It’s mid-month and you possibly find yourself struggling to juggle your finances. It could be you have very little left to enjoy yourself or perhaps you want something special but know you can’t afford it.
We haven’t even mentioned meeting monthly bills. It’s time to examine your finances to find ways to make your money go further so you can save some and keep it in your bank account for longer! With careful planning you may have some left over to save for a rainy day.
Consider creating a budget, you can use a spreadsheet to list out your outgoing and incoming monies. List the different areas of spending along the side and the week number per month across the top, insert the amounts you know you spend and work out what you have left for bills, enjoyment and leisure.
Areas where you spend money will perhaps include mortgage/rent, electricity, gas and water, travel, petrol, gym, food shopping etc. This will give you a clear indication as to what you need for living expenses and what you have left.
Once you know what you have left, you can allocate amounts to the things you like doing the most such as shopping, eating out or holidaying.
Be vigilant, if you know you can’t afford something don’t buy or do it – there are other ways to make your money go further, it’s just about being a little creative! Here are some money saving tips, once you get started, you’ll find some more of your own:
Smart Ways to Make Your Money Go Further
1. Auction Sites
Recycle old clothes, shoes, handbags or other items on Ebay (or similar). If they are in a saleable condition it’s a great way to make your money go further and earn extra money. Once you get started you will enjoy watching people bid for your items! When you start making some money from your old things you could use it to save up for something special.
2. Loyalty Cards
Loyalty cards will reward you with discounts to the brands you love once you start collecting points. Boots are an excellent example. Every time you buy a cosmetic, toiletry for example you can collect points which convert into a payment value.
You could treat yourself to a favourite perfume as soon as you have enough or save your points for something special perhaps GHD straighteners or holiday toiletries. If you’re going away this summer, start collecting now.
3. Bring your Coffee to Work
Do you tend to spend too much money at Costa Coffee or Pret on an early morning coffee? Just one coffee at approximately £2.50 per day multiplied by 20 working days will set you back £50! Buy yourself a funky lidded drinking mug and make your own coffee before leaving for work. Think what you can do with that extra £50!
4. Swap Clothes
Instead of hankering after a top that you know you don’t need or spending money which would be better shaving off your credit card balance, swap some clothes with a close friend and re-invent your wardrobe. It’s a cheaper way of updating your clothes.
5. Shop Around for New Credit Cards
Be aware that if you are paying off a balance, interest rates will be high. Change to a card offering a free balance transfer and no interest for a set period of time. Make a diary note to swap again to another card once that period is up. This will save you paying off the interest.
6. Cut Back Eating Out
It’s cheaper to eat in so avoid costly restaurants by cooking for yourself. If you enjoy concocting recipes in the kitchen invite friends over to sample your meals, you get a night out while being in. Being clever and shopping for fresh produce from the supermarket will save money.
7. Car Boot Sales
Do you have a home full of unwanted items? Remember the mantra “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure”. There are car boot sales at least once a month in an area near you. It can be a satisfying way of converting your unwanted things into cold, hard cash!
8. Packed Lunch
Nipping to the sandwich bar for lunch can end up being an expensive luxury you can avoid. Take 10 minutes in the morning and prepare a nutritious, delicious and inexpensive packed lunch saving approximately £5 a day on food.
That’s a whopping £100 over a period of 4 weeks (based on 5 working days a week). Hopefully some of these ideas will inspire you to save money. By trying some of them over a period of one month you will end up with extra cash in your bank account. Rather than spend it, perhaps put it in a savings account.
Which of these will you be trying? Do you have suggestions for other ways to make money go further? You can leave a comment below. We’d love to hear from you!