Since the first of January I have been reading plenty of tweets from bloggers going on the so called "spending ban" and I have done it myself back in October last year. It was a very popular discussion and this post was very popular Simple Money Saving Tips since it was so popular I decided to write another post sharing simple ideas with you all.
Building a budget
Your finances can sometimes seem like a puzzle. Money will be coming in and going out of your bank account regularly, but until you write it all down it will be difficult to have a clear picture of what is going on. This can lead to worry when making financial decisions. The key to getting in control and staying in control long- term comes from building a balanced budget.
Step 1 - Listing your income and work out how much is coming in.
Step 2 - Listing all your expenditure, work out how much is going out.
Step 3 - Do the maths and see if it balances.
If it doesn't balance then there are steps you can take
Cut costs - do it cheaper
Cut back - do it less
Cut out - don't do it
Cut costs - DO IT CHEAPER
Contact existing utility providers to see whether you can negotiate a better deal on your bill. There are many price comparison site available.
Turning heating down by one degree in winter and using hot water bottle.
Vouchers are available for eating out.
Try cheaper versions of some products, you might not notice the difference.
Cut back - DO IT LESS
This is where things will start to become more challenging. You will need to make serious decision about whether the frequency at which you are doing something is sustainable. Cutting back on something means that you still get to do it, but less often.
If you love eating out but cant afford to do it all the time, why not cut back rather than cutting it out completely. Or find the recipes online and make them at home yourself.
Running a car can be expensive at the best of times, so why not see if you can change your car for one that is cheaper to run or try and work for short journeys.
A take away for two each week could cost around £18 which means over a year you will be spending £936 on takeaways. If you only had a take away every other week it would save you around £468 per year.
Same for lunch if you buy lunch daily for £3.50 it could cost you £910 a year. If you only eat lunch out one day a week you could save up to £728.
This one is a big one for you bloggers....if you love shopping you may not want to give it up but reduce the amount you are spending. If you are spending £80 a month on clothes then reducing it to £60 will help you save £240 per year.
Cut out - DON'T DO IT
The biggest savings you can make in your budget are when you find things to cut out completely. It might be a really tough decision to make, or you may find it relatively easy if you discover you are spending money on things you're not even using.
Often people have gym memberships or subscriptions that they are not even using or getting enough value for money on.
You can apply the formula above for your own individual circumstances, I will end this blog post with the this.....
Before you buy anything ask yourself: "Do I need it? Can I afford it? Have I checked whether it's cheaper elsewhere?"
Before you buy anything, ask yourself: "Will I use it? Is it worth it? Have I checked whether it's cheaper elsewhere?"