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Ten ways to fight the rising cost of living

As we are all very aware, the cost of living just keeps rising and rising. In previous articles we have looked at how to save money on three of the big expenses:

In this article we look at ten more general ways to save money. Ten little things that we can all do to spend less. Ten ways to fight the rising cost of living.

Pause before you buy

It’s all too easy to buy things you don’t really need, and don’t really have the money either. So from now on, if you’re tempted to buy something non-essential, give yourself a 24 hour cooling off period before you do so. You will then either decide you really do want it, or change your mind altogether. Is the item you are about to spend money on really more important than other things you may want to save money for, such as a home, holiday or car?

Get the best price possible

If you do decide to buy something, always do your research before you buy to make sure you are getting the best price. Google Shopping is a good place to start. Prices can vary enormously, and you could really save money by taking the time to search both online and in stores to get the best deal possible. 

Cancel unused memberships and subscriptions

Be honest. How many memberships and subscriptions do you have that you don’t really use? Why not take an hour or two to go through them all and cancel anything you are paying for but are not using. This can feel a bit scary, as if you might get rid of something and then regret doing so. But if this happens you can always sign up again – and may even be able to get a better deal.

Get better deals on your bills

On the subject of better deals, there may be some of your bills that you could be paying less for. For example, mobile phone, TV, broadband, and insurance. Comparison websites such as Money Supermarket, Compare the Market and USwitch can help you with this. You may even find that you don’t have to switch, because your supplier may offer you a better deal if they know you are thinking of leaving them. 

Use direct debits for regular payments

Make sure that you set up direct debits for all your regular bills. This is a great way to help you budget because you know exactly how much you have to pay and when. It also means that you can’t forget to make a payment, which is very easy to do but can impact your credit score. And sometimes suppliers will give you extra deals or discounts for paying by direct debit.

Use technology more carefully

In our high tech world we can get carried away and spend much more on data and entertainment than we planned to. Take mobile phones for example. If you regularly exceed your phone or data allowance and have to pay extra you need to either change your tariff or find different ways of doing things. Also if you spend a lot of money on streaming services and on-demand movies, how about cutting back on these and using free entertainment such as TV movies, DVDs and CDs, and radio instead.

Use your car less

Recent research by Kwik Fit found that it costs an average of £2000 per year just to keep your car on the road. As well as fuel, this includes insurance, vehicle tax, maintenance, repairs, servicing and MOT, cleaning, parking, tolls and fines. 

So the first question to ask is whether you really do need your car? Could you manage without it? If not, then aim to use it less, as many of the costs we have just listed will reduce if you use your car less. Even if you walk, cycle, use public transport or car share just some of the time you could save money on the costs of running your car. 

Use voucher and cashback sites

Never buy anything without trying to find a voucher for it first. Voucher sites such as Groupon, Wowcher, and My Voucher Codes can help you save money. It is always worth doing a Google search on the product you want to buy along with the word “voucher”.

Also consider signing up to a cashback website such as Topcashback or Quidco. When you want to buy something, you simply log in to your cashback website, search for the retailer you want to buy from and use the cashback site’s link to that company. You will then receive the cashback amount – usually around 0.5–1% of the purchase price – back into your cashback website account.

Make the most of supermarket loyalty schemes

So many of us overlook the loyalty schemes that most supermarkets use. But your loyalty card will give you any combination of points, rewards or special offers every time you shop. This can be an easy way to save money, you just need to keep an eye on it and check any emails or checkout vouchers you receive to see what they are offering you.

Set a daily non-spend challenge

Whilst the rising cost of living is really stressful, you can try to lighten the load just a little bit by setting yourself a daily mission to save money. One idea that many have found helpful is to set a daily non-spend challenge, where you choose something non-essential that you might normally spend money on and, just for one day, don’t spend it. 

Some examples of non-spend challenge items are:

  • Coffee
  • Lunch
  • Drinks
  • Newspapers or magazines
  • On demand movies
  • Taxi / Uber
  • Hair or beauty produce or treatment

We hope that the above ten ideas help all of us to fight the rising cost of living. Good luck!

For more financial and lifestyle tips check back here with us soon at Loans 2 Go.