With the help of our extensive list of the most effective ways to save money, you can discover ways to reduce the expense of going out to eat as well as the cost of your monthly bills.
Fix your finances
Giving up your money without a good reason is one of the most aggravating things that can happen.
Despite this, the vast majority of us are complicit in this behaviour because we fail to properly organise our funds. You might be able to significantly boost the amount of money you have left over to spend on the enjoyable things in life if you put in a couple of hours to improve your financial situation.
In this article, we will provide you with nine easy financial fixes that can assist you in making the most of your money.
1. Move the balances on your credit cards to another card.
If you are already paying a significant amount of interest on your credit card debt, it may be in your best financial interest to shift the entire balance onto a credit card that offers balance transfers at 0% APR.
You will have the option to settle any outstanding balances with these credit cards because they do not impose any interest fees on transferred balances for a predetermined amount of time.
However, the interest rate has a tendency to increase once the promotional time comes to a close; therefore, you should make sure that you pay off the balance in full before this occurs.
2. Organise a free overdraft
When the regulations were modified in the year 2020, most banks were required to adjust their overdraft costs.
In the event that you go into an unarranged overdraft, you will not be subject to any penalties; nevertheless, you will now be subject to charges of up to 39.9 percent EAR (effective annual rate) for becoming overdrawn.
The good news is that there are bank accounts that offer free overdrafts that are pre-approved for up to a specific limit. Which? It’s possible that Recommended Provider First Direct is a solid pick given that the company offers an interest-free overdraft of up to £250 as part of its 1st Account package.
3. Decrease the amount of your
By making use of any and all tax breaks to which you are eligible, you can keep a larger portion of the money you generate for yourself.
Despite the fact that reliefs such as the marriage allowance, rent-a-room relief, and potentially exempt transfers (PETs) can all save you a significant amount of money, relatively few individuals are aware of them.
4. Make use of resources that allow you to compare prices
You are able to evaluate hundreds of different financial goods using price comparison websites, which enables you to select the product that is most suitable for your situation.
There is typically a significant price gap between the least expensive and most expensive providers of a product or service. Because of this, it is in your best interest to look through these websites in search of the best deals, regardless of whether you are interested in purchasing auto insurance, credit cards, or a broadband bundle.
5. Register for customer loyalty cards.
Customers are rewarded by a wide variety of stores, restaurants, and supermarkets by giving them the opportunity to accumulate points with each purchase they make at the establishment. These points can be redeemed for discount coupons that can be used toward future purchases.
To encourage you to sign up for the card in the first place, many cards will also provide you with one-time promotions or discounts.
6. Cancel unneeded direct debits
It is easy to miss direct debits that you have forgotten to cancel if you don’t make it a habit to view your bank account on a frequent basis.
A cursory examination of your monthly bill will assist you avoid making any unneeded payments that could drag on for weeks, months, or even years.
Get into the routine of checking your online bank account once a month to ensure that you are not paying for any services that you no longer use or make use of. This should become a habit.
7. Get a better mobile phone contract
Because there are thousands of mobile phone plans, it can be challenging to discover the one that is best for you. Additionally, mobile phone carriers are frequently unhelpful when it comes to offering existing customers a better bargain.
Take a few moments out of your day to check your invoices and make sure that your use of mobile services such as calls, texts, and mobile web isn’t significantly above or falling far below the allotted amount. If these conditions are met, it would be in your best interest to inquire with your service provider about the possibility of upgrading to a plan that is more suited to your needs and more closely aligns with how you utilise their services.
8. Use budgeting apps
Because there are so many apps for mobile phones that can assist you in improving your financial situation, the days of using a budgeting book that required pen and paper are long gone.
Through the use of open banking, many of them will let you to add accounts from a variety of banks, allowing you to monitor the wider picture more easily.
9. Invite others to join your subscriptions
You probably have multiple subscriptions to different streaming services since we live in a world where the entertainment never stops.
You might be able to cut costs on these by enrolling in what the majority of providers refer to as “family plans.” These plans enable you to share accounts with other people who live in your house.
For example, the Premium Family plan offered by Spotify costs $19.99 a month and includes six user accounts.
Spend less cash on food.
There are a lot of different ways that you can save money on food and drink, which is great because it can be expensive to do a shopping trip that will satisfy everyone in your home.
The following are some of our recommendations that, if followed, might end up saving you a fortune over the course of a year.
10. Don’t write off the store brands sold in supermarkets.
It is possible to make large savings by purchasing items from the basic and budget categories offered by supermarkets. Additionally, you can discover that avoiding well-known brands does not need a sacrifice in flavour.
In our taste tests at Which?, we frequently pit well-known brands like Heinz and Kellogg’s against store brands sold exclusively in supermarkets, and the results are often surprising. We recently discovered that our house brand of crisps, mayonnaise, and oven chips tasted superior than the ones sold by major brands.
11. Receive benefits in exchange for the money you pay
When looking for sweets, it is important to purchase at stores that have generous reward programmes.
Both John Lewis and Waitrose typically receive very high marks in customer satisfaction polls conducted by Which? Both stores also provide a credit card reward programme for customers that awards 1.25 points for each pound spent at either John Lewis or Waitrose and requires a minimum of four pounds to be spent at other retailers in order to earn a single point.
12. Opt for less expensive cuts of the meat.
If you choose a less expensive piece of meat, such as a braising steak rather than a fillet, this does not mean that you have to sacrifice a delicious meal. Utilizing a slow cooker allows for the progressive breaking down of the meat’s fibres, which results in an improved flavour profile at a reduced cost. The most effective slow cookers are those that are simple to install, operate, and clean.
13. Create your own version.
There are many people who drink smoothies as a healthy shortcut to getting their five-a-day portions of fruit and vegetables, but the price of these drinks is anything but healthy.
If you consume smoothies on a daily basis, investing in a smoothie maker or jug blender and making your own smoothies at home could save you a significant amount of money.
14. Buy in bulk
Putting in a larger purchase at once allows for easier budgeting.
If you own or operate your own company, it is in your best interest to become a member of a membership club or wholesale retailer such as Costco, which has warehouses located all across the United Kingdom.
There is an annual membership charge of £26.40 for business customers who buy in person, which is more than the fee of £15 for internet shoppers.
Makro and Bestway are both alternatives to consider when looking for wholesale shops.
15. Make use of price-matching pledges.
Customers who shop at Tesco and Asda can receive discounts on their purchases if the same items can be found at certain other retailers for a lower price. In order to take advantage of these discounts, customers should make it a habit to scan their loyalty cards or register their receipts online after each trip to the supermarket.
16. Get into utilising vouchers
Customers that are proactive about looking for discount coupons and vouchers can save significant sums of money. There are numerous blogs devoted to extreme couponing and discount bargains that are available online. Each day, these blogs publish dozens of discounts on various social media platforms.
17. Don’t be fooled by deals and sales.
Be wary while taking advantage of limited-time offers such as buy-one-get-one-free deals or other types of special discounts. You should only purchase things that you truly require and are likely to keep and make use of, such as toilet paper, shampoo, and toothpaste. Toilet rolls are another good example.
18. Be sure to look in the “reduced” section.
If you buy things that are getting close to the end of their shelf life and acquire them at a discount, you can make significant savings as long as you are certain that you will utilise them before they expire. You can typically locate these in a designated section of the grocery store marked with a yellow sticker, though they may also be dispersed throughout the other shelves.
19. You shouldn’t go shopping while you’re starving.
It has been brought to our attention by a number of customers that shopping while hungry results in excessive spending. To avoid this problem, you should do your shopping after a meal or a light snack.
20. Preserve food so that it stays fresher for longer.
Utilize your refrigerator and freezer to their full potential. If you freeze your leftovers instead of throwing them away, you will save both money and time. This is because you will have a ready-made dinner on hand for those days when you just don’t feel like cooking. Additionally, if you store food in your refrigerator in the appropriate manner, it will have a longer shelf life.
For instance, if the temperature in the refrigerator is too low, cucumbers will become mushy; to prevent this from happening, wrap the cucumbers with a tea towel. Also, you should avoid putting milk on the door rack because the door will warm the milk up anytime it is opened.
You can save money by dining out less.
The majority of us treat ourselves to the luxury of dining out on occasion, despite the fact that doing so can at times be very pricey.
The following are nine easy suggestions that could help you save money on your next lunch out at a restaurant.
21. Place an order for takeout or delivery directly with a restaurant.
According to the findings of our investigation, if you want to have a high-end dining experience in the comfort of your own home, it is typically more cost-effective to order meals directly from a restaurant rather than using an app delivery service like Deliveroo or Just Eat.
We found one meal that was more expensive when purchased through an app than it was when purchased directly from the restaurant.
22. Vouchers for restaurants that can be printed off online
There are a lot of eateries that provide promotional vouchers online. For instance, Pizza Express frequently offers promotions where customers can have their main dishes for the price of one.
Before you go out, make it a habit to look for vouchers in the newspaper and visit websites like VoucherCodes, HotUKDeals, and MyVoucherCodes to see if there are any sales or discounts available.
It is a good idea to check out daily deal websites like Groupon and Wowcher to see if they offer any discounts on restaurants.
23. Make online reservations for your evening out.
Websites such as Opentable, Lastminute, and 5pm specialise in offering deals such as two meals for the price of one, discounts of up to fifty percent, and sometimes even promotions in which wine is included with your meal. After conducting a search for the discounts that are presently on offer in your region, you can make a reservation at the establishment of your choice.
When you arrive at the restaurant where you will be having dinner, all you will need to do is mention to your server that you made your reservation through an internet promotion.
24. Sign up for the discount programmes offered by chain restaurants.
You can save a significant amount of money by becoming a member of the clubs offered by some restaurant chains. These are typically run by large companies such as Gourmet Burger Kitchen, La Tasca, Pizza Express, and Wagamama, and they typically allow customers to sign up for them for free by email.
When you sign up for a company’s mailing list, the information you need to take advantage of limited-time offers will be delivered to your inbox as soon as they become available.
25. Sign up for a dinner club.
Sign up for a customer loyalty programme and receive discounts of up to fifty percent at a variety of different restaurants.
Tastecard provides a free trial period of sixty days, following which it may be purchased for either £19.99 for six months or £34.99 for an entire year.
In addition, The Gourmet Society provides a free trial period of 60 days, after which membership is renewed at a cost of £6.99 per month. Both are accepted at over 6,000 different dining establishments.
Bring your own bottle is the 26th rule.
Going to one of the many restaurants across the country that provides the option to bring your own bottle (also known as BYOB) of alcohol to enjoy with your meal can help you save a significant amount of money.
When purchasing a bottle of house wine, you may expect to pay approximately £15, but a similar bottle of wine can be purchased from a grocery store for approximately £5.
27. Avoid spending a lot of money on bottled water.
It is now compulsory by law for establishments that serve alcoholic beverages to provide clients with free water from the tap, so don’t be shy about making the request. Because a bottle of mineral water can cost more than $3.50 in some places, customers who eat out twice a month could save roughly $100 annually by drinking water from the tap instead.
28. Remember your doggie bag
There should be no social shame associated with bringing home food that has been left over. You already invested money into it, so why throw it away? It is not uncommon for diners to order too much food in restaurants; therefore, it is prudent to inquire about the availability of doggy bags and transport any leftovers to your home. You won’t need to spend as much on lunch the next day as a result of doing this.
29. Be social
Join the Facebook or Twitter account of your favourite restaurant or restaurant chain if you frequent either of those establishments on a regular basis. In this way, you won’t pass up any opportunities to save money or benefit from unique offers.
Spend less on travel to save money.
There are a few different ways that you can cut back on your expenditure, despite the fact that the price of train tickets and the expense of maintaining a car both appear to be on the rise.
If you follow our seven suggestions, you will be able to save hundreds of pounds on the cost of your travels.
30. Lower the price of your yearly MOT inspection
MOTs for cars have a maximum test charge that has been set by the government at £54.85; nevertheless, service centres sometimes offer offers that are half the price. Check out what’s available in the area before you make a reservation.
There are certain garages that compete for consumers by providing discounts on their services. Choose a garage that comes highly recommended by a friend in order to sidestep the cowboys.
31. Obtain flexible tickets for the train.
Do you drive to work every day of the week, or do you take public transportation certain days? If you do, the new flexi season ticket programme being offered by National Rail could help you save money.
32. When possible, travel on foot or by bicycle.
When it’s an option, opting to walk or ride a bike instead of driving or taking public transportation can help you save money. Additionally, it is healthier for you to do so.
33. Obtain a better value for your vehicle breakdown cover
Joining a breakdown service will help you save money in the event that your vehicle breaks down. Our survey of suppliers of auto breakdown cover assesses them based on how quickly they arrive, how satisfied their customers are, and how much value they offer for the money.
Make money out of your parking spot by doing the following:
There are many websites that provide you the opportunity to make money off of your unused driveway or garage by renting it out to drivers who are looking for a place to park their vehicles.
A one-time registration fee is typically required in order to have your space displayed; the cost of renting a space is determined solely by the owner of the space.
35. Participate in a car-sharing programme.
Participating in a programme that allows you to share cars could cut your expenses for gasoline in half. Liftshare.com estimates that carpooling with coworkers can save an individual more than one thousand dollars annually.
36. Put money into a “green” vehicle.
Cars that emit the least amount of carbon dioxide are exempt from paying car tax, while vehicles that consume the most fuel are subject to annual levies that could be in the hundreds of pounds.
Those who purchase a new vehicle that runs on gasoline, diesel, or a hybrid drivetrain should expect to pay more taxes. Those who have invested in electric cars, however, are no longer subject to the tax.
37. Obtain low-cost auto components.
Use the used car parts finder on AutoTrader to locate low-cost automobile components.
You have the ability to search a database that contains over 450,000 high-quality used auto components that have been sourced from nationally recognised salvage experts.
You can save money on the heating by.
The cost of energy has been on the rise for some time, but there are several things you can do to avoid your expenses from spiralling out of control despite this trend.
The expense of keeping your home warm can be reduced by following any one of these nine suggestions.
38. Reduce the level of intensity
If you spend the winter moving about inside in a T-shirt while it’s cold outside, you are wasting money. Taking control of the thermostat in your central heating system is an easy step that can result in significant savings on your heating bills.
You can further reduce your fuel consumption by adjusting the timer on your central heating system so that it turns off automatically at night and during the day if no one is home.
39. Cover up any chimneys that aren’t being used.
It’s nice to have a fireplace that works, but when it’s not lit, it can give the impression that you’re trying to heat the space with the window open.
When the fire has gone out, make sure the damper is closed, or you can spend about twenty pounds for a chimney balloon that you can inflate in the opening above the fireplace to cut down on draughts.
40. Have insulation installed.
Considering that as much as a third of heat might be lost through the roof, it is prudent to install insulation. Depending on the structure of your property, putting in loft insulation if you don’t already have it could result in annual cost savings of up to £215 in energy costs.
41. Refrain from making excessive use of exhaust fans.
Extractor fans in bathrooms and kitchens consume energy if they are left on for a longer period of time than is necessary. To save money on your energy bill, change the timer on the fan or turn it off manually. Some ventilation systems even incorporate heat-recovery systems to cut down on the amount of energy that is wasted.
42. Make preparations during dry spells
You may prevent draughts from entering your home by sealing any gaps that may exist around the door frames, window frames, and pipework that runs through the exterior walls. You can accomplish this goal by utilising expanding foam fillers or draught excluder strips. In addition to being insulated, loft hatches and the sides of the aperture should also be insulated.
43. To Which Should I Switch?
Changing your energy provider is one way to bring down the cost of your heating expenses.
In April of 2021, the most affordable plan available for a medium user was one that cost £974 per year. This results in a savings of £264 compared to the currently applicable price cap.
44. Don’t heat rooms that aren’t being used.
If you have a spare bedroom that is only used sometimes, you should reduce the radiator in that room down to the lowest setting possible without entirely shutting it off. The rate of heat loss in these rooms can also be slowed down by installing reflective foil behind radiators on walls that are exposed to the outside.
45. Get an energy audit
It is not necessary to go to great lengths to acquire the assistance of a financial advisor in order to cut costs. On the Energy Saving Trust website, energysavingtrust.org.uk, there is a link to a home energy check that can be completed online for no cost.
Spend less on cosmetics and clothes.
The cost of clothing and personal care items might vary greatly. Here are five helpful hints on how to cut back on spending.
46. Reuse and recycle your used clothing
If you have some dated garments collecting cobwebs in your closet, you might want to consider donating them to a shop of fashionable goods in exchange for a discount in the near future.
If you bring in a bag of used clothing from any store, H&M will give you a discount of £5 off your next purchase of at least £25 worth of merchandise in exchange.
If you donate at least one item of clothing with an M&S label to Oxfam, you will receive a £5 M&S voucher, which may be used toward the purchase of apparel, home goods, and beauty products at M&S stores.
47. Make your own facial masks
There might be an excess of face coverings on the market currently, but constructing one yourself can still provide decent results.
Our step-by-step guide will teach you how to do it.
48. Make do and mend
While you’re in a crafting mood, why not repair up old, broken garments instead of buying new ones?
You can buy needles, thread and spare buttons for a fraction of the price of a new garment. Many outfits come with spare buttons anyhow, so you may as well put them to good use.
49. Buy longer lasting beauty products
Your money will go further if you buy things that last longer. That’s why you should try our Editor’s Choice lipsticks, which our thorough testing has demonstrated have better lasting power.
50. Wash clothing at the proper settings
We all know washing clothes at a lower temperature is good for the earth, but it’s also good for our wallets.
Washing at 20°C instead of 40°C might save you 62 percent on running costs.
You might not even be washing your clothes at the proper temperature currently, so it’s worth reading labels carefully to find out whether you might pull down the dial and save money without making any concessions. Find out how to read washing machine symbols so you can check for yourself.