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It would be great if we didn’t have to pay monthly bills but, unfortunately, there’s no way around it. But most people are probably overpaying on one or more of their bills. Gas and electricity are ones that people always review and they can usually cut their spending quite considerably, but what about the rest of them? These are the common monthly expenses that you’re probably spending too much on.
People are more careful about their energy usage around the home for a couple of reasons; first off, it’s expensive and people want to pay less. Secondly, people tend to be more concerned about their carbon footprint so they try to use less gas and electricity if they can.
But nobody really thinks about their water usage because they don’t think it’s a problem. Environmentally, it is a problem and shortages could become a problem over the next couple of decades. Not a lot of people realize this and so they just use as much water as they like without really thinking about it at all. That means most of us are using way more water than we need to be and we’re paying the price.
The thing is, there are so many simple ways to save water around the home so there’s no need to spend as much as you are. Getting a water meter is a must if you don’t already have one. It’ll show you exactly how much you’re using each day and how much it’s costing you. Then you can start being more mindful about your water usage. Things like waiting until you’ve got a full load before putting the washing on or using a dishwasher instead of filling the sink all save a surprising amount of water.
Everybody needs a mobile phone but most people pay way over the odds for them. There are a couple of different reasons for this; the main reason people spend too much is that they always go for the latest model. If you get a contract with the latest iPhone, you’re going to spend upwards of £30 every month. The thing is, you can get a contract on a cheaper phone that still performs all of the same basic functions for half the monthly cost.
If you are dead set on having a more expensive brand, why not go for a slightly older model. They don’t make that many changes between models so it’ll be basically the same phone for a fraction of the cost. A lot of people also get fooled by the data allowances. You can get wifi in most places these days so you don’t really need that much data. If you’re just sending emails and instant messages, that only uses a tiny amount of data. Unless you’re watching videos on the move, you don’t really need any more than 1GB.
Sometimes, people are paying too much because they think that they’re being rewarded for loyalty. But you don’t actually get a better deal for staying with the same company most of the time. That’s why it’s always a good idea to go for a shorter contract if possible and shop around for better deals every time you change contract.
People have similar issues when they’re looking for a broadband deal. Most of the time, people assume that it’s a fixed rate that can’t be changed, but you’d be surprised how much discount you can get if you threaten to leave. A lot of companies also offer introductory rates so it’s often best to switch regularly for a better broadband deal. Combining your broadband deals with other services is a great way to save money as well. A lot of companies offer a package deal with broadband, TV, and phones all rolled into one and it’s usually a lot cheaper than paying for all of those services separately.
Credit Card Interest
This is a big one because it can land you in some serious financial trouble. If you’ve got credit card debts with massive interest rates, you might just be paying the interest each month and not actually clearing any of the debt itself. That means you’re effectively throwing that money away every month and you’ll be doing so until you can afford to increase your payments and start paying off the actual debt. But there are ways that you can reduce the amount of interest that you’re paying. If you can find a credit card with a zero interest introductory period (usually 6 months to a year) you can do a balance transfer and pay off all of the other cards. Then you’ve got a bit of breathing room to pay back the debt before those interest payments kick in again.
If you can stop paying over the odds for these basic monthly expenses, you’ll be in a far stronger financial position in no time.
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