Sometimes it feels like all your money disappears with bills and everyday essentials, doesn’t it? Although they are necessary expenses, it does seem to leave you with less money for you to spend on the things you enjoy!
But what if you were able to cut back on your monthly outgoings – so you could start saving some money towards your dream holiday or first home, perhaps?
It might only seem like a small saving here but in time you will start to save! Here are our five top tips for decreasing your monthly outgoings:
1. Do you know how much you spend?
There are a surprising number of people who don’t know what their total average monthly outgoings are. Admittedly this can be difficult to track considering the number of different bills and purchases made on a daily basis. But by using a budget calculator you can work out where the majority of your money is going. The Budget Planner from the Money Advice Service is a good start, and if you want to monitor your expenses on the go, this Daily Budget app is also very handy!
By working out what you spend most on some of the more frivolous items, you’ll be able to work out where you can cut down.
2. Do you need to drive…?
Running a car is not cheap, in fact, at the end of the 2017 financial year transport was the largest household expense. So, each time you get in the car, just think – do I really need to drive? If it is close enough could you walk or get on your bike, instead? Once you take parking as well as petrol into account, would it be cheaper to take the bus or get the train?
If you need to drive could you car share? Perhaps if you live near someone who does the same route as you on a daily basis? You will quickly see your monthly costs go down if you can cut back on transport costs.
To further decrease the cost of transport, check out our blog on How To Save £1,000s On Your New Car!
3. Regularly switch providers
Many of us stick with the same bank, mobile phone network or utilities provider, not necessarily out of loyalty but because it is easy. Most of us think the deals are pretty much the same and can’t be bothered with the hassle that comes with change. However, switching providers could save consumers hundreds of pounds. Take the time to look around – it will definitely be worth it.
4. Write a shopping list and stick to it
We are all guilty of going shopping with the intention of just picking up bread and milk – then leaving an hour later with a trolley full of shopping that left you little change from £100. Food shopping can cost you a lot of money each month but it doesn’t have to. Make a list of what you really need and stick to it. Likewise, switching to own-brand products will save you a huge amount of money.
5. Nothing is better than homemade
The latest figures show that we spend 10% of our weekly wages on food shopping. It is easier to buy ready meals and lunch out and about from the shop as and when we want it. But if you stop buying those pricey chicken and avocado sandwiches on the way into work, and instead make lunch the night before you will quickly save a significant amount of money. Try to make dinners from scratch and take a travel flask to work too.
If you need some recipe and ingrediant ideas, check out our blog on the current seasonal foods!