FINANCIAL freedom is the ultimate goal for many of us.
But trying to find a way to save cash is difficult at this time of year, especially with the prospect of a costly Christmas ahead.
I asked chartered financial planner Makala Green to suggest ways to stay on track as we start the 12-week countdown to the festivities.
So plan now and save later with her tips . . .
SHOP SMART: Use your loyalty cards wisely and start to brainstorm ways to limit spending.
Organise it on a list with a pen and paper into “needs” and “wants” as this might help you decide if a purchase really is necessary.
When it comes to your food shopping, a big part of the family budget, I recommend buying in bulk and planning meals way in advance.
CREATE A BUDGET: Define your reasons for budgeting by asking yourself, “What’s the goal?”
Understanding where your monthly income goes by checking bank statements is important.
That way, you can ditch unnecessary expenses. Save time by using a budgeting app to help you do this.
FOLLOW THE RULES: I like the 50-30-20 budget rule. Essentials should be 50 per cent of your budget, other spending 30 per cent and savings 20 per cent.
Buddy up with your partner on it to ensure accountability.
BANK BRAIN: Decide how much you need to save and set a timeframe. Make your savings automatic so they come out on pay day.
This way, you won’t be tempted to spend more.
SERVE YOURSELF: Make your money work harder. Pay yourself first — that means putting money into savings before you start spending.
You need to clear debts or reduce credit cards first so that you pay them off quicker and therefore spend less in the long run.
Also, while savings rates are not great, you should still shop around for accounts with the best return. Another tip is to review workplace benefits and pensions.
You might be able to switch things up to make long-term savings. For more tips, see @TheWealthCheck on Insta.
Prices on page correct at time of going to press. Deals & offers subject to availability.
DEAL OF THE DAY
ENJOY a few scoops of Kelly’s clotted cream raspberry ice cream. Was £3.80, now £2.50 at Co-op.
SERVE up pasta tonight with Dolmio Bolognese pasta sauce Original. Now £1, down from £1.80, at Asda.
PICK up stylish storage at B&M, which has reduced lots of its new ranges.
I love the Loft range, which includes the Loft Studio four-drawer chest reduced from £90 to £75.
IF you want to make your toast delicious, you can’t go wrong with some Biscoff, above, for £2.50 at Asda.
Or save a little with Aldi’s Biscuit Spread, below, for just £1.79.
Giselle’s little helper
HAVE your fill in The Range’s Dining Event.
There are discounts on crockery, chairs and tables, including this Marseille extending table that seats six.
Now with £30 off, making it just £119.99.
SHOP & SAVE
TUCK into a pack of Sensations Thai sweet chilli crisps.
Usually £2 but now £1.25 at Sainsbury’s.
Hot right now
CHRISTMAS is looking even brighter now the festive lights range from Studio.co.uk has landed.
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