IT CAN BE hard to catch a break at the moment, financially.
There are no easy answers, so you need to use every trick in the book to make ends meet.
Saving a few quid here and there can make a difference, but sometimes a little thing can save you hundreds of pounds.
The good news is that The Sun Squeeze Team is fighting your corner with priceless budgeting advice.
Even better, MoneySuperMarket is on a cash-saving mission too.
The independent price comparison website is committed to hunting down the best deals to help people save £1billion on a range of household bills.
It searches for the best quotes from hundreds of providers, and its car and home insurance Super Save Price Promise means you really can’t lose.
If you find a better deal elsewhere after buying a policy on MoneySuperMarket, it refunds customers the difference and gives them the choice of a £20 gift card from retailers such as Sainsbury’s, Just Eat, Argos and Amazon.
MoneySuperMarket customers have saved nearly £500million since May, so what are you waiting for?
In the meantime, the MoneySuperMarket team has come up with a dozen great ways to save right now.
1. Turn it down
The most effective way to save money on energy is to tweak the thermostat.
Energy Saving Trust says that lowering it by just one degree can save 10 per cent on your bill – that works out as hundreds of quid over a year.
Will you really notice the difference between 19C and 20C?
2. Stay under cover
Building and household contents insurance could save you a fortune in the event of damage or theft.
MoneySuperMarket will find its best deals for homeowners and renters in minutes, so you won’t be wasting a penny.
3. Get less wet
Showers use more power and water than you think.
According to Energy Saving Trust, reducing your shower time to four minutes could save a household of three more than £95 a year on their bills – and an extra £60 on the water bill, if metered.
Set an alarm on your phone or get a shower timer.
4. Check your bandwidth
If you’ve been with the same broadband provider for a while, comparing and moving to another supplier could bring down your monthly bill.
Providers often have special offers and vouchers that can make a deal even better value. Compare offers on MoneySuperMarket.
5. Take it easy
Being aggressive with your accelerator and brake wastes energy and fuel, and causes wear and tear.
Move smoothly through the gears, avoid boosting the revs and keep your top speed down.
A black box (or telematic) insurance policy could help you make savings. Compare prices via MoneySuperMarket.
6. Feel the pressure
Under-inflated tyres will blow your fuel economy. Avoid this by checking them every couple of weeks.
You can buy a handy digital pressure gauge for just a few quid.
7. Keep it covered
Don’t leave it till the last moment to get a quote for car insurance. MoneySuperMarket sources quotes from 125 insurance brands, including Admiral, Hastings Direct, esure and LV.
Look at your options around 20 days ahead of your renewal to get the best deal.
Sense check your mileage estimate – if you’re driving fewer miles, you could save on your premium.
Agreeing to a higher excess can save you even more, but make sure you can afford that excess if you do make a claim.
8. Do fuel around
You don’t need us to tell you petrol and diesel prices are off the scale. Download a fuel app to see where you can fill up for less.
Free apps such as PetrolPrices and Whatgas check prices on a daily basis and use your postcode to locate the best deals closest to you.
9. Bank on it
You can earn around £200 for doing pretty much nothing.
Just switch your current account to one of the banks offering deals at the moment and they’ll pay you for the privilege.
Check MoneySuperMarket for the latest incentives and to compare other perks like cashback and rewards.
10. Be in credit
Consolidate debt or ditch an overdraft with a zero per cent balance transfer credit card or switch an existing card balance to a lower rate to save money.
Compare the best deals on MoneySuperMarket.
11. Keep it sim-ple
Switching to a sim-only deal when your mobile is out of contract could easily save you £20 a month.
A MoneySuperMarket comparison will quickly show sims starting from just £5 a month.
12. Sweep the supermarkets
Don’t rely on one big weekly shop. Take the time to check out two or three supermarkets for the best buys.
Check for any rewards programmes that could help you make extra savings.
Phil Cartwright got a nice surprise with his car insurance.
When insurance renewal time came round for his Jaguar XF, Hastings building firm owner Phil Cartwright, 54, was disappointed to discover it had gone up again. In frustration he turned to online price comparison website MoneySuperMarket for the first time.
He put exactly the same details into the MoneySuperMarket website and was stunned to find not one but several quotes that were £200 cheaper.
“I had to check I’d done it properly, but there was no mistake,” he says. “On top of that, I hadn’t wasted 30 minutes on hold like I usually do. I’ll be doing all my insurance like this from now on, no question.”
MoneySuperMarket customers have saved nearly £500million on bills since May. Join them and find out about the Super Save Price Promise at moneysupermarket.com.