We asked for your best money-saving tips – and this is what you told us (2024)

Over the course of the year, Telegraph Money’s comprehensive advice and opinion has helped provide readers with answers and guidance to save money and make it go further.

Alongside this, many Telegraph readers have been sharing their own tips and practical advice they have implemented throughout the year which have helped boost their savings.

From turning to YouTube and eBay for parts and repairs to growing your own vegetables, below we’ve compiled some of your best money-saving tips of 2023.

‘YouTube and eBay are a great start to fixing things that cost a load of money’

Reader J Behardien says, “it is amazing what one can find in a YouTube video and on eBay which are a great start to fixing things that would otherwise cost a load of money to fix. My wife’s GHDs for instance; a quick watch of a video, found a new lead on eBay and they were fixed in no time.

“It’s the same with the InSinkErator that stopped working. They wanted us to pay a call out charge of £75 so I had a quick trawl through eBay and discovered that one could buy a new press button (in fact a white one and chrome one) for £12 delivered. It too was fixed in a jiffy.

“Then the dishwasher. We bought a new bracket for the tray on eBay which cost about £10 and it too was operational again in minutes. Not only does this save you money, allows you to go on using things that otherwise might be scrapped and replaced – but it also raises one’s confidence.

“We have a new ice maker on order from Neff for our American style fridge freezer so we are hoping to continue our successful run!”

‘Always choose ‘withdrawal without conversion’’

When travelling, reader H.B. advises to “always choose the ‘withdrawal without conversion’ option you are given at a cash point.”

He says, “you will be utterly ripped off if you keep choosing the other option, usually offered on the left side of the screen, and it’s not a small amount either. We could easily be talking about the difference between three to five percent on the transaction total.”

‘Cut open tubes of beauty creams and lotions’

Elsewhere, a beauty related money tip reader F.M. recommends is to “cut open tubes of beauty creams and lotions. They can cost a bomb and there is usually loads left inside after it stops squeezing out”.

‘I have found great savings by having multi-cover insurance’

Another anonymous reader has found “great savings” by having multi cover insurance. “Car, van, house and contents all on one policy. That’s with five vehicles. And I always pay in instalments as I prefer to drip feed money and find that all works well for me,” our reader says.

‘Never auto-renew your car insurance’

Mabel Burlington also has a tip regarding insurance. Ms Burlington recommends to “never auto-renew your car insurance and always go through Compare the Market. That way you can get a year’s worth of free cinema and meals – and they usually turn up some decent cheap insurance into the bargain.”

‘Any spare money I’ve put into over payments’

A.M. B.Y. has a mortgage that allows over payments. Our reader shares how, “any spare money I’ve had over the last seven years I’ve put into over payments. So when I remortgaged earlier this year, my overall debt was much lower.

“Sounds like a much simpler way of doing things than an offset mortgage. If I do need cash then I can suspend my monthly payments up to the value of my over payment.”

‘I’m extremely happy with my Starling business account’

Piggy Malone “highly recommends” a Starling business account, which she’s used “for a couple of years now and I’m extremely happy with it, especially compared to the HSBC account it replaced.”

Ms Malone explains how she “used to have to drive miles to another town, park the car, walk to the branch and queue just to pay in a cheque, which HSBC would then charge me for handling. They also charged for the account itself and again for the debit card that came with it.

“Starling is a breath of fresh air. It’s not only free but extremely efficient. I can pay a cheque in by taking a photo with my phone and sending it. I get a message on my phone before any scheduled payment leaves the account and a notification every time a payment is made.

She continues: “The Starling account was easy and quick to set up and switching everything over was done remarkably quickly and painlessly.”

‘Green storage bags absorb the ethylene gas and preserve the contents for much longer’

Meanwhile, on the matter of food preservation, Frances Stuart, advocates the use of “green storage bags for fruit and veg, particularly salads, that Lakeland sell and are reusable.”

Mr Start claims that they “they absorb the ethylene gas that ripe fruit produces and preserves the contents for much longer”.

‘We grow our own and barely buy fruit, salad or vegetables’

Reader Liz Morgan describes herself as “thrifty with food” and “barely wastes anything.” Mrs Morgan and her husband “grow our own vegetables and have so many apples, pears, plums and grapes”

“We barely buy fruit, salad or vegetables July to December.”

She also “frequently makes soup with onions, potatoes, parsnips, cabbage, carrots and tomatoes, which costs pence and is very substantial.”

‘Pay virtually all your salary into your pension’

George Eliot shared some tips from his own experience in regard to his pension. He says, “when you approach the last couple of years before retirement, consider taking a short term unsecured loan to cover all your living expenses, which might allow you to pay virtually all your salary into your pension.”

He continues: “I believe the employer normally expects you to take home enough of your salary to pay some NI, but if you can pay everything using your additional voluntary contributions (AVCs), there’s actually no requirement to pay any other income tax if you can shelter it in a pension.”

“When you retire,” Mr Eliot says, “time it right. Rather than doing so in late winter, wait until late spring, then you can take advantage of that year’s tax allowance too. Some companies pay a bonus around then, so you might be able to pay all the bonus into your pension too.”

He shares how he “lived on credit for my last few working years, to max out on the tax efficiency of AVCs, then when I took my pension, I withdrew the maximum tax-free lump sum, which was 25pc of the total pension pot, and I used that to pay off my loan.”

‘I find some charity shops can be very good value, especially if they are in a fairly wealthy area’

Regarding one’s wardrobe, Gillian Caffell, finds “some charity shops very good value, especially if they are in a fairly wealthy area where good quality clothes are passed on for very reasonable amounts.”

‘The economy setting on our shower is half the price’

Finally, on energy, reader M.B. recommends “checking if your shower has an economy setting.”

He details how “we had ours fitted in 2015 and only discovered the economy shower setting about six months ago. Our smart meter shows in real time that it’s half the price of the ‘luxury’ shower. Took a bit of getting used to as it just puts one heating element on instead of two but we have all adapted perfectly well.

“There’s five of us in the house, so a good saving for us.”

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We asked for your best money-saving tips – and this is what you told us (2024)


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