Living in a big city is fun, but it can also be a drain on your wallet. However, you don’t have to live paycheck to paycheck never getting ahead. Whether you’re a student working part-time, just got your first job or have a financial goal in mind, here are some money saving tips to stretch your pay packet further.
Don’t just jump on the first place you find and sign a contract. Take your time and look at a number of places and compare value for money. Rent is one of the largest outgoings you’ll have so if you want to decrease monthly costs, it’s wise to look around first before you make your decision.
Location can make a huge difference in rent costs. Living closer to the action, means paying top dollar for an apartment and less money in your pocket. Choosing to live slightly further out of the center of the city, but on a good transport route, is wise as it will help you to save money.
Park views are all very well but they’ll come at a cost. A clean, well maintained apartment with working plumbing and decent cooking facilities will serve you better in the long run. Unfurnished and partly-furnished apartments are cheaper than fully-furnished. You can always buy affordable furnishings from IKEA, Target or H&M Furniture to make it more homely.
If you know you won’t be moving anytime soon, then signing a one or two year lease is preferable. This will save your landlord having to find another tenant, and he or she will be less likely to raise the rent. If you choose a month-to-month option it could end up being more expensive if they decide not to renew your lease. You’ll be left with no choice but to find another place.
Monthly bills can add up if you’re not careful. But you can decrease monthly costs by being vigilant about turning off lights or devices left on standby, switching to LED bulbs and air drying clothes on a rack instead of using the dryer.
If you use a power company that bases your bill on meter readings for electricity and gas, then get in the habit of providing these monthly. Otherwise they’ll charge you an estimate of what they think you will use which could be a lot higher. It’s better to save money rather than pay a company for power you’re not using.
Cable TV may be something you’re used to having, but there are a lot of other cheaper ways, Netflix, for example, to watch great shows and movies. You can even find a lot of free stuff online through YouTube. So cut the cord, why pay a lot of money for channels you won’t even watch?
Home cooking is having a renaissance thanks to reality TV shows such as Master Chef. Knowing how to cook is a great skill to have, and one of the best money saving tips because eating out every night is incredibly expensive. Buy fresh food locally and make a healthy, tasty meal for a fraction of the cost, another bonus is that you won’t have to leave a tip!
A simple, but often overlooked money saving tip is to keep your apartment clean and tidy. This means regularly cleaning appliances, mopping floors and vacuuming carpet areas. Not only will your apartment be a pleasant place to live it will ensure that you get your deposit back.
Getting on well with your landlord can help you save money when it comes time to review your rent. Having a tenant that’s polite, friendly and doesn’t have noisy parties is a big plus. Landlords know this and will be more likely to leave the rent as it is rather than lose you.
Being money savvy isn’t something that everyone is born with, it can take time, effort and discipline to get in control of your finances. Want to further money saving tips for renters? Check out these 50 ways to save money at home.