Getting your finances in shape...

January 22nd 2014
By: Melanie Hollidge

Over the Christmas period in the UK, we spent around £13 million on presents and festive food. Many of us will be feeling the squeeze this January and looking at new ways in which to save money throughout 2014, so we have put some ideas together on how you can get your finances into shape:
Each year check that you are paying the right amount for your insurance, broadband and phone, check out comparison sites such as

Energy – with prices due to go up by 10% make sure you lock into cheap energy now. Check out this site, it’s completely free, and it will find the cheapest energy price, check prices monthly and will alert you if it’s time to change

Credit cards – if you can’t afford to pay them off, then sign up for deals that allow you to transfer your current credit card balance over to a credit card that offers 0% for up to 30 months. Barclaycard are currently offering 30 months 0% with a transfer fee of 3.5% of the amount transferred initially.

Dining – don’t pay full price for a meal, check out or before booking a table.

Food shopping – before going food shopping, compare prices by going to

If you haven’t already signed up for reward schemes, Boots, Nectar and Tesco Clubcard are well worth signing up to.  If you sign up to the John Lewis loyalty card you will be able to get free coffee/tea and cake once a month! And you can go at any time of day.

Check your current account at least twice a week, this will help you to manage your money.

Write down your expenditure for a month, this will give you a good indicator on where you can cut down in the future.

Losing weight – try intermittent fasting rather than signing up to expensive diets.

Exercising, rather than going to the gym, go for a walk/run/cycle, or/and buy a fitness DVD.