In the UK, the average household debt (including mortgages) is around £58,540. As of June 2018, Brits owed nearly £1.6 trillion in mortgages, loans, credit cards and overdrafts. The Office for National Statistics says that UK citizens are borrowing more money and saving less due to the bank rate – this dictates the returns on savings and the value of loan repayments. The bank rate has been at a record low for the past decade.
With debt values increasing year on year, the number of people seeking financial advice had increased. In 2017 alone, the debt charity StepChange saw 619,000 contact them for debt advice. To begin making a change we have laid out 10 of the best and easiest ways to start chipping away at debt and begin saving.
Sticking to a shopping list
Just like not going to the supermarket hungry, don’t go without a list either. Getting carried away in the aisles and being shocked at the amount at the till is all too easy without a list. Outline your meals for the week, write a list and buy in bulk.
Car boot sales
Clearing out the garage or loft and heading to a car boot sale to sell your wares can result in a tidy profit. Most car boot sellers typically take home between £80 to £150 per sale they attend. Don’t be tempted by perusing other people’s stalls though!
Trade-in your car
Whilst your gas-guzzling tank of a car may be impressive, you could save some serious money in fuel and road tax per year by changing to a smaller model. Cars with the best fuel economy are often VW Polos and Peugeot 208s. If you want to cut down your insurance, Skoda’s Citigo and Hyundai’s i10 are two of the cheapest options. In terms of road tax, the Renault Zoe and Nissan Leaf come out on top.
Consider a pay-as-you-go mobile
You could save hundreds of pounds by switching from a contract phone to a pay-as-you-go mobile. On average, a typical contract costs £50. That’s a whopping £600 per year! You can now pick up a top-spec second-hand smartphone for around £100 and pay-as-you-go sims are free – they simply need topping up. Some network providers also offer pay monthly sims that are much cheaper than contract phone deals and allow you to keep your current mobile.
Change bank account
Your money might not be working as hard as it can for you. Shop around and check out the latest banking offers. Some banks offer a sign-up bonus or attractive interest rates for new customers. Research for both your current and savings accounts so that you can ensure you’re getting the best from your money.
Customer rewards programmes
There are plenty of retailers in the UK willing to give you vouchers in reward for shopping with them. Most supermarkets have a customer reward scheme and the vouchers can entitle you to money off certain products or your shop as a whole. Some shops also convert your purchases into points and these points are converted to cash which you can spend in-store.
I know it’s a tenuous one, but do we need some sort of tie-in to our service in here?