As regular readers will know, I come from a background in mortgages and finance, and with it becoming increasingly difficult to save any pennies up for a deposit on a home, I’m sharing a few tips on managing your budget that should stand you in good stead for when the time comes to do so.
– Sounds odd, but take our some credit. Credit cards, as long as you pay back in full each month, can be useful if they have rewards or cash-back on them, and providing you’re paying back promptly, they will help your credit rating.
– Always pay back any credit on time. If you’re looking to lend, credit scoring is one of the very first hurdles you’ll face, and you don’t want to fall at the first.
– Where possible, have bills and income running through one account, as it makes life easier for you to see the incomings and outgoings, and it means lenders and agents can see the full picture at a glance.
– Set up a separate account for saving in, apart from your regular bank account, as it can be all too tempting to dip into it otherwise. Check the best buy tables to make your selection, and remember that if you’re a tax payer, you should fill up your ISA allowance first, as it will give you a tax-free return.
– With your utilities and insurances, make a note of when they are out of contract/up for renewal so that you’ve time to shop around for the best deals.
– Try switching down with your grocery shopping. Whether that be to a different store or different brands, it should shave off a few pounds. And alongside this, always meal plan as it’ll save you buying things you don’t need and prevent food going to waste.
– If you shop on-line, as I frequently do, always do a quick check for a voucher code before checking out – I’ve made many a saving that way!
– De-clutter regularly. Not only will you be tidy, you may find things you didn’t know you had and put them back into use, or you may find things you no longer need and you could pop them on Gumtree, eBay and such-like.
– If you’ve a family, perhaps buy or ask for passes for days out (we love our National Trust membership, for example), classes and the like for Christmas/birthday presents. It means you feel you’re treating them all year round, without it being painfully expensive to do so! The gifts that keep on giving!
If you are aiming towards getting a deposit together, to get a feel for how much you can borrow, and the monthly payments with TSB, you can take a look at their mortgage calculator, so you get a better idea of what you’ll be able to do.
What tips would you add?
Disclosure: Written in collaboration with TSB