Going into 2023 it was reported by the Money and Pensions service that almost a quarter of the UK adult population have less than Pound 100 in the form of savings. The latest figures highlight how fragile people's finances have become across the UK.
As we continue to navigate the cost of living crisis, without having a safety net of savings it can lead to vulnerability with bill payments, or unexpected costs that can arise such as home repairs, car maintenance or veterinary bills. Falling behind on any credit repayments means that problems can soon set in.
Sometimes there is a stigma against borrowing or being in financial difficulty and many people avoid talking about money issues. This can lead to feelings of embarrassment in seeking important help that could be essential to saving you from money problems.
Fortunately, a number of free resources are available to help you deal with money issues and there are many practical ways to save more. Our guide below is here to reassure you that there are ways to keep on top of your finances and advise you on some top money saving tips.
Make A Budget
Creating a budget can be a great way to manage your money. By monitoring your ingoings and outgoings you can have more understanding of your financial situation. In doing so, you can know how much money you have available to spend on the essentials, and what can be left to put aside as savings.
There are online tools you can use that can help you easily break down your costs - including your expenses on food, transport and housing. Having clear visuals of where your money is going can often give you perspective on the areas you could be cutting back on.
Although it is important to have saving targets, always budgeting and have a pot of emergency funds for a rainy day. Savings are there not only to invest in your future but also as a cushion for any unexpected costs that life can throw our way.
Leading on from your budget planning, you might realise the money you are spending on food and groceries may well be one of the larger areas of your outgoings, but it might also be an area of your budget that could be more flexible. When doing your weekly shopping trip there are a number of money saving tips.
Look to create a strict shopping list and stick to it. This will reduce the temptation to make those impulse buys when you are filling your trolley. Often supermarkets own brands will be cheaper than branded items so be smart with what items you choose.
Supermarkets are fully aware of the cost of living crisis and remain in competition for customers, so there are plenty of deals and coupons to look out for which can help you get the best prices for your produce.
Try to make meals that go further - this could mean being creative with leftovers or by using budget recipes. Your food shop is essential spending, but make use of these resources which can leave you saving more than you thought possible.
Review Your Providers
You will also have noted in your budget your outgoings on household spending, from internet and water, to heating and energy. It is often assumed that your spending on these services cannot be altered.
We recommend contacting your providers, as it might be possible for you to get a better deal. The market is competitive at the moment, therefore shop around to see if you could be spending less each month.
This could also be a chance to review what elements of these services you are actually using. For instance, you might be paying for extra features for your television provider that you simply do not make use of. Look to drop any subscription services in instances where you believe your money could be better spent, or saved!
Finally, the cost of energy is a great worry for a number of households at the moment, therefore make use of resources available to cut down on your home energy and your savings could begin sooner than you thought possible.