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Save money using the family’s power of bulk-buying

Jasmine Birtles 16th Jan 2017 No Comments

Reading Time: 7 minutes

There are lots of ways you can save money using the family and its power of bulk buying. There’s your immediate family and also wider relatives such as aunts, uncles, grandparents and cousins to get onboard.

Bulk-buying, family offers, sharing and swapping are just some of the things you can do as a family to make your savings increase.



BT Mobile’s new Family SIM for mobiles and tablets offers families up to five SIMs on one contract, each with generous individual allowances and with extra value discounts that increase with the number of SIMs on the contract, which could save families up to £180 a year.

  • pile of sim cardsIt’s designed to help families take advantage of their buying power, so the more people you add to the package, the bigger the discounts and savings
  • Each SIM has its own individual allowances for data, texts and calls, so there’s no need to fight
  • The bill payer can also set different settings and restrictions for each individual family member, such as Parental Controls and spend caps
  • The first SIM purchased on the Family SIM deal is on a 12-month contract, then flexible 30-day SIMs can be added or removed whenever you want.
  • Also, like BT Mobile’s other products, BT Broadband customers receive a further discount of £5 a month on their mobile phone bills

So, for example, a family of five with BT Broadband could buy five 2GB Family SIMs for £36 a month (equivalent to £7.20 per SIM) saving £372 a year. For big data users, BT offers a 15GB Family SIM option where families can save up to £168 a year. Customers can also add Family SIMs to a handset plan.



If your family is a bit older and each member has its own very defined musical taste then the family account is not only good value but will cut down on arguments at home.

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For £14.99 a month you can add up to six family members (or friends if you don’t have a big family). So the more you add (as with the BT Mobile deal) the cheaper it gets.

So everyone can have ad-free, play-on-demand music on their computers or phones wherever and whenever they want.


save with the FAMILY’s power of bulk-buying

With a family you can save a lot of cash buying at a wholesaler.

This is particularly helpful if you are close to your extended family. Bring aunts, uncles, granny and grandpa into the group and you can make really impressive savings.

You should have a cash and carry outlet somewhere in your area – probably within driving distance so one of you needs a car if you want to visit.

Wholesale shop aisle

The main ones are Costco, and Makro and both of them sell big sizes of non-perishables at a discount.

With Makro you need to own a business or be able to purchase for a business to go into the physical ‘store’. However, anyone can use their website and there are all sorts of basics there like a bag of 1,200 Yorkshire Tea tea bags for £13.99. On Amazon they’re £19.47.

Costco costs £33.60 for an individual annual pass but if you buy a lot it can be worth it. They don’t just do bulk buy household items, they also do furniture, TVs, garden equipment, dashcams and everything a family would be interested in.



Holidays can be a particularly big expense for families, especially if you have to buy train or plane tickets for each member.

However, you can use the power of numbers here too, especially if you can get together with members of the wider family and stretch to ten or more on the holiday.Group of young adults jumping happily in the sea

Opodo is always worth a look for group deals, particularly on self-catering skiing holidays.

Travelodge gives you cheaper rooms with group bookings

Eurostar does special group deals and weekend getaways to destinations including Paris, Brussels and Euro Disney. If you’re a group of ten people or more you can get  10% off the usual rate. .


Find out more ways to save by buying in bulk in our article here



You probably already swap clothes with brothers and sisters and even with your kids (well done if you’re the same size!), but have you thought of setting up a swap shop party with the extended family?

Graphic image of two women trading clothesHow about getting aunts, uncles, cousins and step-families involved in a swapping party at your place?

Tell them what sort of items to bring – clothes, accessories, maybe toys and games – give them food and drink and make it an evening of swapping items and having a natter.

By the end of the evening, not only have you had a (hopefully harmonious) family party, but you’ve got some ‘free’ stuff to add to your wardrobe.


Also download our FREE ebook full of money-saving ideas for stressed parents here



Mother giving brother and sister pocket moneyFamilies don’t talk anywhere near enough about money and it’s costing them dear.

So first of all, get the family used to discussing money. Have a family meeting once a month or so when you all talk about what the financial situation is (making it very simple if you have little ones), deciding together what you would like to spend money on this month and what it is that you want to save up for as a family.

The more the children understand about making money and saving money, the better equipped they will be later on to manage their own finances.

There are also ways that families can help each other make and save money.



If one of the grown-up children has an offset mortgage, parents and grandparents can help them pay off the loan faster by putting their savings into her ‘savings pot’ to offset against the mortgage.

Offset mortgages are like one big account that has a bank account, savings accounts and a mortgage all in one. They work by ‘offsetting’ any money in the bank account and savings pots against the mortgage. So that when you pay your mortgage each month, more of the money goes to paying off the capital than on interest.

3 pairs of hands holding model house

So the more money you have in savings, the more you will save on the mortgage and the quicker you will pay it off.

If parents, grandparents or even friends can ‘rest’ their savings in the offspring’s savings pot, that will help them pay off the mortgage without you actually giving them the money. You can take your savings back when you need them, but in the meantime, although you will be foregoing the (tiny) interest you would be making on that money in a normal savings account, the young person will be saving rather more in unpaid interest.



Happy Family in front of homeAnother way that mum and dad, or granny and grandpa, can help their offspring buy a property is to be a guarantor for their mortgage.

This is where a mortgage company will take parents or another family member as the person ultimately responsible for paying the mortgage if everything goes pear-shaped.

Not all mortgage companies offer guarantor mortgages so it’s a good idea to speak to a broker about this.

You can find out more about guarantor mortgages (and other alternative ways to get a house) in this article.



Yes, it is possible to get a pension for a baby, or teenager or grown-up for that matter. Anyone can have a personal pension nowadays and it’s a good, tax-efficient way to invest for a child, teenager or, yes, a baby.

You can find out lots more about pensions for babies here.

Essentially, you can invest up to £2,880 for your child or grandchild each tax year and the Government adds in the tax you would have paid on that (bringing it up to £3,600).

Admittedly you won’t get that tax back yourself, but at least you can know that that tax will be doing good in your child’s pension, helping it to grow faster over the years.



There’s SO much that families can do to make money together. Take a look here for lots of ways to make money as a family. 

Essentially it’s about getting together and working out:

  • what you have as a family – junk you could sell, skills you could get paid for, space you could rent out or use for events, ideas you can pool together to make something good
  • what your neighbourhood needs – maybe you could set up a family disco once a month, or your neighbours have money but no time, so you can offer to do jobs for them.
  • who is going to do what and what you are going to do with the money – maybe you will use the money to buy yourselves a great holiday, or you will let the kids keep any money they make from selling their own stuff online. Or perhaps you will all agree that half of the money you make will go to paying off family debts and the rest will be for fun stuff like family outings.

But do use the power of family numbers to make extra money for all of you. It’s amazing what you can come up with when you get together!


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Jasmine Birtles

Your money-making expert. Financial journalist, TV and radio personality.

Jasmine Birtles

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