The sun is finally starting to shine and the nights are gradually getting lighter. Spring is a time of renewal, and by giving your finances a makeover this season, you could save yourself some serious spondoolies.
The money saving experts at comparison site moneyguru.com have revealed that saving can be easily achieved no matter what your budget. Their top tips are easy to follow, helping you become more aware of your outgoings, saving you money and leaving you full of the joys of spring.
For example, did you know that if you skip buying a coffee during the week and take your own from home, you could save around £546* a year? Saving doesn’t have to be scary, and there are plenty of ways to plump up your bank balance without drastically changing your lifestyle.
- Use cash over cards
This is an oldie but a goldie. Studies have shown that we spend way less when we pay with cash for smaller purchases, because we can physically feel the money leaving our possession. This means you’re more likely to take note of what you are spending and be more careful about what you’re buying. Try to use cash if you’re picking up lunch or hitting the shops – you’ll be amazed at how much you save.
- Pack your lunch
This seems like a simple idea but the reality is a hard cycle to break. Try to plan and prepare your lunch the night before (or on a Sunday night, if you want to be really organised). Be realistic about what you’re actually going to eat – if you try to restrict yourself too much, you might end up spending more on snacks throughout the day. Check out Pinterest for loads of fun lunch ideas that’ll fill you up and keep you interested, so you stay away from that vending machine.
- Check your credit rating
In 2016 a report showed that 53% of UK households have never checked their credit score* or obtained a credit report. If you know what your credit score is and what that means to lenders, you can work out how to improve it over the next year. Your credit score can affect everything from mortgages and car insurance to getting a job, so you need to make sure it’s as healthy as possible.
- Work out where you spend
After the big things like your mortgage, car insurance and monthly shop – the rest of your wage can just seem to disappear. Make a budget and work out where your disposable income is going and see what you can live without. Cutting down on eating out or even knocking one drink off your Friday drinks round can make a huge difference.
- Set goals
Take five and decide what you want to save for – it could be a holiday, a car, a pony, anything at all. Set realistic goals of what you’re saving for and when you’d like to achieve it, to make setting aside a little bit each month more manageable. Plus, it makes your actions more tangible if you know you have something to look forward to at the end of it.
And finally, make sure you give your house a good once-over this spring too – who knows what you might find?