2016 was a year to remember – and that’s putting it subtly. But it’s almost over 🙂
Despite it being rather hard for the world with Brexit and Trump winning as well as 130 celebrities to living us for good it was surprisingly good year for me. Not only I changed job for a better one, improved the traffic to this blog but most importantly I got married to the love of my life.
I managed to save quite a lot of money effortlessly as I am a multitasker with a great memory !
Banks – £1080.42
I have 5 bank accounts, they helped to earn me :
– £60 from Halifax (thanks to a £5 reward on my regular Reward account)
– £121.67 from Lloyds interest rates (Lloyds Club offers 4% on balances up to £5k)
– £117.64 from TSB excl. £32.95 interest rates from my saving account =£150.59(Classic Plus + Easy Saver accounts)
– £250 from First Direct for switching here from NatWest I got £150 and £100 for leaving them recently
– £498.16 from Santander (annual interest rate and cashback £558.16- £60 annual account fee= £498.16)
* I am actually hoping to get £100 M&S gift card when my First Direct switch will commence,sometime in January and then another £120 for the next year I am going to stay with them.
**I have an automated standing orders set up between the accounts, so all the money needed to qualify for certain benefits from those banks are flowing between those accounts – which means I do not have to earn thousands of pounds to be eligible to secure all the benefits.
***The above perks are explained in my old post, however most banks are slashing down their %rates and rewards in 2017.
It seems hard to juggle but it really is not. All you do is you create a simple Excel document in which you note the bank chains for the money to flow from one account to the other and automate the process when using the standing orders. So in reality you dont have to have loads of money to transfer to your given bank account as you simply use your salary when transferring it to all of them within a space of a few days (ideally when you do not have to pay bills so that is unaffected). As for the requirement of having at least 2 direct debits to get certain benefits its also easy as you can use pay your bills, credit card(s), any newspapers subscriptions (I recommend here Moneywise) or simply donate money to charity when setting up a direct debit 🙂
Travel Refunds – £322.5
I finally decided to get my refund for a flight which never took off. It happened in December 2010 but according to the European Commission Regulation 261/2004 (a regulation establishing common rules on compensation and assistance to passengers in the event of denied boarding, flight cancellations, or long delays of flights) you have up to 6 years to apply for a refund. The problem was I didn’t remember all the details clearly as I keep flying to 2-3 different airports back home, but I did fill in the form on the airline site (Ryanair form is accessible here:https://eu261claims.ryanair.com/) and a few weeks later got a check for £314. You can always use compensation lawyers to claim on behalf of you, just always check their fees which will be deducted from your refund!I also got £8.50 for a delayed train last time I travelled with the Thameslink, as you are allowed to claim any delays ranging from 15mins onwards.
Bills – £112.5
We cant change some of the utility bills providers, e.g water supplier (at least not for now), we can swap the gas and electricity suppliers though but I did it last year so I haven’t have to optimise it this year. So the only area of saving optimisation was in telecommunication. I managed to haggle with TalkTalk and get my broadband for £45 as opposed to £67.50 which saved me £22.5 in the next 18 months, which means the monthly broadband package cost me £2.5 and £15.93 for a line rental which totals £17.93.
Mobile phone – I happened to save at least £90 on my mobile phone top ups throughout 2016 as I was given a free SIM from TalkTalk as a goodwill gesture for security breach they encountered in the summer 2015…and as I used to spend at least £7.5 for GiffGaff top ups it resulted in me not spending anything on my phone. The allowance I got from TalkTalk mobile was sufficient enough for me as I do communicate more on Whats App and Skype than using text or voice messages 🙂
As I have a Simply Broadband from TalkTalk and they made the SIM I own a part of that broadband deal it looks like I am not going to pay for my mobile phone next year either. So to conclude the Simply Broadband was a bit cheaper for me and fixed my phone for free 🙂 If you are thinking about switching to TalkTalk ensure you are getting the best deal in your area and some cashback when switching:-)
Home Insurance – £56.94
I paid for my home insurance £56.94 so half of the regular price but this is mainly due to the fact that I work for Direct Line Group and get an employee discount.
Cashback Sites – £79.56
Whenever I shop I check if there is any cashback available on the purchase I am just about to make. I use only 2 sites: TopCashBack and Quidco. Last year I received £57.29 from TopCashBack and £22.27 from Quidco.
TOTAL SAVINGS incl. money refunds : £1651.92
Tax FREE earnings outside of my day to day job.
Matched Betting – I started matched betting in July 2016 and was carrying on until the end of August. I earned £705.43 during that time. Minus the matched betting site membership I earned £682.44 as I didn’t want to extend my monthly membership I was match betting ad hoc using reload offer sent to me by the booking sites I had used in the past and earned £32.20 in September, £33.12 in October and I won £34.00 in casino game in November and £2.5 from one ad-hoc bet totalling £101.82.
So overall I earned £784.26.
Grand Total : £1651.92 + £784.26 = £ 2436.18
Check out my new years money saving resolutions here.