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Thursday, 25 April 2013

30 Ways to save £1

At the moment, Money Supermarket are currently doing a campaign all to do with it being the 30th anniversary of the £1 coin and are collecting tips to find 30 ways to save £1. I think its fair to say that the majority of us are a little short on money right now - with it being almost impossible to get a job - let alone a secure one you actually like - everyone is suffering in their own way. Only working part time myself means I've got to keep an extra eye on my money and often have to miss out on treating myself until I can find a full time job. However, I think in a way I'm a little bit lucky because I can be quite thrifty when I put my mind to it. Here are some tips on how you can save some money which will hopefully go a little bit further.

Image taken from Money Supermarket
01.  Budget. Yes it's boring and everyone knows to do this anyway, but it can make a huge difference. Make sure you budget every purchase or try keeping a spending diary for a month. You can then see where you're spending more money than you need to, and can decide how much money you need to put aside the following month. You'll also be able to work out how much you can save or spend on treating yourself.

02.  Open up a saving account. Just making the effort to open one will inspire you to save, but do some research into the best one to get. Some offer high interest and some make sure you can't withdraw the money ones it's put in. This is ideal for those of you that are tempted to spend savings!

03.  ...and start saving - but realistically. Let's be honest, you're not going to want to put £50 aside every week, so you're not going to do it. But there are ways to build up your saving and different methods to save without even realizing it. Try putting perhaps £1 into your savings account one day, £2 the next, £3 the day after that...and building it up bit by it. Or try just putting aside perhaps maybe 25% of your paycheck each month. If it's the same amount next month, you'll soon get used to not having it to spend and won't think twice about it.

04.  Think about alternative ways to buy new clothes or items. Bootsales and charity shops are so cheap and it's actually a lot cooler to be thrifty and shop this way these days. The bonus is that if you buy something from a charity shop, the money goes to a good cause. You can always find tons of cheap books this way as well as lots of cool clothes that are one off and can be customized. However, saying that, if you're willing to look harder you'll also find top/expensive labels for sale in charity shops too.

05.  Have a spring clean and sell anything you don't want. Ebay, Amazon and bootsales are great for items you don't use anymore. At the end of the day what's the point in them sitting at the back of your wardrobe being unused when you can earn cash for them?

06. If you're quite savvy to Ebay, you can use this to your advantage. Offer your services to other people who may not know how to use Ebay or might not have the time - it's a great alternative to earning money if you're selling your own items anyway. You could also try going to bootsales and charity shops specifically to buy good quality items cheap and then selling them for more on Ebay to make a profit.

07.  Sign up to cashback websites. If you shop online anyway, websites such as quidco.com and topcashback.co.uk are the perfect way to earn some cash whilst doing so. Try setting your homepage to one website so you remember, and always search on them before you buy anything. Quidco also has a fab app like Foursquare where you can earn up to 10p for checking into a shop. It's not much, but it all adds up.

08.  Try some free trials. If you're going to remember to cancel your account before 30 days are up, cashback websites often offer cashback for a trial of websites like lovefilm or credit expert websites. It's a really great way to earn money without actually spending a penny. You can also earn smaller amounts like a couple of pound for signing up to receive simcards and things like that. 

09.  Survey websites are great too if you're willing to put the time in. If you sign up for a few different ones at a time like globaltestmarket.com, valuedopinions.co.uk and vindale.com, it'll all add up. Some surveys can be quite long and repetitive so perhaps set one evening aside a week to do them all, rather then every single night.

10.  Stalk twitter for different competitions. Almost every brand will run a competition every now and then and by simply retweeting a tweet, you could easily win a prize worth loads. If you don't use it, you can then sell it or save money by giving it to someone for their birthday or for Christmas. Christmas is a very expensive time of year, so maybe you could set yourself a challenge of trying to win all your gifts for this Christmas!

11.  Think of different ways to earn a little bit of money, like offering dog walking services or house sitting services. You can get a lot of money for just a little bit of work. Make a list of what you're good at, and go from there.

12.  Try and make products go further so you won't have to spend money replacing them so often. If you think a shampoo bottle is empty, try adding a bit of water in the little to get the rest out. Share one teabag between two cups of tea and things like that. The opportunities are really endless.

13.  Instead of eating lunch out every day, save money by making your own lunch at home. 

14.  Try mystery shopping - yes, it does exist! If you love going out to eat or shopping then often you can earn anything between £2.00 to £20.00 reimbursement for basically visiting a shop or a restaurant and just paying attention.

15.  Don't always go for top brands when it comes to things like food and drink. Try a shops own brand which is much cheaper, often you won't even be able to taste the difference.

Image taken from Google
16.  If you travel often, look around online and try booking train tickets in advance....or try booking an off peak ticket on the day. Tickets can be a lot cheaper in advance, but people rarely realize that if you're travelling off peak, sometimes it can be just as cheap - if not cheaper - to buy on the day. 

17.  At the end of each day or each week, empty your pockets and purse and count up all the loose change you find. You'll probably end up with a lot more than you thought - buying things like bus tickets or odd snacks from the shops will always leave you with lots of random change. And even though all the coins don't look like a lot, once you add it up you'll probably end up with at least a couple of quid. Put the change aside in a money box and within a month or two you could end up with loads of money!
If you're generally quite skint and could do with using the change for your next purchase, try just putting away bronze coins like 1ps and 2ps, and keeping 5ps, 10ps etc in your purse. You'll still end up with more than you bargained for.

18.  Search online for different deals. Lots of blogs offer posts about the best magazine freebies each month or the best deals shops are offering. There are loads of great Facebook pages that post these too.

19.  If you've got a big event coming up and want to go all out, try heading into Debenhams or somewhere similar for a makeover beforehand. This is great if you don't want to stress about rushing and it's also ideal if you don't want to pay out loads for products you're not going to use again like perhaps particularly out there shades of eyeshadow and lipstick.

20.  Going out is fun, but staying in with friends can be cheaper and a lot more fun. The options are endless because you can do so many different themes - you could have a movie night and stream films online for free instead of paying out loads just to see one film at the cinema, or have a dinner party instead of going out for dinner.

21.  If there's a film you really want to see at the cinema, go on a Wednesday (even if you don't have an Orange Wednesday's code I'm sure a friend will offer you theirs) - you can also get 241 Pizza Express with Orange Wednesday's codes too. Some cinemas do cheap days on a Tuesday, and rather then buying cinema food, sneak your own in (but be careful - I once snuck a Subway into the cinema and dropped it all down the side of my seat - talk about bad karma...)

22.  If you're only working part time, you're most probably entitled to some benefits - aka 'going on the doll'. Although it's not the most ideal situation, if you've worked part time in the past you've paid tax so there's nothing wrong with getting a little bit of extra help now. 

23.  Sell your unwanted gold. If you sat down and rifled through ALL your jewellery, I bet you'll find some old gold necklaces or rings you don't want. 

24.  When it comes to birthdays or Christmas, making homemade presents is so much cheaper and a lovely thought. Pinterest is great to look at to get your creative juices flowing and I bet you'll love creating something with your creative side.

25.  If you're really itching to go out and treat yourself to new clothes or beauty products, why not invite your friends round and have a pamper evening? You can try new products of theirs that you don't already have, get someone else to do your nails and lots of other things too. It also beats paying loads to relax at a spa.

26.  If you're a music addict like me, always always ALWAYS pre-order bands new albums rather then paying full price for them when they're released. It costs less and you get loads of great perks. Last year when I pre-ordered The Maine's new album I got an exclusive meet and greet ticket to meet the band (including the sexy lead singer/my idol John Ohh!) and this year I got the choice of one of two awesome tops and the choice of either an iphone case or one of their famous but now finally official logo necklaces. Yes, I just had to find a way to mention my favourite band in this post, didn't I? But really, if you're itching to buy your favourite bands new album, pre-ordering almost always saves money and gets you more band merch or other awesome opportunities too.

27.  Customise old clothes for summer or to just make them more stylish. If you've got loads of old baggy t-shirts, you can easily take them in and cut off the sleeves to make them into a stylish and more fitted vest top for summer. Grab some spare lace and sew it onto your shorts for a very in fashion look, or even just 'distress' old jeans to make them look worn in and a bit edgier.

28.  Look around for freebies. Tons of websites are dedicated to finding companies that offer lots of mini samples in the hopes that you'll purchase the items in full. Obviously you don't have to, but it saves money trying them out in case you wanted to buy them originally, especially if you find you don't actually like them. Also, you can probably use enough samples to avoid having to buy full sized items for a while like shampoo, moisturiser, chewing gum etc.

29. Try new things! If you're bored of doing the same thing with your friends all the time, you can go to free try out sessions for so many different things from dance classes to rollerderby. Think of alternative ways to spend a night out too, instead of going out clubbing, try going to see a local band instead which will be much cheaper entry, much cheaper drinks and you'll also discover lots of new music.

30. Finally...do this and share your tips with others! Moneysavingexpert are all about finding different ways to save one pound at the moment and if you're a blogger and have some tips to share, go ahead and post about it! Moneysavingexpert are offering £30 to bloggers that do so.

On their own, each of these tips may not look like much. But by simply practising at least a few of them regularly, you'd be surprised to find how much money you save or how much extra cash you might have to treat yourself at the end of the month! I hope this post helped and if you have any tips to share please do by commenting.


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