No matter what your income level is, the new era of austerity is the new fad and something we all need to adjust to.
Saving money starts with changing attitudes, and YEI has sourced some money-saving ideas that are a little off the beaten track.
Cell phone – contract vs pay-as-you-go
Is your cell phone an absolute necessity? If your answer is “yes”, then do you need all of the free minutes and sms packages that come with the contract. A pay-as-you-go phone could be considerably cheaper than your cell phone, as you will only be paying for the odd calls as and when you need to.
A shopping list is critical when you go to the supermarket
A significant amount of money is spent on our monthly shopping bill. Is your bill usually more at the checkout till that you had envisaged? If so, make a shopping list. Plan your meals in advance and buy only what you need. Have you noticed that your favourite song is often playing in the background as you meander up and down the aisles. Supermarkets spend a small fortune studying the methods that make us part with more of our money that we would usually intend.
Sell your unwanted goods on Gumtree or E-Bay
We all have unwanted clutter lurking in our cupboards and garages. There are online opportunities to sell these goods and you can flog anything for the cost of a small commission. Do your homework first though, and get to know how the websites operate.
The “thirty-day” rule
Let’s set the scene. You are in a department store and you find this item that you have been thinking about buying – and it’s half-price! Ask yourself if you really need this? And more often than not, the answer will be “no”. So put it down and walk away. Alternatively, wait for thirty days, and then ask yourself if you still really want that item. (The half-price special will be over, so there’s no problem!!).
Books and DVDs from your local library
Have you been to your local library lately? It’s a mecca for money-savers. From your latest blockbuster to DIY manual to cookbook – it’s all there. DVDs, CDs and videos can also be checked out. Just be patient when you put your name down for that latest best-seller.
Unfortunately, most of us have had to cut down on our magazine spend. But – you can read your favourite magazines online – the content is not always a mirror image of the hard copy, but they are generally worth the time spent online. You can also source some of your favourite magazines at your local library.
Look online to find a selection of “Do-It-Yourself” workshops which will give you the know-how and confidence to tackle your home repairs and improvements, and learn the tips, tricks and techniques that one needs when going it alone. Just think – you could soon be on track to wipe out those costly call-out charges.
Flights on the cheap
Low-cost airlines regularly offer excellent discounted fares. Sign up online and you will be first in line to receive notification of their offers and you too can benefit from their cheap bargain-basement prices.
Say “no” to full-price theatre or movie tickets
If you are savings-savvy, you will never again pay the full price for tickets to the theatre or the cinema. Become a member of your local theatres and receive regular advance notice of all productions, special discounts and offers, group booking reduction rates and well-priced season tickets. Peruse the cinema sites to find out how you can watch as many movies as you want to, at a discounted rate. And if you’re a pensioner, you’re on a winning wicket!
Cancel your gym membership
I say this with trepidation, because if you’re a gym bunny, then this is the last thing you should do. But if you are like the majority of us mere mortals and you rarely step inside the gym, why pay for it? Cancel your membership immediately. Consider walking or running from home three times a week – that’s free!