Savvy spring savings


photo by kenteegardinvia PhotoRee

Spring has arrived! As well as the hope of some decent weather, this also means new council tax bills and the beginning of the new financial year. While it is wise to keep an eye on your outgoings throughout the year, a spring clean of your finances is a great way to check that you are paying no more than you need to and getting your budget in order.

Every April I used to do “The Ring Around”; spending hours on the phone ringing my bill providers and making sure that I was getting the right deals and discounts. In recent years I have become lazy (or savvy!) and have done my comparisons online.

The fact that energy prices are higher than ever and don’t seem to be dropping anytime soon is a surprise to no-one. Unless you all know something I don’t, we have no influence over the world energy market and wholesale prices. The only way therefore to keep any control over what we pay out for our gas and electricity is to check our tariffs and switch plans or providers as appropriate to make savings.

It is not always necessary to change your energy company, it could be as easy as changing which plan you are on and that change can save you money! I don’t like paying out if I don’t need to, I’m sure you don’t either so make sure that you are being savvy with your outgoings, be it your gas and electricity, your broadband and phone or personal finances.

I can always find ways to spend (or save of course) money that I keep out of the bill company’s pockets, and by taking an extra few minutes out of my day to make sure I’m not paying too much, I can have the cash to do it!

 *This is a sponsored post but regardless is sound advice and true to what myself and my family believe.

Declutter and Cash Up with MusicMagpie!

I am a frugal sort, I shop around, I make savings where I can and if I can make a little extra cash easily, well I’m not going to say no am I?!

I am a serial declutter fiend. I hate just storing things which we never look at, use or play with, taking up valuable storage space especially when I can make some pennies easily off them. You do not need to keep old cds and what not “just in case”, when you haven’t listened to them in years (yes husband I am talking to you lol).

When we dismantled our home office to make room for our newest arrival, we came across boxes of old cd’s, dvds and console games. Scouring about t’internet I found MusicMagpie. I’d seen them on the tv before but in truth I hadn’t really taken a lot of notice.

MusicMagpie takes dvds, cds etc off your hands and pays you for the privilege. To start with I looked to see what I would get for them all on Amazon and at first glance I would get more, until I took off all the fees and took into account that I had to wait for items to be sold so money could come in dribs and drabs and that there would be multiple trips to the post office!

Checking an items worth on MusicMagpie really couldn’t be easier as you literally enter the barcode in and it will tell you how much your item is worth. The value can seem pretty low for some ie 30p a cd, but 1) they’ve been sat in your cupboard for three years and 2) it’s actually more than you’d get anywhere else. I’ve used MusicMagpie several times now and they’ve paid me between 30p and £8.50 for a single item. They decide the value based on how popular or rare an item is. I presume they sell them on but I’m not concerned with what happens to them, once they are gone and I’m paid, I’m happy!

So how do you do it?

  • Register with MusicMagpie
  • Enter your barcode which tell you what an item is worth to them
  • When you’ve finished your order you print off the freepost label (or in my case sheet, which I attached to the box with tape lol) or if you are sending 50+ items they will arrange a free courier to collect.

You can find a more comprehensive “How-To” here.

Once posted off MusicMagpie will check your items (they have to be in boxes and in good condition), and you will be paid.

They’ve got all clever and technical recently and you can now scan the barcodes on your phone or by using your webcam. I haven’t done this as yet, for my last order I just manually typed the barcodes in, but this will make life even easier (I’m frugal AND lazy).

So, declutter, and add some pennies to your holiday fund, help pay off a bill, or treat yourself! I’ve just about decluttered and cashed in all my old naff dvds, games and cds now (I’m sure there is another box lurking somewhere), but I wouldn’t hesitate to use MusicMagpie again!

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