As the Fresh Prince might say, sit right there, I’ll tell you how I saved half my wages for a house deposit while renting in London without living on fresh air.
While my personal finance skills are clearly better than my musical timing, I also wasn’t living for free with family and paid my own rent and bills. I wasn’t looking to buy in London either, although I did need a 40% deposit because I wanted to buy near relatives in the Southeast, and property prices were still sky high this close to the city. My relatively low salary (especially by London’s standards) wasn’t going to net a big enough mortgage otherwise.
Dear readers, you probably fall into one of three groups.
Group one saves sweet FA while renting and is peed off that I’m some kind of unicorn.
The second group is curious because you save a smidgen, but would like to save a smidgen more with some extra smidgen on top.
Group three is on fire with their savings goals and has only dropped by today to see if there’s one last tip on the planet you aren’t already using about how to save money in London. Or so that you can tell me in the comments even more things I could have done to make my money go further.
I am not a unicorn. My name is Bear. I earned less than my friends, but was always the least broke and the best cushioned for the future. (I’m also not a financial advisor or mortgage broker etc. I hope my experience gives you ideas, but it’s up to you where you put your money).
Renting and saving isn’t impossible. Most of us could get better value from our wages with just a little (or some bear-sized) help though.
My rent was a behemoth compared to my salary and after my student loan and tax, initially ate up 40% of my payslip before bills or any other expenses. The sad thing is there are renters who lose far more of their pay to rent than this percentage.
The distinction is that a large number of tenants have no savings while I tried anything and everything to live off only 10% of my pay the rest of the time. As my pay went up in small increments (and a pension contribution snuck in), I tried to continue to save 50% rather than spending my pay rise.
Here’s what I’ve covered below:
- My Overall Savings Approach
- Why Is Living In London So Expensive
- How To Define Your Level Of Financial Freedom
- The Budget Categories I Use
- The Caveats
- Other Benefits Of Saving
- More Inspiration (With Caveats)
Under the budget categories are some of the tips and strategies I used in each to spend less and stretch what I did spend. Some of the tips are quicker and easier to implement than others, and some tips are far more lucrative than others.
Doing one thing or all of these things is far better than feeling overwhelmed by the seemingly impossible. Especially if it makes the difference between owning our own home and renting ’til death do us part.
My Overall Savings Approach
I’ve written about different budgeting approaches in detail in this post:
Basically I’m a combination of a spending tracker and an automator with the occasional extreme challenge thrown in for funsies.
In steps it looks like this:
- I follow a philosophy that doesn’t assume consumption solves problems
- If I’m certain I need to buy something, I find the most economical purchase (not necessarily the cheapest!)
- For routine spends, I automate buying the most economical item until something competitive comes along
- If my circumstances or my routine change, I track my spending
- I amend my budgets based on what I’ve been spending on average (and look for efficiencies)
- If I feel like it, I go on a complete ban and creatively avoid all shopping for as many days/weeks as I fancy
It’s amazing what goodies you find chilling in your cupboards when you veto a visit to the shops.
Why Is Living In London So Expensive?
Because some people can afford to never think about the value of anything, the rest of us fall in line with prices inflated by someone else’s impulse unless we never want to do “normal” things like eat out, or go to the cinema. We accept it because we assume there’s no alternative. We don’t often have time to look for a better deal.
I have been a worrier on a superhuman level. In an average week I understand it’s a test to stay on top of our family, our income, our health, our relationships, our household, our favourite sources of entertainment, our past, our future…! And that’s when everything’s going well! I understand why not everyone squeezes in worrying about whether they are getting the best value, especially when any or all of the above have gone kablooey.
Luckily for you, I’m a bear-sized nerd, and I use my time differently. It’s not that I never worry about any of the above anymore. They’re all less worrying anyway though when you give yourself some financial freedom.
Ironically, the only way to get financial freedom when you live in the most expensive cities on the planet is with a little discipline. Committing some positive mental space to managing your finances shines light into the corners of the rest of your mind. Living in London can be relatively expensive. You don’t have to accept a millionaire’s concept of value just because you see the same streets.
How To Define Your Financial Freedom
When I moved to London from my teeny tiny village, it wasn’t the first time I’d left my hobbit hole. It was more rent than I’d ever paid in England though. (It was about the same as I’d paid to rent while at college in California, but California has its own property problems).
As soon as I signed my rental contract, I found out my employer was winding their company down. Oops. No company, no job.
I come from a family of make-do-and-menders with a strong work ethic. I’d also had big savings goals before so that I could go backpacking and pay for university. However good our existing habits are though, being unemployed sucks.
My full time job search took far longer than I thought, and temping in between mainly paid for the effort to get to the jobs in question. While haemorrhaging my hard-earned pounds, I decided three things:
- I was really fricking glad I had that emergency buffer for several months
- I would do my darndest to earn well and spend better to rebuild that safety net
- I would get the fudge out of renting ASAP
A mortgage still wants paying, funnily enough. But my mortgage payment is 50% of what my rent used to be, and the mortgage payment is worth more to me than a roof over my head for just tonight. The thrifty tricks I’ve learned over the years including during my years in London mean I don’t worry about my mortgage money running out, even if I lose my job.
This to me is financial freedom.
Some of us baulk at the idea of sticking to spending limits in certain categories. What if operating a budget today allowed you to wake up not so many years from now and realise your options are almost unlimited?
It’s up to you at what savings amount you feel like you have room to manoeuvre past life’s surprises. You might not know in advance the magic figure. Most of us think a million pounds would stop us worrying about money. But even with a million pounds, you can’t buy everything there is to buy.
The only thing that will really stop you worrying is only spending on the things that give you the most value, and discovering that most of life’s small daily problems can be solved without buying anything.
The key to how I saved half my wages is as much about a strong mindset and clear priorities as it is about tracking spending and finding deals.
The Budget Categories
I allocated spending to the following groups:
- Bills – electricity, gas, water, council tax, broadband
- Misc – household, toiletries, insurances, one-off annual costs
- Health including eyecare
Let’s see what we can shave off, shall we?
Like a lot of London workers, this was my biggest expense. No bills were included. When it was time to leave, my landlord did offer to lower the rent if it meant I would consider staying. Someone at work was interested, but only if there was a cliff drop in price. The owner didn’t want to go that low, but it demonstrated that there is such a thing as negotiating your rent. Perhaps we should have tried to move out sooner!
When we moved in, the landlord made it clear that it was a two bedroom flat for two people and that the lounge was only that. Quite often it’s not the tenants that decide to convert the living room into another bedroom. If you want to move in some randomers or more friends to split your rent further, just be clear about whether your contract allows this. You can save a lot by getting evicted, but you have to go and sleep in a doorway instead…
Could we have paid more? We saw other flats in the same building being advertised for higher rents when we started our lease. This trend continued. I suspect this was because they were being rented through agencies, whereas we had no middleman. By the time we left, the flat was “worth” a few hundred extra pounds per month. As evidenced by his offer to lower the rent when we gave our notice, it was easier for our landlord to keep the same tenants for as long as possible. Take care of your properties if you want to bluff your way through asking for a discount.
Let’s just revisit that sentence. You’re either someone who looks after the space and the property around you or you’re not. Perhaps you have a hierarchy of care with the stuff that belongs to you at the top. Perhaps you think your landlord doesn’t repair much, so why should you maintain anything on their behalf.
The real takeaway is that if you keep your rental clean anyway, then you should ask if your rent can be reduced.
If you’d rather stick needles in your eyes than clean a flat or house that isn’t yours (or even one that is!) then reading this blog post isn’t likely to turn you into one of those people on Obsessive Compulsive Cleaners. You should look at other ways to reduce what you pay for a roof over your head.
These were the usual culprits:
Broadband and phone
Let’s break these motherlovers down.
Broadband and phone
We very rarely used our landline because we didn’t have a call plan, but it did help on a few occasions. Calling certain companies through our mobiles would have cost a bomb. My family also used it quite a bit to call me, especially if their Skype had gone kablooey. Because we were paying to have mobile phones anyway, it didn’t make sense to pay for landline calls on top.
We switched every time our broadband bill went up. The cheapest deal we nabbed was £5 per month through Sky. I think the previous provider thought I was lying when I called to cancel as they made no attempt to beat the offer!
It is always worth calling your provider to haggle though, especially if you’ve seen a deal and ask them if they can do even better. Switches were researched through MoneySavingExpert.
I wore a onesie, I wore a slanket. I wore all of the layers ever because when your thermostat is set to the teens in a well insulated property, your heating is going to come on about once a month. Then it’s going to cut out twenty minutes later when the timer goes off, conveniently while I was stood between the newly warm boiler and the oven while cooking dinner.
Then I’d cosy up with a thermos and a hot water bottle while heating my lap with an aptly named laptop. When the heat had faded from all of those it was time to have a hot shower anyway.
Finally I’d fall asleep really well. You can bake yourself into drowsiness by taking a tumble with another hot water bottle.
Because we were at work from dawn to dusk and barely washed up once a day, we needed a minor amount of hot water mainly for showers. Shower timers are useless to me and hot showers in winter are bliss, so this part was flawed.
Mostly spent on the oven, making tea, my personal heater otherwise known as a laptop, and lights. Gas heating needs electricity to power up, so the lack of heating meant we saved on electric. Obviously this is counterproductive if the kettle boils every 10 minutes, so we didn’t do that.
We didn’t own a TV licence, so we very rarely used the TV except to watch DVDs. I had to use my phone at work, so it often got charged at work too. Can’t do much if your phone has died on the job.
All of the light fixtures in the flat seemed to have about 5 light bulbs, usually with a secondary light in each room too. When bulbs blew they stayed blown and we became a bit like vampires until we were down to one light in each room. Hanging out in low light in the evenings was a neat way to wind down for bed anyway.
Washing long hair consumes lotsa time and water. Cold wet hair is also not great in winter if you can’t afford a hair dryer. When it’s dry though, long hair acts as an amazing scarf, so I didn’t shave my head.
The aforementioned showers and neglected timers are tough on the old water metre, so aside from this you just have to work out one thing. Where’s the place you waste water the most? Is it leaving taps running casually? I had to buy bottled water on a trip through South America because the tap water was so dirty you couldn’t clean your teeth otherwise. (Hi, privilege! Fancy seeing you here again). I understand a pilgrimage to a less developed country is a counterproductive way to get in the habit of using less H2O. Makes me think twice about running taps though.
Do you cook with ten saucepans when you could have thrown it all in one pot? Or fill the kettle all the way for one cuppa then tip the rest away the next day when it’s gathered a nice film of limescale? Maybe you boil your veggies in their own little bath when you could steam them? You get the idea.
You basically need to do a water audit and picture dollar signs going down the sink every time. Why not pound signs? You get more dollars for your pound.
No single person discount when there’s two of you, funnily enough. We probably had a reduction while we were both unemployed (my flatmate also found herself jobless after we moved in! Happy days!) It’s always worth checking if you’re eligible for a lower bill.
Gosh, well, this category is going to get many posts all of its own, so jump on the mailing list for those.
In the meantime these were my habits that had the biggest gains:
- Only shopping on foot and with a basket. Can’t carry it, can’t buy it. Want a 3kg bag of pasta because buying in bulk is most economical?That’s fine; 3kg will last months, so if you can’t buy much else that day, you’ll get your other staples next time. (And very few of us would be buying 3kg of pasta two weeks running…)*
- Eat all of the things. When you can’t buy more than what you can carry, it forces you to raid the stuff that would otherwise go out of date in your cupboards even though they’re perfectly good ingredients.
- I didn’t have a gym membership partly because buying food was quite a workout therefore
- If it wasn’t on offer, it probably wasn’t on my list in the first place
- Do the maths on whether an offer is really a good deal
- I’m not paying for a single ingredient if it’s going to push the cost of my dinner over £1 on the regular
- If it can’t be frozen or batch cooked then it also wasn’t likely to be on my list
- Most of my snacks were processed by me rather than a factory
- The last ready meal I remember buying was in 2010, and even then it was yellow stickered…
- When you find the product you think you want, check if the own brand equivalent/world food aisle equivalent has identical ingredients at a lower price
- Get thee to a discounter like Aldi or Lidl if you haven’t tried them yet
- London was also prime for picking up free (sometimes gourmet) food via sharing app Olio
- I didn’t buy on the go anything that I could make myself and take with me, or that I could make when I got to work
*As you might guess, I lived near a major supermarket despite being in London. If your nearest branches are all convenience stores then shopping online will net you lower prices on individual items, but balance this with checkout minimums and delivery charges. It might even be cheaper overall to hop on the bus to an Aldi or Lidl and fill your basket instead because the difference in prices compared to a Tesco Express/Sainsburys Local/online can be so drastic.
Door to door my supermarket shopping used to take less than an hour, so it’s not time consuming to compare the odd price in another aisle. (Probably because I was sticking to a list, I had better things to do waiting for me at home, and there’s really only so much a short woman can put in her basket in this amount of time…If you’re a tall dude you will spend more on food than me, but you’ll also be able to lift a heavier basket).
As I said, this is just a taster of what we can do to save on food. I’m not going to list recipes here (or explain why I very rarely need to use a recipe), as this deserves a post of its own in future.
Car. What car? Problem solved. If I’d had one via one means or another, I probably would have sold it anyway to avoid the running costs and to gain some momentum from getting a large chunk of change in one fell swoop.
Bike maintenance. What bike?
Repeat with scooter, skateboard, hoverboard etc. I lived walking distance from work, a train ride from family (with a railcard), and my hobbies were home-based. I appreciate that being able to walk to work is unusual. There are plenty of run commuters out there though. Here’s how to get started.
Otherwise link any eligible railcards to an Oyster card to save on off-peak travel.
If you are a recent graduate under 25 then you can still have the alumni equivalent of a student discount card. Use this to get the railcard cheaper first.
Even outside of mainstream education nearly anyone can access Totum (what used to be the NUS card). Balance the savings with the cost of an online course first, or see what courses you can take through work to get the Pro version. I first discovered you could get a discount card without being a traditional student through blogger Jenni Hill at Can’t Swing a Cat.
Holidays came under my travel budget. They could have easily come under miscellaneous because they happened few and far between by my standards. In the space of seven years I had the odd weekend away at friend’s houses reached by train, three European city breaks (one staying with friends again), and one Stateside trip.
The last was my most extravagant holiday where I crushed all spending including flights into a £1200 budget. £1200 is still a sizeable amount of money to spend while saving for a deposit, but it’s easy to drop more than double that on 10 days in California and Vancouver. I was visiting friends in Vancouver, but we shared an Airbnb in our old college town for the first leg. This means that £1200 also fetched a flight from San Fran to Canada. Not too shabby.
I considered it good value for a one off opportunity (my friends moved country again the following year. We only see each other every few years for this reason). I might add more to the blog about this in future.
These count as spavings: getting money off what you could have avoided spending in the first place. Going on holiday wasn’t how I saved half my wages. Demoting holidays as a priority and treating them as a low spending priority still when they did happen are how I saved half my wages.
Feel like only a killjoy wouldn’t want to go on holiday all the time? Consider not being desperate to go on holiday because you don’t need to escape your current daily life. What are you running away from? Or why can’t you relax without a holiday? Would getting in control of your finances help?
This category covered everything from cleaning to toiletries, to contents insurance, and anything else that cropped up rarely that couldn’t be dodged completely.
Did you read the section on electricity above and our approach to lightbulbs? Apart from maintaining basic hygiene, we weren’t fussed about cleaning.
Haircuts and “beauty”
What haircut? It turns out that around six months was when someone would say “Wow, your hair’s getting really long”. At which point a chop at the local college was well worth a tenner. Those students really want you to be happy with their new learned styling skillz. One of the best haircuts I’ve ever had was from a student. Better than paying £5 per minute for a professional trim where you sit longer in the waiting area than you do in the chair. (Perhaps your hairdresser is more attentive).
So-called beauty also warrants its own post. Savings here were mostly from wearing makeup on less days and wearing less products on those days. Otherwise if it happens in a salon, it probably wasn’t happening to me, unless it was hosted at a college. DIY, DIY…
Do you have a box of travel toiletries? Or shower gels gifted at Christmas? Do they just gather dust while you continue to stock up at your expense? (I suspect this because I’ve accidentally buried these belongings before, and everyone I speak to says they’ve done the same thing).
Excavate what you already own and use every last bottle before investing in more. When you do purchase again, avoid the pink tax. Men’s shaving gel often costs far less than a pink aerosol…
Use a comparison site, but also check cashback sites like TopCashback. Minimalism is the gift that keeps on giving. The less schiz you buy, the less you have to insure. The lower the price of the schiz you buy, the less insurance companies will charge you. Self-insure things like phones if you’ve never lost or broken one before.
Health including eyecare
My employer covered my eyeballs. If you hit a brick wall negotiating a pay rise, try negotiating a perk like this instead. If you work with screens, there should be some provision through your employer anyway. Or in addition to eyecare, a HC2 covers prescriptions and some dental costs up to a certain income level.
Previously I would have said eat well, shop on foot, sleep well and you shouldn’t need to spend on sickness remedies too often even in a germ fest like London…Then the apocalypse happened. Coronavirus is all the more reason though to get in a savings habit and hone our ability to make do with what we’ve got to guarantee a roof over our head.
This is under misc because it was such a rare expense. I had a clothes addiction just after leaving school. To this day I have very well preserved clothes from that era, so I very rarely “need” to buy more clothes. Yay for cyclical fashion trends, or just not caring whether you’re on trend. Shop from your own wardrobe, or borrow or swap clothes if you’re bored/change sizes temporarily.
Steve Jobs never had a clothes addiction that I’m aware of, but he had a very limited wardrobe. When you’re not wasting mental energy deciding what to wear, or buying more things you know you won’t wear because you don’t wear the clothes you’ve got, you can do things like build innovations that change the world apparently.
As mentioned above, we had no TV licence, but we also had no pay TV or subscriptions at all. Television was supplied by preloved or gifted DVDs, and free services like All4. (At the time we could also watch iPlayer without a licence).
If you do buy a ticket for a day out, aim for tickets that give you annual access e.g. I was able to get entry again on the same ticket after a family day to Buckingham Palace.
Free events abound a plenty if we’re willing to look.
Or if your main hobby is visiting museums, galleries and the like, then see if you can’t wangle a visitor’s pass for your birthday.
A night in of board games, DVDs (with improvised games attached), music, and/or snackage is as good to me as any night out. Do you like your friends or not? I don’t need to sink a lot of cash to listen to what someone I care about is really saying.
There’s almost no need to pay full price out and about in London either when you can nearly always find a restaurant voucher or happy hour.
This was one area where I would spend more on others than on myself, but not with the idea that spending more automatically equals a better gift. The value of a gift was determined by whether the recipient would like it and find it useful, not by the price tag.
Regards regifting, don’t do a Chris Hemsworth. He gave Jessica Chastain a candle she had gifted him…which she had personalised with his name first. (But perhaps he thought she would like it and find it useful…)
Keep anything packaged in tissue paper so that you can reuse it as wrap. Brown packing paper can also be converted to wrapping paper with varying levels of creativity: ribbons for the most cack-handed among us, or you can create entire collages or patterns by cutting up old greetings cards. I don’t tend to buy magazines or newspapers, but these also make for novel wrapping paper. Save the planet and all that.
There might be bigger gains to be had by increasing your income with a job change, pay rise (or both), bonuses, overtime, second jobs, or simply selling your least loved possessions. This only holds true if you don’t then expand your lifestyle.
I didn’t have any debts.
White privilege is a thing.
If all the above so far seems obvious, then well done, you’re probably thrifting just fine without anyone else’s input. Please share your wisdom in the comments in order to help those who aren’t at your stage yet.
Here are the other caveats:
- I didn’t start with nothing
- Investing earns more than voucher codes and shopping around
- Saving 50% doesn’t necessarily equal a quick deposit
- Saving requires the kind of attention that might make your loved ones jealous
- You’re more likely to succeed if you confront your relationship with consumption
Let’s dig into these.
I didn’t start with nothing
I’ve had savings ever since I got my first job at 16. Compound interest has been my friend all these years therefore. These savings went to various other goals beforehand, but I never let them dwindle to nothing, so I didn’t move to London with just the shirt on my back. It’s never too late to start though.
Investing earns more than saving with voucher codes
Investing a little in the stock market has potentially higher returns than cutting back and using other savings accounts. A stocks and shares investment shows the most promise if it can be left alone, however. If you’re going to need the money within five years for a house, then you’ll want to be more liquid (and tolerate less risk).
Saving 50% doesn’t necessarily equal a quick deposit
I don’t know how to save for a house deposit in a year if you want to buy in the south alone on a low salary. The latter of which means Help to Buy is no help at all. I didn’t save my deposit within two or three years even (and that was despite my deposit fund starting off with a few thousand because as mentioned above, I had savings from prior endeavours). Learn to define “quick” loosely.
Saving requires the kind of attention that might make your loved ones jealous
I’ve seen the criticism that paying this close attention to your finances can come across as self-centered. So be it. No one is going to look after you better than you. If you continue to save more and spend better once you have a house then you’ll likely find yourself in the percentage of the population who have free time to devote to others rather than staring down another 30 years at work. How self-centred of you.
You’re more likely to succeed if you confront your relationship with consumption
The other mindset secret to how I saved half my wages is that I don’t view frugality as self-denial. Buy a latte if you really want a latte. Get angry with the “experts” who say quitting lattes and investing that annual saving will make you a millionaire if you want.
I buy a latte out and about maybe once a year. I LOVE coffee. It doesn’t pain me in the slightest to give coffee shops a swerve though. I don’t pine for a coffee whenever I pass somewhere that sells coffee.
I don’t buy lattes on the go because my habit is to make my own coffee exactly how I want it, and I probably consume far less sugar as a result. (Financial and health goals often link up). Also, google coffee shops and ice cubes and you’ll never want to pay for an iced drink again.
Is a hot drink on a cold day comforting because it’s a hot drink on a cold day…or did you see a coffee shop and go in like you’re Pavlov’s dog and Pavlov’s ringing a bell? Are you using spending as a comfort blanket?
I don’t think being thrifty is poverty tourism either. There’s a difference between skipping meals because you have zero, and skipping meals to net yourself an extra £20 in your pocket (the latter’s a false economy anyway).
But I also don’t think that practicing frugality at any income level is at the expense of anyone with less. We underestimate how easy it is to lose everything. If we have more economic power than the next person (even when we complain of feeling broke), then we’re not screwing over someone in poverty by living frugally. Why wouldn’t you give yourself a financial buffer in case you end up unemployed or bankrupt too?
The Other Benefits of Saving
When other parts of your life are up pit’s creek without a shaddle, you’ll still have some semblance of control:
- The more you can stay away from debt early on, the better your credit score, which increases your access to mortgages.
- Like compound interest, the feelgood effects compound. You’ll be more likely to remain self-sufficient in future once you know how empowering it is to make choices that aren’t solely influenced by the (poor) state of your finances.
- Achieving financial goals gave me the confidence to do other things I’d always wanted to do.
- Frugality is often environmentally friendly by default when we consume less.
- Spending mindfully puts you in touch with only your biggest priorities and values.
- We can pass our healthy relationship with money on to others. What if we gave children the gift of financial education instead of piling on toy after gadget after plastic toy that teaches them nothing about value?
- I care less about the superficial and I care less about my status and others. This is tremendously freeing. I read once that the UK spends more on status symbols like cars and designer clothes than we do on our savings and investments. The next time you see someone flashing their cash, consider they might be worse off than you because they’re wearing/driving their wealth. Would you rather have financial security, or give the impression that you do while relying on credit cards? Don’t be afraid to be who you are instead of paying to demonstrate who you think you should be.
More Inspiration (With Caveats)
I love a good caveat to manage expectations.
To prove I’m not the only one capable of saving thousands on a low salary (for London definitely), read this article. Tara was also looking for a certain level of financial freedom (unrelated to securing property, although I suspect she won’t have any problems saving whatever deposit she wants).
In the introduction Tara refers to the research that says it takes “around 20 years to save the average deposit”. I’ve written in another post What You Need to Get the Best Mortgage Offer why I’ve never let averages stop me doing anything though. (Read the same post if you’re not sure how much you even need to save for a house while renting).
I don’t think it’s juvenile to put your fingers in your ears and go “lalala” when averages are held up as a barrier. I’d rather be the exception than average every time. The writer of the same piece is proof that it is possible to save thousands even when your rent and bills are noxious.
It wouldn’t take her 10 years to save £50k either (i.e. an amount resembling a decent deposit in most of the country). Because of compound interest, the same saver could make no behaviour changes and save even more than £5k the following year, and so on the year after that, as the money will grow itself in a savings account.
Saving is a bit like travelling though. Once you get the bug, it requires very little willpower to continue. She quickly tired of her £75 monthly allowance to buy a new item, providing she would still want the item in five years. Experiments like this can make you realise quite quickly that your earnings are worth more to you than something shiny and new.
The other caveats to how I saved half my wages are that while more of us can learn to save more, you don’t want to be misled about the impact these savings will have on your mortgage offer.
If you’re only looking to save a small deposit because you keep reading you can buy with a 5 or 10% deposit, then read The Number One Thing No One Tells You About Saving For A House.
That 5 or 10% comes with a condition.
If you’re only looking to save a small deposit because you’ve been told government schemes will fill the gap, read Help To Buy Vs Shared Ownership Vs A Fleetwood Mac Song.
How I Saved Half My Wages Renting In London
Let’s wrap this up like a charity donation instead of an unwanted present.
- To accelerate your savings and reach your definition of financial freedom, you might want to budget, automate spending on only the most economical choices, or have a go at an extreme shopping ban.
- London can be as expensive as you want it to be. For your savings approach to work, you need to evaluate your mindset and attitude to money before expecting a budget or any other method to be successful.
- Challenge your spending on rent, bills, travel, food, entertainment, health, and miscellaneous purchases. Be aware of the caveats to cutting back, but don’t let any of these stop you from trying.
- Sit back and revel in the other mental and external benefits that savings bring!
Let me know in the comments where you are in your savings journey, what you plan to do to reach your goals, and any tips that you swear by.
Join the mailing list too if you need more motivation. I’ll be doing more posts on saving in the budget categories above. I’ve also written about my experience of what it really cost to get on the property ladder, so subscribe if you want to know when these go out.