There’s a million and one posts out there on World Wide Web which promise to educate you on the best ways to start a savings fund. These are brilliant for those of you who spend £3 a day on a coffee and eat your lunch out everyday. Those solutions are simple. But when you are packing up your lunch, doing a weekly meal plan and already using public transport, how on earth do you save?!
Well, I have the answers! Living payday to payday doesn’t need to mean that your savings account is at £0. There are other ways which are not mentioned in the 101 posts you’ve already read.
Are you ready for them? Feast your eyes…
1. Negotiate your Bills
All those monthly bills that are written down on your budget as a fixed amount – change it! Granted, it may not feel great when you actually pick up the phone, but it’s so worth it. There’s broadband, mobile phones, gas and electric and whatever else you might have. All you have to do is have the guts to call and tell them you want to cancel.
If you have genuinely had problems with a provider, then tell them! Tell them that you’re moving your business because you can get it cheaper elsewhere. They will listen, I promise. Most major companies have a whole department dedicated to retaining customers. This is a fantastic way to grab yourself a discount and start adding what you would have paid into your savings.
2. Shop around for new providers
There will always be the odd company which refuses to budge on their price. When this happens, be prepared… with a brand new provider who will charge you less, and most likely, give a better service. Most people just stick with the providers they have because they don’t like change, but that doesn’t mean that you’re getting the best deal. In fact, a lot of companies offer better deals to new customers than they do to existing ones – just insane!
Get some recommendations from friends and family and call the new provider to see what the best deal they could offer is. Just imagine if you managed to get £10 knocked off each expense, how much extra cash would that free up? Say you have Gas, electric, 2 mobile phone contracts, broadband and a TV package. You save £10 on each which gives you an extra £60 a month. That’s £720 a year you’re saving! Incredible!
3. Look for a smaller place to live
Yes. I know. None of you actually want to do this, but I didn’t say my solutions were easy. I mean let your kids sleep in bunkbeds in one room – they’ll love it. Downsize and you could be saving over £100 a month! £1200 a year!
Obviously there is the technicality of your contract to get around. Have another read of and see what sort of notice period you have to give or if you’re locked in for a set time frame. Start to plan ahead, even if you have another 6 months, you could start looking at which areas are offering cheaper accommodation and what size property you would want to be looking at.
If you’ve had trouble with your landlord and they’re actually breaking their end of the contract by leaving the boiler broken or not replacing broken window, see if you can get out of the contract early.
Remember, this doesn’t have to be long term. This could be the difference between you renting for the rest of your life or being able to afford to buy your own house and have it exactly as you want it. Just give it a try!
4. Make more money with a side hustle.
I don’t need to tell you that making more money will improve your savings, I’m sure you know that. But have you given any serious thought to making extra money with a side hustle? The possibilities are endless and all those people who are earning a fortune – they have side hustles! They don’t rely on one income. Never put all your eggs in one basket – spread them out!
Here are some ideas to get you going –
• Rent your shed – Allow someone else to store their belongings in your shed for a fee.
• Rent your car – Allow someone else to use your car when you’re not using it
• Car Share – Drive your colleagues to work for a small fee
• Cashback sites – get cashback on the things you normally buy
• Completing online surveys – Use your spare time to complete surveys and earn cash
• Sell stock photos – these don’t need to be amazing and they could be of anything!
• Become a secret shopper – visit stores and review their performance for cash or free stuff.
• And finally, the big winner – Start a Blog! A blog is by no means a passive income but it can offer you great security and regular income.
So I challenge you to start one side hustle. I don’t care whether you make £1 or £1000; I want you to do something!
5. Check your finances regularly
I know it’s incredibly boring and one of those jobs you put off an put off, but it needs to be don’t and that’s why it’s here on my list. Your finance could be hiding all the answers to where the hell your money is disappearing to. We all have a weakness. Every single one of us! Whether it’s takeaway (like me) or chocolate (like my husband) there is something which you spend your money on a lot. It’s usually not a lot of money but it all soon adds up.
It is hard to say no to temptation – I know, believe me! When you can smell the Chinese takeaway or you’ve seen an advert for your favourite chocolate bar. It’s all you can think about and suddenly, your budget doesn’t seem to matter to you as much. You tell yourself you’ll be good next month. You’ll make up for it. But it never never happens!
Your finances show you this, that’s why you hate it! But you need battle this! You can do it and once you start, it will get easier! So keep it up! I believe in you!
I really hope that you find this post helpful and if you have anything to add I would really appreciate some comments from you all!
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