7 Budgeting Tips to save You Money ...

Budgeting Tips are a great way to help you start saving. There are plenty of ways to save money but clever and thoughtful budgeting tips are often ignored. So much of the advice you’ll find about saving money focuses on dealing with things as they arise but with some aforethought, you can avoid having to scrabble around in the future. With some simple planning you can not only avoid some nasty surprises but also smooth out your expenditure more evenly over the year. Here are 7 budgeting tips to save you money.

1. Manage Those Credit Cards

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One of the best budgeting tips to save money is to have good credit card management. So many people forget that when you hand over the plastic, it is money and you do actually have to pay for it. Remember too, it may seem convenient at the time but you pay for that convenience in the form of interest. One definite way to save money if you don’t like using cash is to not have a credit card but switch to a prepaid one. This is a card you load up with your own cash. This means you can only spend what you have and you pay a minimal price for having the card. If you feel you can’t get rid of the credit card then shop around to make sure you have the best deal. Two things to check out are balance transfers and lower APRs. Cards with longer term 0% interest are a big favorite with card issuers right now – take advantage of them.

2. Get Rewards and Cash Back

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Despite the economic downturn and the associated problems with personal credit, there is still big competition among the credit card issuers for your business. As well as the attractive 18 month 0% interest offers currently available, when budgeting, you should take a look at what you spend the greatest proportion of your income on. Find a credit card that links in to your expenditure. Look at fuel cards, cash back, purchase cards, even air miles reward cards if you’re a frequent traveller. It’s hard to factor money saved from rewards into your budgeting process but they aren’t to be ignored for that reason.

3. Hold onto the Phone

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Shop around for the best cell phone deal is one of the best budgeting tips. Start looking at the best deals available at least 1 month before the end of your current contract. That way you won’t feel obliged simply to renew with your current provider because you haven’t invested any time in finding a better option. And, do you really need a new phone? Unless you find a deal with a free upgrade, there’s no need to change your phone unless it’s no longer working or doesn’t do what you need it to.

4. Lower the Media Bill

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Check how much you are paying for your cable and home phone or broadband. Some companies will offer a good discount if you bundle them altogether so if there is no big deal about who you are with this can give a good saving. Also, check if you need the cable package you have asthere is no point paying for films or sports if you don’t watch them. As with your cell phone, start looking around before the end of your current contractual term. All the best budgeting advice indicates that planning ahead is a key to saving money.

5. Keep Insured

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Another example of budgetary planning ahead is with your various insurances. It is so simple to fall into the trap of staying loyal to a provider because it’s the easy option. Shop around for all different types of insurance. If you do want to stay with your current provider, call them as soon as you receive your renewal notice. They will want to keep your business, so negotiate a better deal and if not, go elsewhere. You may gain no advantage from loyalty.

6. Utilize Your Utilities

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Lots of utility companies are competing for business so there is a good chance that you will either find a company charging less than yours or be able to negotiate a better price with the company you are presently with. Check out the green tariffs and also employ good practice at home by not wasting energy. Another of the clever budgeting tips is to be prepared for the hike in your utility bills in the winter if you live somewhere with major seasonal variations. Either overpay during the summer months so you have credit in your account or put money aside. If you can even your utilities out over the year, you’ll find them easier to deal with.

7. Create a Budget

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I’ve saved the best one for last. The best budgeting tip I can give you is to actually make a budget. For sound financial management, everyone should have a good idea of what your income and expenditure is on a monthly basis and how much disposable income you actually have. By having a budget you know how much you can spend and more importantly, how much you can save. It helps you plan big purchases and afford things like a well deserved vacation.

I hope that you find that these 7 budgeting tips that will save you money useful. Many of us complain about not having enough money and sometimes it really is just a case of being smarter in how we manage what we do have to make it go further. That's why budgeting tips like these can help. Are you an avid budgeter or are you one of those that has no idea how much money you have and never bothers to balance your check book? Either way, these budgeting tips can definitely help you save!

Top Photo Credit: a_anya

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