We all have to budget in some form or another. Every month, you’ll get your salary and once your fixed costs are covered, you’ve got to figure out how much will go on the fun things, and how much you’d like to tuck away. Budgeting is also not the easiest thing to do. Even the most practiced cost-cutters know that there are no guarantees against unexpected costs that can ruin even the best-made plans. Did the car break down? A surprise birthday party for a friend? Those random, unexpected events are sometimes impossible to factor in. However, they don’t need to be the focal point of a good budget. In fact, your fixed costs are where real savings can be made. Rather than hoping you won’t need to shell out for the unpredictable, why not minimize the predictable stuff? Here’s how to make a dent in your monthly bills – it’s easier than you might think!
Home, Sweet Home
For homeowners, the mortgage is almost definitely the largest expenditure you’ll need to deal with on any given month. If you’re a first-time homeowner, your rates and deals are going to be heavily controlled by your earnings and deposit. Most lenders will look to provide very ‘safe’ deals to increase the likelihood of repayment in full (plus, naturally, a little interest). However, after some time, your life might change. You might begin earning more money or come into a small inheritance. Maybe you’ve decided you want to pay a little less off your mortgage each month and increase the term. Your best bet is a mortgage advisor like Trussle who offers free mortgage advice in the UK. you could discover you could save by exploring new mortgage deals available to you. Some homeowners might want to re-mortgage their property and find a deal that suits their lifestyle a little more. With a mortgage broker, you can.
It can be very tempting to stick certain costs onto your credit card, to offset spending until another day. However, your efforts might actually end up costing you more in the long run. Accruing interest on your credit card is an easy means of ending up inflating your spending and damaging your credit score. At the very least, pay off your credit card in full every month, and ensure you can account for spending, rather than sticking it on a credit card and forgetting about it.
Patience On Payday
Research shows that 20% of people spend nearly half of their disposable incoming within 48 hours of receiving their salary! Don’t be this person. It’s easy to feel invincible on those first few days or weeks after being paid. A better strategy is to open a savings account and treat that to a splurge on payday. As soon as you’re paid, deposit your chosen proportion of savings into your account immediately. This way, you can forget about that chunk of money and focus on the disposable money left over as your money for a little R and R.
There’s a lot more you can do, too. Workplace benefits, budgeting apps, and energy supplier comparison can allow you to identify areas of your life where you’re overpaying for things. The issue with fixed costs is that we can easily assume those costs can’t change. The reality is that their suppliers really defined these costs – and thankfully; you don’t have to commit to any single provider arbitrarily. By becoming more critical of the way you pay, as well as the way you spend, you’ll find your monthly budgets much easier to meet, and savings goals moving that much closer to completion.