What if you can’t afford to save?

Money Advice Service

Even a small amount of savings can come in handy and stop you tipping into debt if things go wrong. If you are only just making ends meet, you might think you can’t afford to save, but it’s surprising how you can find small amounts here and there and they soon add up.

Loose change adds up

By the end of the week, many of us have a few coins left over in pockets and purses – and even down the back of the sofa!

Gather up these odd coins each week and put them in a jar.

Even just a £1 a week in loose change will give you a cushion of over £50 by the end of the year. Looking after the pennies really can mean the pounds look after themselves.

Keep a spending diary

Use our Quick cash finder to see how much you might be able to divert to your savings instead.

Sometimes it’s hard to know where the money goes.

Try keeping a spending diary for a week or two where you write down everything you spend from the smallest stick of chewing gum to filling the tank with petrol.

This will help you identify items you might be able to cut back on.

Money going up in smoke?

If you smoke 15 cigarettes a day, that’s costing you almost £2,000 a year.

If you’d like to kick the habit and boost your savings into the bargain, get the NHS on your side.

Don’t pay over the odds

Shop around for the best deals for your phone, internet and fuel bills and review your suppliers every year to see if you’re still getting a good deal.

Save money on travel, supermarket and bills by following our Money saving tips.

Could you boost your income?

There are no simple ways to increase your income.

Possible options might be take on extra work – perhaps a job you could do from home, such as childminding, or turning a hobby into a small business, selling things you make.

If you have a spare room, you might think about taking in a lodger.

This article is provided by the Money Advice Service.

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