Over spent this December? Wasn’t as frugal as you would have liked to be this past year? Yep, me too.
This year I am determined to cut my spending and to try and put a little something away each month, now there’s a challenge.
Here are my tips on how to cut spending this January:
- Cash limit – Work out your weekly spending needs and take the cash out, leaving those credit and debit card s at home when you go shopping.
- Plan meals in advance – Make a weekly meal planner and stick to it. Only buy ingredients that you will use and if possible buy either a cheaper brand or make use of those deals.
- Use a basket not a shopping cart – having to carry your shopping will prevent you buying those unnecessary items, believe me I’ve tried.
- Use the car less – Fuel costs can be a big expense, so why not plan to walk more this January. It will help to burn those Christmas calories too.
- Start a savings jar – I find popping some spare coins from my pocket into a jar every day really helps to motivate me. You get a great feeling watching the jar fill up. It is always exciting and amazing to see just how much you have saved every month too. (Tip, to stop you dipping into the jar make a tape lid with a hole in it for the money to go into but much harder to take out.
Always Pay Attention to Prices
Here’s a little story I’d like to share about why you should be careful if you have a routine that you follow religiously. Complacency is an easy trap to fall into and lately we nearly slipped into it when we were doing our weekly supermarket shopping.
We have our favorite supermarket which stocks all the items we like and at what we thought was a really good price. But just recently I have noticed that the prices on some basic items has crept up and up to the point that I know I can get them cheaper elsewhere.
For instance, baked beans. A basic store cupboard item which used to be a cheap item to always have in stock. We always used to buy the stores own brand as we found them to be just as good as the brand named ones and at about 20p less a can. But something has changed and the beans are now tasteless, hard and watery and simply not worth paying out for. However, the branded ones are now so expensive at around 70p a can.
This is where my frugal head comes into play and I have now started to buy the multi pack branded beans at less per can than the cheaper store brand beans. Yes, it costs me more in the short term but long term I save money and I get better tasting beans too.
So my advice this month is to check those items that you buy regularly for price and quality and check out some of the deals on the normally higher priced items. At the moment there are some very good deals to be had on many staples such as bread, cheese and tinned goods.