How To Save Money Fast And Really Boost Your Savings In 2019
02 January 2019
Thanks to the lasting effects of the Christmas period and the fact that most people won't get paid for another few weeks, January will feel like a real assault on your finances and everyone will be keen to get back on track as quickly as possible and start saving for a rainy day.
But whether you're simply wanting to gather up a bit of emergency cash or you have a bigger goal in mind, like saving up for a mortgage deposit, here's some of our favourite tips for how you can really supercharge your savings.
Stick To A Routine, Rather Than A Budget
One of the most solid ways to saving money, we're always told, is by setting out a budget for each month and then sticking to it religiously.
However, the problem that many people encounter when they first start trying to get their finances in order is that they find it hard to build up that initial pot of savings as a buffer against unforeseen problems.
In other words, it's all well and good saying that you're going to save £500 a month, but if you find yourself with an unexpected bill or other expense to pay, that £500 can quickly end up spent, ruining your budgeting plans and leaving you disheartened.
The solution, according to financial author Laura D. Adams, is to stick to a routine before you stick to a budget. Establish a dedicated 'Personal Finance Day' each week, where you spend a few hours reviewing your accounts, verifying your receipts and keeping an eye on your expenditures.
By getting into the habit of tracking when you spend money and what you spend it on, you'll become much more aware of your own financial habits. Once you have a clearer picture, you'll find it easier to cut out unnecessary expenditures and start saving naturally.
Set Up A Dedicated Savings Account
While most people will have a savings account in addition to a current account, many will also be familiar with the habit of simply tipping money out of the savings account and into the current account any time they need a little extra cash.
According to Money Saving Expert guru Martin Lewis, if you want to properly save money you're actually better off having three accounts: a current account you use for everyday expenditures, a separate current account for paying your bills and a dedicated savings account.
It might sound like a bit of hard work, but his logic is sound. By separating out your bills into their own account you can both physically and psychologically separate how much you spend each month on necessities.
From the leftover pot, you can apportion funds into your savings account and then keep the rest in your everyday current account as the money you're actually allowed to spend.
Looking for savings accounts that offer good interest rates is key, while it's also helpful to specifically choose savings accounts which don't allow you to have instant access to your cash to avoid temptation. Setting up a cash ISA is also an option for long-term savers, Lewis says.
Shop Around To Reduce Your Outgoing Costs
It might be nice having 8GB of data on your monthly contract, but if you could save £20 a month by cutting your tariff to 4GB wouldn't it be worth downgrading unless you absolutely need the extra data?
The same goes for virtually every outgoing cost you might have, and the benefit of shopping around to reduce the cost of things like your utility bills, broadband costs, car payments and whatever else can't be understated. Even if you save a little bit on each one, over the course of a year it'll all add up.
One of the most common ways that people try and save money is by cutting down on the 'little luxuries' like weekly coffee breaks or trips out. Much like going on a strict diet, this usually doesn't last for long and can just leave you feeling dejected.
But by cutting the costs of your bills, you can still afford the little things and still end up saving money. If you can be smarter about the cost of your coffee breaks or trips, then even better.
Of course, we would always advise being sensible. If the only way to save money on your electric bill is to turn off your heating in the middle of winter and get everyone in the house to layer up instead, it's probably not worth it.
The same goes for things like car insurance; it might cost less to switch insurance to another provider, but are they offering the same cover? The last thing you want is to find that you have to pay for your own roadside assistance in the event of a breakdown, for example.
As an insurance broker, Autoline is able to compare quotes from a range of different insurance providers to make sure you're getting the right cover but also at the right price. If you're serious about saving money, why not get in touch and see how we can help?