15 August 2017

How To Save Some Pennies

How To Save Some Pennies

I work all night, I work all day, to pay the bills I have to pay.

Ain't it sad.

{Sincerely hoping I'm not the only ABBA fan around here...}

Even if we try to pretend otherwise, money money money is often at the forefront of our minds. Whether we're rich or poor, working full-time or part-time, have dozens of mouths to feed or just our own, it can be a problem for all of us.

The unfortunate truth is there will always be stuff to pay for - sometimes it's necessary, like your rent or mortgage; sometimes it's lovely, like a fancy dress or new haircut; and sometimes it's downright rubbish - parking tickets definitely belong in this category. Eurgh.

Whilst I was a student for a good many years, I built up a reputation amongst my family as being fairly frugal {or miserly, as Mama Maggie May lovingly put it} and although these days I don't have to be as careful with my spending, I have proudly retained some of my money-saving skills. So for those of you wishing to be more economical with your bank balance, here are some of my tips for how to save the hard-earned pennies.

Choose something to save up for:  I always like to have a particular goal at any one time, with a money target and timeline, so that I have something specific to work towards - for example, I will need to have saved £12000 by the end of next year for a mortgage deposit, or £1000 by the end of next month for a laptop. Having a clearly defined plan makes it a lot easier to stay on track with your saving, especially when you're tempted by those emails sitting in your inbox from ASOS, or yet another flat white from Pret.

Speaking of flat whites... : Don't get me wrong, I am a coffee fiend - pretty much instantly suffering from caffeine withdrawal if I don't have a cup nearby. But sadly those delicious takeaway coffees very quickly add up {especially if you're buying the tasty lattes and coolers}. You're looking at £25 a month even if you only treat yourself a couple of times a week; that's nearly £300 a year - just on takeaway coffee! Definitely don't ban yourself from picking up a cappuccino now and then, but perhaps monitor your coffee spending a bit more.

How To Save Some Pennies

Be loyal: Most supermarkets will reward you with special offers and vouchers if you shop regularly with them; by sticking to one or two chains, and doing your main weekly shop there instead of buying items throughout the week from different stores, you're far more likely to find a £5 voucher arrive in the post one morning, or a special offer next time you swipe your loyalty card at the checkout. We have an online food delivery each week, and I can genuinely say that not a week goes by when I don't have a £5 or £10 voucher to use, or some bonus points to use up!

Plan your meals: Following on from the above, planning your meals in advance will save you far more money than you think. Buy ingredients which you know can be used for a few meals throughout the week, and think about whether the leftovers could provide lunches too - it'll save you spending a few pounds at work every day on a pricey sandwich...

Have a clear out: Not only will decluttering your wardrobe feel wonderful, but it could also make you some money. You can sell your wares on eBay or Depop {I'm an old-fashioned eBay girl myself}, sell on to friends or family, or find a shop nearby which sells second-hand clothes in return for taking a commission. Although I don't find this makes heaps of cash, it's a quick and easy way to make a fiver here and there - especially if you're making money from things you no longer wear!

Finally - save some pennies! Literally. Have a couple of jars in the house - maybe one in the kitchen, and one on your bedside table - and make a habit of taking all of those pesky coppers out of your purses and wallets every night. Add a couple of silvers now and then too, plus pound coins when you've got them spare. Slowly but surely, those jars will start to fill - a great way of lightening the load in your handbag, saving money without even realising it, and having a handy car parking/newspaper/emergency chocolate fund for when you need it.

What are your tips for saving money? Do you have any methods, apps or advice you can share?

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