Top tips for students on how to cut costs and boost savings.

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WEALTH at work, a leading provider of financial education, guidance and advice in the workplace, offers award winning financial education to students at The University of Lincoln.

The series of financial education workshops are designed to develop students’ financial knowledge, preparing them for life during and after university. Students can learn how to manage their loans, how to budget and about the issues associated with renting accommodation during the course. They also gain an understanding of what to expect when in employment in terms of salary, benefits and pensions.

With the new term beginning, WEALTH at work shares some of its top tips for students who are looking to cut their costs and boost their savings.

1. Know where your money is going

Check bank statements and make a list of what you are spending each month. It is helpful to divide these into utility bills (gas, electricity and water), supermarket shopping, monthly contracts for mobiles, insurance, regular subscriptions, and other spending. This will highlight where your money is going and where savings could be made.

2. Compare utility providers

If you pay the utility bills in your student house, consider visiting a comparison site to find out which providers are the most cost effective for you. For example, Ofgem found that customers who switched supplier saved around £200 annually.*

3. Get discounts for online supermarket shopping

Consider ordering online and getting your food delivered. Not only can this save money as you are not tempted by items in store which you don’t actually need, there are also lots of great online offers. Many supermarkets have offers such as £20 – £30 off your first order. For example, £52 can be saved on £240 worth of groceries**. However, the minimum spend on these offers can be quite high, so why not share the shop with a few friends?

4. Do you need the latest mobile phone?

If your phone contract is coming to an end, consider a SIM only deal rather than upgrading to the latest phone. With a contract, you are effectively borrowing money for the phone, and repaying this loan through your monthly bill. Also, check your tariff as there are some very competitive deals available.

5. Review other regular contracts

Are you making the most of the subscriptions you have? Could you cancel music and other TV services that you may under-utilise? Calculate how much you spend on these types of contracts and see how much of a difference cancelling these could have on your finances. For example, savings of £150*** a year could be made by cancelling a couple of subscription services.

6. Watch out for auto-renewals

Many insurance policies for cars or holidays, automatically renew each year but individuals may not be getting the best deal if they allow this to happen. For example, it’s estimated that £2.37 billion a year is wasted by individuals ‘auto-renewing’ their car insurance ****. To get the best deal and to avoid any potential price hikes with auto-renewals, make sure you shop around and either switch or haggle where appropriate.

7. Student discounts

Make the most of any student discounts available to you. Perhaps the most well-known is the NUS Extra card for giving discounts, but discounts are also available through Student Money Saver, MyUnidays.com, Savethestudent.org and StudentBeans, which give you savings on every day purchases as well as big one off items – everything from free cinema tickets, to 25% off National Express and free food. The savings could be significant!

Jonathan Watts-Lay, Director, WEALTH at work, comments, “For many students, university is the first time they are away from home and having to become independent whilst learning how to manage their finances. Developing good financial habits early on can provide a strong foundation for their financial future and save a fortune over a lifetime.”

The latest news is brought to you by WEALTH at work*, a specialist provider of financial education and guidance in the workplace.

*WEALTH at work and my wealth are trading names of Wealth at Work Limited which is a member of the Wealth at Work group of companies.