It’s funny how most things are simpler than you imagine. Saving money is one of them, once you know how
A great way of saving money is by thinking of money as time. In a YouTube video, lifestyle minimalists ‘Exploring Alternatives’ gave a thought-provoking example. If you go to a coffee shop and buy a drink for yourself and your partner, is the money you spend worth the time you would need to work for it? For instance, the two coffees amount to £9, so, are they worth it if it takes you an hour to make that money at work?
Or could that £9 be spent on a meal out with your partner on a Groupon voucher to a delicious restaurant in the city? Many websites such as Groupon and Voucher Code offer amazing discounts on nights out, home essentials and many other things. Similarly, there are many websites that promote nights out and things to do that can be very cheap or even free, such as All in London and Time Out.
Ever thought about online shopping? That can save you a lot of money compared to shopping on the high street. Comparison websites such as mysupermarket.co.uk provide a quick and easy way of gathering the best deals from a range of shops. Essentials such as food and utilities can be conveniently delivered to your door in addition to having access to online discounts that you may not find at your local supermarket.
Furthermore, you can find discounts on flights, hotels and clothes if you research online. Websites such as eBay and Gumtree as well as popular apps such as Depop allow you to make money by selling things online, but they also find things for you at very affordable prices. The rise of discount apps means you can also find cheap travel through services such as Uber who always have a discount code floating around.
Dividing up your money could also help with savings and understanding your cash flow. Knowing how much comes into your account and what you spend it on is the basis for managing your finances effectively and reducing stress related to money worries. You can put calculated amounts aside for bills, essential buys and savings. Likewise, opening a separate savings or cash ISA account will allow you to put money aside that you cannot easily use. There are also many comparison websites available that show you what offers there are for earning interest on your money.
Another factor to consider in the long term is quality over quantity. The money you spend buying the same £9 shoes every few months over a year, could be saved on sturdy, well-made shoes. The item may come at a more expensive price but buying something made to last means you may never, or only occasionally, need to replace it and therefore end up saving money!
If what you spend your money on is also a priority, would that £9 be more beneficial if spent at the cinema? Research shows that we are more likely to be happier long term from an experience than from an expensive buy. So that iPhone you’re thinking of purchasing which costs £500 would be significantly less memorable than a weekend holiday break to a place you’ve been wanting to visit — the break may also come a lot cheaper if you shop around online.
Additionally, if you have the time, the online community can be a great resource for doing things yourself that save you money. YouTube offers a quick and easy way of learning anything from making your own clothes and lamps to constructing your own furniture. If cooking your own meals instead of buying out is an option, there are numerous YouTube channels, websites and apps that can help you get started to make magic in the kitchen.