Showing posts with label Money Saving Tips. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Money Saving Tips. Show all posts

Thursday, January 14, 2021

Following the year of 2020, which was all about surviving, 2021 should be the year of thriving. This is especially true from a financial perspective as the last 12 months have shown the fragility of your financial health. Now is the time to regain control of your situation to open new opportunities and put your mind at ease.

Here are eight great ways to bolster your earnings in the months ahead. Start to embrace them right away, and you should notice the difference in next to no time.

#1. Work for a promotion

Perhaps the most obvious and logical way to increase your earnings is to focus on getting a better job. Your career is likely to be the primary source of income in 2021 and until you retire. Therefore, knowing how to ask for a pay rise and get it is essential. Before approaching your boss, though, you’ll want to ensure that you are the strongest possible candidate. This means investing in your resume, appearance, and relationships with hiring managers and bosses.

If you successfully land a promotion, internally or elsewhere, it won’t only boost your finances in 2021. The benefits can last a lifetime.

#2. Maximize your rental property earnings

Real estate is one of the best assets that anyone will ever have at their disposal. Therefore, squeezing every last dollar out of yours is essential. Traditional landlord duties are still a good option, but vacation rentals. Knowing the best way to advertise your VRBO property and get the recommendations to gain more bookings will take earnings to new heights. In truth, the short-term agreements are likely to outweigh monthly rentals, even if only full for 50% of the year.

Domestic vacations are likely to be more popular than overseas trips due to the pandemic. So, you may find that the earnings are even bigger than expected.

#3. Launch a side business

Starting a new business will require an investment of time and money. Nonetheless, the climate makes it more accessible than ever for home-based ventures and small local firms. Whether selling a service or creating products with the support of outsourced staff, you can run a business from your smartphone. It does not have to stop you from enjoying a successful career in traditional employment. And when things go well, you’ll be able to make the transition you crave.

There will be difficult moments ahead, though, which is why you should aim to work on something you love. When you do, the rewards are huge.

#4. Become an influencer

Shooting for increased earnings without any risk is a particularly popular solution right now. Affiliate marketing through CBD schemes or other products can be a great way to gain success without ever handling products. Whether you have a lot of friends with joint interests or know how to target a niche through social media marketing doesn’t matter. The potential of this highly versatile arena should not be ignored. As a small side hustle, the fact it can be done from home is amazing.

Aside from removing the need to risk your capital, it solves headaches linked to managing an inventory of products. The ceiling is limitless too.

#5. Utilize your knowledge

When you have skills or experience in a particular field, it’s likely that novices are looking to follow in your footsteps. With the best podcasting equipment or home video camera, you can monetize your knowledge. Creating courses to become a tutor or mentor can open the door to a new revenue stream without having to abandon your career. Moreover, the use of pre-recorded content means you can take on as many digital students as you can find. It’s an ideal solution to refresh your mind.

Even 100 students at $50 each would boost your annual earnings by $5k. If you do well, it could grow far bigger than that.

#6. Start gaming

If you’re looking for a fun way to earn a few extra dollars, gaming for money may be the ideal solution. It does come with a degree of loss if you’re using a platform where you pay to play with a chance to win cash. However, there are plenty of free competitions out there too. In fact, the best players are signed to esports teams and can turn their passion into a career. Even if you are just looking for a way to earn a little extra cash in your recreation time, it’s worth researching.

Besides, it will make the gaming activities feel far more engaging and exciting than playing against the computer. Just be sure to be responsible.

#7. Make investments 

Utilizing your savings in a successful way will have a telling impact on your future financial health. While Bitcoin has gained a lot of headlines, the whole crypto arena offers great opportunities. This is because the market is very volatile. So, when you trade at the right time, you can see stunning results. Another option is to support other businesses through funding in return for equity. There is a degree of risk, but calculated decisions should yield good results. Especially as most savings accounts pay low-interest rates.

You can combine this with a desire to go green by supporting eco-friendly schemes. After all, society’s desire to embrace them can only increase their hopes of success.

#8. Sell unwanted products

You probably feel that you are fairly good at removing clutter from your life. In reality, it’s likely that your home is packed with many unnecessary products. The good news is that they can be sold using the best online apps and websites. Whether it’s old electronics, collectibles, or clothes doesn’t matter. You could quickly generate a four-figure fee to boost your finances in 2021. It will simultaneously create space around the home. This is surely a match made in heaven.

There’s never been a better time to make the changes. After all, it’s a new year while the chances to socialize are limited due to the pandemic. Use the time while you can.

Thursday, December 3, 2020

Is Downsizing The Right Financial Decision For You?

If you are tempted to save some cash and create a little nest egg for the future, you might be tempted to downsize your home. This massive asset that you own is a burden around your neck. If you are spending a small fortune every month on your home loan repayments, you may need to consider decreasing your outgoings. Alternatively, by swapping your large pad for a smaller and more humble abode, you can decrease your mortgage and enjoy more disposable income. Take a look at why downsizing could be a sound financial decision for you.


Downsizing from a property that you have built up equity in will leave you with a healthy bank balance once you have downsized. This large amount of cash sitting in your bank account post-downsizing could empower you to travel, start a business, or simply save for a rainy day. Thinking about your twilight years also needs a cash injection to prepare for your future. Equity being released means that your money isn’t tied up in a large asset. You may even find that by downsizing, you have enough equity that means you can buy your next smaller property outright without the need for a home loan. This could leave you mortgage free meaning that you have an asset that is yours and your alone!


You may leave in a large detached pad in the middle of suburbia or you might live in a home that has spare rooms that you no longer use. If you are tired of living in an echoey property and you seek a more vibrant community to be part of, downsizing can facilitate this. Think about checking out the garden Brickworks apartments, designed by renowned architects that are the embodiment of modern living. With like-minded individuals, you can feel part of a more exciting and inspiring community. Living in silo will be no more as apartment living tends to be more communal. 

If an apartment doesn’t sound like your thing, consider venturing to a two bed condo, a terraced home, or a smaller version of your current dwelling. This gives you a chance to declutter from your current pad and take with you only those items and sentimental things that mean something to you. A smaller pad doesn’t have to squeeze in all of your current belongings and gives you a chance to detox materialistically.

Ongoing Costs

Living in a smaller property naturally means that your pad takes less time to heat up in the winter and requires less upkeep financially. Having a smaller boiler is cheaper, you may be able to implement greener energy saving initiatives, and you could find that your garden and exterior costs less to maintain. Less ongoing maintenance means that your finances are freed up and your time is less shackled to your pad. A smart thermostat needn’t cost the Earth to install and could save you a small fortune in an apartment or small condo. 

If you are keen to downsize, assess all of your options, and make a decision based on your financial needs and wants.

Friday, September 4, 2020

Many people want homes that are energy-efficient. Not only are they better for the environment, but energy-efficient homes can save you a significant amount of money on your power bill. You don’t need a lot of expensive equipment to create an energy-efficient home. Here are three things you need to know to make your home more energy-efficient.

Your HVAC System Uses a Lot of Energy

Even if you have an energy-efficient HVAC system, it still uses a lot of power to keep your home at a comfortable temperature. If you aren’t taking measures to improve efficiency, your unit will have to run more frequently to be effective. Install energy-efficient windows to keep the interior of your home comfortable and seal cracks around windows and doors so cold or hot air doesn’t penetrate your home. You may also want to use spray foam insulation Maryland to keep air from escaping through walls and attics.

You Conserve Energy When You Use Less Power

The more power your home uses each month, the more energy it uses. Reducing the amount of energy you use doesn’t have to be difficult. Turn off lights when you aren’t using them and try to reduce the number of times you run appliances.

You Can Buy Energy-Efficient Appliances

You don’t have to stop using appliances to be energy-efficient. You can buy all types of appliances, from washers and dryers to refrigerators and dishwashers, in energy-efficient models. While they may be expensive, you will save more money in the long run because these models conserve power and save money on power and water bills each month.

Creating an energy-efficient home is not as difficult as it sounds. Once you know these three facts, you can take simple steps to make your house more energy-efficient to help the environment and save you money on utility bills.

Thursday, August 27, 2020

You don't have to be a financial expert to get your own spending under control. In fact, it has never been simpler or easier to save money on your monthly budget and have more in your pocket for the fun things in life. Just keep reading for some super strategies that will help you do just that. 

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Switch to cash only.

Switching to cash is an oldie, but a goodie! In fact, it is an incredibly useful tactic if you are hoping to save money. After all, it is much harder to part with cold hard cash that you hold in your hand than to pay for something with your card, watch, phone, or by clicking a button online. 

Unfortunately, the way that things are set up can make paying cash for everything a bit more tricky these days. After all, many of us don't carry any cash at all anymore. 

The good news is there is another strategy you can use that is just as valid. It's to remove your payment details from any site that is anything but essential. Then you can still pay for everyday necessities like travel with no problems, but when it comes to binging on clothes and fashion, you will have to think twice. 

Use prepaid cell phones. 

Whether it's for calls, text, email, internet, or social media, our cell phones are a vital piece of equipment that most of us cannot afford to do without. Unfortunately, they are also one of the highest and most difficult costs to control. This is because we are invoiced for what we used at the end of the month. Something that means it's straightforward to lose track of your usage and overspend. 

Fortunately, there is a solution. It is super simple, too, as all you need to do is switch to a Prepaid Bill instead. In fact, opting to top up our phone before we use them has several advantages. The first is that we can always make sure that we spend according to our budget. The second is that it makes it much clearer when we are overusing our phone, allowing us to step back and make saving where necessary. 

Zero spend days.

Wow, can you imagine a day where you don't spend any money at all? Probably, 20 years ago, this wouldn't have been a big deal. However, as we are continuously digitally connected to a universe of commerce, the temptation is always there. Whether we are on the move, chilling out in front of the TV, or even in bed!

In fact, with the spend all the time culture we live in, it's even more critical to institute zero spend days. The good news is that you will be working on your ability to resist compulsive spending by doing this. That's not all either as you will learn other skills like packing your lunch or thinking ahead for what you will need. All of which will help you to master the art of saving money in the longer term.

Friday, March 13, 2020

Simple Ways to Save Your Business Money

Without being able to balance the books and keep your business in the black, your business is likely to fail. Of course, getting more customers and boosting your business in that way is going to be the main aim of the business. However, there are still plenty of things that you can do to cut costs and curb your spending, which can be more immediate and quicker than building up more sales. So as they say, when a penny is saved, a penny is earned. So here are some of the things that you can do to save money in business. 

Set an example: one of the things that can help to save money is for you to be on top of your spending, and setting an example to others when it comes to things like expenses. When you do something and show others what you’re doing, the rest of the team are much more likely as well. 

Hold less meetings: meetings can be something that can hinder productivity for a business, as well as take up a lot of money. How many times have you had a meeting with a client and you buy lunch or put on a spread of food and drinks? How many times have you had to travel to a meeting, all of which have associated costs that add up? Have less people attend meetings, and really limit face-to-face meetings in order to save some money.

Move away from traditional marketing: running things like magazine ads and TV adverts are expensive, and really, you can’t measure the impact that those things will have. But in comparison, more modern ways to market your business can cost less, and can be more effective. So think about how you market your business, and look for the most cost-effective methods.

Change small daily costs: there are a lot of small costs that can occur daily that can be a problem as they do add up to be quite a lot. Think about the credit card payment processing that you currently use, for example. Something that sounds like it is a small fee can add up and actually lead to be quite a lot, especially over time. So something as simple and changing provider can make a difference. You could also think about costs to things like coffee machines and disposable cups in an office; these costs can add up, but aren’t necessary.

Consider remote working: one of the biggest costs that a workforce will experience is the cost of rent on an office space. So think about remote working, if you are in a position to do so. A small team, all working from home, meeting up from time to time, could be what you need to do if you are in a financial bind. 

Buy supplies in bulk: As a rule, things are going to be cheaper when you buy them in bulk. It can be hard to buy in bulk as a cash-strapped startup, but if you are in a position to pay for more things up-front, then it can make a big difference to your cash flow long term.

Friday, February 14, 2020

At this time of year, many of us are taking a long, hard look at our finances. The excesses of Christmas are long behind us, and many of us are starting to think about how to get back on track, and how we can trim down our expenses. However, it can be a lot easier said than done. If you are overstretched and need to evaluate your finances, here are a few areas in which you might be able to save a bit of cash.

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Sadly, many of us have a debt of some kind, and these need to be prioritized as they can get you into a real financial mess and affect your credit rating. It may be that you need to consider additional forms of income or seek professional financial advice if you are struggling.

You may also want to consider getting in touch with creditors to lower your repayments or come up with some sort of payment plan to help get them back under control while leaving you with enough money to live on.

Lower your expenses

First of all, take a look at your utility bills (gas, electricity, and water) and work out whether you are getting the best possible deal. It may be worth phoning up your supplier and seeing if they can offer you a better deal, and if not, switch suppliers.

This also applies to other expenses. For example, your auto insurance. It is something we all need, but if you do not drive many miles, it may be more money than it’s worth. You cannot avoid paying it, however, but there are insurers out there who will cover you on a mile by mile basis? A Metromile overview will give you more information about this sort of scheme if it sounds right for you.

Look at your spending habits.

The chances are you waste money. We all do! It might be that cheeky cafe au lait in the way into work, or that bagel at lunchtime. It might be that bottle of water you grab while you are out or that gym subscription that you never have time to use. Keep a record of all of your spending for a week and see what you can cut out. Take a flask of coffee, a packed lunch and a reusable bottle of water with you to work, and take up running or home workouts and cancel the gym sub.

Some of these habits might be harder than others to cut out - they are often well ingrained and you do not think a couple of dollars here and there makes a difference, but when you add them all up at the end of a week or a month, you may be surprised.

With a bit of planning and preparation, and being a bit stricter with yourself when it comes to spending, you can save yourself a fair amount of money for the more important things in life.

Friday, September 13, 2019

If you want to cut back on your daily expenses, then you have nothing to worry about. It’s easier than ever for you to do that and you’d be surprised at what a difference it could make to your life.

Compare Electricity and Gas Prices

Think about it, are you getting the best deal for your electricity and gas? If you’re not quite sure then you’ll be glad to know that it only takes a couple of minutes for you to compare the best deals and by taking the right steps, you can be sure to save a small fortune.

Cut out Pricey Drinks

If you spend every weekend going out or if you find yourself going overboard when having friends round, then this could be really hitting your budget. One way for you to help yourself here would be for you to put a small portion of your salary aside each month. When you do, you can then use this for any luxuries you might want without cutting into your main budget. Remember that this amount needs to last the full month, so if you go over one week, you’ll need to cut back the next.

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Keep a Change Jar

Believe it or not, having a change jar is one of the best ways for you to save money every month. Simply collect any loose coins that you have around the home or even in the back of the car. When you do this, you’ll easily be able to see how much you’ve saved, and you can also use it towards something special for the family.

Ditch your Overdraft

You might think that your overdraft is handy and that you can easily spend more than you have in the bank. You do however need to take note that if you do go into your overdraft on a regular basis, you’ll be cutting into the amount you have every month, and this can easily impact your budget. One way for you to get around this would be for you to get rid of your overdraft entirely.

Clear Out Anything that is Unwanted

This might not be an expense, but it can make a huge difference to your savings. If you have items that you no longer need then why not think about selling on Ebay? When you do, you’ll be able to make some extra money and you may even find that you are able to clear out your home too. This will also help you to build your savings, which can be the secret to long-term success.

Share your Car Journey

You’ll be wasting so much money if you drive to work every single day. One way for you to avoid this would be for you to see if there is a colleague who lives nearby. Car sharing is becoming bigger than ever before and usually, your colleagues will always be more than happy to contribute to your fuel costs. You can even put up a notice at work to see if there are people in other departments who can ride with you too.

Evaluate your Insurance

It doesn’t matter whether you’re looking into travel insurance, health insurance, life insurance or anything else of the sort because you need to do everything you can to make sure that you get the best insurance rates. If you’re able to save a small amount on each policy, then this will really add up. One thing that you do need to be careful of when selecting your insurance is that cheaper is not always better. If saving money is ultimately going to mean that you end up with a worse policy, then you need to weigh up your options.

Change your Mobile Contract

If you have a mobile contract, you will know how expensive they can be. To cut the cost, think about whether you actually need all of those extras or whether it’ll be cheaper for you to get a pay as you go phone in the future. The more you can shop around, the more deals you’ll find so take the time and make sure that you’re willing to compromise if required.

Don’t Take out a Payday Loan

Payday loans can be appealing, but the interest rates are usually extortionate, and you certainly won’t be better off. If you do have a payday loan right now, then you need to do everything you can to pay it off as soon as possible. This will help you to make the most out of your policy and it will also help you to maximize your savings.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019
If you are reading this, congratulations! You have successfully given your child the foundation to be a productive member of society - a college degree, moral upbringing, and a lot of encouragement and support to let them reach for their dreams.

Now that your child is about to receive his/her first paycheck, what advice would you give them to be financially smart with their money? Here are 5 ways to do it.

1.  Keep all payslips.
Keeping all payslips until the end of the fiscal year can be used as reference when checking for discrepancies. Was there a change in pay rate? Were the deductions justified? Was the amount reflected in the pay slip the same with the amount credited in the payroll bank account? These are just a few things your employed child should be aware of.

2. Regularly check if mandatory deductions have been credited to the respective agencies.
Withholding tax on salary, social security payments, government health insurance, etc. are but a few of the mandatory deductions being taken out of an employee’s paycheck. They should regularly check if these deductions are being forwarded to the respective government agency. It is their money, it is for their future use, so it is only right that they monitor these remittance payments.

3. Advise them to arrange for an Automatic Transfer of Funds in the bank that handles their payroll account.
This is the easiest way to ensure that they save money. Make an arrangement with the bank to automatically transfer a certain amount, let’s say 10% of their pay to a savings account. It will teach them to make do with what is left with their pay after putting aside some savings.

4. Pay off loans first before splurging.
It is always so tempting to buy designer clothes, shoes, and bags, a new smartphone, or another high tech gadget when they have cash on hand. Remind your child that his/her cash flow should follow this equation: 

Cash from Income Payment minus Savings and Loan Payments equals Spendable income.  

There may not be much left, but this scheme will pay off in the long run. They will have savings in the bank and their loan (if they have any) will be cleared in a short period of time.

5. Share their blessings.
Let your child learn the habit of giving back. Small tokens of appreciation, volunteering their time, and helping out with non-profit charitable institutions are some ways to give back and share their blessings. It is not that we, as parents, expect to be “paid back.” Simple gestures to let us know they treasure they gift we have given them is enough. 

Motivate them to participate in community volunteer activities - soup kitchens, donation drives for the needy, or helping out in a local shelter for the homeless/elderly is a good way to start. “What goes around comes around,” so encourage them to spread kindness and love, and it will come back to them a hundred-fold. 

These 5 tips will definitely help your child to secure a financially healthy future. For the parents,  you can rest assured that your children will lead a good life.  

Thursday, November 29, 2018

How You Can Raise Extra Cash In One Month

Ah, money. Is there anyone on earth who doesn’t have a complicated relationship with it? It seems like we never have enough, or we do but then get hit by a surprise bill, and whoosh, it’s gone. While keeping money might seem like trying to keep water from slipping through your fingers, it’s actually more possible than people realize. Within one month, you can see an increase in the amount of cash that you have! We take a look at several ways that you can do this below.

Say No

You’ve got an income. Getting money into your bank account isn’t the problem; it’s just what it seems to leave just as quickly. But why is this? While you’ll have essentials that you need to pay for, is it also possible that you’re not quite as disciplined as you should be? Because we’re spending the bulk of our time working, it doesn’t take much to make us believe that we’ve earned a treat of some kind. And our friends are always willing to offer us one! They’ll invite us out to dinner, for drinks, to the cinema, anything that costs money, basically. For the next month, say no to invitations, unless it’s not going to cost you a penny.

Sell Old Goods

We’re a society of hoarders. We accumulate more and more, and rarely have a clear out. If this sounds familiar, then good news! You likely have a lot of cash sitting in your home. Take a look at through your cupboards and drawers, and see if you’ve got anything valuable that you could sell. Of course, the pricier the item was to begin with, the more cash you’ll get for it. If you’ve got an old smartphone and are wondering “can I sell my phone?” the answer is yes, you can. You’re not using the items anyway, so you may as well get some money for them.

Spartan Living

There are some things that you need to pay money for, such as your rent, food, and drinks. You can’t do much about the cost of your rent, but food and drinks? That’s all within your control. For the next month, look at only eating those bargain (but nutritious) meals. Ditch the expensive daily coffees, too. People spend much more money on eating and drinking than they think they do, and much more than they need to!

Reducing Essential Costs

Some costs, such as getting to and from work, can seem pretty rigid, but they’re not. If you’re driving, you can take public transport. If the train is too expensive, take the bus. While you’re at work, you should be eating your homemade lunches, not buying it every day! Track every penny, and make any cuts, where possible, which don’t impact your quality of life. If you put all the money you would have spent on these things into a savings account, and take a look at how much you’ve saved in a month; you’ll be pleasantly surprised! 

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

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When it comes to ways to show off your financial pedigree and class, jewelry is one of the oldest options people have. For a very long time, wearing wealth on your body has been a popular concept, not only enabling you to keep the stuff safe but also making you look great in the process. Of course, nowadays, the options people wear are most subdued than those in the past, while also being very pricey. To help you out with this, this post will be exploring some of the best ways to get your hands on fine jewelry without having to pay an extravagant amount for the privilege. 

Go Secondhand: As the first option, a lot of people don’t know what the jewelry they own is worth. Often being unwanted family heirlooms, the marker for second-hand necklaces and rings is huge, and it’s easy to find a very good deal. To achieve this goal, hunting around thrift and charity stores will often result in loads of great options which won’t be found anywhere else. To help you with this, it could be worth finding someone with some knowledge of old jewelry to make sure that you’re buying items which are actually worth something. While a lot of items in the market are gems, even more of them are fake, cheap, or made from materials which won’t last long at all.

The Right Rocks: Along with looking for the right secondhand option, a lot of people will find a lot of success when choosing the right stone for their jewelry. Options like Roma Designer Italian jewelry don’t use expensive rocks like diamonds. Instead, to keep things affordable, alternatives with similar qualities are used to make sure that the items look great. To help you to find examples like this, there are loads of websites out there which let you compare different gems and stones to make sure that you can get the best option for your money. It can be very surprising to find just how many different kinds of rock there can be.

Auctions: Finally, as the last option on this list, it’s time to add a little bit of competition into the mix. Jewellery auctions are very intense places. While there are people looking to complete their favorite outfits, there are also those fighting to get the best possible deals on items which they plan to sell. The very best of the bunch will be hotly contested, and a lot of people will be trying to buy them. Knowing when to stop is very important. Otherwise, you could find yourself spending far too much on items which you don’t really want.

Hopefully, with all of this in mind, it will be a lot easier to start spending time on the jewelry you adorn yourself with. Nowadays, people are becoming a lot more tasteful with the metals and stones they decide to wear, and this makes it a simple matter of finding something you like to kick off a collection to go with all outfits.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Money is the number one cause of stress in the developed world. If you’re stressed out because you’re finding it tough to get from one month to the next, you’re certainly not alone. The good news is that there are lots of ways you can cut household costs and get more for less. If you’re looking to boost your budget and alleviate money worries, here are some straightforward solutions to try now. 

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Reducing your monthly bills
Even if you have a stable income, it can be difficult to make your monthly paycheck stretch far enough. Most of us have a list of outgoings, which takes up the majority of our salary. If you’re left with virtually nothing after you’ve paid your bills, there are ways to try and get more for less and to reduce spending. 

Take a look at what you spend each month, and aim to bring each figure down. Start with your energy bills. Are you paying too much to heat your home or keep your TV running? The first thing to do if you can’t afford your bills is try and bring them down. There are many ways of reducing energy usage, including swapping older appliances and light bulbs for modern, energy-efficient versions and making a concerted effort to save energy at home. You don’t need to have the lights on all the time or the TV, a DVD player, a games console, hair styling tools and portable heaters running at the same time. Use what you need, and try and be more frugal. If you don’t already have one, it may be a good idea to invest in a smart meter. Smart meters are designed to provide you with a visual display, which shows you how much energy you’re using and how much money you’re spending. If the figures are abnormally high, this may alert you to the fact that you left appliances running, and it may also encourage you to try and use less energy. If you can see the numbers, you may make more of an effort to cut your usage, just like people who count steps are more likely to be more active. 

The second way you can try and decrease your energy bills is shopping around for a better deal. Have you been with the same energy provider for years? Do your bills seem to be going up even though you’re trying to use less energy? If you have been with the same company for a long time, there’s every chance that you could be missing out on incentives and cheap electricity plans offered by competitors. Have a look online and compare prices and contact your current provider to see if they would match deals from other firms in a bid to keep you on board. It may also be possible to switch to a different tariff to lower costs. If you’re out all day, for example, it’s best to have a tariff with lower unit prices in the evening. Many of us tend to assume that switching provider is a hassle, but most companies will handle the process for you.

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Switching energy company is not the only way to make a dent in your monthly bills. You can also use the same measures to try and lower other bills. If you have an insurance premium that is due for renewal, for example, don’t just ignore the letter or email and automatically roll your policy over. Check the new quote and then go online and see if you could get more for your money. This applies to everything from home and health insurance to pet and auto insurance. It’s also worth comparing prices for TV, broadband and cell phone packages.

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Saving on getting around
Are you spending half your wages on actually getting to work? The cost of commuting can really eat into your monthly budget, but there are ways of saving money on getting from A to B. If you drive every day and you’re forking out for gas and parking, consider approaching colleagues about sharing lifts or talking to your boss about a scheme, such as a carpool program, which could save everyone money. If you’re only driving twice a week and getting lifts the other days, for example, this could save you a huge amount over the course of the month. Other options may include walking or cycling to work if you’re only covering a short distance. Some employers are really keen to promote cleaner ways of commuting, so speak to your manager about making this a more appealing option. You may find that you’re more inclined to cycle if there are showers at work or you have more flexible working hours that mean that you don’t have to be at the office at the crack of dawn, for example. If you use public transport, you can almost always save by bulk-buying tickets or getting a frequent travel card that reduces the risk of single journeys. A monthly pass for the train or tram, for example, should cost you less than paying for a ticket every day.

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Eat well for less
How much do you spend on a weekly grocery shop? Most households spend a substantial amount of money on food. In the US, for example, the average household spends 6 percent of their income on shopping and a further 5 percent on eating out. Food is an essential item, but you don’t have to spend a lot to eat well. There are lots of ways you can reduce the cost of food shopping without compromising on quality or taste. The first thing to do if you’re one of those people who fill their cart with all sorts of things you don’t need because they’re on special offer, is start shopping online. If you’ve got a list, a virtual cart in the top corner and a running total, it’s much easier to make sure you buy what you need and stick to a budget. When you’re not in the store, it’s easier to swerve discounts and avoid temptations. Shopping with a list also helps to prevent overspending.

If you don’t like the sound of buying groceries online, avoid visiting the store when you’re hungry, stick to the items on your list and add up as you go so you don’t get an unpleasant surprise at the checkout. If you’re buying meat or fish, look for deals on frozen food, as these products tend to be a lot cheaper. You can also save money by buying foods that are close to the best before date and visiting towards the end of the day when prices fall.

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When you’re doing your weekly shop, it’s a fantastic idea to buy items you can take to work with you. Make sandwiches, wraps and salads the night before and don’t stop at the coffee shop every morning. Instead, boil the kettle and have a cup of coffee at your desk. The average American spends over $1,000 per year on takeout coffees, and in London, employees spend an average of over £6 per day on lunch.

Shopping online is not just a good way to save money on food. It can also help you gain access to offers on everything from clothing and gifts to electrical items. If you’ve got a particular present in mind or you’ve chosen a specific make and model of TV, for example, use the Internet to find the lowest prices.

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Affordable socializing
Many of us want to spend time with friends, but socializing can blow the budget. Nights out, meals, activity days and weekends away all cost money, and if you’re trying to save, invitations can become an unwelcome temptation. If you’re struggling to keep up, there are lots of ways you can spend time with family and friends without breaking the bank. If you enjoy eating out, but you can’t afford to keep going to restaurants, start a supper club or host an evening in and ask everyone to bring something with them. If you love going to the movies, but your film habit is costing you too much, invite friends or your other half over for a movie night or go to a drive-in cinema and split the cost of entrance for a car between you. Swap drinks at a bar or a club for a dinner party at home and split the cost of a rental home or a home-swap between you instead of paying for expensive hotels if you’re going away for a couple of days.

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Do you wish you had a bit more money left over at the end of the month? Do you spend almost all your income on basic living costs? Many of us would love to have a little extra to treat ourselves and those closest to us. The good news is that there are lots of ways you can save money and try and make your salary stretch further. Take a look at your monthly budget and consider how you could reduce spending. Compare prices to save on energy bills, insurance and shopping costs, try and be more disciplined when it comes to energy usage at home and consider cheaper ways of commuting. Prioritize what you need over what you want, embrace online shopping and prepare lunches to take with you to work. If you’re on a saving drive, talk to your friends about trying to save on socializing and try out some different, more purse-friendly activities. All these minor changes will make a huge difference come the end of the month. 

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Financing Your Home Improvements

Do you often find yourself looking at big houses, having lots of work done and wondering how their owners can afford to make changes all the time? Or hear your friends and family talk about extensions they are having or big decorating jobs they are planning in the future, knowing that their jobs mean they couldn’t afford such an expense? Do you want to make some changes to your house, but find yourself unsure of how you could ever afford it?

Well, you’re not alone. Many of us have constant urges to make changes to our homes. We want to make improvements which will keep it warm and safe. We want to replace things that are broken and old, and we want to change our décor. Many people finish one room only to start making plans for the next almost immediately. While a little paint job or a change in accessories are cheap and easy, larger changes and improvements can get very expensive; it’s thought that the average new kitchen costs around $20000. But, that doesn’t mean that you can’t make changes. Here’s a look at some of the options available to you when it comes to financing your home improvements. 


If you want to make some changes without getting into debt, the best thing to do is simply save and only spend what you can afford. Ask your employer about 1099 forms to help you manage your income, and set yourself a budget. Try to pick up some overtime at work, or look for ways to make extra money online. This money is in theory extra to what you normally live on, so can all go into your home improvements fund. Put this money into a high-interest savings account to get the most from it. 

Ask for Help

Another option is to ask your family for help. Most of us hate asking family for money. But, if your home desperately needs work and your family can afford it, they may be willing to help you out. Even if you wanted to pay them back with interest, it’ll be significantly less than you’d pay a bank.


For large home improvement jobs, often the best way to raise the money is by refinancing your home. Essentially borrowing on your house to improve your house. Mortgage refinancing doesn’t necessarily have to mean borrowing more money. If the interest rates have changed significantly since you got your current deal, changing to a new deal could lower your payments and free up some money.

Take Out a Loan

Personal loans often have higher interest rates than mortgages, but if you don’t want to use your home as collateral or change your current agreement, it can make a good option. Just make sure that you shop around for the best deal, and never borrow more than you can afford to pay back.

Pay with Credit Cards

Credit cards can have even higher interest rates and shouldn’t be used to make large payments. However, they are fast and easy to use for smaller home purchases. 

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Many of your household costs such as your mortgage and cable bill have a fixed price, making it easy to budget for them.Others, however, are more unpredictable and can come as a nasty surprise - like your energy bills. Unlike your mortgage or your gym membership, your energy bill is something that you can actively reduce by making some simple changes to your lifestyle. Want to win that power struggle for lower energy bills? Read the following tips that could help you cut down. 

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Power off at the mains, not the standby button

One of the biggest mistakes people make is thinking that they’ve turned their appliances off when they hit the standby button. While you will be using less energy than if the appliances were turned on, you could be using even less by turning them off altogether. Get into the habit of turning your appliances off at the mains at night and watch your energy bills decrease.

Invest in a more efficient water heater

Water heaters come in different varieties, and some are more energy efficient than others. Take a look at electric tankless water heater reviews and see the benefits of using a tankless heater to cut your energy bills down. Tankless heaters will heat your water instantly, meaning there’ll always be hot water without having to keep it on constant. It’s a great solution for households where multiple family members are in and out of the bathroom and could significantly reduce your electricity or gas bill.

Get out more

One great way that you can save on your energy bills is to get out more! Instead of sitting at home watching TV or wasting time on the internet, you could be outside getting some fresh air and doing fun activities with the family. You and your family should never have an excuse to be bored so plan some great outdoor activities you can do together that will get you out of the house. The extra exercise will be good for your health and will be sure to cut your energy bills down.

Start tracking your usage

One way to shake up your energy consumption habits is to start tracking your usage with a smart meter. There are pros and cons to using a smart meter, but they could be useful in your home to help you track exactly how much energy you’re using and identify where those peak moments are. Keep an eye on those numbers and aim to keep them as low as possible. Other alternatives include investing in remote home kits such as Apple HomeKit which allow you to control your heating and lighting outside of the house to help you reduce wasted electricity.

Cutting down on your energy bills is a good way for your family to make the most of its budget. If you can cut down on everyday expenses, you’ll have more to put aside towards paying off debts or put into savings while also helping the environment too. Set yourselves an energy-saving challenge and see if you can reduce your monthly bills from now on.