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There are endless money saving tips out there, but most of them are really nothing new. These money saving tips are different. They are the kind of tips that make you rethink the way you spend and save your money. The kind that can actually make life saving changes to your finances.
When it comes to saving money, you can make as many budgets as you want. But if your attitude to money is still stuck in a spending every cent you earn kind of mindset, nothing is really going to change. However, changes your habits and your mindset towards your money will chance everything, and for the better.
Having a great money mindset is an amazing thing. You start to become more grateful for the things you have, which in turn means you stop focusing so much on the things you don’t. You discover that spending large amounts of money doesn’t = fun, and that there are some amazing ways to have fun spending very little or even nothing at all! Your house might even become less cluttered as you stop buying things that contribute to the clutter, and start selling the things you don’t actually use. Best of all, it’s result in way less stress. What’s not to love about that?
Keep reading to discover the best money saving tips that could change your life. These tips are practical changes that anyone can make, no matter how much or little you earn.
Avoid shops at all costs
It’s a given that sometime you will actually need to visit the shops, especially when it comes to grocery shopping. But if you don’t need anything, and I mean really NEED anything, they steer clear of the shops at all costs.
Shops are designed to make you spend. All those bright lights, the music they play and the colourful sales sign will make you want to spend, even if you had no intention of buying anything before you hit the shops. It sounds simple, but the number one best way to avoid spending money in shops is to just avoid shops in the first place. Your bank account will thank you for it!
Take cash for those quick supermarket runs
It’s unavoidable that from time to time you will need to go to the supermarket to grab just one or two things. For most of us, we end up walking out of the supermarket having spent $50, when all we needed was a loaf of bread.
A great way to combat this is to take cash with you, and only take enough cash to buy what you need. So if you only need a loaf of bread which you know costs $1.50, then only take $1.50 in cash with you. It sounds silly, but it means you have no choice but to say no to everything else in the store. Leave the credit card at home too, otherwise you might be tempted to pull out the credit card and purchase a few extras.
Plan your wardrobe
Do you find yourself constantly impulse buying clothes, so you have plenty of clothes to choose from, but nothing really goes with anything else? It can be one of the reason why we often think we have nothing to wear, even when we have a wardrobe bursting at the seams with clothes.
Rather than buying items of clothing on impulse, take your time to have a look through your wardrobe and identify any items that might be missing. Write yourself a small list including those items your wardrobe actually needs, and keep it in your purse. Whenever you happen to be out shopping and you find an item of clothing you like, you can then pull out your list and check if the item matches anything on your list. If so, then grab it. If not, it might just end up being yet another item that doesn’t go with anything else.
Always compare unit prices, not package prices
This is especially important when grocery shopping, but it’s a good tip to keep in mind whenever shopping. It’s easy to just assume that the largest packet size is going to be the cheapest, but that’s not always the case. Supermarkets have to provide unit prices on all price tags, and it worth using these unit prices to determine which is actually the cheapest. Often the smaller size package will be on sale, making it cheaper per unit than the larger sized packet.
It’s also a great way to compare prices between different brands when package sizes are different. You can very quickly see the price difference per 100g/100ml and decide which brand provides the best value.
Switch from dishwasher tablets to dishwasher powder
Dishwasher tablets are way more expensive than buying dishwasher powder, but are they really that much better? Chances are dishwasher powder will clean your dishes just as well (if not better), yet are an absolute fraction of the cost of tablets. Don’t be afraid to try the generic brands of powder either, I find them to be just as good as brand names, yet they are about 1/5 of the price.
Ditch cleaning products and switch to microfibre cloths
I swear by my microfibre cleaning cloths, and rarely buy cleaning products thanks to them. You can pick up multi-packs of microfibre clothes from places like Big W or Bunnings, and they will last for year. Just use them with water to clean bathrooms, glass, kitchens and for general dusting. Just chuck them in the washing machine when they need a refresh.
Sell something to buy something
Make a deal with yourself that before you buy anything non-essential, you sell something of equal or higher value first. If you can’t handle parting with something you already own, then the new item might not be something you REALLY want after all.
This is something I do with my daughters school uniforms. Uniforms are ridiculously expensive, but at the same time the quality is amazing and they just last! As she outgrows a uniform item, I sell the item that no longer fit on Facebook buy & sell groups, then buy a bigger size second hand in the same Facebook groups for the same price or less than I sold the smaller size. We take great care of her uniforms so they usually still look great once it’s time to on-sell them. This means that after buying the first lot of uniform when she started school, we are not outlaying any extra money when she goes up a size.
Following the rule of selling something to buy something stops your house from becoming cluttered, since you are removing something before you add something new to the house. It also saves you money, since you are essentially shopping for free.
Impulse shoppers – grocery shop online!
If you impulsively add things to your trolley when grocery shopping, try doing your grocery shopping online. You can then have your shopping delivered to your door, or if you don’t want to fork out extra for delivery just choose the click and collect option.
Shopping online means you aren’t distracted by all of those sale signs and flashy end of aisle displays, and you can review your cart before you pay. It’s hard to change your mind about items once you hit the checkout in the supermarket, but it’s extremely easy to delete items from your cart when shopping online.
If you are shopping to a budget, you can also easily tweak your cart until it comes in under budget. It’s very hard to do this in a store unless you shop with a calculator, notepad and have plenty of time on your hands.
How many hours will you need to work to make that purchase?
Working out how many hours you will have to work to purchase an item is a real eye opener! Just divide the price of the item you want to buy by your hourly after tax income. For example, if you want to buy an item worth $100 and your after tax hourly income is $25, it will take 4 hours of work just to pay for that one item. Using this little trick every time you are about to make a purchase quickly helps you decide whether the item is really worth it!
Change the way you think about sales
It can be pretty hard to pass up a great bargain, and I always find myself drawn toward those sales racks. But rather than considering how much buying an item on sale is going to save you, switch your thinking.
If an item was $300 and has been reduced to $150, most of us would think that’s an amazing find, and that by buying that item we will save ourselves $150! Next time you are in this situation, instead remind yourself that the item is not saving you $150, but is instead costing you $150. It’s a great reminder that you are still outlaying money for the item, especially if it’s something you don’t actually need.