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How To Stop Spending And Start Saving In Your 20s

Some people don't have to worry about spending a lot of money but some people do. If you're in your 20s like me and want to starting saving for things like a house, car, travelling etc then you've come to the right place. 

There's plenty of websites out there that give you tips on how to stop spending and start saving. Today, I'm going to be giving you tips that have worked for me.

Before I begin, I want to put a disclaimer out there: I'm no money expert. Everyone's financial situation is different 😊 Do what works for you. Save how much you can. Spend how much you want. It all depends on your income, whether you pay rent, bills etc and individual goals. 

Set up a budget
The first step to take care of your finances is to have a budget. Don't feel like this will restrict you. It will help you see how much money you can spend on certain things and will present you with how much money you have coming in and going out. Setting up a budget means: more control of your finances, aware of unexpected costs, good credit score, see where you can save, save up for nice things. The odd £20 here and there can really add up. I set myself a goal of how much I can spend each month and make sure I don't go over the limit. It works and you get used to it.

Open a Savings Account
If you have all your money in one account, try opening a savings account. This will keep your spending money and saving money separate. Having a savings account will ensure that you don't spend the money in there and can use that money to save up for anything you want. I set up a direct debit so every month, 80% of my income is transferred automatically into my savings account (I don't pay for rent or bills so I manage to save more). You can also follow the 50+30+20 rule: 50% of your income goes towards essentials (rent, bills, groceries), 30% for non-essentials (like shopping and socialising) and 20% into savings. This way you're not tempted to spend more than you should. 

Start an Emergency Fund
When unexpected life events occur (if you have a medical emergency or your car broke down), you can pay for it using your emergency fund. This way you don't have to dip into your savings account or go into debt. Set aside a certain amount of money every month and put this into your emergency fund account. It will add up throughout the year and you won't have to panic when you're in a sticky situation next time. I've set this up as a direct debit.

Go through all your direct debits/subscriptions
Make this a habit. Every couple of months, sit down and go through all your direct debits/subscriptions. Check what you're paying for and ask yourself "do I really need this?" If the answer is yes, can you find a cheaper alternative? For example, are you paying for a gym membership every month you don't use? Can you use the equipment sitting in your garage? Are you paying for Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu? Only pay towards things that you need or can't find cheaper alternatives for.  

New car?
You don't have to get a brand new car every year, especially if you can't afford it. If you can afford it and want to treat yourself then by all means. But if a car takes you from A to B then that's what really matters. You'd be surprised at how much money you can save without paying for an expensive car. Alternatively, use public transport if you're able to. 

Cut back on eating out/ordering in
You've had a long week so you want to go out to your favourite restaurant with your friends. Whilst that's great and you deserve it, try not make this a habit every week. It can all add up. The same goes for ordering food to your door. Due to Covid, we haven't been able to go out to eat so people have resulted in ordering their favourite food to their house (i'm guilty of this) via delivery companies like Uber Eats, Just Eat & Deliveroo. I realised that I was spending £80 every month on ordering in! If that continued, it would have added to a lot of money. So, i've made the decision to only order in once a month. Try that too. It's more rewarding.

Have a side hustle
A side hustle is a great way of doing something you love and getting paid for it. You can literally get paid for anything. Figure out what you're good and find a way to sell that service/product to people. There's an unlimited number of side hustles to choose from i.e. writing articles, painting, babysitting, website design, public speaking. You can also register on sites like Fiver or Upwork and sell your services as a freelancer. Still not convinced? Check out Monica Bassi's Ted Talk 😀

Sell unwanted items
Do you have extra items in your home which you don't need? Do you want to make some extra cash? Well you can! Take a picture of your item(s) and upload to Ebay, Amazon, Facebook Marketplace, Vinted, Depop. Add in a description and state your price. Selling unwanted items is a great way to make extra cash as well as clearing up your space. 

Your 20s are some of the best years of your life and if you are saving, don't forget to have fun too.

I hope you guys liked these tips and let me know if you start implementing them into your life. 

Adeeba x


  1. Wish I had done this a long time ago! 20 was 28 years back. My wife and I have been doing most everything you have mentioned here and yes it still works in our 40's thanks for the sound advice!

  2. This is a great list to get your basic finances right! One thing I would add here is long-term investing. I'm 29 now and wish I would have educated myself earlier on the topic ��

  3. This is great advice.

  4. I think this is a great article. I wish I came across an article like this when I was 20! Thanks for sharing:)

  5. These are useful tips for young people. I think most aren't that serious about saving in that stage but posts like this helps put the word out about inculcating the habit of saving as early as possible.

  6. Like many here, I wish I had started back in my 20s. I know it's not too lat, but it is a valuable lesson I am passing onto my kids so they don't make the same mistake.

  7. Great list! I wish I had learned these tips in my early 20s- I didn't figure them out until later in my 20s. Thanks for sharing!

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