Living on a tight budget can get tiresome, irritating and plainly hard. However, if you go the right way about it and save up where you can you won’t have to constantly feel deprived. You just have to make sure every pound has its purpose and you priorities expenses that really matter. Whether you have found yourself in this position because of general money problems, an unexpected emergency or you recently lost your job, these tips and tricks will help you make the best of your situation.
Have Clear Priorities
When living on a tight budget you can’t afford luxuries. You have to focus on meeting your essentials and remaining within your financial limits. Priorities your rent, mortgage payments, electricity/water bills, food and any debts you have to pay off. The key is to separate your needs from your wants. By making sure you are staying on top of your necessities you will feel a lot calmer living on your tight budget.
Create A Strict Budget
Due to the fact you don’t have much space to manoeuvre you have to have a well-thought-out budget plan. Hopefully it will prevent you from any careless and impulsive shopping sprees, which can be highly detrimental while suffering from financial difficulty. Make sure all your expenses are covered before thinking of making any other purchases. Remember to keep tracking your outgoings to ensure you stick to the plan.
Once you have a well-balanced budget you can see where you can make cuts and perhaps start an emergency fund.
Save On Food
Shop at the right time! The ideal time to go shopping is an hour before closing time, or at 7pm in 24-hour stores. This way you’ll find the most products in the reduced section. Freeze the items you purchased to prolong their expiration date and be mindful of how long you keep them for.
You can also check out Approved Food website for stock clearance food.
As obvious as it might seem, try not to shop on an empty stomach as you’ll end up buying things you really don’t need. Try to make a grocery list beforehand, which fits with your tight budget. You could even make a meal plan to make sure you will efficiently use all your purchased products. It may also be a good idea to follow these tips:
- Try own brand products as these tend to be the cheapest and you might be positively surprised with their good quality.
- Don’t forget to set up loyalty cards everywhere you go! You can get some major discounts or even items for free.
- Shop in Lidl or Aldi, there you’ll find the best bargains and brilliant deals.
- Buy in bulk especially products with a long expiration date.
- Don’t waste food! Freeze it or add a new ingredient if you are getting bored.
Before eating out check online if there are any vouchers available or discounts that apply to you. Unfortunately, you will also have to limit the amount of times you will eat out if you want to save money.
Have some space in your garden? Maybe try growing some tomatoes. Then just keep the seeds, replant and you can have a sustainable source of vegetables.
Cook from scratch, potatoes, pasta and veggies are some of the cheapest foods out there. You can save a lot of money eating mostly plant based.
Shop for Offers
Research from Santander says, UK households spend an average of £3,329 per year, on their: water, energy, Council tax and broadband bills. You can save significant amounts of money by switching utility providers and shopping around for the best offers out there. Remember to save electricity by turning off the lights or keeping the temperature down.
When shopping for clothes ask yourself what sort of style you have. If you like to follow the most recent trends, shop in the cheapest fast fashion brands such as Primark and avoid Topshop or River Island unless they have some major sale, but even than be weary. If you have a more classical style, try charity shops or gumtree.
Instead of going to the cinema, invite your friends for a movie night to your home. As a general rule, if you stay home you will spend less. Celebrate your birthday or New Years by throwing a party at your place rather than going out. There are many fun activities you can engage in not having to leave your house, including playing board games, cooking or doing some at home exercises (save on that gym membership).
We all love going to the cinema, the big screen, the darkness the high power speakers. You don’t just pay to watch a movie, you pay for the whole experience. However, it’s an expensive experience and as such it’s good to look for deals. Most cinemas offer great deals mid week or 2-for-1 deals so visit Odeon Websites frequently not to miss out.
Rather than buying a car, walk, use a bike or just take the good old-fashioned public transport. If you desperately have to use your car, check out which petrol station has the best prices in your area.
If an emergency occurs you can try to borrow money from a friend, family member or a payday loan company. If it’s a small amount for some unforeseen circumstances a short-term loan will help you without burdening you for many years, being a short time repayment option. However, remember that not being able to repay your debt can get you into serious financial difficulties.
Following these tips and tricks will help you enjoy life even on a tight budget and decrease your worries about running out of cash or drowning in debt.