17 Ways to Save Money!

17 simple changes you can make to save money, it all adds up over the year.

money

These are 17 ways you can save money in order to budget and cut back on your spending, I hope you find them useful:

1.  Beauty Treatments

  • If you pay to get your nails done, learn how to do them yourself.  I used to pay £50 to get Shellac on my Fingers and Toes, I invested in a Shellac Kit, I halved the costs with my sister (so she’s saving money too).  If you can paint your own nails, you can do Shellac, it’s very easy, looks great and lasts for weeks.  It basically paid for itself after one or two treatments.
  • I also used to get my eyebrows waxed and tinted at a cost of £12, I admit I am not brave enough to wax them myself (I just pluck now) and use either an eyebrow dye which lasts a few weeks or Maybelline Brow Tattoo  This is so easy to use, it does only last a few days, unless you really avoid getting your eyebrows wet, but I love the results, the little brush ensures precision as you shape.

2.  Cooking

  • Cook from scratch and batch cook, I will often cook enough to last me at least another day, I can get three meals out of just cooking the same dish once.
  • Limit getting takeaways, good for the waist as well as the pocket
  • Make healthy dog treats, rather than buy ones that are often unhealthy.

3.  Walk Wherever You Can

  • I am lucky, I am able to walk to and from work, although I don’t always walk home, I am building up to this.
  • Again good on your waist and your pocket

4.  Shopping

  • As I order my groceries online, I have reduced this down to two deliveries per month, I stockpile, things I can freeze and just pop the supermarket for fresh items once, at most twice a week, usually on my way home from work as it’s near to where I work.
  • This saves on delivery charges, although I have purchased a delivery pass with Asda, there is a minimum spend of £40 and I don’t always need to spend that much, I will sometimes ask family members if they want anything adding and they just transfer the money to my account.

5.  Stop Buying Water

  • I used to buy bottled water, I invested in a cheap water filter (£8 from Wilko’s) and fill a water flask I love these pretty colours.  You can take this to work to ensure you are drinking your daily recommended amount.
  • Take  your water flask to the gym, or out and about.

6.  Underwear

  • I now only purchase black, white or navy underwear, I used to spend a lot of money on pretty underwear in multiple colours, but you are sometimes limited in what colour underwear you wear, for example you could not wear red underwear under white.  So now I have every colour I need and they go with everything I wear.

7.  Public Transport

  • I gave up my car two years ago (2016), yes there are times when I miss it, when I am going somewhere not on a public transport route, I will get a taxi then, with the money I have saved not having a car, I can afford to take taxis.
  • If I was going for a night out I would always get a taxi to and from my destination, this would cost anywhere between £20-30 per night, I now, whenever I can and weather permitting get the bus or train, at least one way.

8.  Exercise

  • I, like many paid for gym membership but never went, I paid for 18 months without going, I eventually cancelled my gym membership and started to exercise at home.
  • I often use either an exercise DVD or put a You Tube exercise video on and exercise to that.

9.  Make Your Own Cleaning Products

  • I used to buy cleaning products for everything, I have cut right back on this and plan to make my own, apparently you only need white vinegar and baking soda for most household cleaning.
  • You can buy large volumes on Amazon

10.  Buy Second Hand or Use Discount Websites

  • Try to buy as much second hand products as you can, you can buy really cheap clothes, handbags etc. on Ebay, Shpock, or Gumtree
  • Groupon is a great site if you want to buy a cheap trip or a gift such as a Spa Day.

11.  Household Maintenance

  • You can learn to do almost anything online, You Tube is great for learning how to do your own repairs, maintenance or decorating.  You can learn how to fix your own leaking overflow pipe for example.
  • Try to repair something broken, rather than buy a replacement product, super glue is my staple when small items break.  I also nearly purchased a new shredder, until I decided to take it apart, turns out it just had some paper jammed in it, it’s now working fine, I saved myself some money there.

12.  Take Your Lunch to Work

  • If you add up what you spend on work lunches throughout the year, you would be astounded, why not take your lunch to work.
  • I often do this, by overcooking the night before and taking what’s left to work.

13.  Save on Bills

  • Hang clothes out to dry on the washing line, rather than use the dryer.
  • If you like the softness of towels from the dryer, hang them out until they are partially dry and then put them in the dryer for 10-15 minutes.

14.  Stop Using Paper Towels

  • Paper towels are such a waste and are not recyclable, buy some dish cloths that can be washed and re-used, dry surfaces with tea towels.

15.  Grow Your Own

  • If you have a garden, you can easily grow your own vegetables, including potatoes, these are so easy to grow, you can also grow your own lettuce and herbs.
  • Even if your space is small, use pots to grow herbs and small greens.

16.  Save to Save

  • Put a small amount of month away to save for home or car emergency breakdowns or repairs, this will save you reaching for a credit card when your washing machine breaks down for example.

17.  Prescription Pre-payment Certificate (PPC)

In the U.K. if you get more than one prescription per month, you will save money if you purchase a ‘Prescription Pre-payment Certificate’ (PPC).  As at October 2018, the monthly cost of a twelve month PPC is £10.40 per month paid over ten months, see here for further details

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Different Stages in Life!

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I have been thinking a lot lately about where we all are in life at the moment, I have read some great blogs from young bloggers and I think ‘Wow’, they know so much more about ‘intentional living’ than I did at their age, in fact, I had never even heard of ‘intentional living’, they are so lucky.  At 50, I am only starting to ‘wake up’ and rather than think ‘fate’ will foretell my journey, I am realising that I am the author of my life.

Why has it took me so long to come to this realisation?  Apart from being a bit slow, I am not sure, except that I have been caught up in the strains and stresses of working, living and everything else that came my way.  Anyway, I am here now and intend to make the rest of my life better, cleaner, and more purposeful.

In fact, I have reached the point where I resent the fact that I have to go to work just to try keep up with my mortgage, bills and £18,000 personal debts, mainly on credit cards.  I am currently on a DMP (Debt Management Plan) with Step Change because after living on my credit cards (due to overspending), I got to the stage where I simply ran out of credit and could no longer make the minimum payments.  These debts have caused me a huge amount of stress and worry.  I have also realised my spending is related to my mental health, whenever I have felt low, I have gone on a little spending spree, at one stage there was barely a day I didn’t buy something.

The realisation that my spending habits relate to how I feel at any given time, has made me realise, there are other (cheaper) ways  to feel good.  Realising that link between my mental health and over spending, the consumer trap I have fallen in to, buying in to consumerism and ‘keeping up with the Jones’ is enough to make me change my ways.

I no longer browse online when I am bored, I carefully consider if I really want / need an item before purchasing, I also put in my planner on pay-day 1 or 2 things I ‘plan’ to buy, things I have given careful consideration to purchasing, sometimes by the time pay day comes along I have changed my mind.

I have not worked out exactly how old I will be by the time my debts are paid off, but at the rate I am paying them off now, I will be over 100 years old taking the interest into account. This is not how I want to spend my retirement years, this is not what I have worked so hard for all my life.  I came to the conclusion that the only other option is to increase my income and eventually (hopefully within 3-5 years) hand my notice in to a job I have not an ounce of interest in anymore, this lack of interest is down to my own self-realisation in what I can and want to achieve; help people in some way, no matter how small to improve their own lives, if we all share what we know, we will gain many lifetimes of knowledge, how wonderful is that!.