER what I would actually spend. Never underestimate your spending as then you will literally have no money left to save. For me, my fuel is never £60/week and my food is never £50/week, therefore, I’m left with more money that I can put into my savings.
4. Make your own lunches for work
This is the same as point number 2 really, but in relation to food. If you are buying your lunch every day from a store or sandwich bar etc. you are paying for the convenience of the food being made for you. You’re therefore spending tens of pounds on food when there is no need. It is much cheaper to prepare your own lunches at home, it only takes a quick 10 minutes in the evening to put something together.
5. Do not spend lots of money every weekend
Lots of people feel that they need to constantly go out every weekend otherwise they are missing out. This is far from the truth! For me personally, I go out for food every other week with my partner. The other two weeks we grab cheap ready meals from the supermarket and watch movies at home. Generally, we go out after we have been paid. There are also tonnes of things that you can do for free in your spare time! You just need to research what is around in your area and then you’re good to go.
I hope that the above tips are helpful to you. These are minor changes that you can make to your daily life, but they can make a big difference to your bank account.