Today I have a wonderful guest post from Martyna who blogs at Money Saving Girl. This post is about 12 New Year money saving resolutions. Over to Martyna…
I am a naturally thrifty person but even I have a few habits I could change to improve my money saving score. That's why I decided to guide you through my money saving resolutions, which hopefully can be inspiring, helpful and easy to copy for you too.
- Plan a household budget
Ok, I know my income and outgoings almost by heart, so you may wonder why on earth do I need a budget plan… There's a logic in this madness. It will allow me to control the spend even more and make me realise where are potential areas for improvements. There are plenty of templates and apps on the Internet, which can help us prepare a household budget. I really like Monify.
- Switch to Save
Once you will find possible areas of money saving improvements you will see if there is a need to switch any of your utility providers, switch bank accounts or simply change your grocery habits. I switched my utility providers a while ago, so in my case I will focus on some more bank accounts switches. You can see why it pays off when reading my latest post on this subject.
- Carry on with matched betting
I discovered matched betting in the middle of 2016 thanks to Emma's post about it but didn't make the most of it. As I was betting rather infrequently in 2016 I am planning to change it this year, so that I can achieve some more tax free earnings.
- Plan next holidays now
According to Post Office Annual holiday cost barometer Portugal is the cheapest holiday destination for Britons this year. It looks like our next holiday destination is sorted and we are going to Portugal indeed.
- Quit watching TV
Not only will it allow me to gain more time for reading papers and books but will also save me £145.50 per year.
- Explore high interest ISAs/peer to peer lending
I used to be a fan of ISAs a few years ago when the interest rates were much higher than today. Having bought a house I have been rebuilding my savings using high interest rates current & saving accounts. However in the light of banks slashing the interest rates and benefits coming of the current and savings account it's high time to explore ISAs consisting of shares e.g the Scottish Widow's fund from Halifax. I convinced my husband to get such an ISA a year ago and so far he has benefited from 7% interest rate to date, so it's my turn now.
- Get better at doing groceries
I already have started shopping in cheaper supermarkets such as LIDL but in 2016 I was still visiting some other shops as well. I am going to change it in 2017 and shop only at LIDL and at local markets for cheap and fresh fruits and veggies in bulk. If I happen to go to the biggest supermarkets I will try to make the most of the reduced price items – food with the yellow labels (food sold for a fraction of the price @certain times from the afternoon throughout the evening). I may look for some grocery cashback apps such as GreenJinn to save on groceries as well.
- Books buying
I got a Kindle reader for my last birthday, so I should really buy more electronic books, therefore I am saying no to an impulsive paperbacks purchases from now on. As I shop & scan my groceries (Shop&Scan) I am able to get up to £60 in high street or online vouchers which I am usually spending on Amazon books. I also have Amazon Prime which allows me to get 1 book for free from their Kindle Library. I also started getting free books in an exchange for a review from Honestfew.com, so my book spent in 2017 is going to be truly minimal if any at all, yet I will get a chance to read more than before.
- Get Student Discounts
I enrolled for some online course which allows me to apply for a NUS card. The card will give me an array of saving opportunities in many shops, so now it’s finally the high time to get it.
- Start Mystery Shopping
Inspired by Emma again I would like to take up some mystery shopping as it seems to be a nice way of assisting certain services.
- Get rid of unwanted belongings
Everybody has got something in their house they have been meaning to get rid of. I seem to have at least a few such items, so I am hoping to sell them on eBay or Gumtree. I was lucky not to get anything unwanted this Christmas but last year I used Preloved to get rid of a few items I didn't feel strongly about…
- Master the art of minimalism
I don't think I have too many clothes, cosmetics or belongings in general. I became even more minimalistic ever since I started commuting to work on my motorcycle as it does limit me appearance – wise, so there is not much effort required these days especially that I am married 😉 In my case motorcycling reinforced that good quality in me but I am sure there is always a room for improvement, so I do wish myself and you to master this ability to the fullest in 2017, when asking yourself these questions :
– do I really need it?
– will I use/wear this more than a few times?
– is this item crucial to my happiness?
– do I have space in my house to use/store this item?
– is this going to be impulse based purchase?
I wish you money savings habits development and improvement, as often small and prosaic at first sight changes can lead to great outcomes.