Ten ways to save money without even noticing

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Dec 11, 2014 by James

Let's face it, we would all like more money - for that dream holiday, new car or even just to make day-to-day living a little easier. In fact, there are many ways in which to cut the cost of things just a little, and over time these can really add up. Here are ten ideas for saving cash that are largely pain-free.

 

1 Don’t buy expensive shaving foam

Try using bath soap with high glycerine content instead, and see the difference in your bank balance. Many women shave their legs with cheap hair conditioner rather than shaving gel or foam; use a bargain hair conditioner for this and you'll be quids in.

 

2 Use a basket or smaller sized trolley at the supermarket

If you can't fit as much in the trolley, you can't buy as much. This is a great way to minimise impulse buys and focus the mind on what really has to be purchased. While you're at the supermarket, make sure you have all of the coupons or vouchers that come with supermarket loyalty cards - sometimes these can be valid for several years. Also, shop without your children; you will spend less and the absence of requests for toys/sweets/DVDs/clothes will lower your stress levels!

 

3 Don’t buy expensive lavatory cleaners

Cheap own-brand cola works just as well to remove stains. Although once you have seen what it does to your loo, it might just put you off drinking cola again...

 

4 Batch cook and freeze food

In particular, one-pot meals like stews and casseroles. That way, when you are tired and can't be bothered to cook, there will be a meal ready to heat. Much easier, healthier and cheaper than nipping out for a takeaway.

 

5 Whatever a product is, make sure you use every drop

For example, batch cooking and freezing is a good way to use vegetables before they go off. You can also cut open packaging such as almost-empty ketchup bottles and decant the contents into a bowl or jar: you may be amazed at how much more of the product you can eke out.

 

6 Give up buying magazines and newspapers

Can you not get the information online?

 

7 Take a packed lunch to work

This is cheaper than purchasing a pre-packed lunch, and keeps you out of the shops (thereby reducing the temptation to shop).

 

8 Don’t buy anything above a certain value, say £50, without sleeping on it first

You might be surprised at how frequently that 'essential' luxury seems much less essential after a good night's sleep.

 

9 Move onto a cheaper mobile 'phone tariff

Or consider pay-as-you-go: that way you have complete control over your spend. After all, do you really need an entirely new 'phone every couple of years?

 

10 Find a cheaper hairdresser

Don't kid yourself that the best hairdressers work in the same few salons - they don't. Finding a hairdresser that comes to the house may be particularly economical: mobile hairdressers don't have to pay for a salon so often charge less, and staying away from the shops can be helpful if you are trying to save.