I’ve been published in The Sun online, talking about my savvy hacks to save money at home so I can be more free and not work constantly.
I’ve always been very frugal—not just with spending but also with how I am at home with heating and water. Living alone for years has also given me the chance to figure out what works and what doesn’t. I live in North Yorkshire in the U (very cold in the winter), but I have found a few things that are cheap to run and keep me warm.
One thing to note: I do live alone. These tips won’t be for everyone. If you have a large family, then it would be beneficial to use the heating. I don’t use the oven as it’s only me, but again, a large family will use it for big meals. Everyone is different, but I am just giving you my own experiences and tips.
Use a wheat bag. This is one of my top tips! I make my own wheat bag (examples here). I warm them in my microwave for approximately 2 minutes at a time, and they last for quite a while. I cover it around my neck or belly depending on what I’m doing, and it’s so comfy and warming!
I find hot water bottles heavy, and they don’t fit anywhere! They also lose their heat quite quickly, I find.
I only switch on my hot water when I need a shower. I don’t see the point in using all that energy to constantly heat water when I don’t need it. I boil my kettle when I want to wash up and just heat my boiler when I need a shower—not when I think I should shower. Do you remember the days when we used to have one bath a week with your sisters or brothers? Why have we normalised showering every day when all we do is sit at a desk?
I don’t have a car and never will. Yes, I live in the city centre, so I just use the buses and try to walk as much as I can. It keeps me fit and reduces my outgoings massively. The cost of a car is so much, I’m shocked at what people spend! Insurance, petrol, servicing, etc.—think to yourself whether it’s worth it.
I am only shopping second-hand. Vinted has become my best friend. It’s so handy and cheap. I sell on there too; you can check out what I am decluttering here. It’s fast and easy to sell in there, so I recommend you sign up!
I have lots of fluffy socks and a good dressing gown I’ve had nine for years now. I got them gifted for Christmas from Marks and Spencer’s, and the quality is so amazing. I recommend getting wool socks, as these are usually warmer.
Keep track of your expenses to see where your money is going. This will help you identify areas where you can cut back. You can get free ones from Google or just track them on a simple spreadsheet.
Reduce your energy usage by turning off lights and electronics when you’re not using them. You can also lower your thermostat a few degrees in the winter and raise it a few degrees in the summer to save on heating and cooling costs. Check the government website to see if you are eligible for any discounts or benefits.
Cooking at home is often cheaper than eating out. You can save money by planning your meals ahead of time and buying food in bulk. I know it’s hard to plan if you have never done it before, so look online for inspiration or group up with others to share ideas and support each other together.
If you need help and ideas, then have a look at:
Make your own detergent. You can make your washing detergent for cheap! It’s amazing for everyday use and so cheap you won’t have to worry about the prices going up.
- 200g soda crystals
- 50g bicarbonate of soda
- 120 ml liquid soap
- 2 litres of boiling water
- 10 drops of essential oils (optional)
- A bottle for storage
- A large bowl
- A whisk
- Pour the soda crystals into your bowl and slowly add 500 ml of boiling water
- Stir the mixture until all the crystals have dissolved
- Whilst stirring, add in the bicarbonate of soda a little at a time
- Add the liquid soap, the rest of the boiling water, and the essential oils (if using)
- Stir until well distributed and then leave to cool
- Whisk the detergent until it is smooth and then pour it into your storage container
Once you’ve bottled up your DIY liquid detergent, store it in a cool place with no direct sunlight.
I cancel any subscriptions that I don’t use regularly. This could include streaming services, gym memberships, or magazine subscriptions. If you do pay for something that you forgot to cancel, use the Apple or Google App Store to chat with them and ask for a refund.
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