How to cut back as well as make a little extra
By Adam Stokes
Wondering how to save money? Although it will always involve sacrifice – we’ve compiled the best ways to help those savings start climbing without affecting your life too much. Below are the 5 best ways to save money, and the 5 best ways to make money, so that you can have enough for whatever your heart desires – whether it’s simply financial stability, or a getaway to the Caribbean! Though they might not all be for you, you’ll definitely find enough to start padding out that wallet a little more.
“The quickest way to double your money is to fold it and put it back into your pocket.” (Will Rogers)
#1 | Save Money: Book Your Tickets Early
Train tickets can be one of the most expensive commodities you spend your money on – or one of the cheapest. Sites like Raileasy.co.uk and thetrainline.com are great for finding affordable tickets if you buy in advance. So if you know you’re going somewhere, don’t wait ‘til the last minute! Check out our Cheap Train Tickets page for all the best sites offering budget rail solutions and you’ll soon find your savings creeping up that little bit more.
#2 | Make Money: Take Paid Online Surveys
There may be a lot of skepticism surrounding paid surveys, but with enough time and effort, they can be a great way to earn money online. With heaps of different sites offering surveys to take part in, it can be difficult to decide which you want to follow – but there’s nothing stopping you signing up to a couple. Toluna, Mysurvey, Valued Opinions, Swagbucks and Paid Surveys at Home pay you to complete online surveys. Check out our Best Online Survey Sites for more online survey sites. If you’re looking to make a little extra cash only, your decision may be made a little easier as you can discount those offering vouchers or free tester products instead. Well, what are you waiting for?
#3 | Save Money: Pay Bills by Direct Debit
Many utility providers will offer discounts for those who set up a direct debit with them or pay them annually rather than in stages. Although this may seem like a lot to pay in one go, it will save you money in the long run. It’s always worth checking your gas, water, and electricity bills to see if they offer this option, as you could be saving around £50 a year! There are several more ways to save money, so check out our guide to saving money on household bills.
#4 | Make Money: Sell Old Phones, CD’s, DVD’s and Games
One of the best and easiest ways to make extra money is to sell old stuff you don’t want, and there’s a heap of ways you can do it, too. Sites like Mazuma and MusicMagpie are great places to start, as they’ll tell you exactly how much your stuff is worth before you sell it. You can also check out our Sell Your Old Stuff for Cash! article to find out more, as well as our Top Ten Ways to Make Money Online. If you’d rather do it in person to get the cash straight away, then places like CEX on the high street can contribute to your savings even quicker.
#5 | Save Money: Do Your Food Shopping Online
Many see this as being harder than actually going to the supermarket themselves, but it doesn’t have to be. Once an account is made and your first shop is done, you have the choice to let the site remember your purchases for next time – so it’s like having your own personal shopper to get all the items you want at lightning speed! Of course you’ll need to plan ahead a day or two for delivery, but with money off first shop coupons (most of the supermarkets offer online vouchers for every new user) at places like Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, Tesco, Ocado and more – not to mention the savings from petrol costs – you’ll soon be saving a pretty penny for that piggy bank. You can also make further savings by using voucher codes such as Waitrose voucher codes. Also, with sites like mySupermarket that compare prices from all the major supermarkets to get you the best deal, you’ll know you’re not spending any unnecessary cash. Check out our Shop Online and Save Big Time! article for more.
#6 | Save money: Buy Food in Bulk
People are often hesitant to buy in bulk, as they see it as spending more money, and are afraid that things won’t last. The truth is you can actually save quite a lot when shopping this way. If you’re smart about it, stocking up mainly on dry and tinned goods, and only enough fresh produce that you can fit in your freezer, then over time you’ll see your savings benefiting. Shops like Costco were designed for this, but if you’re not a member, finding the best deals in your local supermarket and taking advantage of them is just as good! Finding reduced items will also help you save!
#7 | Make money: Sell at Car Boot Sales
If you want to clear up some much needed space in your house and learn how to make money in the process, then a car boot sale might be for you. For those with a little more than just CD’s and games to get rid of, car boot sales can offer a win win opportunity. Old clothes, ornaments and items that you’d consider random and unused could be perfect for passers-by. Work out when the next local jumble trail is near you and go make some cash! Check out our Spring Cleaning Tips for everything you need to know first…
#8 | Save Money: Cut Down On things that aren’t worth it
That £2 a week that goes on a flimsy piece of card with a few numbers on it could save you more than £100 a year when not bought, and in all likelihood won’t make you any more. We don’t want to come across all boring, but one of the best ways to save money is to stop spending it on things that aren’t worth it. That said, we understand that for some, not entering their numbers for just one week – let alone a year – can make them a little uneasy. Instead, find something you don’t really need, and cut it out! You’ll be saving money in no time.
#9 | Make money: Busk the Streets Away
Okay, so this one might not apply to everyone. However, if you’ve got a talent and some spare time on your hands, then why not try and make some money from it? Performing on the street, whether it’s singing, playing an instrument or entertaining in any other way, can be a great way to earn while having fun. Admittedly you’ll need to know the right spots to make money, as well as getting a permit to play, but if you’re serious about it then you could soon be making a tidy little extra for that savings account.
#10 | Make money: Sell Your Unwanted Gold
One of the most lucrative ways to make money – Gold! We’re not suggesting you raid your jewellery box for all your favourite pieces just to top up your savings, but if you have any unwanted or even damaged pieces of gold jewellery, they can earn you quite the sum. From earrings to necklaces and bracelets, if the piece is of enough carats, then you can earn hundreds no matter what its condition. Check the high street retailers for quotes and you might soon be boosting your savings big time.
So there you have it, the 10 best ways to save money – from cutting back to making extra on the side. Using even a few of these techniques should help your bank balance out, but the more the better! So book, busk, cut, sell, bulk and head online and you’ll soon be hitting those savings goals and, of course, not feeling so broke. Don’t forget to check out the top 10 ways to make money online. Good luck!