What are some money saving tips for UK households?
In the UK, the cost of living is going up every year while our earnings are not. In fact, with COVID-19 and Brexit, our financial future is looking more UNCERTAIN THAN EVER BEFORE.
Regardless of your situation, you deserve to get the best deals and the most out of your hard-earned money for your family.
In this post, you will learn 25 household money-saving tips for UK living. By making these Smart changes, you can easily save over £3,500 a year.
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The first a few household money saving tips [UK] are to help you straighten out your finances. These may not feel like a short term saving, but by making these small changes will save big for you and your family’s future long term.
1. Paying Off Credit Card Debts
If you have credit card debts, paying off these debts as soon as possible will save you from paying hefty interest rates.
Firstly, move the debts to a credit card that has a 0% balance transfer and 0% interest for a period. This will give you a time frame to pay off the debt. Here’s an example from MoneySupermarket of the type of credit card you should be looking for:
Be sure to know when that interest free period runs out as it will jump to a hefty rate afterwards.
Secondly, to pay off the debts, use Dave Ramsey’s Debt Snowball strategy to start from the smallest to the largest.
2. Stop Borrowing and Start Budgeting
This is a mindset shift more than anything – only spend the money you have!
While you are paying off your debt, start making a monthly budget. This will help you figure out how much is coming in and how much needs to go out.
3. Maximise Pension Contributions
It’s never too early to save for your retirement.
Aim to contribute 15-20% of your monthly income to a pension, which can be in the form of private pension, a company pension or an investment ISA.
For those of you who are in a company pension scheme, many employers match or add to your contributions. So max it out in order to take advantage of the employers contribution.
That’s FREE money towards your retirement!
4. Payoff Mortgage Earlier
Another long-term smart household money saving tip is to payoff your mortgage earlier.
For us, by overpaying by £350 a month, we are saving £11,000 and become debt free 5 years earlier.
Most online mortgage accounts provide a simple calculation. Find out how much you can save from yours.
This small step will save big for you and your family long term.
Food is an area that makes a large portion of the monthly bill, especially if you have a large family.
But the good news is, there is plenty of rooms to save here.
The next a few household money saving tips [UK] on FOOD alone, will help you save over £1,000 a year.
5. Eat Out Less
The bigger the family, the more costly it is to eat out.
Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE dining out not just for the food, but also just being served and not having to worry about clearing up afterwards.
Try to reduce the number of times your family eat out per month, you will be amazed at how much you can save. Plus, if you use the following tips when you do eat out, you will save even more.
6. Early Bird & Happy Hour Deals
When you do treat your family for a meal out, consider having an earlier meal. Many restaurants do early bird or happy hour deals before 7pm.
This is great for families with children and friendly for your wallet.
7. Swap Dinner for Lunch
Another alternative way to save money [UK] is to eat out for lunch instead of dinner.
Many restaurants set a higher price on their diner menu than lunch menu, even for the same dishes!
So going out for a family lunch is a great way to save especially if you want to try some fancier restaurants.
8. Meal Plan for Food Shopping
When it comes to ways to save money [UK] on food shopping, having a weekly meal plan is the key.
This will not only reduce the number of trips to the shops per week, but also reduces the wasted food by the end of the week.
Plan out the meals that your family is going to have, drinks, snacks etc. and then transfer the ingredients to the shopping list. This way, every item you purchase has a purpose allocated during the week.
To help you out a little, you can subscribe and get my FREE meal plan here:
Subscribe & download this FREE Money Saving
Weekly Meal Planner & Shopping List
9. Shop at Aldi
I’ve been shopping at Aldi on a weekly basis for the past 5 years. Despite having to get used to a slightly different way of how they operate (like having to bring your £1 for the shopping trolley), they have won me over on the quality and price consistently.
We spend on average £80/week shopping in Aldi for a family of 4, which is over £30 lower than an average household spends on food shopping. That translates to a £360 saving each year.
10. Eat Less Red Meat
Eating less red meat on a regular basis, not only is a way to save money [UK], but it’s healthier for the family.
Cutting meat out 1-2 times a week, can save you as much as £300 a year!
Got little fuzzy eaters at home, or a meat-loving partner?
I got you here.
Here are 3 tried and loved vegetarian recipes from my household:
- Slimming World Slow-cooked Mac & Cheese
- Turmeric Cauliflower Soup
- Slow-cooked Chocolate Vegetarian Chilli
HOUSEHOLD BILLS & PURCHASES
This category of household money saving tips [UK] is for anything you buy and use on a regular basis.
Because of the frequency of buying and using these items, small savings can add up quickly.
Applying the following tips, you can potentially save over £1,500 a year.
11. Kick-Backs from Credit Card
Are you taking full advantage of having a credit card?
Many credit cards have kick-backs either as cash, points or vouchers.
Choose the perks that are high value to you and you know that you will get the benefit.
As an example, my mother-in-law collected air miles from her credit card for years, which only amounted to a flight within Europe that was hard to book so she never used them.
Learning from her lesson, we instead, get the M&S vouchers from HSCB credit card based on our spending. We then often use the vouchers on wines especially when M&S run their 25% off six bottles.
12. Use Cash Back Sites
Use cashback sites on your regular purchases is another great way to save money [UK]. We save on average £200 a year through these sites on things from holiday deals to gifts.
Sign up 2-3 of these cashback sites, and get in the habit of checking on cashback deals before you make a purchase. You will get cashback either in forms of cash, or voucher to spend.
13. Use Honey to Save Money
Honey is a recent find for us and it works like a charm!
This handy tool can help you find vouchers available for things you buy online.
Honey is a browser extension you can install. Every time you shop online Honey check to see if there is a voucher or ‘Honey Gold’ that can be applied to your purchase, often saving 10 to 30%. Honey Gold is a loyalty program where you earn points on the purchase and can redeem them for Amazon vouchers.
14. Buy Insurance Online
These days you can purchase anything online, that includes buying your house and car insurance.
Finding the best deal online will save you money compared to paying a broker or buying them over the phone.
15. Pay Annually to Save
Many insurance companies offer a price reduction if you pay annually instead of monthly.
So if you are able to pay for the full amount for the year, you can save money too.
16. Never Let a Contract Auto-Renew
If this is news to you, LISTEN UP my friend!
Often when a contract renews itself, the premium often increases 10-30%. In certain case, it goes up to as much as 1000% (see example below).
This applies to house insurance, car insurance, mobile contracts, utility bills etc.
Last year, when we switched contracts, we were able to save a total of £848 a year, which breaks down to:
- £448 – energy provider
- £250 – house insurance
- £150 – car insurance
So never let your contract auto renew. Instead, set an alarm 30 days before your contract expires.
This will give you time to shop around the best deal.
According to Confused.com, the best time to shop your insurance is 21-30 days before your policy expires.
17. Switch to Energy Saving Light Bulbs
These modern energy-saving bulbs not only use less energy but also have a longer life than regular bulbs. So all-in-all, an effective way of saving money for the UK household.
18. Turning Down and Switching off the Heating
Another way to save money on utility bill is to by turning down the heat in your household.
According to Energy Saving trust, you can save approx. £75 just by turning down your heating by 1 deg C.
So next time, when you feel cold in the house, instead of cranking up the heating, put an extra layer of clothes on.
You can also switch off the heating in the rooms that are unused. This simple change can easily boost your saving to £100 a year.
19. Shower with a Water-Efficient Shower Head
Do you know you can save on your utility bill by simply swapping your normal shower head with a water efficient one?
20. Purchased Second-Hand Items for Your Children
If you are new parents or with small children, there are certain items for children are just not worth to buy new (take advice from a mum, who brought up 2 children). They grow so fast, these items simply are not worth the money buying new for the amount of time they use.
Things to consider buying 2nd hand are baby cots, toys, occasional clothes, shoes, bikes etc.
We recently sold the bikes we bought for our girls, 2nd hand, for the same amount as we paid.
21. Sell Things That You Don’t Need
Sell things that you no longer need in your household.
This applies to many baby/children items that are collecting dust in your loft or garage.
Large items that are expensive to ship, are the best for selling locally through FaceBay. On the other hand, smaller and higher price tag items are better selling on ebay as you can get more interest and sell quicker.
Finally, we are going to explore some household money saving tips [UK] on entertainment related expenses.
Just by applying 2-3 tips below, you can potentially save over another £1,000 a year.
22. Book in Advance
If you want to save money for a large family, make friends with planning and booking ahead. This applies to holidays, events, flights, trains etc.
Booking holidays, flights a year in advance will not only ensure you the most options but also the lowest price.
You will also save money on purchasing tickets for events, day trips, train tickets online in advance instead of buying it at the door.
So being a bit organised and booking things ahead is another ‘smart household money saving tips UK’.
23. Pack a Lunch on a Family Day Out
A family day out can easy cost up to £100 with entrance fees, parking etc. To keep the expense to a minimum, pack your own picnic lunch instead of eating out.
By packing a few sandwiches, snacks and drinks, you can easily dodge a £50 bill for a family of 4.
24. Saving on BroadBand and TV
Are you spending way too much time and money on your TV packages?
This is another BIG ‘household money saving tips UK’.
Even combining high speed internet (£30/month) and Netflix subscription (£9/month), will save you around £60 a month compared to some of the current packages from Sky and Virgin.
25. Review All Your Subscriptions
These days companies like to sell subscriptions instead of a one time purchase, why? This will guarantee a regular cash flow for them. Think about Spotify, Audibles, Amazon prime etc.
However, as a consumer, while some of these maybe essential to your household, but many you are just paying for convenience.
So reviewing your subscriptions on a regular basis, and unsubscribe things that you no longer need.
Final Thoughts on 25 Smart Household Money Saving Tips UK…
So here you have it, my 25 tried and tested Smart household money saving tips for UK living.
Simple changes can add up quickly and save big in the future. By applying a few of these can easily save you over £3,500 a year.
What would you do with an extra £3,500? I’d love to hear from you…