Wednesday, 25 April 2018

How Not To Over Spend

Oops. Well I had planned to blog a few posts in April and I had so many posts lined up in my head, however it has seemingly fallen a bit flat on its face! My last post about April Fools was on the 1st of the month and today is the 25th. How rubbish am I? Finally I have had the chance to write some stuff down and grab a photo from my collection and here we are. Roll on to the post.

Now if you'd spoke to me 10 years ago about money I would of confessed I was pretty crap with it. Cash burned a hole in my pocket, credit cards were my major downfall and savings - well I didn't even know what that word meant. Roll on a few years, I'm so much better than I ever used to be. Yes I have my moments of spending on various bits of tat, but as I've got older and wiser (LOL!) I'm far better. There are quite a few ways to stop over spending, firstly I'm going to start with the obvious one...

Cash Not Cards - With the invention of contactless cards, it so easy just to tap tap tap. You basically forget what you have in your account and just tap away your cash until it is too late. By popping to an ATM/cash machine and actually withdrawing physical cash to pop in your purse, you can see what you have. It's a safer way to spend money, because it is actually your money you are spending!

Credit Cards  - Now credit cards are OK for some purchases, perhaps a holiday so you are protected by your credit card provider. However other than that I seriously do not recommend them. Why? Because they are not real money. It's an easy option to get carried away and spend money which you do not have. You're just leading the money from the provider, like a loan. When you first get a credit card you are likely to get a 0% card, but as soon as that runs out ... you'll be paying interest on your balance. Ouch.

Weekly Allowance - If money is tight, I suggest an allowance which I have done myself before. After you have paid your bills, popped money into a savings account etc - work out what you have left for the rest of the month. Split this money equally between the weeks of the month - an allowance as such. Any money you have left which you didn't spend in the week - save this. Pop it towards a credit card payment for example or put it in savings. Once you become savvy with your spending allowance, you'll see your left over money creep up. Yay!

Vouchers And Points Cards - These are a god send. Some points cards give you perks, where when you spend in store and use that stores points card you collect points. For example Boots have their advantage points scheme which for every £1 you spend you receive 4 points. You can then spend these points on future purchases, plus they'll also send you vouchers. So yes you're technically spending money, but you will be saving money in the long run.

Make A List - I am a avid list maker, even with house chores or a shopping list for food. It really helps to write a list as it really helps in not going off plan. Just stick to the list and you should be fine. However there is one thing if you are doing the food shop, don't do it when you're hungry. It might sound stupid, but it is totally true that you always overspend when doing the weekly shop if you do it on an empty hungry stomach. Trust someone who knows, because will power is a little stretched when faced with tempting foods.

Shop Around  - It is so easy to just buy something then and there, but I will always advise you to shop around and compare your purchases - especially big purchases like washing machines. When we were looking for a jumperoo for Grace I was tempted by one on Very and it was £129.99! The hubby looked on Amazon and found the same one (just a different colour) for a cheaper price of £79.99. Think of the money we have saved just because we looked around and opted for a different colour. Nuts I tell you.

Do I Need It? - This relates to back when I read Marie Kondo's book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying. That book has really helped me when it comes to buying things and it always makes me ask myself 'do I need it/do I need this?'. Sometimes I'll end up walking around the shops with an item in my hands, then I get to the time where I have to go to the till to buy the item - I'll have a good look and ask myself 'do I still want it?'. It works really well and I've mostly put things back on the shelf.

Stop Treating Yourself - Now get you your calculator out and add this up. If you are the kind of person who likes to buy yourself a Costa coffee in the morning and lunch out everyday, it will soon add up to quite a bit of cash. Making lunch and bring it in to work will save you money ultimately. You just need to start planning food prep in advance.

Barter - The hubby and I recently purchased a new mattress for a eye watering price. When we were signing on the doted line, my hubby asked the shop assistance if there was 'anything they can do?'. Sometimes you might not get money off, but you might get something for free. Or if you're buying two items they might be able to offer you a deal. What is the saying... If you don't ask, you don't try.

Right folks that is all I can think of for now and I hope some of these tips help you out if you are trying not to over spend. I promise to not leave it too long in the future. Have a good day people.

Angela x


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