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Thread: Your BEST tips for saving money......

  1. #19

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    1. If you use a spray and wipe type product, next time you need more save the spray bottle and get an undiluted "pine o clean" or similar and dilute with water (thats all the spray is anyway) and that will last you months.
    2. when cleaning your teeth, put water in a cup & use that not the tap.
    3. DP shaving fill the sink with water and dont use a running tap
    4. We do all our fruit & veg shoping at the market & it costs between $15 - $30 per week whereas at the supermarket for the same things it was $40-$80 per week.
    5.Invite people over for coffee or go to their house, cheaper than a cafe
    6.Turn off unused appliances at the wall
    7. Use 2/3 of the recommended amount of laundry powder/liquid, it still cleans just as well
    8.Use a clothes horse or washing line instead of the dryer
    9.If you see something at the shops that you want but dont need, instead of buying it, go home if you still want it the next day then you'll know you really wanted it & it wasnt just something in passing
    10. Plan birthday shopping and Christmas shopping well in advance, keep a birthday list & a christmas list in your bag. When you come across something on special for someone, put it away until their birthday or christmas and tick them off the list. We normally have our christmas shopping done by October


  2. #20

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    Hi I forgot one which has helped us go from being a 2 car family to a one car family - if you or DP can - ride your bike where ever you can - before child DH and I both rode our bikes to work and home most days all up 60km round trip saved heaps on petrol, rid us of public transport frustration and cost etc etc and no need for gym membership! Takes a bit of planning (ie have to get work clothes to work) and a little capital investment but a great great green way of getting around!

  3. #21

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    Get a good savings account set up. We have one where we get bonus interest (earns us on average an extra $3-$5/month on top of what we put in), we also can't take money out of it by net bank, both of us have to physically go into the bank and sign to take any money out of it, makes you less likely to spend it. Shopping with a list is great, as is meal planning, make as much as you can from scratch (biscuits, slices, pizza etc), start a vegie garden as fruit/vegetables can be expensive.

    Buy what you can from wholesalers or green grocers, they are often a lot cheaper than supermarkets. Also if you need something, try going to a cheap store first, like The Reject Shop or Clint's Warehouse or similar, their products while they may not be quite as good a quality, they are cheaper and as long as they do the job they are intended for...

  4. #22

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    i read in the paper that petrol seems to be cheapest on a Tuesday, so is a good day to fill up your car.

  5. #23

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    Default I gave this thead 5 gold stars!

    Awesome tips guys.

    Making a spreadsheet of weekly meals is a great idea - you can even make up several weeks and, using different tabs, just alter one or two of the meals and end up with a full monthy planner so you arent having to go in and make a new planner each week.

    If you have dogs, when i had them, i found it MUCH cheaper to make them some meals each week rather than the cans - chicken gibblets, liver, cheaper mince, shredded carrots, peas and pasta (etc) made kinda like a casserole, they will love you for it!

  6. #24
    smiles4u Guest

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    1. Shop at Op shops for baby/kiddies (& my own) clothes & occasional toy. I wipe the plastic toys with dettol.
    2. We buy a big 10kg DUO washing powder from BigW (oh, I miss my dynamo liquid), but the powder does the job.
    3. Use plastic shopping bags from the grocery shopping as rubbish-bin liners.
    4. Buy up big when nappies are on special.
    5. Use Aldi or Coles brand nappies during the day & better brand like Huggies at night.
    6. Buy plastic nappy-bags from Warehouse or Go-Lo.
    5. Nappy-san (cheaper brand) from the Warehouse.
    6. Still bath my 22mth old toddler in her baby bath to save on water (luckily she is short, LOL). We have extremely tight water restrictions in Ballarat.
    7. Wash dishes ONLY in sink & wait for a sink full's worth of dishes to do so.
    8. YES, I too have heard (on TV) that petrol is cheaper on a TUESDAY !!

  7. #25

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    Like Bathsheba, we don't really budget, but we do live on one income, and donate nearly $700/month to the church and Christian school that our children will attend. So we know how to live a little tighter.

    Just wanted to add a couple of things -
    DON'T impulse spend! Go home, think about it, wait a while, talk to your DH, and then decide whether you really need that item.

    NEVER pay for things with your credit card that you don't have the money in the bank for. We have a credit card that earns us points towards free groceries, so I use it for purchases on occasion, but I pay it off immediately online when I get home. No surprise bill, or late fees, or outrageous interest.

    If you want to eat out once in a while for a special occasion (and make sure you save it for special!) try going out for breakfast instead of dinner. It's way cheaper, and often you get so much food, you don't need lunch!

    Shop second hand for as much as possible. I have bought pretty much all of my children's clothes second hand, and I think they look great. I buy all good quality, brand name stuff that is in great shape (hurray for everyone else having only one or two babies ) and it will last a long time. My stuff was bought second-hand for my first DD, and has been used by my three girls and my sister's two girls, and much of it is still fine!

    Give up satellite/cable TV. Seriously. You won't miss it. (after a week or two, anyways.) You'll find you and your DH talk more, read more, play more games. It's much nicer for you as a couple, and much cheaper that way!

    Learn inexpensive hobbies. Scrapbooking can cost an arm and a leg, if you want your stuff to look like the examples in the store. Knitting and crocheting, and even quilting, I find, are cheaper. The library is cheap. I'm sure there are lots more.

    Don't have a gym membership. Go for walks!

    Oh, and BTW, apparently the dishwasher is more efficient than handwashing! Who knew?! But maybe that's just for water usage?

    Congrats on the new house!

  8. #26

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    A huge thank you to everyone for your replies. They have been absolutely fantastic!!!

    Please keep them coming, even if you think its an obvious idea... you never know!

    Im going to ask a mod if this can be made a sticky? there is priceless info on here

  9. #27

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    With the whole dishwahser thing, it depends on your actual washer. Older versions use up to 100 lites of water each load!!! But mine (ASKO) uses 13 lites of water for a full wash. Thats less than what i think i would use to wash in the sink!

    Also, the upfront costs of a water saving washing machine mite be a little high, but will work out much better in the end - just like insulation.

    And, my best tip that i have recently started doing myself - drink your coffee at work! I have a cup of tea in the morning now (aldi organic green tea, $2 pkt) and then have the more expensive beverage as soon as i get to work, courtesy of my place of employment. Over a year that adds up!

  10. #28

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    I'm a big fan of online shopping. eBay is great for things like cheap DVDs and CDs, as well as cosmetics (let's face it, us girls still need to shop!).
    I just stocked up on my favourite lip gloss, I bought 3 at once from an international seller so they ended up costing AUD $14 including postage each, in the shops here they are about $40 each! I know that's probably a bit of a luxury item, but if it's something you know you'll end up buying, it can be an idea to check online every now and then. Big brands like Clinique, Nutrimetics, Avon etc can all be found on eBay too. You'll also save petrol & parking!

    I agree with making stuff from scratch - I've recently discovered how fun it is to make your own pizza! Buy some 'strong' or '000' flour and some dry yeast, that's all you'll need! Oh plus the toppings! Simple!

  11. #29

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    Make a conscious decision to not buy "stuff". There is always something you will want - a beanbag for the kids, a new set of towels cause your old ones are frayed, a rice cooker cause you are sick of boiling rice on the stove, a new pair of boots cause you don't have this season's style - all stuff you WANT, none of which you NEED. If you actually make a promise to yourself to not buy random "stuff", the next time you see these sorts of items you won't feel deprived because you don't have them - you will feel SMUG because you aren't wasting your $$$ on cr@p that you don't need and will most likely end up in the Salvos bin in a few years. It can be strangely empowering when you realise that all those clever marketing campaigns aimed at separating you from your cash just aren't working.

    For a bit of support on this type of living - google the San Franciso Compact. A few years back a group of friends made a promise to eachother to not buy anything for a year. It is now a world-wide anto-consumerism movement........

  12. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by Roryrory View Post
    It can be strangely empowering when you realise that all those clever marketing campaigns aimed at separating you from your cash just aren't working.
    How true! I always say our biggest expense is trying to fix a fragile ego.
    Marketers are focused on how to make your purchases come from your heart rather than your head. I studied this at uni! They are trying to sell an emotion. Don't make emotional purchases. Easier said than done! Especially when it comes to revisiting our childhoods ie buying things for our children. For example: My mum never bought me jeans... so I'll be damned if my kids are going to go without the best jeans and lots of them!

    Know that, when it comes to shopping, you will be a better person for identifying your emotional weaknesses and resisting them!!!!

  13. #31

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    Some of these might have already been mentioned but I though I would share them anyway:

    - Draw up a meal plan for the week. Check the pantry for what you already have and write a list for what you need. Shop only for what is on the list.

    - Set aside an amount each week to buy bulk products. If the supermarket has toilet paper/laundry powder/dishwashing tablets etc on sale then you can buy up and put them away for when you need them (DH and I have enough washing powder to last us 12 months).

    - Throw a $5 or $10 voucher in with the shopping every week - you save them up over a year and then you will have christmas dinner more than covered!

    - Use a clothes airer and the clothesline for everything - only use the drier when it is completely necessary!!

    - Call your electricity company and ask them about peak/off peak times. It takes a while getting used to turning on the dishwasher/washing machine after 10pm but we save around $30 a quarter by doing it this way.

    - Get a mobile plan for you and DP that allows you free calls to each other. In 2 years I have never paid a cent to text or call DH.

    - Set up a high interest savings account that direct debits from your normal account. We have an account with Bankwest that currently has a 7.75% interest rate with no minimum deposit. It automatically direct debits from our transactional account. Instead of deciding whether we should put away a certain amount each week - it takes it regardless and if there are no funds in there - it takes it anyway (you are not locked into anything - you can cancel the dd anytime). Great way to save as it is automatic. Pay yourself first!

    - Make your lunch for work. The cost of bread, salads, cold meats and cheese for a week is usally the cost of 2 bought lunches. Chuck in a yogurt and an apple as well as a bottle of water and there is no need to buy lunch!

    - Get a debit card (doesn't have to have an overdraft). This means you can press the "credit" button for everything and you won't pay anymore EFTPOS fees (usually around $2 per transaction I think).

    - Pay a little extra per week on your mortgage - even if it is only $10 a week. It will help when the interest rates go up and also if you can't make a payment.

    - Buy toiletries/pharmacuticals online through websites such as Pharmacy Direct. We save around $40 a month on these items (pain relief, pads, tampons, razors, deoderants, makeup etc.) They also ship for free if you spend over $50. We shop for these items on a monthly basis.

    - Make sure you have some "entertainment" or "play" money put aside each week to do something you enjoy. My DH and I are movie buffs and we have a collection of over 1000 dvd's (not even kidding)! We never pay more than $10 per DVD because we buy ex-rental. When money is tight we have a whole library to choose from!

    - Love each other to the ends of the earth and remember why you have a mortgage - to build a firm foundation for your lives. Financial issues are the #1 reason for divorce so try and stay positive when things get tight!!

  14. #32

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    Wow sorry that was so long - I got a bit carried away!!

  15. #33

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    oohhh thanks guys! we are really excited about becoming more frugal!!

    amysarah, thanks so much!

  16. #34

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    I don't know if anyone's mentioned it but don't make the mistake that a lot of people make when they get their own home - start spending too much money on it. Some renovate and others upgrade all their furniture. Don't do either. Live with what you already have. Mortgage rates keep going up and look like they will for a while yet so keep your money in the bank so you have it sitting there as your repayment rises. You can always fix things later and get new furniture later when rates start to drop.

  17. #35

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    Sorry if these have already been said Danni but here are my tips:

    1. Grow your own vegies - it sounds daunting and I had no clue when I started but now I have successfully grown capsicum, lettuce, tomatoes, herbs, zucchini. Oh and they taste great too!

    2. Make extra repayments onto your mortgage, even if only a tiny bit every week. This reduces your interest and gives you a 'cushion' if you are struggling to make a repayment.

    3. Shop at Aldi or similar

    4. Usually petrol is cheaper on Tue/Wed and beware long weekends when prices tend to sky rocket

    5. Target/Kmart often have 20% off clothing/shoes etc so it pays to wait for those specials before you buy something

    6. Plan your meals every week and don't buy lunch if at work

    Um I think that is all I have right now, good luck and congrats hun!!!

  18. #36

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    *bumping* as i reckon this is an excellent thread that can help us curb our costs with rising inflation and interest rates/rent!

    any other ideas?

    anyone ever done freecycle Segment Publishing : Design.Develop.Host online? have you ever received anything from freecycle?

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