colonial Bedroom by Tarimas de Autor

How can I easily save money at home?

Amy Buxton Amy Buxton
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If 2016 turned out to be an expensive year, we think you're going to really appreciate some top tips for getting your spendthrift ways under control.

We're not judging, as we're all guilty of the odd impulse buy that ends up costing a fortune, but perhaps if we all try to curb the habit a little, this will be the year we top up the coffers instead of draining them! 

If you're ready to discover easy ways to save money at home, come with us as we enter the world of sensible spending…

1. Have a huge clear out

When we say huge, we mean it! Tackle one room at a time and clear absolutely everything you no longer like, use or have a purpose for.

But don't simply throw them in the bin. Put your items on online auction sites or preloved websites and you might even make some money! 

Donate or dispose of anything that doesn't sell.

2. Take shorter showers

minimalistic Bathroom by SANSON ARCHITETTI
SANSON ARCHITETTI

SANSON ARCHITETTI

SANSON ARCHITETTI

Your bathroom is a great space for saving money if you get strict with your whole household. 

Set time limits for showers and you'll soon see the savings rack up. You'll be genuinely shocked by how much a long shower can cost you, so instigate a 3-minute rule!

3. Focus on necessities only

Interior designers are always trying to emphasise just how important it is not to clutter up your home with unnecessary items and we're in full support.

Think about what you actually need rather than want and you'll be able to resist a lot of 'bargains' that all add up to a huge expense. You can still choose nice things, just fewer of them!

4. Have a household spending spreadsheet

industrial Living room by Espaces à Rêver
Espaces à Rêver

Pièce à vivre : salon—Appartement industriel chic & moderne 55m2—75010 Paris

Espaces à Rêver

This is going to seem very grown up and perhaps a little scary, but set up an expenditure spreadsheet for the house and you'll soon see where you waste the most money. 

List absolutely everything you buy and you'll discover habits you didn't know you had, but will be able to break. 

5. Set a realistic budget

Mysterious Woods: scandinavian Living room by Pixers
Pixers

Mysterious Woods

Pixers

All you need for sensible spending habits are a few figures. You need to know how much money you bring in every month and how much your bills (such as mortgage/rent and utilities) come to. 

Subtract bills from income and that tells you how much you have for the month. Factor in some savings, then give yourself a realistic weekly budget, with any leftover money also going into your savings. 

All you need is a little willpower!

6. Have a plan before you shop

Virginia Water Apartment - Surrey: modern Bedroom by Bhavin Taylor Design
Bhavin Taylor Design

Virginia Water Apartment—Surrey

Bhavin Taylor Design

We can't stress how important this tip is if you want to save money.

If you go shopping without a list of what you actually need, you'll be easily swayed by impulse buys and things that look like a bargain, but are totally unnecessary. 

Never forget that even if something is cheap, if you don't need it, it's an overspend. If, on the other hand, you're looking for something specific and that happens to be on sale, happy times!

7. Have a plan for spare money

If you're the kind of person that finds a two-pound coin in their pocket and buys a coffee, it's time to make a plan for spare cash. 

For loose change, piggy banks that have to be smashed open are a fantastic idea as you can collect a sizeable sum and pop it into your savings when it's full. 

For leftover budget, we suggest a simple savings account that's linked to your current account so you can transfer it out instantly.

8. Fit a smart meter

If you never bother to turn off lights in rooms that aren't being used, and have your heating on high, get a smart meter from your utilities supplier and see just how much money you're wasting. 

A few pence here and there quickly turns into pounds and sky-high bills. A smart meter will make you instantly more energy-efficient!

9. Don't go without

You're probably thinking that the future looks pretty bleak if you have to be under the cosh of a budget and tight with your money, but you don't have to go without.

Always be on the lookout for good deals and indulge in the occasional treat, as this will help keep you on track.

For more money-saving tips, take a look at this Ideabook: 9 ingenious tips for saving money in your kitchen.

What are you saving up for this year?
Whitton Drive:  Terrace house by GK Architects Ltd

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