Seven successful steps to save money in 2022
The beginning of a new year always feels like a good time to take stock of your life and think about the year ahead. Even if you don’t make actual New Year’s Resolutions, there are probably plans, hopes and dreams that you would like to happen this year. And anything you can do to help them become a reality is well worth considering.
One thing that will help with pretty much anything you want to do is to have a bit more financial freedom. And a great way to do this is start looking for simple ways to save money. After all, if you can spend less money on everyday living, there will be more available for those special times you are hoping for in 2022.
So in this article we look at seven simple steps to help you save money in 2022.
Step 1 – Only buy what you really need
Most of us will admit to having made impulse buys in the past. Buying things we don’t need with money we don’t have. So if you are thinking of buying something non-essential, it’s a good idea to pause before doing so. Even if you do decide to buy it, chances are you don’t actually need it right now. And giving yourself a cooling off period before you go ahead and purchase the item may change your mind about getting it in the first place.
It can also be helpful to compare how much you want the item with how much you want something else. For example, if you are trying to save money towards a home, car or holiday, is spending money on the current item of interest really as important as your moving nearer to your desired goal?
Step 2 – Get the best deal on your bills
It can be very easy to slip into expensive habits with your bills, simply because it feels like too much effort to do anything about it. But it is always worth seeing if you can save money by getting a better deal on household bills such as energy, mobile phone, TV, broadband, and insurance.
There are websites to help you do this, such as Money Supermarket, Compare the Market and USwitch. And you may not even have to switch: you can often get a better deal from your current supplier just by contacting them and saying you are thinking of leaving them.
Also make sure that you have direct debits set up for all your regular bills. Not only does this ensure they are paid on time, but you often get further discounts for doing so.
Step 3 – Cancel anything you don’t use
Most of us have a variety of different subscriptions and memberships, and are probably not using all of them. So take the time to go through all your subscriptions, memberships and apps and cancel anything you are paying for but are not using. Otherwise you are throwing money away.
Sometimes it can just feel safer to keep things going, but if you do cancel something and realise you miss it, you can always sign up again. The provider will welcome you back with open arms and you may even be able to get a better deal.
Step 4 – Get the best price on your shopping
For any kind of shopping, do your research before you buy to ensure that you are getting the best price. For major purchases such as cars, home appliances, furniture etc it is worth looking around both online and in stores to get the best deal possible. Prices vary enormously and you could really bag a bargain. Try searching Google Shopping to get you started.
Even with food shopping there is an opportunity to save money by planning your shopping carefully and being willing to use different stores for the best bargains. See our article How to save money on food shopping for more help with this.
Step 5 – Use points, vouchers and cashback
Many supermarkets have some kind of loyalty card which gives you points or rewards when you shop, and sometimes special offers too. It is worth keeping an eye on these as they can help you save money with no strings attached. So always check any vouchers you are given when you checkout, rather than just throwing them away.
Also consider signing up to a cashback website such as Topcashback or Quidco. When you want to buy something, all you need to do is log in to your cashback website and search for the online retailer you want to buy from and use the cashback site’s link to that company. If you buy something, the cashback amount is then put into your cashback website account.
There are also various shopping and cashback apps that can help you to save money with your food shopping and/or give you cashback. These include Shopmium, Checkout Smart, ClickSnap and TopCashback – but more are being developed all the time so keep an eye on Apple App Store and Google Play Store to see what’s new.
Step 6 – Don’t always buy new
There are many items – such as good quality clothing, shoes, children’s toys and household items – that you can often pick up very cheaply second hand. So it is always worth looking for nearly new goods in charity shops, local ads, and online sites such as eBay and Facebook Marketplace.
Another option is to organise clothing or household item swaps between friends. This can be a great way of decluttering your home and getting what you need all at the same time.
Step 7 – Your daily non-spend challenge
Try and make your mission to save money a fun one! It’s a great idea to set yourself a daily non-spend challenge. This can be something different every day. Choose one way in which you would normally spend money and, for one day only, don’t spend it.
Examples of non-spend items could be:
- On demand movie
- Taxi / Uber
Because it’s only one day, it is not going to be a major sacrifice. But if you can get into the habit of then putting aside the money you have saved – ideally into a separate bank account – it will soon start to add up. And you may even find that there is something you’re happy not to spend money on regularly, but would prefer to go without and save money instead.
We hope that the above seven steps inspire you to find ways to save money in 2022, and that you begin to see some of your plans, hopes and dreams for this year starting to happen as a result.
Check back with us again soon for more financial and lifestyle tips from Simple Fast Loans.