Tips on saving money on weekly expenses

in Uncategorized

In these trying financial times, the endeavor to reduce unnecessary expense is an important task for people at every financial level (well, okay, maybe billionaires excluded).  When it comes to reducing the household budget, cutting costs from the regular necessities is tricky; it’s far easier to find corners to cut with the ‘wants’ than the needs.

But the good news is that’s not to say that it is impossible. It does require some dedicated work, though. Learn the basics of cost-cutting on essentials with these money-saving tips and you’ll soon be reducing costs on your unavoidable weekly expenses.

Scan, scour and save: Grocery expenses

Flyers, catalogues, brochures: the very words may be enough to strike dread into the hearts of junk mail haters, but when used to their full potential, they are the bargain hunter’s truest friends.

Scanning and scouring through local supermarket catalogues, which are typically distributed weekly, will keep you up-to-date with the week’s sales and markdowns. To take it even further, comparing the catalogues of competing supermarkets makes sure you get the best deals on essential groceries.

Stocking up on your usual items when they are at their cheapest is a great start, but you can take those savings even further by planning ahead: plan the menus for the week around these reduced buys. Buying bulk in non-perishable items can also be a wise investment, but only if you are certain you will use them all in time.

Doing your shopping late at night can also maximise your savings, as many grocery stores and supermarkets reduce prices at the end of the day to make sure their stock is sold.

A word of warning, though: be sure to distinguish between the flyers of your local supermarket and, say, the fancy department store whose pages may be filled with tempting ‘wants’ instead of cost-effective needs.

Keepin’ it fresh: Food expenses

Food wastage is an important global issue, and an often overlooked financial drain on the average household. Each unused, uneaten or unwanted foodstuff thrown away is a waste of money that could have been better spent elsewhere (not to mention the grave environmental impacts).

Preventing food wastage will dramatically cut your weekly expenses. Sure, it seems obvious to think carefully about portion sizes and save tonight’s leftovers to reheat for lunch tomorrow.

There are less obvious ways to reduce the amount of food disposed of, however. Why not put aside one night a week for a regular veggie roast session, allowing you to prepare a whole week’s worth of vegetables in advance so that you have a ready-made snack prepared? This will save on food costs and prevent those pesky forgotten vegetables we always seem to find lurking in the refrigerator long past their use-by date.

If, luckily, you find the leftover vegetable before its expiry, don’t be afraid to play around with the dinner menu to incorporate it as a main ingredient.

Apply the same principle to your fruit basket, and swap the expensive snacks from the local corner store (or, even costlier in the long term, junk food from the pantry) for the lonely avocado you haven’t yet used. Your health – and medical bills! – will thank you as much as your wallet.

Stay informed: Information expenses

In today’s knowledge economy, there are plenty of opportunities to keep abreast of economic developments that could influence your spending, saving and investing options – and plenty of rewards for those who do seek out this information.

In the past, this sort of knowledge could only be acquired through specialist finance-focussed magazines and newspapers which, although cheap as a one-off item, can add up to hundreds of dollars per year.

If you insist, try asking your newsagent for last month’s edition of your favourite magazine the day that the new issue comes out. As unpurchased copies are typically sent back to the publisher, the newsagent may be happy to give it to you at reduced prices.

Cheaper still, the Internet’s vast swathes of information include everything finance-related, from price comparison websites to resources on asset management. Up-to-date – and free! – information on all things finance can be found at Clime, for example.

Author bio: Sarah Trevor is a stereotypically penniless student and freelance writer from Sydney who loves sharing the money-saving tips she’s gathered over years of thrifty experience.

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post:

SourceOptions XPath/RenderXSL