I wish I could say that money isn’t everything and money doesn’t equal happiness, but let’s be honest; having money makes life easier. I’ve always been a saver, when I first started earning money at my first job I would always shove a massive chunk of it into my savings every week. This was back when I only had a phone bill to worry about every month so naturally I was able to save way more. Now though I’ve got rent, council tax and car payments etc to worry about every month which makes saving a teeny bit more difficult than it used to be.
Saying that, I have still managed to maintain two savings accounts and keep a pretty decent amount in each, so I thought I’d share a few of my tips on how to actually save a bit of money.
1. Put 10% of your monthly salary into savings.
I think this tip originated from FRIENDS of all places. Basically, work out what 10% of your monthly take home pay is and pop it into your savings right after you get paid if you can. For me, it works out at around £140 into savings each month if I keep up with it on a regular basis and if I don’t have any major things to pay for that month. We went on holiday recently and we’ve got another coming up which means I’ve not been able to do this as often but once this second holiday is done I’ll be committing myself to this trick.
2. Use an automated savings app.
Personally I use Plum (not spon, sadly). Plum basically calculates how much you can afford to save every few days and then automatically saves that amount into your Plum savings. It depends on how much you have in your main bank account, for example if you’ve got like £50 Plum will take a small amount, maybe a few pounds and sticks that into savings. So you’re still saving but you’re not running out of money and you also don’t even really notice the money coming out.
Since starting Plum around a year ago, I’ve managed to save a total of £1260+. I’ve obviously made the odd withdrawal here and there so I don’t still have that full amount, but I’ve got a comfortable amount still sat there for emergencies etc.
3. Save your bonus.
If you’re lucky enough to get an annual bonus from your employer, chuck it all into savings unless you need it for something specific. I find that if the money is in a separate account, i’m less likely to try and spend it. When I got my bonus this year I moved around £800 into my savings right away, so it was like I never had the money to spend in the first place if that makes sense.
I think that’s the main trick; pretend you don’t have that money from a bonus etc. I know it’s easy to look at your bank account and be like omg yes I have money finally, but just try to remember how good it feels to look at your savings account and see more than a tenner in it.
4. Try a spending ban.
I’ve done a few of these in the past when I’ve spent a lot of money in a short period of time and I find them to be quite helpful. For one month (I usually do payday to payday) I won’t buy anything I deem “unnecessary”, for example clothes, makeup, takeaways etc. I’ll only spend money on things I need like food and petrol. It can be quite challenging but it’ll be worth it at the end of the month when you’re not trying to stretch £15 to last you three weeks.
5. Once you have savings, SAVE THEM.
I’ll hold my hands up and admit that I’m definitely guilty of transferring money from my savings to pay for things I want. I even did it today to buy a Playstation 2 and some games to relive my childhood (I don’t regret it one bit). Dipping into your savings here and there isn’t a bad thing, but don’t rely on it to pay for things you don’t technically need. I always think long and hard about whether I want to spend my savings on something or if I’d rather keep that money saved for something bigger in the future.
So next time you’re like oh I’ll just transfer money from my savings to order this Dominos for dinner, consider the fact that the money used on that pizza could’ve potentially been spent on a holiday in the future. Just sayin.
I hope this was a lil bit helpful for anyone that struggles to save money. I’d definitely recommend Plum the most because it literally does it for you (again, not spon). If you have any tips on saving that work for you please let me know because I’m always looking for other ways to save pennies to pay for all the holidays I want.