Money Saving Ideas
- Instead of paying by card, use cash for non-bill spending such as food shopping, travel and socialising. Spending cash makes the spending more real, and there’s an added advantage of knowing exactly how much cash you have left, instead of spending more than you can afford.
Get Savvy with coupons
- Coupons are a great way to save money on grocery and everyday items. Cut them out of newspapers and magazines, sign up for email alerts from your favourite brands or go to a website like Super savvy me and print them out.
- Done right, extreme couponing can slash your grocery bills and help you bag countless freebies. Check out www.moneysavingexpert.com/shopping/extreme-couponing for more info and where to find the best coupons.
Create a shopping list
- The less you go to the supermarket, the less money you’ll spend. One strategy is to simply plan ahead. At the beginning of each week plan your dinners for each night, do a check of all the food items in your home that need to be replaced and think about what you will need during the week from the supermarket. Make one shopping trip that will guarantee that no quick trips will be needed for the rest of the week.
Food shop in the evenings
- If you’re prepared to shop around
(around 6pm, that is), lots of supermarkets mark-down items they need to
shift or ditch by the end of the day. Still make a list, but if you’re
flexible on brands and flavours you could bag tinned or fresh produce
that’s still plenty good to eat, but for pennies.
Never shop on an empty stomach
- You’ve probably heard this one a zillion times before, but the golden rule really is: never ever shop when you’re hungry! If you haven’t eaten all day and then head to the supermarket, you’re going to throw anything and everything into your trolley. Have a bite to eat before you go, to avoid hunger-fuelled overspending.
Buy supermarkets’ own brand foods
- These are cheaper, and in blind taste tests, people often can’t tell the difference.
Always buy generic medicines
- Don’t be fooled by branded over-the-counter medicines. A 16-pack of Nurofen caplets costs £2 compared with Tesco’s 16 pack of Ibuprofen caplets at 19p.
Learn to say “no.”
- Telling yourself no regularly is the best way to save money. Simply passing on the chocolate bar or bag of sweets you want at the checkout for example can make big savings over the course of a year.
Set a budget
- Do you really need to spend £3 on that fancy coffee? But make sure the budget is realistic and allows you some treats. Be realistic to avoid setting yourself up to fail.
30 Day Rule
- If you feel like you’re treating yourself to an unnecessary purchase, it probably is unnecessary (sorry!). Write the item down and wait thirty days. If at the end of that time you decide you still want it, then go for it.
Keep a spending diary
- If you want to take control of your finances and you are on a tight budget you need to know where all of your money is going.
Loose change jar
- Collect loose change and pennies in a jar and cash them in at the end of the year. Without even realising you could have saved £40 or £50.
Get cashback for shopping online
- Cashback sites like Quidco or Top Cashback give you cashback on your purchases once you have created an account with the respective site. You can browse High Street and online retailers using the websites and once you buy an item, you will receive a percentage of the value of your shopping as cashback which will be paid into your account.
Grow veg and herbs
- Growing your own vegetables can be fun; it’s good for the environment and is a great way to cut down your food bill. Small herb gardens are easy to grow, and you can keep them inside your home or on a windowsill. This can save you cash throughout the year, and fresh herbs taste better too!
Use a slow-cooker
- Using a slow cooker to make a stew is both easier – you can leave it to stew while you’re at work all day – and cheaper. It costs around 10.5p to use a slow cooker for around eight hours, while using an oven will cost far more at 30p for one hour. The small appliance also produces huge batches of food to freeze for later.
Shop around and cut your energy costs
- It might be a little bit of hassle, but checking the price of your household utilities with comparison sites and changing to the cheapest supplier could make big savings over the course of a year.
Book an appointment with your budget support officer
We can provide a personal budgeting support service for you. We will work with you to understand your individual circumstances and agree a personal plan to help you manage your money more effectively. Call us on 01536 535773 to book your appointment.