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Share your top tips on staying on top of the family’s bills with EE – HTC One Mini (worth £365) to be won NOW CLOSED

(83 Posts)
MichelleMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 10-Dec-13 12:45:28

EE want to know what tips Mumsnetters have for staying on top of their family’s bills.

Here’s what EE have to say, “We're the UK's biggest mobile network and we've just created Shared 4GEE Plans. Based on the idea that you share your data allowance across multiple devices (phones, laptops, tablets) you can save money. You can sign up with up to four other people (friends, your partner, your mum and dad) and together you can get up to 50GB data for everyone to play with, as well as unlimited calls and texts for all the phones – all on one simple bill.”

So, what tips do you have for keeping on top of your family’s bills and making sure you stay within budget? Do you revise your bills thoroughly each month? Do you make sure you only run the dishwasher and washing machine overnight? Perhaps you Skype rather than phone call any friends or relatives living or travelling overseas? Whatever it is we’d love to hear about it.

Everyone who adds their comments to the thread will be entered into a prize draw to win an HTC One Mini. For full T&Cs please terms and conditions click here

Please note your comments may be used (anonymously of course) on EE's pages on MN, social media channels and possibly elsewhere.

Thanks and good luck,


Bubbles85 Tue 10-Dec-13 13:45:04

I have an Excel spreadsheet (probably a bit over the top!) But I do find it useful to input our outgoings and add on any income that we get so that I can quickly see by tallying each month whether we have spent more than we should have this month or not. Then we can take action to deliberately cut back in the next month if needed.

I also always look around for better insurance, breakdown or gas/electricity provider deals when ours come up for renewal. I have saved quite a bit over the years by doing this.

telsa Tue 10-Dec-13 16:46:25

I keep an eye out for bargains. Charty shops, reduced for quick sale counters, and the like. Apart from that, I switch off lights when not absolutely necessary and have bought an electric blanket to keep warm when at home alone.

mrscumberbatch Tue 10-Dec-13 17:58:09

I'd heartily recommend Reastie's bargainous Xmas threads... I spread the cost this year and so I am in December not in my overdraft.

It's a Christmas miracle

ScienceRocks Tue 10-Dec-13 17:58:33

We FaceTime rather than calling people abroad or even in the uk.

I check phone bills to calculate whether all inclusive tariffs would be more cost effective.

I check on comparison sites before renewing insurance etc.

I do online grocery shopping as it stops me impulse buying, and menu plan so I only buy what we need and don't waste food.

I shop around for non-food goods, comparing prices so I don't pay more than I need to.

iclaudius Tue 10-Dec-13 18:13:36

My top tip for staying on top of nasty winter bills is ...
When orange renew your business mobile phone contract that you've had since you started your own small business twelve years ago - employing 6 people and working really hard to sustain - read the small print. Make sure you WONT be switched over to EE without your knowledge or consent. EE will then alter the terms of the contract making you much worse off and with far inferior mobile phone terms and conditions .
Thanks a lot EE - you just made our small business struggle more in this recession

Buzzardisnotina4birdroast Tue 10-Dec-13 18:24:03

Changed all the lighting in the kitchen over to LED bulbs. Only heat lounge, cooking tends to heat kitchen, bedrooms have high tog duvets.

Steffanoid Tue 10-Dec-13 19:06:54

we have our bills all on a spreadsheet and everything is inputted on there, then we know whats for bills etc which all come out of our joint accountsmile

AnnaConda Tue 10-Dec-13 19:18:37

Shop on eBay, at TKMaxx, in the sales. Use for tips on special offers, vouchers etc. Use Quidco for cashback and Santander for a current acct that pays us a significant amount of money for banking with them. Tesco Clubcard vouchers have paid for many leisure activities we would never have afforded.

Started to grow our own veg, and have a new membership for Costco, and Aldi has been a real money-saver.

mercibucket Tue 10-Dec-13 19:58:50

I use topcashback or quidco especially for phone contracts! and moneysaving expert. and reastie on mumsnet

tinypumpkin Tue 10-Dec-13 19:59:08

Use quidco to buy insurance and gifts for Christmas. Shop around for all insurance policies. ebay is a favourite in our house too.

DH has just insulated the pipes in the loft.

DoctorGilbertson Tue 10-Dec-13 20:15:42

It only works running your appliances at night if you are on economy 7. Most people aren't so beware of this tip!

KnitActually Tue 10-Dec-13 20:43:07

we keep a strict shopping list of low price healthy ingrediants, we have down ranked to economy ranges where the actual product is essentially the same as the normal one too.

lalamumto3 Tue 10-Dec-13 21:52:28

We pay most of our bills monthly by direct debit, as it is normally cheaper. However check as for things like insurance can be mre expensive.

flowerygirl Tue 10-Dec-13 21:58:36

I had a competition with a friend as to who could spend the least that month

BlondieTinsellyMinx Tue 10-Dec-13 22:06:16

I am staggered at EE's cheek in asking after this fiasco in which they forced price rises onto their customers

WaitingForPeterWimsey Tue 10-Dec-13 22:15:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Hopezibah Tue 10-Dec-13 22:16:03

So, what tips do you have for keeping on top of your family’s bills and making sure you stay within budget?

Firstly KNOW what your bills are and how much they are! All too often things are missed out when budgeting.

Do you revise your bills thoroughly each month?

We occassionally have a big shop around and check what we pay for things like life insurance and home insurance and the energy bills. Have just switched energy provider hoping it will be lower - sometimes you need to try something new to see if it works out better for you!

Do you make sure you only run the dishwasher and washing machine overnight? Perhaps you Skype rather than phone call any friends or relatives living or travelling overseas?

We email anything rather than post it to save postage. We facetime granny. And we get the kids to remember to turn the lights off to help them save energy too.

gazzalw Wed 11-Dec-13 05:39:03

Pay all the bills by direct debit at the day after payday then you have a clear idea of what you've got left to play with.

supergreenuk Wed 11-Dec-13 09:34:35

We had to review our heating bill as last winter our bill shot up by £100 a month. We have changed suppliers and are making sure it's not up high and preferring to snuggle under a blanket watching tv in the evening than sitting in a stuffy house.

We always use our free minutes for phone calls rather than the house phone.

CaramelisedOnion Wed 11-Dec-13 13:25:22

use topcashback, I search for coupons and vouchers on MSE and hotukdeals, I spread the cost of big things like Christmas and birthdays, I always unplug everything in the house when it is not in use, I rarely have the heating on and have lots of fleece blankets at home instead.

I use Skype for international calls, and whatsapp for international texts.

whattoWHO Wed 11-Dec-13 13:30:30

I use cash back sites.
Always use price comparison sites when renewing insurance, utilities etc.
EBay unwanted stuff.
Pay all bills by dd and check them when they come in.
Do online supermarket shopping to avoid impulse buys.

HanShotFirst Wed 11-Dec-13 13:32:44

We shop around for the best deals - we use price comparison websites to make sure we're getting the best deals on a whole range of things.

Being organised in writing down what you need to buy, when to switch energy suppliers/cancel subscriptions when they aren't worth the money anymore/checking for stray direct debits and sticking to budget is also one way we keep on top of our family budget.

GotMyGoat Wed 11-Dec-13 13:36:37

We have duvet days at the weekend - try and stay in the bedroom when the tumble dryer is on, or hang out in the kitchen when we are cooking, and make sure we open the doors once we are finished - get the most out of the energy we use!

nemno Wed 11-Dec-13 15:36:07

Buy during sales or when things on offer.
Meal plan based on offers.
Turn appliances off when not in use.
Never take loans.
Check phone,broadband, utility price plans fairly regularly.
Shop around for insurance, savings rates etc.
Recycle and reuse

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