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Concerns about financial security are reaching a fever pitch early on in 2021, but there are plenty of ways that you can make the most of your money stretch a little further, while also safeguarding your savings. Find out what you can do below.
How To Make The Most Of Your Money In 2021 And Beyond
Shop around for insurance
There are plenty of insurances that we have to renew each year, from the car and home to professional indemnities, but are you taking the time to see if you could get a better deal? Simply allowing a previous policy to renew could be costing you a lot of money, especially when trusted insurers such as Royal London might be able to offer you a cheaper, but just as comprehensive package.
Of course, it takes a little time to look for alternative insurers, but it could save you a shocking amount of money, especially if you can save on every policy you hold. Think about the compound savings on your pet, home, car, and even phone or gadget insurances. A few minutes spent comparing and asking for discounts could be very lucrative.
Debit, don’t credit
It’s easy to simply pop your food shop on a credit card, but unless you are still enjoying a 0% purchase interest rate, you are paying more than you need to. Instead, why not see if you can start and stick to a household budget that allows you to pay for everything with a debit card? At the end of each month, whatever you have left in your current account can be transferred to an ISA or savings account to grow over the next year.
Once you get into a thrifty mindset you’ll find it exciting to challenge yourself to spend even less. Add in some savvy discount codes, use free delivery options and multibuy offers and you’ll start to see that the adage of ‘looking after the pennies so the pounds can take care of themselves’ is accurate. On that note, you can also set up a ‘save the pennies’ initiative with your online banking, whereby all purchases are rounded up to the nearest full pound, with extra pence being diverted to a linked savings account. There are plenty of apps for doing this too if you’d rather not have it confined to your bank.
Set aside what you would normally spend
If you’ve been thinking that there has to be a silver lining to national lockdown, other than staying safe and well that is, here it is. If you are in a position to, squirrel money that you would normally spend into savings account as a buffer against unexpected job insecurity and rising costs such as council tax, fuel, and food.
For example, if you’ve decided to take part in Dry January but you’d normally buy alcohol as part of your grocery shopping, transfer a comparable amount into a savings account. You won’t miss it if you’d normally spend it, but you might be pleasantly surprised by how quickly your savings start to grow.
Focus on quality, not quantity
We’ve been told to shop more consciously and sustainably for years and now’s the time to put it into practice. As a way to help the planet and your karma, sustainable consumption is a double-hitter as it can also help your finances. Let’s take fashion as a perfect example of how.
Those £3 t-shirts in popular high street shops might seem like a bargain, especially when compared to more expensive organic cotton options, but which will last longer? It is likely that by the time your more expensive and quality choice has finally given up the ghost, you’ll have bought multiple replacements for the cheap style. Not only because it won’t wash as well, but also because you’ll have a more built-in disposable attitude towards it. One pluck or pinhole and you won’t feel bad about throwing it away. If you’ve spent upwards of £20 on a t-shirt, you are more likely to take care of or repair it.
Cancel all your non-essentials
Now is the time to take a look at your standing orders and direct debits, to cancel anything non-essential. With gyms and health clubs being closed during the lockdown, you might find that you can cancel a costly contract, fee-free, in favor of a home workout app instead. Many of these apps offer a free month too, so your subscription cost will stretch even further.
Other monthly commitments that you could cancel include music subscriptions. If you are at home a lot more, try simply listening to the radio or just putting up with a few ads on Spotify. There are plenty of free browser extensions available to circumnavigate ads on Youtube too, so you could simply have that playing in the background.
Making your money go further has never been as important as it is now, so have a think about which of these ideas you could easily try and start maximizing your money!