It’s all about the Money
Whose not worried about money these days? With never-ending price increases in everything from food, to clothes, to school fees, we’re all in a state of shock, bewilderment and worry. It’s a stressful time for us all on the financial front and to help relieve some of that stress, here are some top tips for helping you save some cash. You might not be used to doing some of these things, you might think some are ridiculous, but actually they’re not. There are some very simple things you can do that will end up saving you quite a bit. There’s no harm in giving them a try.
- Turn off the television, lights & the air-conditioning.
One big way to save money is to drastically cut down on the amount of electricity you use. Televisions, lights and air-conditioning units use an excessive amount of electricity and what with
surging electricity prices, cutting down on these will make a big difference. Read a book instead, turn on a fan and never leave the lights on unnecessarily.
- Write a list before you go shopping, and stick to it.
We’ve all been to the supermarket and strolled around pushing our trolleys
picking up randomly what we feel like
buying. But one of the easiest ways to save money is to only shop when you have a list. Because when you’re
without one, you typically end up making impulse buys and unplanned purchases, all things that cost money. Creating a list before you go will help you avoid buying food you don’t really need and might even waste.
- Master the 30-day rule.
You’ve just seen that latest designer handbag and you just have to have
it right? But avoiding instant gratification
is one of the most important ways to save money, and waiting 30 days to decide on a purchase is an excellent way to implement that rule. Quite often, after a month has passed, you’ll find that the urge to buy has passed, and you’ll have saved yourself some money simply by waiting. If you’re on the fence about a purchase anyway, waiting a while can give you a better perspective on whether it’s truly worth the money.
- Stop collecting, and start selling
Whose house isn’t full of stuff that we
no longer use, but keep nearby for
‘memory’ or just because we don’t know
what to do with them? It’s time to get all that old clutter out, not only will you feel refreshed, you’re house will be revitalized and you can make some extra cash by selling all your items online. Try the‘Olex’ or ‘Jumia’ websites, they’re great for selling stuff.
- Invite friends over instead of going out.
Going out is part of our daily lifestyle, but these days regular eating out is bound to break your bank account. So how about an alternative, host a fun dish party dinner with your friends. Play cards or watch movies with your guests. You’ll all save money and have a blast. We’re not saying don’t go out at all, of course that’s not going to happen, but stick to drinks and have your meals at home.
- Repair clothing.
Don’t throw out a shirt because of a broken button, sew on a new one with some closely-matched thread or a pair of socks with a hole in them, just sew them up. Don’t throw out a pair of
trousers because of a hole in them, put in a patch of some sort and save them for times when you’re working around the house. Anyone can do the most basic sewing jobs, and a little bit of practice goes a long way.
- Don’t spend big money entertaining your children.
It’s normal that children want to buy every toy in the toy store, and if it’s not all of them then it’s at least the most expensive one! And within an hour of getting home, you’ll find it broken, cause that’s what kids do. But actually, most children, especially young ones, can be entertained very cheaply, what your children want most of all is your time. Avoid the toy store altogether and sit and make pasta necklaces together, read them a story, fill the bath tub and throw a few plastic cups and bottles, they’ll be equally entertained, you’ll find money in your pocket and joy in your heart.
- Quit smoking.
If you’re a smoker, you have to know by now that your habit is not only expensive, but potentially deadly as well. If you want to add years to your life and save a ton of money, the easiest thing to do is to stop smoking altogether. You can quit cold turkey, try some of the many
anti-smoking products that are out there, or switch to an electronic cigarette to buy some time. Whichever path you choose, you’ll be much better off.
- Install Energy-Efficient light bulbs.
Energy-efficient light bulbs might cost a bit more initially, but they have a much longer life than normal bulbs and use far less electricity. Some types can use only a quarter the amount of electricity of a normal bulb, so just imagine if you were to change all the lights in your house.
- Go with the
Like we head for the shops when it’s sale time, do the same with your grocery shopping. These days all the supermarket chains have a monthly ‘sale’ magazine with everything offered at discounted prices. Choose what’s on sale and plan your meals around it. This month there’s a sale on minced meat, choose a bunch of minced meat recipes and so on.
- Do a price comparison.
Most of us get in a routine of shopping at the same grocery store, and we may not even realize that we’re not getting the best deal. Look around for other grocery stores nearby, the options are endless and you’ll end up finding the toilet roll cheaper here and the washing up
powder cheaper there. You might spend a bit more time getting your groceries done, but you’ll save a whole lot of money.
- Make your own.
Are you into cooking? Then why not try baking your own bread? Or making some delicious brownies or cupcakes, instead of buying them for an absolute fortune? Get online, get some recipes and get that oven working. Make your own own cleaning supplies instead of buying them. It’s amazing how many things you can make at home in just a few minutes to save a ton of money
compared to the commercial version. Just hunt around online and you’ll find all the methods you need. Check out our article on Homemade recipes.
- Try different brands.
Instead of just picking up the ordinary brand of an item you buy, try a different one. Yes the ads will have you believe that this detergent will get your whites whiter than any other brand, but that’s just marketing. At least try different, cheaper brands, you might find it equally as good.
- Avoid the mall.
The mall might be a fun place to hang out, but it is also packed with temptation and window-shopping when on a budget is just torture, so avoid the mall unless you actually need to purchase something. Unburden yourself and find something else to do when you need some entertainment.
- Try to fix things yourself.
That cupboard door has fallen off its hinges, one of the washing lines has come off, the tap is dripping. What do you do? Call for someone to come fix it and fork out the cash. Not anymore, leave that as your last resort. With online tutorials and videos that show you how to fix almost anything, for free, it’s time you give it a go. No matter what you’re trying to fix, it’s always worth a shot. If not then Plan B is still there.
If you live near anyone you work with, you might both be able to benefit by carpooling to work. Or perhaps your spouse works nearby, if so, consider whether it would make sense to take one car back and forth each day. Doing so will save money and wear and tear on both of your vehicles.
- Avoid convenience foods.
Pack food for road trips. Whenever you’re ready to hit the road, take some time to pack snacks and meals you can easily eat on the go. Take your lunch to work, instead of going out to eat at work or ordering food, if not every day, then at least a couple of times a week. Convenience foods are notoriously expensive, so you’re better off avoiding them whenever possible. With some thoughtful preparation and just a few minutes of time, you can create something quite enjoyable for you and your family, probably eating healthier and saving a fistful of cash too.
- Eat less meat.
Meat these days is very expensive when you consider its nutritional value, especially as compared to vegetables and fruits and the fact that red meat is not even good for you anyway. But even if you don’t want to become a full-fledged vegetarian, you can still save a bundle just by eating meat less often.