2014 is already in full flow and many of us have already broken our New Year’s resolutions. But that’s fine, because it doesn’t mean you can’t try again with renewed determination. January can be one of the most stressful months of the year, especially with financial worries following the festive period’s expensive outlays. So here are five simple steps to increase your disposable income in 2014, and even beyond…
This is one of the best ways to save money, and reduce the amount of food that you throw out due to it passing its use by date. Make a meal plan where you only buy what you need and make life easier by being a bit more organised. Start with sticking to a weekly shop. Doing one shop a week already means that you will save money on impulse buys. We’ve all done it, go in for a loaf of bread and come out with a basket full of things we think we might need and throw half of it away by the end of the week. Make a meal plan, buy only what you need and stick to it. If you have time then make some of your meals after your shop, freeze the portions and reheat when you want them – saving you time too.
Kicking the tobacco habit
If you’re a smoker this will save you a lot of money. Switch to e-cigarettes and e-cigarettes‘, and you can save around £2,500 a year if you are a 20 a day smoker. Other options include nicotine patches, nicotine mouth spray and hypnotherapy. You also might be able to save money on your health and life insurance policy.
Cancelling memberships and subscriptions
Unless you use them, of course… But if you have a gym membership and you’re paying monthly and not going then cancel it. Having it there just in case doesn’t mean that you will use it and if you’re not motivated to attend even whilst losing money then you need to address the situation. Same goes for magazines. If you pay a subscription but find that you put them down intending to read them and haven’t by the time the next issue or the one after that turns up then you know what to do!
Higher interest bank accounts
This one can take a bit of time researching as there aren’t always many worthwhile one’s about but if you have savings then they may as well work for you. If you don’t want to risk investing in stocks and shares then this is a safer and more secure option. A fixed rate ISA can attain interest monthly or annually. However, this is on the condition that you can’t withdraw the funds for a number of years so be sure you are happy to commit as once you’re in, you’re in.
Selling all unwanted or unused items
Using eBay, attending a car boot sale or having a garage sale are great ways to raise some extra money whilst creating extra space in your home. If you have any unwanted items then let someone else have them who is going to use them.
These simple steps are easy ways to increase your disposable income. If you have any other money saving tips then please add them to the comments below.