Most of us do not have the luxury of an unlimited budget; we cannot simply buy whatever our hearts desire without worrying about the repercussions. These days, for many people, even finding the funds for once basic things and day-to-day living can seem tricky and we could all use a few tips on how to make our money go that little bit further.
1.Identify Needs and Wants
By sifting through your expenses and deciding what you buy because you need it and what you buy because you want it, you can save a lot of money. Weekly trips to the salon, going to the theater to see every latest movie release and dining out at the end of each week may be great fun but they are a strain on your budget. Decide what is necessary to your everyday life and cut out the rest.
2.Plan Your Shopping
Take a list with you when you go shopping to help resist any unneeded impulse buys and make treats actual treats, rather than overused drains on your money.
3.Cut Out What You Do Not Use
Simple tasks can often add up to culminate in a drastic financial saving. For example, reducing your TV package to cut out the sections you do not watch or unsubscribing to services you do not use.
4.Sell Old Belongings
Selling off old clothes, gadgets, toys, etc. you no longer have use forcan bring in some extra cash. Have a garage sale or post them online and you would be surprised how much you can make.
5.Avoid Designer Goods
Avoiding high profile brands when buying goods and groceries can help you retain that extra bit of cash. Often, you are paying more for the name than you are for the quality. Seek out cheaper alternatives and save yourself some serious money.
6.Reduce Your Debts
When your budget is already under strain, the last thing you need is debt hanging over you. Advice is out there on how to reduce debt butthe sooner your debts are paid off, the sooner you reduce the pressure you are under and can start spending the money on the things you want to again.
7.Get Back What You Have Lost
Some people may have lost money that was, by rights, their own. In a day and age where every penny counts, claiming back your money, however big or small the amount can often make quite a difference. Sometimes people face charges from their banks for the likes of bounced cheques or for going over the upper limit of their overdraft. This in itself is not the issue but exaggerated charges way over the value of the offence certainly is an issue. If you ask for reimbursement but are turned down, the Financial Ombudsmen Service will help all those unfairly treated in disputes over money.
8. Claim Back PPI
Another favourite way that banks have taken money from us is through PPI. Payment Protection Insurance was unknowingly added to the payments of millions of people who took out a credit card or loan. With huge sums of money already set aside for compensation, people often qualify for a refund without even realising. Services are available to help people claim back what was taken from them. Getting back what you are owed not only provides a nice unexpected boost to your bank balance but also makes for a nice moral victory and if you are unsure about the likelihood of success, the victory stories are rather promising.
9. Plan Future Spending
Writing out exactly how much you need to spend and on what is a useful task. Knowing how much of your cash is already accounted for and precisely how much you will be left to work with makes planning what you can and cannot afford a much less daunting task. There will be no guilt felt when buying the odd treat, as you already know all necessities are covered.
Money does not grow on trees. Saving up cash is great and best of all; it is often easier than people may think. Small changes add up to make a big difference in time. Just resist from giving up if you do not see a massive improvement within the first week; with a bit of patience and persistence, you can really improve the health of your budget.
This post was written by Gladstone Brookes. Since 2006, they have been offering advice on all matters concerning personal finance but with a particular focus on claiming back mis-sold PPI. Be it linked to a loan, credit card or mortgage, Gladstone Brookes have had a string of success stories and they continue to support consumers in getting back their wrongfully taken money.