Easy Steps to Save Money

As a university student I shared a post on budgeting and managing finances. Of course, this was something that was relatively new to me and more focussed on life as a student. I feel like I've now become much more savvy and have found new ways to save money so I wanted to share some of my newer top tips, many involving apps, as that's the new way forward! 

The quickest and easiest way I have found to save money is to use discount codes when shopping, both online and in-person. A quick Google search can often lead to some good findings, however they can be both time consuming and require trial and error. Honey is a great way to simplify that; it is a browser plugin that automatically applies the best discount code available in the database, at the checkout stage of online shopping. It's free, simple to use and works on most sites! 

Find the best accounts for you. Make sure to do research on which bank accounts are best for you and don't be afraid to challenge branches, for competitive prices. Similarly, be knowledgeable about interest rates. For example, my main account only earns interest to £2,000, therefore any money above that gets transferred out. Interest rates are rubbish at the moment with everything being unsure because of the pandemic, but anything is better than nothing. 

Also, think about what you want to do with your money in the future. People looking to buy houses should open a Help to Buy ISA as you get a large government bonus, however there is a maximum deposit per month. Alternatively, the Lifetime ISA works similarly if you have an end goal. If you don't plan on spending a relatively large sum of money for a few years, put it in a Fixed Rate ISA. These have the highest interest rates and are locked in for 2 to 5 years. Alternatively, if you're not completely unbrave like me, you can invest in Stocks and Shares, which have a higher interest rate, but have a slight risk to them. Wealthify is an app that let's you do this from your phone, and even gives you free credit the first time you use it. 

Importantly, be familiar with your finances and get into the habit of regularly checking your balances and accounts. Budgeting is a separate post in itself but transferring your money into savings accounts on the first of the money, via standing order, is a great way to get into the habit of only spending the money you need to. If you have trouble saving, there are some great apps that automatically safe for you. Plum works out how much you can afford to save without breaking the bank, whereas Moneybox and Yolt rounds purchases up to the next £1 so if something cost £2.50, they would make it £3 and put 50p in savings. 

This follows that you should also be familiar with where your money is going. There are some great apps to use to see where you're money is going to budget, such as Emma and Cleo, but I personally prefer using my in bank one, with Santander. There are so many different apps for budgeting, spending, sending money and more - some of which I have already shared - but some of my favourites are the ones that give you free money, for signing up or sending money the first time. Did you also know, PayPal just came out with a referral programme? You can earn £10 for referring a friend, up to 5 times. Simply send 1p to a friend who doesn’t have PayPal, and when they sign up, link their bank account or card and spend £5 or more with PayPal by 30 June, both parties get £10. 

What are the simplest things you've done to make saving money easier? Leave it in the comments below! I love a good discount