How to Budget Better

Setting a budget can help you to become more aware of your spending and critique your habits. You may notice that you’re spending money on things you don’t need, and not saving money where you can! Follow these simple tips to budget better, spend less and save more!

Budgeting Tips

Understand your Incomings ⬅

Know your Outgoings ➡

Tally up all the different bills you have to pay. Don’t forget mortgage/rent, utilities, insurance, groceries, car payments, phone contracts, Internet/TV service, etc. Add them all up and make sure the money coming in is more than what’s going out… if it’s not, you’re going to need to find a way to reduce your outgoings!

Get Rid of Debt

Paying off existing debt is a priority! Pay the debts off before you save! Debts (usually) cost more than savings earn. For your wallets sake follow this simple steps to take back control over your debts. Prioritise the most expensive debts (use any savings you have to pay these off).

Check to see if you can lower any of your debts’ interest rates. Consider a balance transfer; with a balance transfer you get a new card to pay off debt, at 0% interest/a small fee – meaning that you have longer to pay off your debt without paying the added interest.

You can write off 75% of your debt with a new government scheme called Individual Voluntary Arrangement (you may qualify if your debts are over £1,700 and you have more than one debt). If you’re being contacted by a debt collector like Wescot Glasgow for example, be aware that they have guidelines that they must follow including:

  • No use of aggressive practices (coercion,
     or deceit for example)
  • Be transparent and provide clear information that is not misleading
  • Be considerate towards debtors experiencing difficulty

If you are being intimidated by debt collectors who are not abiding by these guidelines, then you have a good case for reporting them to the Office for Fair Trading.

Reduce Non-essential Outgoings

Lets be honest – we all buy things we don’t need from time to time. For the sake of your budget you need to reduce it! Here’s what most people waste their money on (separated by generations). All three put the most unnecessary cash towards dining out…

Spending infographic

Look for cheaper or free food alternatives to reduce your wasteful spending! But how much are you spending on ongoing contacts that you don’t need such as streaming services, entertainment packages, and gym memberships?

Do you know if you are entitled to any discounts? Do you qualify for any benefits or schemes such as Motability? Getting what you are entitled to could significantly reduce your outgoings, so if you work for a company that has discounts as company benefits or you have a disability which means you might qualify for some financial help, make sure that you have checked.

Budget Tracking

Screenshot of Cleo

It may be a good idea to keep a record of small spends and extra earnings.
If you don’t want to do this manually, Cleo could be your new best friend! Cleo is an artificial intelligence money-managing assistant that can be accessed through Facebook Messenger, text message, Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. Therefore, you can ask it questions relevant to your account and spending habits, and receive instant feedback and advice (super helpful!).

As well as this you can set yourself a budget and Cleo will notify you when your spending is about to send you over your budget! Another perk to signing up with Cleo is the referral scheme. When you first sign up through someones link you’ll be rewarded with £2.50. After that, you’ll get your own unique link that you can share with others and if they sign up (and connect their bank account for more than 7 days) you’ll both get £2.50!

Sign up to Cleo

Open a Savings Account

If you’re in debt, I recommend paying off debts before looking into a savings account.

More often than not your bank will offer you a variety of savings accounts, it’s best to talk to your bank and find out which savings account will work best for you! If you like the idea of an ‘automatic savings account‘ then carry on reading. Plum is an automatic savings account that analyses your transactions & identifies your regular income, rent, bills & daily spend. Using this data & other factors like your available balance, Plum’s smart algorithm calculates an affordable amount for you to save.

Your savings are then invested at RateSetter; one of the biggest peer-to-peer lenders in the UK. Your 3% interest (on average) accrues for every day that your funds are on loan and is paid monthly as the borrower repays their loan. You always have access to your Plum savings and can withdraw at any time (always allow for 24 hours when withdrawing).

Sign up to Plum

Disclaimer: investing with RateSetter, you are lending your money to a number of people, some of which may not pay back their loans, meaning that your capital may be at risk!

Increase your Income with Side Hustles

There are tons of ways that you can earn some extra money on the side, I have a full list of these over on my ‘Side Hustles Page’. Click the link below to find a side hustle that works for you! I have a range of part-time job ideas, work-from-home roles and gigs you can do in your spare time.

Extra Income Opportunities

Reduce your Spending

I’m constantly adding new articles to my blog that should help you save more money, but for some quick inspiration I’d recommend the following articles:

How to get Free Food

Earn £50 by Switching the Renewable Energy

Get £5 FREE and Cashback on your Supermarket Shop

Money Making Iphone Apps

Earn Money with Survey Sites

10 thoughts on “How to Budget Better”

  • The difference in alcohol consumption through the generations is crazy!! Although rating out is at the top that is something that I enjoy doing so I wouldn’t see it as a waste for me 😊. Good tips though.

    Lola Mia x

  • Omg been looking or a blog post this for a while… I spend so much money on pointless crap ESPECIALLY eating out… it’s a joke 😂 Think I’m going to sign up to Cleo actually, after seeing so many adverts for it, and then after you recommendation!

  • This was actually such a good read! I find saving money so hard usually! But since I actually started giving myself a budget and writing down everything I spend I have been doing so much better!

  • This is a really helpful post! I always struggle with money towards the end of the month as I’m rubbish with budgeting and like to treat myself after payday! I also agree that millennials eat out a lot more than any other generation, I know I’m definitely guilty of this but want to try and limit myself to one takeaway/meal out a week to cut spending!

  • Great info! I know I have some debt I need to pay off and paying it off first before saving would be a smart move!

Leave a Reply