Written by: Sally Conway
Head of Consumer Communications
14th November 2022
Saving money can give you a greater sense of financial freedom and help you reach your future goals. If you can afford to, having more money in your bank accounts can help with supporting you in case of an emergency or unexpected expense.
There are short-term and long-term benefits to becoming better at saving money. Short-term savings goals can help you save for an upcoming expense, like a holiday. Long-term saving can provide financial security, helping to put aside funds for your children or retirement.
We’re all looking for tips on how to save money fast. But the best way to save money is the one that works best for you. There are lots of different ways to save money. For example, some people suggest cutting out all luxuries, but that’s not always practical or sustainable.
To help, we’ve compiled a list of 15 different savings tips. So you can select the ones which suit you and your situation best.
Creating a budget is an important place to start. Even if you already have a budget, it’s worth re-evaluating it. Your expenses might have changed since you first put it in place.
For example, you might typically assign funds for travel or eating out. But if you need to save more money, you may want to cut back on some of this spending and create a more slimmed-down budget. This can help you visualise where you could more usefully allocate that money.
You can use Money Helper’s free budgeting tool to put together a plan.
The first step in understanding where to make budget cuts requires assessing all current outgoing payments. There are the usual expenses and monthly bills, like mortgage payments or rent, household costs, and childcare. But also consider how much your family spends on food shopping, fuel, and eating out.
Take a look at your credit card and bank statements to see where your money is going. Once you have an idea of your spending habits, you can work out how much you can put into savings and where you could make some cutbacks.
There are many different types of savings accounts on offer. From easy access to fixed rate bonds savings accounts, each has pros and cons to consider.
Consider whether you can afford to lock your money away, which could likely offer higher interest rates. If you need more flexibility, you may be better off with an easy-access account. Take time to research and choose the option that works best for your savings goals.
At Shawbrook, we offer a variety of savings accounts.
It sounds simple, but one of the best ways to save money is to save first and spend later. For example, if you can, it can be a good idea to put a set amount of money into your savings account on payday. If you have an easy-access savings account, you can always access it later if needed. Make sure you read the fine print as your chosen savings account could be subject to withdrawal limits, notice periods or a short wait before being able to access your cash.
It can be hard to save while you’re paying off debts. Because of this, you may want to consider clearing your debts before putting money into a savings account. But it can be difficult to know which debts to pay off first.
In most cases, the largest debts will likely take the longest to pay off. Each payment makes a small dent in the overall figure. When making your savings plan, you may want to consider clearing debt with high interest rates first.
For more support, visit our tips on how to pay off or reduce debt faster.
Take a look at your current direct debits on your bank statements and credit card monthly bills. You may spot subscription payments that you have forgotten about. Perhaps you subscribed to a free trial and never cancelled.
Carefully consider whether you are still getting your full use out of entertainment providers such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Audible, and Spotify.
If you have paid off your monthly contract and your handset is still in good condition, consider moving to a SIM-only contract. Shopping around for the best deal could help you significantly reduce this monthly bill.
Whatever you plan on purchasing, check out price comparison websites to get the best deals. You can use these sites to save extra money on anything from bills and large household appliances to food and clothing.
Food shopping is often one of the most significant household expenses. Making better choices when shopping and sticking to a list can help you reduce food waste and save money.
These tips can help you save on your food bills.
Avoid temptation by ordering your food shopping online. This can help you stick to buying only what you need. Shopping in-store can lead to impulse buying.
Online smart shopping assistant plugins such as Honey can also help you find coupon codes. These automatic discounts can help you save extra money on items you already intend to purchase.
If you prefer to shop in-store, meal plan in advance. This can help you create a list.
You might also want to avoid offers on products you wouldn’t otherwise buy. Buy one get one free is not as cost-effective as it appears if you’ll only use one item. Consider purchasing own-brand products as well. You might also want to consider batch cooking meals to save on costs.
Plus, always remember the golden rule: don’t shop hungry!
Many supermarkets offer cashback of up to 1%+ for existing customers and up to 12% for new customers when shopping online.
With supermarkets and online stores looking to entice customers to shop with them, you might be able to find some great offers, like money off your first shop or a percentage off the first six shops.
Online meal subscription brands such as HelloFresh or Gusto also often offer discounts for your first boxes. If you are taking out a subscription though, make sure you remember to cancel if you can’t afford it at full price.
If you haven’t shopped with a particular supermarket for some time (4-12 weeks typically), you will fall into an automatic pot of inactive customers. The brand will look to entice you back with an offer to do a shop. Switching supermarkets and waiting until you receive these offers can help you save.
Many supermarkets, restaurants, and retailers now reward their customers with loyalty schemes. This can help you save money off products or provide points that can be converted into vouchers.
Investigate what your employer currently offers in benefits. It may be private healthcare, childcare support, or discounts on gym memberships or other wellness activities. Plus, these benefits could help you qualify for tax relief.
There are a variety of ways to start saving on your daily commute, no matter how you travel. You can even put the extra money you’ve saved into an emergency fund.
Sharing your car can help cut down on expenses. Liftshare suggests that their members save over £1,000 a year. Plus, it’s better for the environment.
If you need to commute during peak times just two or three days a week, check out the National Rail’s Flexi Season ticket programme. You’ll get a minimum discount of 20% on the equivalent monthly season ticket.
Is your driveway empty while you’re at work? There are many websites and apps where you can rent your car parking space, like JustPark.com.
Be mindful of how much heating you use versus how much you genuinely need. Try bundling up with extra layers before bumping up the thermostat. Deal with draughts immediately, and turn off heating in unoccupied rooms.
Avoid falling into the marketing trap by removing tempting emails from your inbox. You could also spend less time on social media to limit your exposure to other tantalising ads and offers for items you don’t need.
We hope these savings tips will help you find new ways of putting aside some extra money. It’s never too late to take a step toward financial security and start saving for your future goals.
If you’re looking for a savings account make sure you do your research and find one that suits your needs best. Shawbrook has a range of different options to fit your personal savings goals. Browse our savings account page to find one that suits your needs and start saving today.
Read our latest blogs and guides for more helpful tips for managing your finances