Sunday, March 3, 2013

Five Great Ways to Save

If you’re struggling to free yourself from debt, there are a lot of ways you can do so that may not readily spring to mind. But in the UK debt management has become big business as the whole country seems intent on freeing itself from the burden of debt that was taken for granted just a few short years ago.

In making savings to help reduce debt, it’s important to remember that saving what might seem relatively small amounts of cash each month can make a huge difference over time.

So here are five top tips to achieve your goals:

1. Shop around for the best possible mortgage. The current lowest-ever interest rates mean there are some great deals around – so seek expert advice to make sure you have the best deal possible.

2. Clear your credit card debts if you possibly can. The interest rates on credit cards are generally very high.

3. Try to cut the cost of your household bills. Make sure you’re getting the best possible deal for your gas, electricity and telephone bills (including your mobile(s). The market is constantly changing as companies introduce new schemes to lure in new customers. The switched-on householder who’s prepared to make the extra effort can benefit hugely from these deals.

4. Save on food shopping. The discount supermarkets offer excellent value – and even shopping online can be cheaper despite the delivery costs. This is because you aren’t as readily tempted to buy the things that would tempt you from the shelves.

5. Sell the things you no longer use. Is your home full of clutter you really don’t use or appreciate any more? If so, consider selling it at a car boot sale or in the local paper – or on E-bay, the online auction house. There’s always someone looking for something and you may surprise yourself by how much money you’ll receive. This also helps psychologically as you realize how little the things that may tempt you now will be worth in a year or two’s time.

These are just a few of the way you can grow your savings which will gradually free you from the nightmare of personal debt.

Photo by _J_D_R_.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Find Cheaper Premiums for your Home Insurance

Part of living frugally is making sure that you’re not overspending on necessities in life. There are lots of areas where you can easily save money – if you’re prepared to do your research. One classic example is home insurance. Nobody wants to pay out for home insurance, but it’s not something you want to be caught without in case of a fire, flood or burglary in your home.

To reduce the cost of home insurance, you first need to make the effort to get a number of different quotes. You’ll then be prepared to go back to your current insurer at renewal time and ask whether they’re willing to match the lowest quote you’ve found to keep your business.

There are many different optional features on a home contents insurance quote and not having these is another way you can make savings on your annual costs. Each optional feature brings potential benefits, but it really depends on how much you think you will have need of the features whether you decide to add it to your annual costs for insurance or not.

Home emergency coverage is an extra feature that many people choose to pay more for. If you have a home emergency, like the boiler breaking down or the washing machine flooding, then home emergency coverage will mean that a tradesman comes to your home to deal with the problem within a short time frame and that the cost of the repairs and parts will be covered up to a ceiling amount.

Another extra feature on home insurance is accidental damage coverage. This is particularly popular with households that include young children and will cover you in the case of jam sandwiches being shoved into the home entertainment system or blackberry juice being spilled on a white carpet, for example!

Not everyone realizes that their contents coverage only covers their possessions when in the home, so if you lose your tablet or phone while out and about, your insurance doesn’t cover it. The only way around this is to include personal possessions coverage on your contents insurance, which means that items with you when away from the home will be insured. Again, this is down to personal judgement whether the extra premium costs will be worthwhile.

Look carefully at what you current home insurance covers and decide whether this is the right coverage for you. Then get some comparative quotes to check whether you're getting the coverage you want at the best possible price.