How To Save Money During Lockdown – 10 Simple Ways. In this blog post, I share some practical money saving tips that will help you to save money during lockdown.
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In the U.K., we are 10 days into lockdown 3.0. It’s hard to believe that it’s almost a year since we first started hearing about this virus that was claiming the lives of so many people in Wuhan, China.
Life as we’ve known it, hasn’t been the same since. Now, when leaving the house, not only do I need to check if I’ve got my keys and my phone, I also need to make sure I have my face mask and hand-sanitiser – it’s insane!
I don’t think I’ve shared this in a blog post, but I’ve spoken heaps about it on my YouTube Channel and Instagram ( so if you’re not following me over there, you know what to do – shameless plug!), I was made redundant from my employer back June 2020 thanks to The Rona. And I’m not the only one. Thousands of people lost their jobs due to the virus and many others were furloughed, receiving 20% less pay than they were used to.
According to a report by the Money Charity Organisation, 2.8 million households reported that they had either no savings, or savings of under £1,500 before the pandemic hit. So I can just imagine, for a lot of people, losing 20% of their pay when living paycheque to paycheque would have been a big financial blow.
While a lot of people were able to save a lot of money by working from home and not travelling into work, a recent post by Resolutions Foundation revealed that one-third of families with children in the lowest income bracket reported increased costs in spring 2020.
The reasons for this, is the basics necessities that we all need such as food and heating, are likely to have weighed harder on those lower down the income distribution.
I said all of that to set the scene for today’s blog post. Yes, I talk a lot but I promise it’ll be worth the read – stick with me! In this blog post, I share some practical money saving tips that will help you to save money during lockdown.
I talk a lot about budgeting because I truly believe there is so much financial freedom in having a budget. A zero-based budget is where you give every single penny and pound an assignment to do on payday, so that at the end of the month you’re not left wondering where all your money has gone. Income minus expenses must equal zero. Once the budget is created, there shouldn’t be any money left unaccounted for.
You can grab a copy of my new Zero-Based Budget here and start making a plan for your money. You’ll be surprised as how much money you are able to find in your budget once you get in front of your money and start planning ahead for it.
Tracking your expenses will help you identify patterns in your spending behaviour. You’ll be able to see where your money is really going, as opposed to where you think it is going. The good news is my new Zero-Based Budget also includes an expenses tracker so that you can start tracking your spending.
To save more money, you need to spend less money. One great way to do this is by reviewing your utility expenses. Who are your providers for electricity and gas? How much are you currently paying monthly? Are you on the best tariffs for your consumption level? Websites like Money Supermarket, Uswitch and Money Saving Expert are great price comparison sites. In these times, it’s important to make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck. These comparison sites will help you see what your cheapest options are.
Food is perhaps the biggest lockdown expense. Having the kids at home all day means that they’re consuming more food than usual. To keep the food costs down, give meal prepping a go. Batch cook meals and freeze them. You’ll be surprised at how much longer food lasts when you do this.
How many times have you bought fresh fruit and vegetables with plans of eating clean that week, only for the week to fly by and the fresh produce that you’ve bought is no longer any good? No? Maybe it’s just me then. If you’re anything like me and do this more often than you care to admit, a great way to avoid food wastage is to freeze the fresh produce. You can use it to make smoothies or soups, the main thing is to make sure there is zero waste.
Netflix, Amazon Prime, Sky, Audible… the list of subscriptions are endless. Now may be the time to do a quick audit of all the subscriptions that you currently have. Are you getting the most value out of them? Can you justify the monthly outlay? If the answer is no, cut them and look for cheaper or even free alternatives. Can I let you in on a secret? I’ve had Netflix for 5+ years thanks to my sisters’ subscription with multiple users. Do you have a lovely family member that could do the same for you?
If you’re in a hole, the worst thing to do is keep digging. At times when our situation seem hopeless we accept the lie that things can never get better so instead of looking for ways to resolve our problem we make it worse. Maybe not you, just me. I buried my head in the sand for years when I was in £36,000 debt. Instead of looking for ways to get out of debt I found myself deeper and deeper in it.
If you’re a shopaholic like me, then there are so many temptations that make you want to spend money you don’t have. Relieve yourself of some of this unnecessary pressure by unsubscribing from mailing lists and blocking those brands that trigger your desire to spend.
Have you heard of a pantry challenge? A pantry challenge is where you challenge yourself to save all the money you would have spent on food and groceries for the week/month by instead shopping your pantry. I have a 12 month money saving challenge and each month there’s a different savings challenge to encourage you to save more money and achieve your financial goals. I’ll be doing this challenge in February as part of frugal February.
At school, children are given one square meal a day. There’s no snacking and eating again when they feel hungry. They eat at lunchtime and then wait until they get home to eat again. Don’t fall into the trap of allowing the children to eat whenever they want. In the same way they have allocated times for eating at school, let the same be true at home-school.
You could even take it a step further and make their packed lunch for the day. Let them know that their lunch is the only food they’ll consume within the normal school hours. This will help stop them eating you out of house and home.
Give yourself a spending allowance. Whether its £20 or £200, set yourself a guilt-free spending allowance for the month. Once it’s gone it’s gone. Doing this will help relieve you of that guilty feeling you get when you treat yourself to something nice. It’ll also help cultivate that discipline of saying no to yourself. This helps create balance. Yes you need to enjoy the fruits of your labour, but everything in moderation.
These are just 10 of the many ways that you can save money during lockdown. Applying just a few of these will really make a difference to your finances during this crazy period. I hope you found this article useful. If you have any questions, be sure to leave them in the comments section below.
What things have you been able to do to save money during lockdown?
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Wife and mum of three boys on a journey to achieve financial freedom. Earn more, spend less and invest the difference.