If you’re wondering how to save extra money each month without making huge changes to your lifestyle, here are 12 easy ways to reduce your spending and boost your savings.
Are you tired of losing money to credit card interest? Moving your balances over to a 0% balance-transfer card could save you thousands.
It should also make it easier to pay off the remainder of your debt.
Most 0% credit cards have an introductory interest-free period. The exact length of this period will depend on the card you choose. By paying off your balance in full before the 0% period is over, you won’t need to pay any interest on your credit card debts.
If you can’t clear it within the given time frame, switching to a new balance transfer card can give you more time.
Warning: Most 0% balance-transfer cards will charge you fees and interest to withdraw cash or spend. Instead of using it as a way to spend, see it as a tool to make your debt more manageable and easier to pay. If you want to avoid paying interest but you really need a credit card for purchases and cash, an all-rounder card may be more suitable.
How much does your bank charge you for going into your overdraft?
If you get hit by charges every time you’re overdrawn, it may be worth looking for alternatives.
Some banks offer free overdrafts up to a certain amount, meaning you can have that flexibility without losing money.
Before making a purchase, compare prices online first. Price comparison websites can be a great way to view multiple options from across the market before making a commitment.
Whether you’re looking for car insurance, credit cards or a new broadband deal, you may be surprised at the offers available when you don’t settle for the first option you see.
Once you’ve compared prices online, head over to a cashback website such as TopCashback or Quidco to find the product or service you need.
You’ll then be redirected to the retailer’s website and a special link will track your purchase. At a later date, a small percentage of the purchase will go back into your bank account.
This could be 2%, 7% or another amount depending on what you’re buying and the website you’re using. Rates can vary from one cashback website to another, so compare two or three before creating an account.
Cancelling services you’re not making the most of is one of the best ways to consistently save extra money each month.
Check your bank statement regularly and keep an eye on your banking apps if you have them.
The last thing you need is to realise a free trial expired 6 months ago and you’ve been paying for a service you don’t use.
Making the most of vouchers, coupons and deals can be a smart way to make your money go further.
But there’s a risk that when faced with a discount, we might spend more money than we should.
Offers don’t exist to save consumers money. They exist to make businesses money.
So next time you get a voucher for 10% off or you see an amazing buy one, get one free deal, question whether you really need the product first.
How often do you explore the reduced section at your local supermarket? The cheapest items can usually be found at around 7pm onwards, but reduction times vary depending on where you shop.
Get creative with the items you find and see if you can make dinner for that evening for a fraction of its usual price. Most foods can be frozen as soon as you get home and eaten at a later date.
Reduced eggs can be a particularly good bargain. They often have a ‘display until’ date and a ‘best before’ date and there is usually 7 days’ difference between the two.
So while the supermarket may have to sell those free range eggs by the 10th, you’ll have until the 17th to eat them before their quality is affected.
Turning your thermostat down just a couple of degrees can make a difference to your heating bills each month. If you’re warm enough to not need a jumper, take this as a sign to turn it down a little further.
If possible, avoid heating your home overnight too. Your home should still be warm from the heat generated in the day and with the help of blankets on top of your duvet, a hot water bottle and warm PJs, you could save hundreds on your bills.
Washing your clothes at 20°C or 30°C instead of 40°C can be good for your bank balance and the planet. Unless your clothes are covered in mud before they go in the machine, you’re unlikely to notice any difference in the cleanliness of your clothes when they emerge from the wash.
If you like eating out but you’re on a tight budget, going out for breakfast or lunch instead of dinner could save you money.
Not only might the meal be cheaper, but you might be less likely to order a dessert and less tempted to order alcohol. Having a coffee or two will be much kinder to your budget than a few glasses of wine.
Online retailers have plenty of tricks up their sleeve to make us spend money, but sometimes we can use these hacks to our own advantage.
Some retailers offer discounts to shoppers who add items to their baskets but fail to complete the purchase. So next time you’re doing some online shopping, do the following:
Create an account with the retailer and make sure you’re logged in
Add the items you want to your shopping basket
Close your browser window and try to forget about it
There are no guarantees but hopefully you’ll receive an email within a day or two offering you a discount to complete your purchase.
A similar strategy can be used when cancelling a subscription service. If you’re asked why you’re cancelling, select ‘too expensive’ as your reason and hopefully you’ll be offered a discount. Of course, if you’re not making the most of the service, it’s worth going ahead and cancelling anyway.
If you own your home and have a repayment mortgage, changing your mortgage payments can be a great way to save money each month.
If your fixed-rate period has ended and you’ve been moved onto your lender’s standard variable rate (SVR), get in touch with your lender to find out if you can get a new fixed-rate deal with a lower rate.
We hope this post has helped you learn how to save extra money each month, but take a look at our other blog posts for more tips, tricks and budget hacks.