Saving money doesn’t have to involve stopping the things you enjoy doing. It doesn’t have to mean eating ‘value’ brands, and it doesn’t have to mean giving up on your hobbies and activities. At its best, saving money simply means employing a few smart strategies and sometimes doing the very same things in smart ways that don’t cost as much. Here we will look at some examples of what that means, and at how you can go about implementing these tips and tricks to save money without affecting your lifestyle.
Use Rewards Schemes
You know when that shop you go to regularly keeps asking you if you have a loyalty card? And you get slightly annoyed and hint that they need to back off? Well stop doing that! Actually loyalty schemes are one of the few examples of business models that benefit everyone and they’re a great way for you to get the things you enjoy most often for less. It might not seem like much, but if you use them regularly you’ll see the benefits in time and be glad you made the effort.
Look for Deals – And Buy in Advance
This is something that we all know, but that few of us actually take advantage of. Next time you’re out shopping then, be on the look out for deals and discounts and let them inform your buying where it actually benefits you. What that doesn’t mean by the way is buying things you wouldn’t otherwise buy: it just means buying alternative brands when you can get them for less than your usual purchases.
Another tip is to take advantage of deals by buying in bulk. If you use a lot of protein shake and you notice that it’s in a penny sale (meaning you buy one, you get another for a penny), then buy four tubs at once. It might sting at the time, but if you know you are going to spend that money you might as well buy now and get it half price – your cash flow will even out over time.
Turn Down the Brightness on Your TV
This is a simple tip that will hardly be noticeable, but actually it can save you quite a lot of money each year if you watch a lot of TV as it will cause your set to use less energy when you’re watching.
Use Bubble Wrap on Your Windows
While we’re in the business of saving energy, another easy tip is to take some bubble wrap and to attach it around the edges of your window – particularly if it’s single glazing. Bubble wrap is made up of trapped air, and air is one of the best insulators out there: which makes this especially good at keeping more warm air in your property and more cold air out. It doesn’t cost anything, and if the window is out of sight (such as a small bathroom window) then you won’t notice the look of it too often.
Use Cashback Sites
Cashback sites are sites that pay you for using them to do your shopping. This is possible because they sell products that they get a commission for everytime you pay. Thus they get more money the more people use them, and so it’s in their best interests to encourage you to do so. And the way they do it? By sharing that commission with you. This way you will literally get the same products, but you’ll then get up to 30% of that money back.
Trading in is another thing that few of us take advantage of enough. This is particularly useful as a way to get technology more cheaply though and can save you a lot of money in the long run. For instance, if you want to change your mobile phone, then rather than just buying a new one outright you could take your old one back to the store and offer to sell it back to them in exchange for money off of the next purchase. Often you will get more money back this way than you would had you just sold it and you can get even more still if you plan this in advance and so treat your device in a way that will make it likely to survive the test of time. It may pain you, but leaving the sticky back plastic on the screen could just save you a lot of cash…
The author of this post, Andy Philip, is an avid blogger and tech enthusiast. In one of his recent articles for SmartClub, a company offering lifestyle rewards programs, he talks about the importance of scanning through local deals online before shopping and investing in products. You can catch up with him on Facebook and follow him on twitter.