If like myself you're a father, and your in a family which relies mainly on one income (my partner works 10hours or so per week) you will know that its hard to always have money spare and its not easy to create a budget that looks flattering
But, there are ways in which you can save money each month on your budget, they may actually be more obvious then you think, and the best thing you can start saving money today!
Lets jump straight into it and go over 7 ways you can save money on your monthly outgoings right now
1. Check your subscriptions
In a study by Barclaycard Payments, It found men top the list of monthly subscribers, forking out an average of £57 each month or £684 a year – 63 per cent more than the £35 a month or £420 a year spent by women! WOW!
Of course this site is aimed at the Fathers in the household, and no doubt like me you could add up your subscriptions and find it comes somewhat close to that figure!
The fact is you probably haven't ever thought of it as a collection of subscriptions and more so just individual numbers but lets look at what this could include, for me that would look something like below
Disney+ - £7.99
Amazon Prime - £7.99
Netflix - £9.99
The Athletic or Online News - £7.99
Spotify or Online Music - £9.99
Xbox Live / Game Pass - £10.99
With the total of these subscriptions coming in at £54.94!
This is before thinking about things like twitch, if you watch the online gaming platform you may have subbed to some of the content creators which is around £4 a month, there is also YouTube premium, and plenty more online services, magazines and news outlets that you could be subscribing too!
Make a list of all of the subscriptions you have, rank them from 1 to what ever number you have an decide on which are essential!
Take a look at some of them and see if they have cheaper options for example Netflix has a 1 screen option which is around £2 cheaper, or Spotify has a duo & family account working out cheaper! Also look out for offer of so many months free etc and sign up through those, or contact the company and say you're going to leave to see if you are offered a discounted rate
2. Ditch the Gym
Now if you live in the gym and you get the time to go multiple times a week to make that membership worthwhile then fair enough you may as well skip this point but if like me you work 35-40 hours per week, and then come home to your partner and child/ children weigh up whether what you are doing at the gym is worth the cost!
There are plenty of ways of doing exercise with out the gym. You could buy an exercise bike (check marketplace) and use this, or if you have your own bike use that! Skip the commute to work in the car and walk there instead, go out for a walk or jog in the evening, create a makeshift gym at home
But have a think if the £25 - £40+ a month is really right for your at this point and where you could spend or utilise that money elsewhere
3. Walk! Don't Drive!
Tying in with the above point, its time to ditch the car! if you live within walking distance or cycling distance, or if your work has a changing facility then its time to think about ditching the car
With petrol prices continuing to rise at the minute especially with the widespread panic of petrol shortages now is a good a time as any to get out in the fresh air and walk to work
Not only will it save you money over the long term on fuel, it will help with increased cardiovascular health and give you a nice sense of freshness and make you feel alive early in the morning
4. Lower your phone tariff
One thing I have learned recently is that you don't need the best phone on the market to get by! Around 12 months ago I upgraded my phone to the iPhone 12 and to be honest it was a mistake, I was happy with the iPhone XR which I had previously and I was about 8 months away from the contract ending which would of allowed me to go Sim only and save a lot of money
Now I pay around £65 per month for my phone and to be honest I don't get any extra benefit from that, yes the camera is a bit better and all that jazz but in terms of service it was not worth doing
Take a look at your current phone and your current plan and see if you are on a tariff which offers more than you need! are you paying for 60GB of data when you average 3GB use? reduce it! Are you like me and get Unlimited minutes but rarely phone anyone? Reduce it!
If your coming to the end of your current contract and your phone is still working ask yourself "do I need a new handset?" if the answer is no then look into a Sim only deal. These start from as little as £5 and offer so much more for your money giving you a great saving going forward
5. Reduce your council tax
Now I'm assuming like myself your in the same boat as me and as we have spoken about previously its single income, maybe with a second very low income in the household
Well, if that's the case check with your local council and see if you are eligible for a council tax reduction. It may be that you are and you can get a couple hundred pounds reduced over the course of the year, or you may be eligible and get £50 reduced over the year
Whether its £50 or £200 off your bill this is a saving and every saving is another small win in our household
6. Are you owed by your Utilities
One thing I found when setting up our utility bills when we first moved in is that they wanted to charge us large amounts per month compared to what we thought we would need to pay!
We mentioned that there was 2 of us and child and gave them information based on what we think we would use per month, they then did there calculations and gave us a quote
We not find that over the course of the year every time we give a reading for the Gas / Electric or for the water they come back and tell us our account is in credit! You now have 2 options you can leave the account in credit, though I found with this they still took the same monthly payments and just allowed the credit to build and build
Or you can do as we do and ask for the credit to be refunded! For us this can be anything from £60 - £100+ every few months which is great as we can then put this towards essentials or even things we would usually buy as it is additional funds on top of our budget
Don't be afraid to ask for your refunds people!
Take a look over your budget today, and see if there are small changes you can make to it! As a I said previously even the smallest saving is a Win in our household and over the year it all adds up!
You can also save money through your shopping and current choices in regards to nappies, meal choices or even just being savvy! You can find 5 ways HERE to save money as a parent.
Let us know where you have been able to save money in your budget using some of our tips