“Money, money, money…it’s always funny… in a Rich Man’s World”,
I think that’s what ABBA were singing in the 1970’s. And how right they were.
But we never seem to have enough.
How many times have you got paid at the end of the month, but within 2 weeks you’ve spent it all and you still have birthdays to buy for?
Or Christmas is coming?
Or you have to pay off the money you owe your parents?
You have Debts mounting up but don’t know where to turn?
Yes, our friend Money is always there mocking us in the background, we want it, we need it, but we never have enough.
Even those who seem to have lots of it, never seem to have enough of it.
But wait there are those around you,
the ones that seem smug in their financial security,
they always glide easily through their lives,
with enough to do what they need to and never worry about money.
How do they do it and what are their secrets?
Well, we are here to tell you those secrets.
You need to know, to sort yourself out before it is too late.
To help you get some money saved and change your life around.
Reduce the money worries.
Reduce the stress of never having enough.
This blog is called; How to Save Money – 15 Simple Ways to Start Saving Money Fast Now For 2020.
Many of these hints are so simple, you will cry, thinking of all those wasted pennies and pounds/dollars you have been literally throwing down the drain over the years.
“Money doesn’t necessarily buy you happiness, but my goodness doesn’t it help? Isn’t it better to be an unhappy rich person than a poor happy person?”
“Money doesn't necessarily buy you happiness, but my goodness doesn't it help? Isn't it better to be an unhappy rich person than a poor happy person?” #saving money, #tipstosavemoney, #getridofdebt, #savemoneyfast, #greenagenda,… Click To Tweet
That’s was a quote from an old film (Gentlemen Prefer Blonds Marilyn Monroe). I’m not sure if this is true, but I’d like to give it a whirl, wouldn’t you?
Now, this article isn’t about being mega-rich. It is about realistic things you can do to save the money you have and make some more, by being clever.
This is doing more with what you’ve got, making the most of what you have.
It isn’t a get rich article, it isn’t an…. I’m going to press some buttons and “heh Presto I’m rich”.
If someone promises you that, run a mile.
It does not exist.
These 15 tips mean that you have to take some actions, think differently about what you do with your money and make some better choices.
*Disclaimer, this is advice, your level of success is dependant on getting off of your derrière and doing something about it.
Have some fun and enjoy the process, you never know you might enjoy it!
The first tip is coming up, you might want to save this, makes some notes…share it with your mates.
These first few tips are the biggest, most important way to save money and have enough to spend on Christmas, Car, holidays and the kids.
1 Get Your Self Online Banking;
this is a foundation stone really for the following tip. Banking online has been around at least 20 years, if you aren’t doing it… why not? It is pure madness not to be doing your banking online.
There are still many who aren’t.
They still go into their bank every week or month and sort out their banking face to face. I know a few who do this and I just can’t understand it.
For one I don’t know about you but some staff in banks are quite surly and face to face banking is worse than going to the dentist at times.
Having your banking online means that you can control your money face to face, well I’ll change that… face to screen.
You can see what is going out.
When it is going out.
When it is coming in.
Who and what is being paid.
You have control.
You have a view on what you have coming in and what is going out.
You have more control over your debts and credit. Looking at your finances can be like ripping off a plaster on a hairy leg, but if you do it fast it doesn’t hurt too bad.
Pay Your Savings Before the money is spent elsewhere: split out your saving.
Use online banking accounts.
Have multiple accounts.
An account for holidays.
An account for the kids.
For the dog, the cat, the cars, Your hobbies.
Even the future.
Use this system to save and pay off your debts too, if you have them.
On payday go through and work out how much you can move into these accounts…
Then don’t touch them, keep growing them like plants and you’ll have enough in there to pay off the MOT’s and services, the pet fees, the Christmas presents, the holidays.
It is going out anyway but pay it now. Pay it forward.
Pay it out consistently and frequently so you don’t notice the big payouts.
You also have your ‘savings’ account so you don’t need to dip into that as you have the other ‘bills’ accounts.
Make a spreadsheet with all your known monthly expenses laid out and how much you have leftover.
It takes a little bit of setting up but it gives you much more control over your finances.
2. Have a bit going out every month into a trust fund, an ISA, a Premium bond.- it doesn’t have to be a lot. It can be £20 – £30 a month.
If you have a bit going out every month it is never missed.
You might do it when you have a raise.
Or your mortgage rates drop.
Don’t spend it, save it.
Every bit helps and over time, over a few years, that little bit of saving grows.
It can buy a new kitchen 5 years down the line.
It could get you that new car.
It might even mean you retire a year or so earlier.
3. Plan for the long term.
Don’t just think of your money as in the here and now.
Plan for the future a bit as well.
Now I’m not saying you have to live like Scrooge and never spend your money. But think longer term.
Think…if I save a bit now I’ll have something to fall back on later down the line.
The separate bank accounts above do meet your shorter-term goals but you need to think longer term.
Building your career up over the years, every time you get a pay rise or a grade rise, don’t spend it save it.
Decide a net salary coming in is the one you need to live off, pay the bills and put some away for the short term.
The bit above this and it could be £100’s over the years as you go up the career ladder, could add up to quite a bit over time.
For example, you get paid £1500 a month in 2010, you pay all your bills and do well on this, but as your salary goes up, keep the net salary as £1500 and anything above this becomes savings.
It works, as your mind thinks…that’s all you need.
If you start thinking well I’ve got £2500 a month now, your brain kicks in and start spending all of that, like Goldfishes we grow to the size of our bowls (money coming in).
That saving could be;
Your investment in your retirement.
A cruise in a few years time.
Take a year out and travel.
Yes live for the moment, but don’t forget the future.
It will be here quicker than you think.
4. Think before you buy that Coffee.
This isn’t just about coffee, it is about how you spend the money you have. but really? Take a flask. Make it at home.
An idea is to allocate yourself and partner an allowance for the month and stick to it, draw the cash out at the beginning of the month and stick to it.
Don’t go above it.
You can make it into a competition about who can save the most or not spend the most.
Take a packed lunch.
It is both healthier as you know what the sugar and salt levels are. You know who has made it and the hygiene that has been used.
But more still…
Think about how much a decent sandwich costs? £3.50 meal deal? The soft drink, the crisps.
Do the Maths.
That figure times by 5 days, is £3.50 * 5 = £17.50 a week. Times by 48 weeks in the year (inc. minus holidays) is about £840.00
Yes, £840.00 a year.
Coupled with the chocolate bars.
The drinks out with friends after work.
The cups of coffee, it all adds up.
I know I’ve been there and I see it still with my workmates.
Think about a decent cup of coffee from that well-known coffee place.
Let’s say I buy a flat white coffee each morning on the way it works.
It is about £2.40
£2.40 * 5 = 12 * 48 weeks again = £576.00.
I know. It adds up.
Throw in a packet of cigarettes a day and well, is it any wonder you have no money left at the end of the week.
Record your expenses.
It sounds boring, but it’s hard to save if you don’t know what’s moving in and out.
There are budgeting App’s out there you can use on your phone if you need to if nothing else it will keep an eye on what you’re spending.
5. Choose Your Fun Times Wisely.
Yes, I know…
Saving money doesn’t get you all excited, (well it does a bit for me), but it’s more about fighting the system than anything else.
How we spend our money on the fun stuff really does eat into our monthly money.
Think about things differently.
A few drinks out with your mates can eat away at £50 for a few hours.
Lunch out Saturday afternoon (£50), a takeaway in the evening (£30).
Yes, it all adds up and can cost you a lot.
I’m not saying you don’t, but space it out.
Limit it to a few times a month, rather than every week.
Think of other ways of meeting up with your mates.
Drinks around at your place. Everyone brings a bottle.
Movie night on Netflix.
Strictly Come Dancing evening. Football at home.
Latest box set evening.
Picnics, bring and share meals.
Local supermarket meal deal for an evening in, rather than a takeaway and eating out.
Cook from scratch evening and everyone bring a dessert type of thing.
Make it fun. Save the money in the process.
Look on Group-On for saving, online vouchers, they are everywhere.
Family discounts for holidays away. A family railcard for a family can save a lot of money for trips away.
Camping instead of a trip abroad can be fun and saves a lot of money in the process.
It might not save your back though!
6. Sell, Sell Sell
There is a soft economy out there.
It is TAX-free and it is money in your pocket.
A lot of the money is just lying around your home.
Well, sell your stuff, not all of it of course.
But the stuff you no longer need or don’t want.
Use…E bay, online Facebook market place, are the places at the moment.
Take some photos, write a blurb and pick a realistic price to attract realistic buyers and get selling.
It also means you de-clutter your homes, have more space and feel lighter in the process. Everyone is a winner.
You also meet some really nice people selling stuff.
7. Travel costs; how much does your travel to work cost you?
Can you car share?
Use the bus with a discount card?
Cycle to work – get fit and save money.
The ideas are unlimited.
But travel does cost us a lot each year.
Work from home where you can.
Just one day a week can save a lot of fuel.
Yes, you might spend a bit being at home, but the offset of travelling is worth it.
Stick an extra jumper on and exercise at lunchtime to get the warmth back if you are chilly.
8. Gym Memberships and other fees;
If you aren’t using it, ditch it.
How many of you reading this have a gym membership but haven’t even put on your gym shorts since the membership card dropped on your doorstep?
Yes, I thought so.
Stop it, don’t do it, do something different.
If you have a good-sized garden shed or garage, get a second-hand rowing machine, cycling machine, go for a run, get some cheap weights from the local recycling centre. Bring the gym to your doorstep.
Block out 15mins in your calenders/lives and stick to it. You save money, you get fit, you feel better.
Go for a run, a walk.
You get as much exercise having a brisk walk every day than you do at the gym for an hour a week.
In fact, it is better for you to have regular, shorter spans of exercise than longer, less frequent bursts.
Save your money, work it out at home.
9. Pennies Make Pounds:
Ask for a money box for your birthday or Christmas present, one of the pottery pots that you have to smash open and start putting your loose change in it.
Over a year you can save hundreds, it all adds up.
It might pay for your camping trip or concert tickets, or a cool big outing somewhere.
Make it fun with the kids/partner, see how fast you can save up.
Maybe stick to the silver coins though.
Getting the copper changed into notes can be hard.
10. Set Goals and give your saving Purpose.
A bit of motivation goes a long way.
I always do well when I have a goal to focus on.
For example a big holiday next year, a Cruise, a visit to China, backpacking in Australia. That type of thing.
A new car in 2 years,
Disney World in 3.
Moving house in 4 years.
Don’t get into debt, save it forward and do it yourself
If you’ve been putting the things into practice above, you’ll have the methods, now give yourself some good old fashioned motivation.
Make yourself a goals picture board, stick some pictures of your motivational goals above your money box, next to your bed, on the inside of your kitchen cupboard doors.
If you can see it in your head, you can with focus, materialise it in your life.
And have an account for that.
Work out how much you need to save up, how much you can afford each month and just go for it.
Yes, some projects can take a few years but keep focused and you can do it, like an Olympic athletic heading for the next games.
Just Do it.
11. Shop Well and cut those food bills.
Do you ever just “nip into the shops for one thing and come out with 10?
yes me too.
Those naughty supermarkets are set out to draw you in and make you spend all your lovely money.
Buy one and get one free, on something you never wanted in the first place.
Go in with a list if you have to go in at all.
Be focused on what you need and stick to it.
Better still don’t go in at all.
Do a big list and a big shop and get it delivered to your door, that way you won’t be tempted to spend more than you need to.
You can be more focussed and clearer about what you want from the comfort of your sofa.
12. Shop Smarter and Cheaper:
This one relates to the one above, we shop so much for food and drink, the average family of 4 spend £60 -£80 a week on food and this is not including takeaways, alcohol and other bits.
Why not shop smarter?
Look at the ‘selling off ‘ sections of the aisle, you know the markdowns. Was £50 now £2.99.
Stock up on the meats, bread and fish and put them in the freezer when they are marked down or on special.
Don’t pay top price for anything.
Why not shop at the cheaper side of the supermarkets? The Aldi and Lidl type places?
You can look at taking up to a third off of your shopping bill, well I have anyway. Try it out and see for yourself.
These places keep their prices down by having fewer brand goods, more of their own, less choice.
Personally I find them less overwhelming and easier on the eye and brain after a long day at work.
I am often amazed at how much I can get at the checkout for the price.
I then ‘pop’ into the more expensive supermarkets and get the same and wow it comes in a lot more.
You can get fresh, sometimes organic items at the cheaper places, a lot of them do food allergy needs and vegan, so catering for all tastes.
If you shop every 2 weeks and then do a focused pop in for the fresh top-ups.
It works, it can be done.
13. Upcycle, Recycle and Go second hand:
Yes, there is a whole world out there when you want to buy some new stuff.
For a variety of reasons, ethically, our green agenda and well because it is fun, we upcycle furniture, recycled goods and buy at charity shops and online, wherever we can.
Don’t spend your money unless you need to. Where you do, try and do it ethically. That’s just my input.
From books to chairs, clothes, and shoes, toys, and everything in between. Use your local recycled centre and charity shops, they are like Aladdin’s cave.
Make it fun with the kids who love looking for vintage DVD’s or books for their favourite subject.
You are teaching them the virtues of not buying new all the time, so educating them smart too.
14. Grow your Own, feed off of Nature where you can.
If you have a garden or an allotment, pots on a balcony, you can grow stuff and feed yourself. Every bit saves money.
For example, I’ve got a greenhouse where we have grown tomatoes and cucumbers, we’ve got 4 raised beds where we grow French beans, courgettes, onions, lettuces, strawberries squash, carrots, beetroots, it can be done by a busy family if everyone mucks in.
You might not have to spend money on fresh stuff for about 5-6 months of the year.
Get chickens and you have eggs, they are easy to keep and don’t cost much to keep.
15. The last one…Save what you consume, Energy Conservation.
I’m a bit of an Eco-warrior, so I use energy saving devices wherever I can. It isn’t just good for the environment it is doing your bit for your wallet/purse.
Save energy and save the planet at the same time.
When buying your appliances look for the A+++ energy rating, have LED lights where you can. Turn off stuff when it isn’t being used.
Stop draughts by your front and back doors, close windows when it’s cold.
Put a jumper on, not the heater.
Shop around each year for the best energy deal on your gas and electric.
Get some solar panels and look at other energy-saving solutions.
It all adds up.
Well, there you go.
Save your money where you can and I’ve just given you 15 helpful hints in helping you get to where you want to go financially.
You can do it, anyone can. Good Luck.
Save your money where you can and I’ve just given you 15 helpful hints in helping you get to where you want to go financially.
If you want to read more of my musings and articles have a look here on my blog on the Axe your 9 to 5 website.
Or if you want to see what education I am getting that is changing my life around and getting out of the 9 to 5 by building my own online business, there are https://axeyour9to5.com/Start-learning/home
They will show you that there are alternatives out there that any person can achieve if they want to. Act here for the videos.
So, what else can you do to save your money and aim for your goals?
Leave a comment below and let me know.
I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Take back control.