Page last updated at 17:05 GMT, Wednesday, 18 February 2009

Your hints on conserving cash

Baking your own bread saves 1 per loaf, says one reader.

The BBC has gathered a panel of experts to help people with their financial dilemmas at the Money Matters Roadshow in Manchester.

Here, BBC News website readers share their tips for saving some cash.

You can send us your suggestions using link below:


Give yourself pocket money each week and stick to it - don't take any cards out with you unless absolutely necessary. Something which you would just 'chuck' on you card for 5 somehow seems a lot more expensive when you have to outlay the hard cash for it.
Lizzie, Portsmouth

I recommend shopping in charity shops. You can really buy some bargains, if you look and get lucky. Go to posh areas, where they donate some good things. Or shop on eBay for the things you need it's much cheaper than the high street.
Rosy, Hackney

Most householders pay their water bill and council tax by direct debit. Council tax for 10 months and water for eight. When not due, be disciplined and move the payments to a savings account - such as a cash ISA.
Martin Element

I've invested in a breadmaker and have started baking my own bread

Here's a radical idea. Give up smoking, drinking or any other vice legal or otherwise. The cinemas are highly overpriced so rent DVDs instead. Oh and give up big label shopping: supermarket own brand stuff saves cash.
Richard, Newcastle Upon Tyne

1. Make lunch to eat at the office - don't go to the sandwich shop.
2. Try the clothes on and then go home and buy online.
3. Sell any junk that could be worth something on eBay.
4. Try a home-cooked dinner and the pub or DVD instead of the West End.
George, London

A cigarette
Stubbing out smoking is one money saving tip.
I've invested in a breadmaker and have started baking my own bread. Average saving over 1 per loaf and no artificial additives. The breadmaker will have paid for itself in a couple of months. I've also started making a huge batch of soup on Sundays and taking that into work for my lunch every day, along with the home-baked bread. Average saving 15-20 per week. I also cook in batches and eat the same meal for two days and freeze the rest. I seem to have cut my food bills by over half.

I'm in a much better position financially now than I was a year ago. This is partly due to a well-regretted five-year loan coming to an end. The rest has been common sense. I've stopped smoking, saving me 100 a month and have cancelled my gym membership - which I hardly used - and now exercise at home, saving 30 a month. Lastly I looked at my shopping habits and have stopped nipping to the supermarket on my way home from work, I now stick to one weekly shop, this makes a big difference at the end of month.
Sarah Wylie, Dundee

Buy a slow cooker so you can use cheaper cuts of meat and poultry
Linda, Kirkcaldy
Buy a slow cooker so you can use cheaper cuts of meat and poultry, and when you cook do an extra portion or two for the freezer. Home made soup and a sarnie is an adequate dinner. Shop at discounters like Lidl and Aldi - you will be surprised by the quality if you shop carefully. I buy most of my everyday toiletries, toothpaste, cleaning stuff and stationary from Poundland. You could also look for things to do that are free - a walk in the park costs nothing and keeps you fit and healthy.
Linda, Kirkcaldy

We wanted to rent a holiday cottage this summer down in Dorset, the cost for two adults one child around 650, then add two dogs at a cost of a further 50, throw in fuel and food for the week and your looking at well over 800. So this year we will be taking a summer break but will be staying at home, we may go out for the day or invite some friends over for an evening meal but mostly will just go on long walks with the dogs.
R, Oxford

Over the last few months, I've started shopping in Iceland and Lidl as opposed to Morrisons and Tesco. I don't go out as much, but have friends over, or go see my family. I miss buying myself nice new clothes but its not the end of the world.

Vegetable and rice soup - it's cheap, healthy and quite tasty too. My main tip would be jumpers, though. Get yourself along to a charity shop and buy some warm jumpers - that way you're spending relatively little, you're giving to charity and you won't need the heating on too much.

Get plug timers - use your washing machine, tumble dryer and dishwasher after 1230 when electricity is a third of the price. After three months, my energy supplier owed me money.
H, London

A Lidl store
Discount supermarkets are seeing a rise in sales
When ever possible - walk. In January I walked over 75 miles (about two miles per day) instead of using the car. I saved around three gallons of petrol. Also cut your credit card in half; cash is king.

When you go shopping make a list and stick to it - most of the worst value things people buy are impulse buys. Go to supermarkets after 9pm when reductions are often made, but don't forget the rule above. When you are thinking of making a major purchase look at a comparison sites, then go to the shops using the prices you have found as a negotiating point.
Douglas Glen, Barcelona

We turn the heating down, cut down on peak time telephone calls, fill the kettle with water for two cups, keep showers to a minimum time. We also fill the bird's pots with half seed, wear extra jumpers in the house to keep warm and generally cutback on spending.
Jim Young

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