These simple tips will help you save money this January
January is officially the time of year when we feel the most broke, according to online surveys. But here are some simple ways to save money!
It may not always be fun, saving money, but it is always rewarding. Whether it’s for sales shopping, a holiday you’d like to go on, or just to get back on track after Christmas - we have five easy ways to save money this January.
1. Quit/go without
Dry January. Smoke-free January. Choc-free January – whatever it may be, find something you spend extra money on and consider stopping for at least 1 month. The average smoker spends £250 per month just on cigarettes, so you may have paid for that flight abroad after just 30 days of stopping (not to mention the added health benefits). This may also include subscriptions to certain things you don’t really need or use. It’s very honourable to renew that gym membership, but it’s only worth it if you’re actually going to go. Before shelling out, consider local pay-as-you-go classes, or even join a local running club or sports team. They are often cheaper than the gym, and going in a group helps keep you motivated.
2. Stop carrying cash/pause before you buy
Many of us are guilty of frittering money away just because it’s in our pockets. Online surveys suggest that the average person can save around 10% of their outgoings by being mindful of what they spend. You could try not carrying cash, or setting up a limit on your credit/debit card (there’s nothing that makes you re-consider those inappropriate shoes than when your bank contacts you to tell you to stop spending). Try the 1, 2, 3, pause tip: ask yourself do I NEED it or just want it? Leave it by and go elsewhere – come back only if you still really want it. Keep the receipt, and ask others for an honest opinion. If they aren’t very forthcoming it may be best to take it back.
3. House, home and car savings
According to online surveys, many people can save money every day simply by using the ‘extra jumper’ rule: put another layer on before you put the heating on. Also, if you don’t have insulation, check out your local authority website as sometimes grants are available for free insulation, which can really make a difference. Whilst you’re at it, consider how clever you are being with your car. Checking tyre pressures regularly will help to bring down your fuel bill, as will driving smart (accelerating gently and sticking to the speed limit). You can get great apps to help you with this. Don’t forget to shop around for the lowest petrol prices, too!
4. Switch and save
Speaking of shopping around, gas and electricity deals can be had when you switch to a different supplier. Comparison sites can help you. Why not also look at your bank account whilst you’re at it? Not only will different banks offer different rates on saving and borrowing, but some even offer cash rewards when you switch. Money Saving Expert is a great place to start.
5. Be prepared
According to recent online surveys, the average commuter can save around £1,500 per year simply by not buying their morning coffee en route. By bypassing the coffee shop on the way, and bringing in your own, a simple £4.99 saving can really start to add up. That goes for buying lunch on your break as well. You may not think much about popping to the café for a sarnie, but making your own the night before costs closer to pennies than pounds. Think you won’t have time? Taking all the bits in a bag and making it there will save time AND money. If lunch out is a social thing though, and you’re worried about missing out, why not suggest to colleagues and friends that you all bring in something for a DIY buffet lunch? You’ll have even more time to chat about all the money you’re saving!
Have you got any great ideas to save money this January? Discovered some tried and tested ways to save a few bob? Let us know, and chat to other money-saving fans, on our Facebook page. And of course, don’t forget to have your say whilst making money online in your spare time, by taking paid surveys for cash at Opinion Outpost UK!