Published on September 10, 2015 3:25 pm, by Jen Bakker
Budget planning can be challenging. Sometimes we’ll get an idea that we hadn’t thought to try or it seemed a bit hard. This week we challenge you to find one thing off our list to give a go. If you really, really can’t find anything check out a previous post and choose from there.
Scoopon and Groupon
We found a great deal in Chinatown last week, $6 each for a Thai noodle dish and soft drink. In my world there’s nothing like feeding the masses for $30 and having no cooking or cleaning to do. If you’re going to eat out anyway, why not check if there are any deals in your area?
Do you use cash and wonder where it goes?
For 1 or 2 weeks track everything you buy with cash. At the end of the time period, add the different things up, and see if there’s anywhere you can make savings.
Set up a savings account
Start an account that you can’t access immediately through card withdrawal or immediate transfer. Opening it at a different bank to where you keep your everyday transaction account may mean that all transfers are overnight. This will stop you accessing funds on the spur of the moment.
Beef up your savings account
Set up an automatic transfer on payday that is 1% of your salary. If you did OK next payday think about increasing it by another 1%. Keep going until you are running very low by payday. If that’s not your thing, think of ways to trick yourself in to putting more money in. Maybe anytime your balance isn’t a multiple of $5 or $10 you transfer the money in to your savings account to make it that. Be sure to check that you won’t be charged fees for extra transactions.
Check out the buy, sell and swap sites on FaceBook
These sites are a good way to make a buck and save one too.
Bring your own lunch
If you buy lunch every day consider bringing it from home. Even twice a week will save you $20.
Going shopping? Write a list
If you’re heading to the shops, whether it’s for groceries or other things, write a list! And stick to it. A fun thing to do can be to check your statements for how much you spend when you go without a list compared to when you take a list and see how much you saved.
Hand me downs
Hand me downs are a mother’s best friend. Accept them gracefully and pass them on when you’re done or if you won’t use them. Who wants to take their kids to the park or send them to day care in beautifully presented clothes when you’re pretty certain to get them messed up? Not to say that some of the 2nd hand clothes received aren’t in impeccable condition!
Consider buying and cooking in bulk
A big meal can become dinner and lunch with very little work. Or a huge lasagna or chili con carne can be 3 nights dinner. Aren’t those things better after leaving them to stew in all those spices for a few days anyway?
Get your cool on and head to the local op shop. It’s a great place to pick up all manner of things at a very reasonable price – clothes, books, jewelry and home wares.
Jen is an experienced banking professional who loves wine, coffee, finding a bargain and of course her three beautiful children. Since Jen's first budget led her to buy a home at 20, Jen has passionately helped others to make better decisions with their money.