General

3 Top Tips For Regaining Control Of Your Finances

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If you are someone who dreads looking at the online banking balance or your bank statement, then chances are it is largely due to the fact that you don’t feel as though you have the tightest control over money.

You’re probably not alone though, because many people also worry about their income and outgoings constantly, and often it seems that cash flow is always moving in the wrong direction.

There are simple ways that you can fix your financial situation, and very often, with a bit of work you can start to see the back of nagging money worries. If you have debts too, eventually, you may also see the light at the end of the tunnel for these by putting some simple practices in place. 

Go Through Your Finances

Often, when we ignore our finances we end out paying for things that we don’t even need. Because we are not paying attention to our money, we don’t notice regular bills going up, and we miss out on cancelling services we no longer need.

Go through your bank statement on online banking with a fine-tooth comb. Work out what you have to pay out, and look for things that are not essential. 

Some services such as insurance products, or energy and phone bills may be cheaper elsewhere if you switch to a different provider. Start looking at contracts for services that you are using, and see if there is anything that can be cancelled.

Often, by switching to a new supplier on everything that you possibly can, you will free up quite a bit of money. 

Consolidate Your Debts

If you have multiple loans and credit cards you may find that your debt never really goes down. Sometimes payments will only cover the interest, and the overall balance never drops. 

By consolidating your debts into one loan, you will only have one set of interest to pay and one loan. This will make things easier to manage, save you money, and set a definite end date for you to have cleared your debt by. 

If you have a poor financial history you may want to look at guarantor loans for bad credit as a way of managing your debt.

Be Strict On Spending

By creating a budget based on what you have to spend each month after bills, rent, mortgage, and loan repayments have all gone will mean that you can be stricter with yourself in terms of spending money. 

Work out a budget for important areas such as food and transport first. Try and keep your weekly food shop within that budget. Avoid expensive branded foods and eating takeout, and focus on homecooked meals that are more cost-effective. 

If you have any additional money left each month, make sure that you only spend within this limit. If you cannot afford to buy something, be strict with yourself and save up for it. Avoid impulse buys that push you back into unmanageable financial situations.

General

What Are The Least Sustainable Parts Of Your Home?

orange and blue concrete painted house

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There are few problems in the world which unify people quite like climate change. Everyone is impacted when the weather begins to change, whether they live in the coldest or hottest part of the world, and this makes it crucial that people work together. 

Of course, though, it isn’t always easy to know what you need to do to do your part. You can recycle, drive less, and try to cut down on the plastics you use, and this is all great, but there is still plenty you can do. To help you out with this, this post will be exploring your home, highlighting some of the most environmentally unfriendly parts of it.

The Boiler

Most modern homes have some sort of boiler. These machines heat up the water in your place, providing you with heat and pleasant baths, and they can last for a very long time. Like any mechanical devices, though, they won’t be able to work at their peak unless they’re kept in the right condition.

This can lead to it taking more energy to keep your water hot, making your home less efficient and increasing the cost of your bills. Having your boiler serviced on a regular basis will help with this, ensuring that it is running at its full potential. Modern boilers are also a lot more efficient than older ones.

The Radiators

Alongside your boiler, your radiators can often be causing your home to use a lot more power than it needs to. Over time, air can get into these large metal vessels, forcing you to turn them up and using more power. You can bleed your radiator yourself, though it can be a messy procedure, and it’s often worth talking to a professional plumber to help you with this.

The Windows & Doors

Windows let light into your home, and doors make it possible to get inside without compromising your security. Both of these parts of the building you live in can let heat out of the place. Modern glass usually consists of two panes which have gas between them. This gas is a better insulator than air, and this means that it will keep heat inside your home more effectively.

This gas can leak, though, often resulting in windows losing their insulative properties, and a lot of secure doors have small windows on them. A window replacement company will be able to help you out with this, providing you with everything you need to make your windows and doors better at keeping the heat in.

The Lights

This next area is nice and easy to change. Old filament light bulbs use huge amounts of power compared to their LED counterparts. LED bulbs also last longer, cost less to run, and come with loads more features. You can even find ones which can cycle through different colors. This is something which most people can change for themselves, making it a worthy home upgrade.

The Refrigerator/Freezer

Cooling things down can take a huge amount of energy. It’s quite amazing that refrigerators and freezers have been around for such a long time, and just as remarkable that they can do their job so well in the first place. These devices can be less efficient when they have less in them, making them use more power. It’s always worth keeping these appliances stocked up, with the dense items inside them holding the chill much more effectively than air.

The Cooker

When thinking about ways to make cooking greener, a lot of people will find themselves at a loss. There aren’t many ways to approach something like this, though this appliance can use a huge amount of power, and this makes it worth looking for ways to make it better for the planet. Thankfully, there are a couple of easy options to choose from.

Cooking on the hob can be easier. When you’re using pans with hot liquids in them, lids will help them to heat up much faster, as they will lose less heat when they are covered. Making food smaller can help its cooking speed in the oven, too. Smaller pieces of meat and vegetables will cook much faster than they would if they were whole.

Keeping your home running efficiently can be a very difficult task. Many people struggle with this, but want to make positive changes in their lives. It will be far from impossible to do this in your kitchen and other rooms, and many people already have some of the tools they’ll need to get started.