Frugal Brits regularly employ a string of weird and wonderful money saving tactics – including sharing their phones at work, reusing tea bags and sharing bath water, it has been revealed. The extent to which the nation is still watching their wallets in the wake of the recession was revealed from a study carried out among 2,000 adults.
The report also found many of us are reusing tin foil and cling film – and even cutting our own hair – to avoid shelling out money unnecessarily.
Selling unwanted belongings through online auction sites and buying second hand items has also become popular.
A spokesman for paid survey site OnePoll.com, which commissioned the study, said:
”Money is tight for many people at the moment, shorter days mean the lights are on longer and the cold weather means the heating is on more.
”It’s good to be creative, and it’s interesting to see that small things such as re-using teabags and sharing bath water are helping keep costs down.
”And if you look hard enough, you can find good quality second hand items which have hardly been used for half the price of brand new.
”Selling items online and filling in paid surveys are easy ways to make a little extra cash to help you out with particularly tight months.
”We particularly like the thought of exchanging unwanted gifts for vouchers – at least you can get something you need!”
The study also found buying supermarket own brand products, raiding the coppers jar and leaving the oven door open after use to keep the house warm are common tricks.
Having leftovers for lunch and ordering tap water at restaurants are also helping keep Brits in the black.
Most said they had managed to work out their money-saving habits for themselves while one in three said tips had been passed down by their parents.
The study also found a large percentage are now so careful with their spending that they keep a log of where each penny goes, with this updated as many as four times a week.
It also emerged around two thirds of savers have a coin jar at home (with an average of £27.68 hiding within).
Making money is just as much of a priority to a lot of Brits as filling in online surveys and providing feedback means they will get free samples.
But it’s not always obvious who the cautious spenders amongst us are as it seems that many will prefer to keep their penny-wise ways a secret.
Some have come under fire for taking care of their spending, being mocked at least three times in the last week by those who aren’t so strict with their expenditure.
But a quarter of us think that life is too short to worry about what they spend their money on or how to save it.
The OnePoll spokesman added:
”To some, it might feel necessary to keep their careful spending a secret from friends, family and colleagues.
”But there shouldn’t be shame in this as in the long run, it’s a pretty sensible thing to do as you don’t know what bill is waiting around the corner.”
TOP 25 WAYS TO SAVE MONEY
1. Buying supermarket own brands
2. Shopping around for best deals on insurance and utilities
3. Having leftovers for lunch
4. Making and sticking to shopping lists
5. Unplugging all appliances/ electrical goods when not in use
6. Walking or cycling places rather than driving
7. Driving more slowly to preserve fuel
8. Flushing the loo less
9. Selling on eBay during free listing weekends
10. Buying second hand goods
11. Ordering tap water when out for drinks/meal
12. Leaving the oven door open after use
13. Only shopping in sales
14. Cutting your own hair
15. Charging phone at work
16. Raiding the coppers jar
17. Reusing tin foil or cling film
18. Sharing bath water
19. Keeping car empty to preserve fuel
20. Reusing tea bags
21. Haggling when possible
22. Spraying with perfume testers instead of buying your own
23. Exchanging unwanted gifts for vouchers
24. Grocery shopping after a big meal
25. Freezing leftover wine in ice trays to add to dishes in the future