Looking for cost cutting tips? It’s currently a scary time with the huge cost of living crisis in the UK and indeed globally. We can see the same in the rest of Europe, US and beyond.
The UK is experiencing the biggest rise of inflation in decades and it’s having a traumatic effect on people’s lives. Many of us are wondering how we will manage as we don’t all automatically get salary increases.
Even for those that have had a pay increase, it’s still unlikely to match the current rate of inflation. Food, fuel and energy prices have gone up. It’s a dire mess.
You might feel you shouldn’t have to cut back on the little things if you are already quite budget savvy. But you also might be feeling really stressed about it all.
There are a few simple things you can do that could help around the home. Here are my top five cost cutting tips to get started which you might have been meaning to do already. Have a read of these ideas now and start cutting costs today.
1. Cut back around the home:
Turn the temperature down…even a little bit helps. Turning the heating down by 1 or 2 degrees won’t feel that different in your home but it will save you money on your heating bills. Tell anyone else you live with you need to do this to help with the bills.
Also, turn off appliances properly/unplug rather than keeping things on standby which still uses energy. So many of us have learned this one way too late!
Wash clothes at lower temperatures and use heated appliances less (they use up a lot of energy). So vacuum less (yay!) and give the straighteners/curlers a miss if you can sometimes.
2. Stop buying clothes you don’t need and sell them
The last couple of years have helped me realise I really don’t need to buy new clothes very often. We get into a habit of buying for the sake of it and wearing things once or not at all. Clothes waste is out of control with fast fashion getting a lot of news coverage recently. If you want a wardrobe change, consider a clothes swap with friends or visit charity shops.
And for your own wardrobe, it’s well worthwhile being brutal about what you don’t need or wear anymore. Especially it is taking up space, gathering dust and likely not to be worn again. If you’ve already got it tucked away, that’s a big clue you don’t need it.
3. Stock up and bulk buy to cut costs:
This is a tricky one for me in a small flat but it’s important for those key items (loo/kitchen roll, nappies, wet wipes, tissues, cleaning products). If you have storage space, lucky you, stock up. If like me, you need to stick to the essentials which are so much cheaper to bulk buy, then get creative.
I use the space on top of the wardrobe, under the bed and any nook I can, as long as it won’t get untidy or become a safety hazard. No, you shouldn’t be using these spaces for clothes you’ll never wear again, see point 2!
Another one to add to the cost cutting tips list is to do your bulk buying with a friend or family member. If you are limited on space but want to benefit from the saving, this is a way to access savings without having to hoard more than you’ll need in advance.
Bookmark this for reference later.
4. Cut back on the way you spend:
Consider looking at alternative and cheaper brands. Buy supermarket or pharmacy own brands to save on your weekly shop. Check what’s on offer that week. Be flexible about brands.
Some own brands have received better reviews that the ‘leading’ well known brands so keep an open mind. This is one of the easiest cost cutting tips you can apply immediately.
Also look at how much you spend on food delivery. During and just after the pandemic, the amount I spent on food delivery was shocking.
Once I was working from home more, I still wanted that lunch treat or if I’d not had time to shop, I’d order in dinner. Later, when I looked back over my statements, I’d be horrified by the money wasted.
If you’re the same, ensure you’re doing a planned, sensible food shop so you can make more at home and just buy what you need. I’m DIY-ing my favourites more now, and let’s face it, lukewarm food deliveries that need a reheat are such a disappointment.
5. Cancel what you don’t need:
This could include a gym membership, other club memberships, TV streaming services (OK, there are one or two I can’t live without either but do we need 5?). Look at other subscription services that you may have just meant to trial but forgot to cancel.
Examine your direct debits and standing orders thoroughly. Check you aren’t paying for a service you don’t actually use enough to justify a regular payment for.
Final thoughts on cost cutting tips…
These ideas will help you go about cutting costs to save money during tough times. I haven’t covered changing energy suppliers, as we are going through a long and ongoing crisis in that department (in the UK and much of Europe).
It may be better to stick with what you have for now while things are insecure. But you could save on other services like broadband and insurance.
If you’d like more information on swapping suppliers, I would advise visiting moneysavingexpert.com for the latest news on this subject and in other constantly changing scenarios in consumer finances.
Do you have any other cost cutting tips that help you save money? Visit the post on how to avoid impulse buying and the decluttering post for more on this subject and read how to claim back working from home costs to see if you can make further savings!
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