Lifestyle habits you can adopt to help save money

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Whether you’re constantly asking yourself where your money’s gone, or simply want to save for that special occasion, sometimes it can be a struggle to set money aside each month.

According to a report by The Money Charity, at the end of 2017, 9.45m households didn’t have any savings set aside. That’s why this month we wanted to explore some of the easy lifestyle habits you could adopt to help save you money.

 

Identify your treats and repeat purchases

Some habits have been cultivated over years of routine, which can often lead to you spending more and saving less. For example, if you buy a newspaper on the way to work, or grab that takeaway coffee to wake you up, on a daily basis, it soon becomes part of your routine.

These routines don’t register in your mind as spending since it’s a habit that you’ve adopted and integrated into your life. There are two ways you can help cut these habits.

  1. Keep all your receipts and add them up at the end of the week. If there’s a particular item that you’re spending money on, make a note of it. Look at how much you’ve spent over the week, and do the maths to see how much it’s costing you throughout the year.
  2. Take a different route to work or wherever you need to go. This shock to the subconscious will help distract you from the need for coffee, meaning you’ll be spending less.

Practice delayed gratification

Whenever you’re out shopping, you’re always going to be bombarded by those special offers, subtle advertising and exclusive “member” discounts. However, these are all counterproductive when it comes to saving money.

Another lifestyle habit to adopt is delayed gratification. If you see something you love when you’re out shopping, whether that’s an item of clothing or something for your home, wait. Don’t buy it, take a picture, leave it alone.

Come back to it an hour, a day or even a week later. If you still get that feeling of excitement about the item, then you can consider buying it. If you’d totally forgotten or that feeling has faded, then don’t buy it.

There’s no point buying something on impulse, especially if you’re already struggling to set money aside. If it’s not going to improve your life in a years time, then it’s not a good investment.

Set aside a little, rather than a lot

As we’ve mentioned previously in our top ways to organise your household bills, once and for all, it’s often easier to set aside a little more often than a lump-sum once a month.

In case you missed it, the principle is simple. Set up a separate savings account, and set up three standing orders from your main income account.

  • Standing Order One – £1 on a Monday
  • Standing Order Two – £2 on a Tuesday
  • Standing Order Three – £7 on a Sunday.

These standing orders can be there for as long as you want them to be, but they repeat on a weekly basis. You’re saving a little over a long time, but it’s something that you don’t have to automatically think about.

Talk about it with friends or family

If you’re struggling to set money aside each month, there’s nothing wrong with talking to your friends and family about it. In fact, we would actively encourage you to talk to a loved one about your financial worries.

An article from mentalhealth.org.uk showed that 22% of adults within the UK cited debt as a contributing factor to their stress levels. At the same time, 37% of adults who reported feeling stressed also explained that they felt lonely as a result.

Looking after your mental health is incredibly important, and if talking to a loved one is going to help you feel better, then what’s stopping you? If you’re not good at talking, then write a letter. It’s a good way to get your thoughts collected, and the person will know that you need their help. Visit youth residential treatment programs for more information on this subject.

Learn when to invest in quality products

If you’re on a money-saving mission, sometimes it’s tempting to go for the cheapest option in the hope that you’ll save more in the long-term. This may work for certain household items (think own-brand consumables vs big brand consumables), but it won’t always work for others.

For example, if you need a new sofa, a new mattress or a new refrigerator, it would be worth investing in a product that’s slightly more expensive. This might seem daunting, but it’s worth considering.

If a cheaper product needs to be replaced more often, whereas the higher-quality product doesn’t, you’re going to be saving in the long-term.

 

So there we have it, some of our top lifestyle habits you can adopt to help save you money. Remember, these are just our recommendations. If you’re struggling with your finances or would like more advice, then we would advise you to seek proper financial assistance.

Are there any habits that you’ve adopted that you think others would find useful? We’d love to hear your thoughts, so make sure that you let us know in the comments below. Alternatively, you can join the conversation on our Twitter and Facebook pages.

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