The new year is often a time when people start to look at their budgets more closely, and if one of your resolutions is to be more frugal in 2016, this article shares some tips on easy ways to save money.
Cut down on transport costs
- With the rising cost of train fares, commuting can soon eat into your budget. If you can’t drive, the New Year is a good time to learn, and if you already drive perhaps consider an advanced driving course so that you can drive yourself more efficiently and safely.
- Learn to drive more efficiently in order to keep the costs of motoring down. Don’t leave the engine running if you don’t need to and keep the car well-maintained to avoid expensive repair bills.
- Explore the possibility of a car share to ease congestion and reduce carbon emissions. If you live close to a colleague, or if someone you know is going in the same direction, see if you can come up with an arrangement that is mutually beneficial.
Conduct a full spending audit
- Review your spending and take a close look at areas where you could possibly cut back. For instance, it might be that you spend a lot of money on takeaway coffee or meals when it would be cheaper to make your own lunch and take it to work with you.
- Take a look at your direct debits and see if there are any that you can do without. Many people will have payments going out every month that they don’t ever think about so see if there is anything you can cut down on.
Use online tools to make life cheaper
- If you shop online, take advantage of the many cashback sites. These sites give a commission every time you buy from their listed retailers; there are free offers available too that can give you the opportunity to earn some extra money.
- Use the Internet to research the most competitive energy suppliers, Internet companies, insurance policies and TV packages and see if you can make any savings that way. You might also want to check if you are on the right tariff with your energy company as this can make the bill significantly cheaper.
Handy tips and tricks
- Cut down on your food bill by creating your own meals and planning carefully. Make extra where you can and freeze leftovers to get out of the habit of wasting food. If you’re using the cooker make good use of it and cook more than one meal at a time. This will help to save money on energy; you can freeze extra meals when they have cooled sufficiently.
- Shop bought cleansers are often expensive and they can sometimes be full of chemicals. For a greener, more cost-effective way of living, make your own household cleaners from natural products such as lemon juice.
- Finally, look at local newspaper columns for free events in your local area; this will help save money that you spend on entertainment.