In the UK, the average weekly household expenditure is £572.60 which is the highest weekly spend since 2005.1 With average living costs for UK households rising by 2.4 per cent in the past 12 years, more and more people are searching for ways to cut costs and make every penny count.2
A new year means a new start and a fresh perspective; it’s a great time to start thinking about setting a family budget, saving goals and spending limits. Here we look at what tactics you can add to your budgeting plan to keep your spending in check.
Leave Christmas behind
The festive season is a great time of year to spend with friends and family, but it isn’t too kind to your bank account and could potentially leave you on the backfoot come January. In 2018, 16 per cent of Britons – the equivalent of 7.9 million people – admitted that they are likely to fall into debt after spending too much during the festive period.3
To avoid carrying your money woes into 2020, you should remain strict with your budget, skip credit card purchases and cut your gift list to just your immediate family and friends.4
Another tip – if there are toys your children haven’t touched since last Christmas or a beauty set you still haven’t opened, why let it go to waste? Regift!
Get organised for 2020
The first step in budgeting for the family is to get organised before the year begins. Give the Money Saving Expert’s free budget planner a try, you can include everything from your household’s weekly shop to your monthly loan repayments to see how you can give yourself a money makeover.
Or if you’re a little more tech-savvy, connect your current accounts, savings and credit cards to a budgeting app. You can see your spending categorised, so it’s easy to identify where you’re overspending and set limits for the month ahead. These apps can also forecast for future income, expenditure and balances, a great opportunity to get ahead with your budget and saving.
Household bills are something that can seriously deplete your budget if you don’t shop around for the best tariffs. A great money saver is to compare the offers on utilities, fixed rate mortgages, home insurance and phone contracts to cut your monthly outgoings.5
The average family food shop in 2018 was £60.60 per week, with wine, bread and vegetables being among the biggest food expenditures.6 A great way to cut your food bill is to cook filling and freezeable meals to make your family meals go further and avoid wastage. What’s more, simply preparing and taking lunch to work could help cut more than £4,000 from your yearly spend.7
Identify tough months
A study revealed that 37 per cent of those surveyed have had arguments with their partner about money and around 7.4 million Brits struggle to sleep due to money worries.8 A great tip when planning your family budget for 2020 is to identify potential ‘tough’ months – perhaps you’ve been invited to three weddings next summer, but you also have the annual family holiday to save for too. Make sure all events and occasions are in the calendar so they can be factored into your monthly budgets in advance to avoid any overspending.
Start a health care cash plan
Another way of planning and managing your costs in 2020 is to take out a health care cash plan, to help cover everyday health care expenses. Starting from £2.22 a week, with Good All Round you can receive back 100% of your dental and optical costs up to your cover level limit. For all other benefits such as physiotherapy, prescription charges etc, you’ll receive back 50% of your costs. Click here to find out more.