Unlike most shiny new things in life, these tools and links should help you keep more of your cash instead of giving it away like a magpie on crack. Subscribe to the mailing list to discover shiny new tools as they’re added.
How To Get The Free Ebook
Email subscribers get weekly money tips and blog updates, but also instant access to the free PDF Money Makeover For Your Life And Your Side Hustle.
(If your side hustle involves blogging, then also check out the blogging resources towards the bottom of this page).
The Ultimate Groceries Shopping List
100+ Best Value Food Ingredients (and where to find them)
Recipes sometimes known in my house as ‘What recipe?’
And before you hit the special buy aisle, read this:
There is of course my own collection of blog posts on everything first-time buyers need to know on this page:
The Open University has a free course to wrap our heads around how mortgages actually work:
I used free mortgage broker London and Country after some not stellar experiences with other brokers. They have a whole section devoted to FTB on their website:
Moneysavingexpert’s credit club provides a free way to check and improve credit scores before any finance applications:
To combine the best of both worlds, MSE and L&C also have a booklet that reinforces a lot of the information above in one handy PDF:
If you want all the information in one book, and a true picture of what the personal experience is like as a first-time buyer then I have written The Essential Steps To Buying Your First Home. A second book on how to move home for less than £2000 spent on moving costs is a handy companion available on the same page.
Game For A (Not So) Quiet Night In?
I created a page for The Not Drinking Game.
My recommendations for other blogs etc got a little out of control (I like to read, listen and watch A LOT). To give the list its own real estate, I’ve made it clear how each content creator can help on this page instead: Recommended Bloggers, Vloggers, and Podcasters
Save Like A Bear was also shortlisted for the UK Money Bloggers’ community annual SHOMO awards in 2020. Check out the others on the shortlist.
If you sign up for a free trial or purchase via an affiliate link below, I earn a commission that goes towards the running costs of all the free content I produce at no extra cost to you.
If you’re curious about what’s keeping the blog ticking, below is what I’m using and why.
What I recommend for podcasting and free podcast hosting has its own page:
For quicker audio and video editing I use Descript (affiliate link).
Mailing list provider
Just a reminder that this section includes affiliate links.
The mailing list exists thanks to ConvertKit. All the blogs I read for fun seemed to recommend this email provider the most. I can tell why creators like it for building email lists because it is very user-friendly. They’ve obviously taken extra care to create an email platform that has all the bells and whistles you might want for delivering content.
You can choose a monthly subscription, but I pay less by paying for a year upfront. It works therefore on the same principle as insurance/telecoms companies who will usually discount you for paying annually rather than monthly. (Except those companies make me sad on the inside as the money leaves my account…)
I thought this was justified. I love writing and the blog is partly for my own amusement. However, I figure if I’m going to share anything to help others, it may as well have the best chance of reaching people. If I can email readers via a service like ConvertKit then hunkydory (affiliate link).
If you have a blog or are starting one, I’d definitely start a mailing list at the same time to make the most of what you’ve already invested in hosting. Otherwise you could just be shouting into the void. No?
ConvertKit also have a free plan if you want to try it out first before committing (affiliate link). Let me know if you have any questions!
I chose Siteground because they had the best write ups for the price. My favourite bloggers kept mentioning them again and again. They’re fast, reliable, and include nifty convenient features like free backups of your site.
Other hosts charge extra for these things, or just couldn’t compete on speed and reliability. For a brand new site, it’s single figures to cover the hosting costs monthly.
The costs goes up if you have a website that gets lots of visitors obviously, but I figure anyone in that category is probably covering their costs with their traffic anyway.
I got my domain names cheapest from Namecheap. The blogs I visit kept recommending them anyway. When I did my own research, they still came out cheapest after comparing GoDaddy, Siteground again, and just about every other host. (Most webhosts also let you hire the domain name you want for your website address for the year or longer).
I’m not a one-stop-shop kind of person though if the value isn’t there. I don’t see what’s convenient about paying double or more just to get something from the same business.
I could have got a free website theme. However, I was attached to the theme you currently see from Pretty Darn Cute designs for practical and aesthetic reasons. I just couldn’t find a free theme with the layout, features and colour options that I wanted. It was obvious that designer Lindsey knows how to create something that looks clean, and gives you all the functions you need most.
At the same time it provides the flexibility to create a blog that looks like it belongs to you instead of any old soul. The “best” website theme is one that works the way you need, and reflects your personality. I’m usually a tomboy whereas Lindsey’s speciality is feminine WordPress themes. However, you can customise these. Her website provided a lot of information and support even before buying the theme. I felt I would be in safe hands.
Like a lot of themes, Modern Blogger Pro requires the Genesis framework to run. If you don’t know, the framework is what web developers use to build a website on top. Genesis provides the skeleton for Lindsey at Pretty Darn Cute to create her designs.
I don’t think there’s anyone on the planet who’d argue this isn’t the most popular framework because its capabilities saves developers a huge amount of time. If it means I get to use my chosen theme in exchange for a one-off cost, then that’s fine by me because I’m really happy with how it’s turned out.
I’m writing in WordPress which is free to use (unless you go to them for the hosting etc). If there are any content creators or would-be bloggers reading who want to share ideas about leveraging a blog to boost your savings, leave a comment on any of the posts.