How lockdown taught us to save more money
06 Dec 2021



For some of us, lockdown provided an opportunity to save more money through reviewing our lifestyle as well as our spending and savings habits. And whilst lockdown was undoubtedly a difficult period for many of us, it was a time for realisation and taking stock for others.

We investigated ways in which people were able to spend less and save more because of lockdown and found that our spending and savings habits were affected by the lack of social occasions, a reduced commute, and no foreign travel. Whereas others told us they had no choice but to cut back and prioritise spending on things they consider to be most important.

Which habits help us to save more money?

Below, we’ve included a few of the things we learnt about people’s spending and savings habits during lockdown that could help you save more money.

Save money by living on less

It goes without saying that many of us made changes to the types of things we spent money on during lockdown - one being luxury purchases. 34% of the people we asked explained that they were able to save by cutting out things they consider to be a luxury spend.  

It may seem simple, but by only spending money on the things you can’t do without, you’re sure to get into the rhythm of being able to place more money into savings. 

Create a list of your necessities: many of us switched to shopping online for our most-needed monthly items during the pandemic and by pulling together a list of your necessities, perhaps into an online basket, you could save more by not spending on the items you’re usually tempted by during your monthly shop.

Plan home improvements and save money on days out

During lockdown, most of us spent more time at home than we did previously, meaning a lot of us found the time to plan home improvements, and spending more time at home meant lots of us worked hard to improve our homes with things like outdoor play areas and even DIY garden bars.

In fact, during lockdown, more than 28% of us listed home improvements as our number one reason for spending money, excluding usual living expenses, meaning the extended time at home drove us to want to do more to improve our living space.

But why not continue the trend? By spending a little time and effort planning home improvements now, you could have less need to leave the house for expensive nights out in the future!  

Save even more by completing home upgrades yourself: you don’t need to spend a fortune either; you can find plenty of examples of money-saving home improvements through a quick search online.  

Consider changes to your lifestyle that could help save money

One thing lockdown forced us all to think more about is the need to travel to different places, whether that’s into the office, to far away holiday destinations, or just the number of times we need to pop to the supermarket.

In fact, 38% of us used our cars less often during lockdown, meaning as well as petrol costs hurting our pockets less, we’re also hurting the environment less.

Only 7% of the people we asked won’t keep any of the lifestyle changes they made during lockdown, and so hopefully driving less is one lifestyle improvement that’s on everyone’s mind.

Why not revamp your wellbeing at the same time: couple reduced travel with a bit more time in the gym, walking, or exercising more, and you’ll have a reason to feel even better about the decision to drive less often.  

Revisit your plan to save money, regularly

During lockdown, some of us turned to new savings trends to bolster our back pocket, with 38% of us using techniques like round-up your change and the 30-day rule alongside our existing savings plans. 

We also learnt that 40% of people are more determined to save money because of lockdown and so if you fancy giving a new savings trend a go, perhaps do a quick search for some of the techniques listed below - they could improve your savings game as well as making savings fun. 

  • The 1p challenge
  • Screw up your savings
  • Round up your change
  • The 30 day rule

Use your plan to learn from your habits: even if savings trends don’t make it into your savings plan, revisiting your plan from time to time, investigating new ways to save, and learning from your habits could make all the difference when it comes to your end of year total.

Keeping hold of good habits doesn’t always come easy, and so hopefully some of the learnings from lockdown we’ve shared will help re-energise your savings plan. It all helps!

And if this post has left you looking for more ways to make changes to your lifestyle, take a look at the 7 simple lifestyle changes to help you save money for even more inspiration.

Maru conducted research among 2,000 adults living in the UK on behalf of Kent Reliance between 7 and 12 July 2021.