If you’re finding it hard to keep money, but easy to spend it, it would seem that you’re not alone. More than half of 22-29-year olds have no savings at all, and the amount of people with over £100 in savings is falling. However, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t put yourself at risk with your money. Summer might be on the horizon, but it is still important to have a rainy-day fund. For those looking for ideas, here are some money saving tips to help you save:
Monitor Your Outgoings
A good place to start when trying to save would be to sit down in front of your computer and figure out what you need to pay for and what you don’t. Took out a free trial a few months ago and forgot to cancel? Still paying for a subscription service to an app that you don’t use anymore? Trimming the fat on these niggling purchases may not seem like much at first, but it can certainly add up over time. An HD Netflix subscription, for example, adds up to over £100 a year.
Additionally, it might sound trivial, but scheduling your outgoing monthly payments to go out around your payday can be a big help in visualising what you actually have to spend. The last thing you want is a huge mobile phone bill coming out of your account at the end of the month, and so having everything come out in one fell swoop gets the hard part of over and done with. From there, you have a basis for planning around.
By making small changes to your routine, and cutting back on thoughtless purchases, you can increase your end-of-month balance quite effectively. Examples of these include scanning around when doing the weekly shop to see if certain supermarkets offer items cheaper, and cutting back on buying meals out when in work.
For students, buying items cheaply and learning to compare multiple different stores’ prices is part of the trade-off for living away in a desired city-centre, alongside affordable and space efficient apartments offered by property companies such as RW Invest.
Heading on a night out and got an amount in mind that you want to spend and not go over? A classic trick would be to leave your card at home, and withdraw only the cash you need. You may be interested in the income and expenditure form on DIY Debt Management Plan.
Use Your Smartphone
Using to your smartphone to your advantage when saving is a great idea, as it allows you better protection with your card, and the ability to monitor your balance at the click of a button. All major banks have a smartphone app that allows you to view payments and send money, and with contactless payment functionalities such as Apple Pay or Google Pay (which the majority of stores now accept), supporting fingerprint or facial recognition, it is arguably even safer than the traditional means.
In addition to these well-known functions to our smartphones, there are also a variety of inventive mobile apps that can be used to help you save. Monzo, a new banking company with its own current account, features a mobile app that vastly differs from any of the traditional banks. Free to download, the intuitive app divides your different spending habits into a handy graph or pie chart, allowing you to see what you’re spending the most on each month and pull back. It’s also straightforward to use with friends, as you can send each other bills and payments without having to go through the rigmarole of using a bank card reader.
For a hands-off investment app, MoneyBox is an interesting smartphone idea that links to your bank and invests the rounded change from your purchases. Spend £1.50 on a cup of coffee? The app will put the remaining 50p into an investment. As with all investment, there is no guarantee of success, but it’s a simple tool that might be worth looking into if you’re thinking of ways to save, because you don’t really have to do much. Other than spend your hard-earned money, of course.