And while we can’t wait to safely catch up friends in a beer garden, get a haircut or go to the gym, it does mean you may need to adjust your budget accordingly to make sure you have enough money to do everything you need to do and everything you want to do.
We asked Tom, one of our money experts, for his tips on managing – and maximising - your post-lockdown budget.
Don’t sacrifice your “needs” for “wants”
This is the least sexy, but most important, part of any budget – knowing how much money you NEED to pay each month and making sure you have that amount available when your payments are due to come out of your accounts.
Your rent and bills should be your priority, but if you are going to be working from an office again, you may need to factor in travel costs as a “need” as well. It’s always best to over-estimate how much you will spend and get surprised when you have money left at the end of the month, rather than coming up short.
Food can make - or break - your budget
If you’ve been “supporting local businesses” via your favourite delivery app over lockdown, you may need to look at how often you’re ordering in once the world begins to open up. There’s nothing wrong with ordering food, but some of that allocated spend may need to go towards a bigger “socialising” budget now that your socialising may take you to more places than your sofa and Zoom.
Little things like bringing your lunch to work or cooking an extra night each week can save you hundreds – if not thousands – of pounds each year and help stretch your socialising pennies further.
And while you might have been waiting months for that first off-the-wood pint, there’s still plenty of parks and open spaces for you to catch up with your friends if you’re on a budget – just don’t forget to bring a bag for your rubbish.
There are plenty of apps on the market that can help you manage your budget, track your spending, or even help you invest your small change.
Theses apps can help you see your entire budgeting picture as well as breaking down when and how you spend your money so you can take control of your spending habits.
Don’t forget to save
Every penny of your budget should be accounted for, but that doesn’t mean you need to spend every penny. Even putting away £10 a week can make a big difference to your financial wellbeing – or even help you offset the costs of Christmas or other big expenses later down the line.
Need a hand?
We can help with setting up a budget, making the most of your money, making sure you’re claiming the right benefits, managing your debt, or getting a better deal on your utilities.
If you’d like to speak to one of our money experts about your finances, fill out our form and we’ll get back to you!