It may be the season to be spending, but with continuing strain on the
household purse strings, start the New Year in thrifty style!
Here are 10 simple, cost-cutting tips that could help you reign in the outgoings and save some pennies:
1. Own brand bargains
If you tend to opt for the big name brands when buying food, try the
shop's own. There can be a big difference in price and not as much
difference in taste as you think.
2. Swap shop
We're all creatures of habit and might stick with the same supermarket
because we like to know our aisles. But you could save a packet by
taking a trip to a store renowned for good value, so give it a go.
3. Switch it off
A standard TV still uses 2 watts of power when on standby and LCD and
plasma screens use more. According to the Energy Saving Trust, switching
appliances off saves the average household at least £37 per year.
4. It's free on foot
Where practical, choose walking over driving – it'll save you money, cut emissions and help to keep you fit.
5. Spot the difference
It might seem like hassle, but checking the price of your household
services could save you a bundle. Use comparison websites or ask friends
and family what they pay.
6. Winter warmer
It may be tempting to turn the thermostat up when the icy climes hit
home, but try pulling on a woolly jumper instead and you could be just
as toasty. With the cost of household gas and electricity on the rise,
it could really help to keep those bills down.
7. Grow your own
If you have a garden, access to an allotment or even just a window box,
try growing some of your own fruit and veg. Lettuce, carrots and
tomatoes can be particularly easy and chillies can thrive on a
8. Paper Reuses
Wrapping paper and gift bags are easy to reuse and doing so helps to
save money as well as the environment. You can get more life out of
envelopes, food containers and boxes, too.
9. E-cards, free cards
The cost of paper cards plus the postage can make season's greetings
pricey to send. But many websites offer a free e-card service that’s
quick, easy to use and could be preferable to greener friends.
10. A load of cobblers
Do you really need those new shoes? Your local cobbler can re-heel,
resole and generally renew your footwear for a fraction of the cost of a
If your sterling efforts to trim the outgoings leave you with surplus
funds, try building up a stash of cash in a savings account. The regular
saver from Teachers Building Society offers an attractive interest rate
for a minimum monthly deposit of just £10. For more information, check
the website www.teachersbs.co.uk or call 0800 378669.