This is a collaborative post.
Most people could use a little extra cash at the end of the month. The good news is that there are countless ways to stretch your salary and save, without making major sacrifices. Small changes to your lifestyle and spending habits can have a big impact and boost your savings account. With that in mind, here are four tips to make your money go further.
1. Create a budget
Working with a budget is fundamental to maintaining healthy finances. Having a budget will encourage you to make smart spending decisions and save more each month. It will also give you a clear overview of your finances and help you identify any weaknesses.
To create a budget, you need to start by calculating your total take-home pay each month (i.e. your salary). You must then work out how much you spend each month on expenses. This should include rent, utilities, food, direct debits, loan repayments, etc. You should also estimate how much you spend on luxuries like socializing, clothes, and meals out. Finally, subtract this total from your incomings to work out how much disposable income you have left each month. Ideally, this should be put into a savings account.
2. Write a list of needs and wants
One of the simplest ways to make your money go further each month is by finding ways to reduce your spending. Take your list of expenses from your budget and sort them into two lists — needs and wants. If you can’t live without it, then it should be classified as a need (i.e. accommodation and food). Conversely, other expenses such as makeup and takeaways are not essential. Carefully consider your list of wants and see whether there is anything you can cut from your monthly budget. For example, make lunches at home instead of buying expensive sandwiches and snacks at work.
3. Take advantage of coupons
Coupons can get you massive discounts and significantly reduce your monthly expenses. Discount codes can be used to save money on everyday essentials like groceries and transport. You can also use vouchers to save money on luxury expenses like clothes, vacations, and cosmetics.
For instance, use a Sephora free shipping code to save money when ordering new cosmetics and beauty products. Take the time to look for valid coupons and vouchers before making any purchases online or in-store. Taking advantage of discount codes will save you money and make your budget come further.
4. Plan your meals
Food is one of the best places to start if you are trying to save money and make your income stretch. There are plenty of ways to reduce your food costs and save more each month. Eating out regularly and buying convenience food from shops is going to be expensive. A far better approach is to do a weekly food shop at a budget-friendly supermarket like Aldi or Fareway. This will make it easier to control your grocery bills and avoid overspending on your food budget.