Tag: family finance

How to save money during Christmas spending

December is a tough time for us all financially. We are suddenly inundated with buying gifts, extra food and home decor. Am I the only one that thinks the price…

saving money during christmas spending

December is a tough time for us all financially. We are suddenly inundated with buying gifts, extra food and home decor. Am I the only one that thinks the price for a Christmas bauble seems to have doubled?!

Not only do you have to pay for all of the extra strains, you still have to keep up with your regular bills and maintenance costs. This is extremely hard especially if you are surviving off maternity pay.

It can be very tempting to dip into that savings pot you have worked so hard for through out the year but, I’m here to tell you now don’t!  Check out my very handy saving whilst spending tips first!

Honey

On Chrome, you can simply download a FREE extension. Guys, let me just say that this took me under 5 minutes to do. It was so easy!

Honey will pop up when you are at the checkout on your online shop with a discount code. Not only that, Honey searches for the best possible discount code for you! Amazing.

Here is the link: Join Honey

Quidco

Using a website like Quidco, you will get instant cashback from shopping online. All you need to do is log onto Quidco first and then shop through there onto your retailer of choice. For example, I want to buy a pair of trainers. I will log onto Quidco site first then I will look for the Nike website and click on it and carry on with my shop. Simple.

You can get rewarded cashback on so many different products, whether it will be gifts for people this year or you want to take out that break down cover you desperately need but can’t afford at full price.

If you are a new customer the chances of your cashback amount being a better rate will increase!

Sign up with my link for a free £5!

Here is the link: Join Quidco

CamelCamelCamel

Did you know that companies regularly change the prices of products on their website? Amazon can do this multiple times a day! So let’s say you are on Amazon, and you really want a new TV, if you put what product you want to track into CamelCamelCamel, you will be notified with an email when that product is at its cheapest or the price has dropped.

There is also a free browser extension too.

Here is the link: Camelcamelcamel

Groupon

Sometimes you just want to treat someone to a really lovely gift. This could be a trip out or a spa day. Check out  Groupon. They have amazing offers where you could save yourself so much money rather than booking direct.

They even have a full section on handy discount codes too!

Here is the link: Join Groupon

Basket Abandonment

You have done your full online shop and got to the checkout at the end and realised, you know what? I can’t afford all of this right now. So you leave it.

If you do this whilst logged into your account. You can get an email saying “Hey, we have noticed you have left items still in your basket, here is 10% off to complete the purchase.”

A great way to save extra money. I know that Pretty little Thing do this, Apple and Ebay. It will be trail and error finding companies that offer this way of discount but will be so worth it! Just be careful with risking your product will be still in stock.

 

Happy Saving and Happy Shopping Everyone!

saving money during christmas spending

*Some links are referral links.

 

 

 

 

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Help To Buy ISA | DEADLINE

Are you a first time buyer? If you save for a mortgage deposit in a Help To Buy ISA the government will add an extra 25% on top of the…

Are you a first time buyer? If you save for a mortgage deposit in a Help To Buy ISA the government will add an extra 25% on top of the amount you have saved!

But, time is running out!

When is the deadline?

The deadline to open a Help to Buy ISA is Saturday 30 November.

help to buy isa

How much money do you need to open one?

All you need is just £1 and you can be eligible for up to £3,000 towards your first mortgage.

Who is eligible?

You need to be a first time buyer ages 16+. You have to have a valid national insurance number.

What does the government add?

The government will add 25% tax-free to whatever the amount is in the ISA when it is used to buy a home. There is even a bonus of up to £3,000 if your total amount in your ISA is £12,000.

The minimum amount in your ISA to get a bonus is £1,600 and you can get a bonus of £400.

Buying a house together?

If you are both first time buyers then you can both get a Help to Buy ISA.

Can I use the bonus on the house deposit?help to buy isa

Be aware that the Help to Buy ISA bonus is for the mortgage deposit not the house deposit. You only get the government’s bonus with the Help to Buy ISA bonus on completion. So if you are planning on using the bonus towards the house 10% deposit. You may need to speak to the seller to agree on a lower deposit that you can afford.

You get the bonus when you become the legal property owner.

It is designed to help cut the cost of your mortgage and reduce the amount you need to borrow.

If this is an issue for you, the Help to Buy ISA might not be the best option for you. A Life time ISA pays you a bonus monthly.

What happens if my circumstances change?

If you find yourself in a new job down the line where you have to move abroad then you can still rent out the property you have even if you used the Help to Buy Isa. You can not rent out the property if renting is your intention when buying. You may have to pay the bonus money back.

Will I lose my money if I don’t end up buying my first home?

You will not lose your money. In fact you can withdraw all of your money penalty free.

What happens if I have already invested the money into a cash ISA?

A Help to Buy ISA counts as a cash ISA. You can only make payments into one of these ISA’s in the same tax year.

You can transfer your savings over into a Help to Buy ISA but, this depends on the total amount of you have paid into your cash ISA this tax year.

The best option is to speak to your provider if you are wishing to transfer as not all providers allow this option, especially, if you have paid more than £1,200 since April.

If you have paid more that £1,200 into a cash ISA, you will need to open it with a provider that allows you to transfer and then ‘split’ your cash ISA.

Natwest and Nationwide allow you to open the Help to Buy ISA and the cash ISA where as, other providers if you have paid £1,200 will make you either withdraw £200 or invest the £200 into stocks and shares. Again speak to your provider if you need more advice.

What happens if I can’t make the max payment this month?

help to buy isa

Still open one and keep your options open. You just won’t be able to make a double amount next month. You will only be able to put in £200 not the £1,200 the first month offers.

If you are interested in the Help To Buy ISA then you can apply online right up to the closing date. But, remember the closing date is approaching so don’t leave it until last minute.

You don’t need to be currently banking with the ISA provider and you don’t have to have your mortgage through the same provider either.

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10 Money Saving Tips | Baby Shopping

Baby shopping. Now, if you’re anything like me, you can just spend, spend and spend. Baby shopping is my biggest hobby. For some reason, when it comes to shopping for…

Baby shopping. Now, if you’re anything like me, you can just spend, spend and spend. Baby shopping is my biggest hobby.

For some reason, when it comes to shopping for my baby, I do not seem to focus on a budget even when I really need to. It is like a part of me thinks if my baby needs it then I will buy it her. Which is okay but half the time, does my baby really need it?

Look:

I have been strict on myself to save more money as my maternity pay has come to a stop. It is sad, yes, but I feel so much more secure financially now.

You’re probably wondering how:

By following these ten tips I have been able to think twice about my biggest outgoing which is baby shopping.

10 Money Saving Tips When Shopping For A Baby

  1. Think twice before you buy
  2. Shop around and compare prices
  3. Go for second hand
  4. Re-sell anything you no longer need
  5. Avoid baby clothes shopping unless necessary
  6. Do not stockpile
  7. Join baby groups for freebies
  8. Shop neutral
  9.  Spend with cash
  10. Prepare your baby’s dinner from scratch

 

saving money tips with a baby

Think twice before you buy

Did you know some parents spend over £10000 in their baby’s first year?

I can guarantee that most of their spending would have been on items they really do not need.

Have a good think before you put the product in the basket. Ask yourself will you use it enough times to be worth the money or will your baby get their use out of it before they grow out of it.

A good idea is that if at that moment in time you are set on buying it, wait a few days before you go ahead with the purchase. If I have been online shopping and I go back after a few days to check my basket 9/10 times I no longer want it and do not purchase it.

Shop around and compare prices

You can get many brands for less at different stores. Do not jump on the product straight away. Check for price comparisons online first to see if you can get the product cheaper.

Go for second hand

There should be no shame in second hand items. Mole has had tonnes of second hand items from clothes to her Jumperoo. We love it! It has helped me out so much that friends have been able to gift us with what their baby no longer needs. Plus, Mole would never have been able to tell the difference if it was second hand or brand new anyway.

Re-sell anything you no longer need

Selling your baby’s items that you no longer use is a great way to make some money. I love to sell Moles preloved clothes and I think its amazing knowing that another baby out there will be wearing her outfit. It is recycling clothes at its finest.

All the money I earn back from selling her items I use for her next clothes. It has been really fun selling her items. There are so many ways to do it now it makes the process so much easier.

I have a Depop site where I sell her clothes: @zjwaite. But there are many other ways such as Facebook Market Place.

 

Avoid baby clothes shopping

It is so easy to flitter away your saving when you shop for baby clothes. Try to avoid the baby clothes section when you can. Obviously if your baby needs new clothes then you can get what you need. I always do this when I go shopping, I end up picking clothes out for Mole even though her wardrobe will be full.

I have found to really look for good quality in her clothes now. I tend to avoid the really cheap shops as I know how much I wash her clothes they will not last and I end up buying more to replace them.

I love to count out exactly how many pairs of leggings she has then I know how many tops she will need. That way, when I am shopping, I don’t get distracted in buying another pair of leggings lets say when she already has more than enough.

Do not stockpile

It is extremely easy to stockpile on baby products. Whether it is their food or nappies. It is always a good idea to have spares in the house but when the wardrobe is bursting at the seems with spare nappies or your draws are becoming draws just for baby wipes then you need to stop.

baby products savings

If you’re trying a brand for the first time, do not go and buy more than one of their products as you might find you do not like them and you could have used the money on your favourites.

Join baby groups for freebies

Joining as many baby groups as you can, you will be sent vouchers or free samples. These can really help you save! Check out what baby group your local supermarket has!

Shop neutral

Shopping neutral will be ideal if you are planning on having any more babies. You will be able to hand down their clothes or nursery items no matter what the sex is of your baby. It saves you from having to buy lot’s of items twice. Items you will  fall in love with too will be able to stay in the family for longer. It’s a bonus that it will save you money in the long run.

Spend with cash

Now we have contactless payments and our wages are paid through online banking, we rarely have cash. This is a downfall as we can not physically see how much cash we are spending. If you took your spends out in cash rather than on your card, you are likely to spend less.

I love to withdraw a budget then once that cash has gone I can not spend anymore on baby products I don’t need. It’s also fun challenging myself to a spending budget and rewarding when I find the bargains.

 Prepare your baby’s dinner from scratch

baby products savings

Food has to be one of my biggest outgoings at the moment for Mole. Especially during her teething phases I find that I open up more than one shop bought pouch at dinner times to see if I can get her to eat anything. But with most ready made shop bought pouches of baby food costing around £2.00 each now, this all adds up and gets pretty pricey.

I have set the time aside and bought fresh produce or frozen from cheaper stores like Lidl or Aldi and prepared her food myself.

I am saving so much money doing so. Any spare meals I have for her can go in the freezer too. I remember doing this when she first started off weaning and I was saving around £8.00 a week!

 

 

What are your favourite saving tips?

 

PLEASE LIKE, SHARE AND SUBSCRIBE!

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Help your baby’s Grandparents benefit from childcare

We are all aware of formal childcare fees becoming more and more expensive and the best cost effective decision for us can be to let the Grandparents care for your…

We are all aware of formal childcare fees becoming more and more expensive and the best cost effective decision for us can be to let the Grandparents care for your child/children whilst you have to work. They have been a vital role in many of us being able to even return back to work.

grandparent caring for grandchild

Many working grandparents have even give up their jobs in order to care for the grandchildren.

Unfortunately, this can mean losing out on their state pension rights.

So how can grandparents benefit?

Grandparents that care for children under 12 can qualify for National Insurance Credits that can top up their pension in retirement.

Grandparent Facts and Figures

  • Half of the UK’s 7 million, working age, grandparents in Britain have a grandchild under the age of 16.
  • 63% of all grandparents with grandchildren under 16 help out with the childcare. Surely yours must be one of them?
  • 1 in 5 grandmothers provide at least 10 hours a week of childcare
  • 1 in 4 working families and 1 in 3 working mothers use grandparents for childcare
  • The childcare they provide is worth £7.3 billion a year, mainly from school holiday care.

It is clear to see that the decision for grandparents to provide the care whilst parents can return to work is growing in popularity.

How the system works

Working parents can transfer their Child Benefit credits they receive and donate them to their child’s grandparents for the previous tax year.

Both parents and grandparents must apply for the credits to be transferred first. Hopefully by transferring National Insurance credits will stop grandparents missing out on building up a full state pension.

So, if the grandparents care for grandchildren under 12 years old, they can qualify for class 3 national insurance credits. The credits will count towards the grandparents qualifying years for a full state pension.grandparent caring for grandchild

The NIC details

Retirees need to have accumulated 35 years’ worth of National Insurance Contributions (NICs) – These are the credits built up for each year they’re in work.

But, not all grandparents that are retired worked for the full 35 years.

Instead, if they are looking after a child below the age of 12, the childcare credits can top them up.

This means the grandparent can continue to build up their National Insurance Contributions as they look after their grandchild.

How to claim

To claim download this form here.

You can not claim if you have claimed for any other NIC’s that year. The back date for claiming is 2011.

 

 

 

 

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