20 ways to beat the cost-of-living crisis

Harvey Jones 7 February 2022

As Britain remains in the grips of high inflation, here are practical ways to reduce and cut spending where you can 

The cost-of-living crisis is taking its toll as bills and taxes soar out of control, but here are 20 ways you can fight back and save money:

Turn your clutter into cash. Have a clear out and sell stuff you no longer use on eBay, Facebook Marketplace or GumTree. Fashion, tech, video games, DVDs, bikes, clothes, furniture and baby equipment are big sellers.

Sign up to cashback sites such as Quidco, Topcashback and others, and get rebates on your online spending.

Draw up a monthly budget. Make sure your outgoings aren't exceeding your income. If they are, bring them into line (with a little left over for savings).

Cut the cord. If you don’t use your landline anymore, stop paying for it. You could save £240 a year, comparethemarket says.

Drop that unused gym description. If you never actually go to the gym, don’t extend your contract. Find free exercise classes on YouTube instead.

Spend nothing. Challenge yourself to have a few zero spending days every month. Plan meals shun take outs and make your own coffee rather than buying a frothy latte. It all adds up.

Show some loyalty. If you can’t give up your daily coffee, then sign up to loyalty scheme. Pret a Manger’s is the hottest, says Takepayments.com. McDonald's, Costa, Cafe Nero, Greggs and Starbucks also offer savings to loyal coffee customers.

Get switching. If your motor or home insurance, broadband, mobile or mortgage is up for renewal then shop around. You might get it better for less.

Cut your energy bill. Visit website energysavingtrust.org.uk for ways to cut your usage.

Transfer your credit card balance. If you can't pay down your credit card debt, switch it to a zero-interest balance transfer card if you can. This could save somebody with the average £2,898 debt interest totalling £1,831, according to TotallyMoney.

Start a side hustle. Brits unleashed their entrepreneurial instincts in lockdown by launching side hustles, banking £6,300 in extra income last year alone, according to research from Fiverr.com. Why not give put your skills to work? Online selling, crafts and baking, gaming and voiceovers, PR, marketing and copywriting can all bring in the cash.

This could be your new side hustle

Kill your zombie subscriptions. Brits waste a tenner a month on “zombie” subscriptions to streaming and others services they never use. It’s time to cancel them.

Make fast food savings. If you love your fast food, cut the cost by downloading food apps from chains like McDonald’s, Greggs, and KFC.

Stop being “tap happy”. Take care when making contactless payments as they make it a bit too easy to spend money. Check your bank statements to see how it all adds up.

Review your direct debits regularly. This is a quick and easy way to pay bills but can backfire if you fail to keep tabs on what's going out of your account each month.

Think twice before having a flutter. You will lose a lot more than you win by gambling and should never bet money you cannot afford to lose.

Read your bills. Nobody likes looking at their bills but pluck up your courage and keep on top of them. Otherwise, they will only get scarier.

Build a cash buffer. Everybody should have the equivalent of three to six months of spending money in an easy access savings account for emergencies. Start building your rainy-day fund today.

Save for the future. As well as paying bills today, you need to save money for your retirement. Set up a pension or invest in a tax-free Isa.

Make the most of your workplace pension. The workplace auto-enrolment scheme has given 10 million mostly lower paid pension workers a company pension for the first time. Don’t opt out.

Read more: How to save during the year of squeeze

Read more: How to cope with a higher cost of living

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