Tuesday 7 June 2016

Three Ways To Save Money On Your Home Expenses

When it's time to fly the nest and set up home by yourself, it's going to cost a small fortune just to decorate and furnish your home, that's not even including transportation cost if you already have a fair bit to move with! I wanted to share ways in which you can save time on every day home items to help others out with the ways which I find which works best for me. A few times a year I get emails from young mothers, and even middle aged people who've just set up home to ask me how I financially coped!

I'm sure I wasn't the only person who didn't think about bills, food and other essentials when moving out. Instead I thought about the ways in which I was going to decorate each room, Spud's room was going to be blue, themed with his favourite character/characters, whilst my room was going to be cream with grown up pink, the front room was to feature butterflies and/or flowers, whilst the bathroom would be a different shade of blue to Spud's room.

The reality soon hit me though when I had a list of people to call and visit, you need to speak to your local council for council tax, and sometimes even an appointment is necessary, then you need to call up the electric and gas company, along with the water board and TV licensing team (though I don't believe in this, I still have to pay it!), and then there's shopping and other bills to think about - like your mobile phone bill, your transport cost and all the rest.

Below you will find three tips that work for me, and which I hope work for others too!

Tip One: AVOID Debt.
If there's one thing I can change about my life, it would be the debt I stupidly landed myself in. Avoid lending from loan companies, and avoid buying items on finance/credit/buy now-pay later etc unless you really really need too, and when I say that I mean you're on your last pair of shoes and they've started to grow a hole, be cut throat, save and buy the responsible way - I didn't and I regret it. I wanted everything right there and then, I wanted a flat screen TV, matching kitchen appliances and new furniture for every room.

When those items broke on me one by one, and I was still paying them off with ridiculous interest rates, I had no choice but to save and buy, something I couldn't be bothered to do the last time round, but something I had to do eventually as I had no choice. There's been periods where I've lived off of hob and microwave food when the oven part of my cooker broke, there's also been times where I've had to ask family to wash my clothes and use the launderette when my washing machine broke.

My writing bureau isn't just my working area, but whatever Spud wants it for too!
Don't be afraid to buy second hand items also, furniture can be disinfected safely without damaging the products if you use natural cleaning products instead of ones filled with bad, unnatural chemicals. I have a beautiful second hand writing bureau that I got from my local emporium before it closed, it really is one of the centrepieces to my lounge, as well as being my perfect working desk.

Tip Two: ALWAYS Compare Prices.
Admittedly when you move into your new property, one of the last things on your mind is who your energy supplier/suppliers are, you're more concerned to find out if you're on pay as you go or quarterly to make sure you're not going to run out of gas or electric in the middle of the night!

One of my regrets when moving into my first property as a responsible individual was not only staying with the company who the previous tenant had, but also not switching to a pay as you go service! However in my defence, I don't recall having services around at the time that could compare energy prices for me, and being a young adult, I didn't have much experience on it all!

I went by the prices my parents paid for their homes (which was houses with more people occupying them) and saved the same as them, so I asked my parents to look after £150 a month for me (another good idea!), £450 for a quarter, but when the bill landed I was in for a shock! £730+ was what I was suppose to pay for two people, one being a baby - in a two bedroom flat! Of course I didn't have the extra money laying around being a single mum! I checked to see if the previous tenant had left any debt, but the meter's were debt free, the prices were awful and because I owed them money, I couldn't leave for a very long time. It was a never ending circle for years!

Tip Three: ADOPT New Living Ways.
When you was living at home with your family, you most probably didn't have to do the food shopping, pay all the bills and keep home, but now you do. When I done my first food shop I was so excited, I could buy as much pizza and ice cream as I wanted, now when I go shopping, I know not only is my favourite Haagen Dazs ice cream going to cost me £5, but its going to cost me fat too - I put on loads of weight leaving home, don't adopt the living way that I did!

When I was younger, I was admittedly VERY stupid, to the point where I refused to be seen going into a pound shop or other budget store, not only would I refuse to go in such places, but I'd also refuse to carry any bags with such  companies logo's and names. Now though, I know if I can get a big bottle of Fairy washing up liquid for £1, or the same size bottle from a supermarket for £1.69p, believe me I'm going to that poundshop! It's time to stop being stupid and time to start being savvy!

All of the above cost me £10.48 instead of the full price of £31.45 a saving of £20.97!
Check out the reduced items on supermarkets, I've picked up 10 bottles of 20 washes washing powder for £5 (50p per bottle) just because the brand had a new design and didn't want their old branding to be seen, changing a logo is BIG to a company - but not to us, unless you're the makers of my once favourite treats (Time Out - they've changed to wafers and they're nasty)! Check out food too, if there's a packet of fresh chicken breast due to run out that day or the next day, you have room in your freezer or plan to eat chicken that day then it's saving yourself money!

I have loads of other money saving tips like saving money by walking/cycling instead of driving/using public transport etc, its also good for the waistline and is a form of exercise after all, but I'd love to hear some of your tips! Please do leave me your comments below!

Remember, every penny saved is a penny to that new item you're after, or another penny to the much needed holiday you're desperate to book. A penny saved isn't much, but 1000s of pennies together is a lot!

Jada x


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