Have you got money on your mind? Saving money can be a challenge at the best of times, but for some, it’s even more difficult. However, there is hope. These small changes to your lifestyle may help you on your way to a fatter piggy bank.
Groceries saving tips
- Always make a list and take it with you when you shop. The aim is to only buy what's on that list. That way you should be better able to stick to your budget.
- Work out your approximate costs before you leave home, and only take that amount of money with you – no extra. That way, even if you’re tempted, you won’t have the means to spend more.
- Try buying in bulk. Rather than daily or weekly shopping, aim for fortnightly shopping. And try to use all the food in your pantry before you restock.
- It’s also best not to shop when you’re hungry, as hungry shoppers tend to make unnecessary purchases.
Save electricity and water
- Try to buy energy-efficient electrical appliances. The Energy Rating App can help you to research your appliance before making the purchase.
- Switch off air-conditioning, heating and lighting in the rooms you are not using.
- Close curtains or blinds at night to retain warmth in winter and coolness in summer.
- Use a door snake or rolled-up towel under the door to retain heat in winter or cool in summer.
- If it’s not too cold, wear a jumper instead of turning on the heater.
- Switch off unused electrical appliances at the powerpoint, so you don’t get charged for ‘trickle’ power usage. This includes TVs and computers.
- Use energy-efficient light bulbs where possible.
- Only use your washing machine or dishwasher when you have a full load.
- Set a timer and try to take two-minute showers. Also, try installing a water-efficient showerhead.
- Place a bucket under your shower or bath outlet to catch any water you may waste whilst waiting for the hot water to come through. Then use it to water your plants.
- Save the grey water from your washing machine or shower and use it to water your garden.
- Wash your clothes with cold water, so you don’t get charged for hot water.
Other handy money-saving tips
- Look for basic bank accounts that offer no account-keeping fees, free monthly statements, no minimum deposit amounts and no overdraft fees.
- Every so often, remove your credit card from your wallet or purse and only use cash for purchases.
- Borrow books from the library instead of buying them. You can also find many classic and new release DVDs in your local library.
Change your habits
You can also save up big by changing your habits, which may be beneficial for your health as well. Try giving up your second daily coffee, cutting back on the cigarettes, or avoiding alcohol during the week.
Make it fun
If you have a friend who wants to save money, then why not make a competition of it? You can share tips and spots where you’ve found bargains. You can also share the cost of bulk items, or share a ride to your supermarket. Splitting costs can save you a bundle and make the whole saving experience a bit more fun.
Read more about saving money on www.moneysmart.gov.au
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