How to: Save.

‘Do not save what is left after spending, spend what is left after saving.’ – Warren Buffet

Unless you are one of the few born into a multi millionaire lifestyle, at some point in your life you will almost certainly save for something. Whether that be a house, a car, a holiday, or something you’ve wanted for a long time but it costs the same as 3 months wages. And if you are anything like me, saving isn’t always as simple and easy as it sounds.

However, I am going to share with you my top tips on how to save and budget your money, hopefully to make it a much easier process. So let’s get started…

Tip 1. – Create A Budget
Make a list of all your expenditures that you must pay monthly, such as, your rent/mortgage, bills and food etc.You should also include any car payments and any insurance that must be paid. Try and be as in-depth as possible as this will give you a clearer picture of where your money is going. Seeing them all written down may also help you see any places you could tweak, for example, food shopping is one that can quite often be brought down when you plan your meals weekly and don’t stray from your shopping list. After you have created this list, take away your expenditures from your monthly income and what you are left with is the amount you should be able to save.
Don’t forget to factor in the cost of extras, such as meals/nights out.

Tip 2. – Make Your Own Lunches
You will be amazed at how much you can save by making your own lunches and not buying them every day, the same goes for that coffee you get on your way to work every morning. On average a lunch and coffee will cost between £4-5, this will add up to between £80-100 per month and £960-1,200 per year. That’s a lot of money you could be saving.

Tip 3. – Meal Planning And Prep
Taking 15 – 20 minutes out of your day once a week to plan your meals and writing a shopping list will save you so much time and money. It results in all the food you’ll need being bought in one go and not through endless trips to the shops for a handful of things.

Tip 4. – Save Energy
Turn off your lights, appliances and heating when you don’t actually need them on. It is such a simple thing to do, yet we are all guilty of failing to do so a lot of the time. These small changes will add up on your energy bills.

Tip 5.- Learn To Say No
So every weekend you get asked ‘Want to do something?’ or ‘Want to get a coffee?’ and over time the little bits of money you spend from all these outings add up to actually quite a lot of your monthly income. You need to learn to say no. If you feel bad, explain you can’t afford to right now or you’re trying to save. Alternatively suggest doing something free, like going for a walk or cycle. Or look up fun things to do for free in your area, you’ll be surprised how much you’ll find.. unless you live in the back of beyond!

Tip 6. – Stop Impulse Buying
Firstly don’t go shopping when you’re hungry, I can almost guarantee you this will be the time you will have the most impulse buys. Secondly, make a list and stick to it. If you don’t stray from your list you’ll save a tonne and only buy what you need, so you’ll also use all the food you’ve bought and not waste it. Thirdly, try online shopping. This really limits impulse buying as you only search for what you need, and are not distracted by all the tasty things at the end of the aisles.

Tip 7. – Be More Organised
Becoming more organised in all aspects of your life will really help. Don’t just go and do something because you’re bored at the weekend, plan your weekends. That way you can find the free things to do or beautiful walks to go on. Explore somewhere a bit further from home. Don’t just go to the cinema or for tea and cake just for the sake of something to do.

Tip 8. – Track Your Spending
Keep a list of everything you’re spending, keep all your receipts and tally up how much you are spending each week or month. If you keep track on your costs you will be able to see your biggest outgoings and also see things you’ll be able to cut down on or cut out entirely. As a lot of the small things you don’t think about might end up being one of the biggest extras you didn’t even know about!

I hope these tips help! It might be a good idea to try and integrate just a couple at a time instead of becoming super strict straight away as you are less likely to stick to it. Once some of these things become habit, try introducing a couple more until before you know it you have heaps of money!

If you’re still with me, thanks for reading!

Fiona XO

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