HOW TO SPEND LESS & SAVE

The struggle is real for a fellow shop-a-holic such as myself

It’s no secret that I have an excessive and impulsive habit of spending money whether it be on new inserts for my Louis Vuitton agenda’s, coffee from my local cafe, food to fill my cranky tummy or a new pair of Tony Bianco shoes.

However, not only will I not have a full time job like I have had in the last seven years but I will be back at school, studying. I thought now is a good time as ever to make a change and start saving by spending less. A flight to Europe (or America) ain’t going to pay for itself, nor will it put down a deposit to buy our first home….You know what I’m saying?

I am no expert at saving as you can probably gather, so I thought I would share some saving tips that I have learned over the last two years with you all in case you struggle with the same symptoms as me because you know, spending is an illness. πŸ˜›

Sell the things you no longer treasure

If you want to buy a new outfit, why not sell some of your unwanted pieces and then buy something new with that money? That way, you avoid’t touching the savings that you have and you manage to get something brand new out of it.

Or, sell the items you no longer want and put it towards your savings instead. Best idea, ever!

Check out my recent post on ‘How to Purge your Wardrobe‘ as I briefly touched based on selling your items.

Make coffee at home

This is one of the hardest things for me to do because I absolutely cannot stand instant coffee ever since I moved to Canberra. It’s true, Canberra has made me a coffee snob. I have heard of this tip on numerous occasions but after watching Shea Whitney’s video on Youtube called ‘How to save money for luxury goods‘, I have a new perception on sacrificing a perfectly brewed coffee and make coffee at home. Shea calculated an average amount of the cost per coffee, per month and the results were a huge slap in the face. Just watch the video and find out for yourself!

In saying that though, I can’t live off instant coffee every single day so I have been thinking about investing in a Nespresso coffee machine that starts from $199.00 (I might find a second hand one instead) and you can purchase a pack of ten pods that cost under $10.00 which would last me at least two weeks. Yes, purchasing the Nespresso would put me out of pocket for a month or so but at least when I stock up on the coffee pods, I’d only be spending $20 a month as opposed to $100 a month. You feel me?

Occasionally I will treat myself to a good coffee….every now and again.

Home cooked meals

Fortunately, I’ m pretty good at this one as Idrus and I only go out for dinner once or twice a week and we would go out for brunch once on the weekend. Again, I’m. all for treating yourself but if you eat out a lot at the moment I highly recommend cooking dinner instead because you could make a big batch and have left overs for the following night or better yet for lunch too. Lasagna is a great dish to make for dinner as you will have enough left overs to last you for a week. I make a mean lasagne too.Β 

Avoid Bank fee’s

I currently bank with Commonwealth and yes they have a $4.00 monthly fee but I really like my bank and so the $4.00 is worth it. Idrus also banks with Commonwealth so it’s just convenient for us as we have a shared account. However, if you are looking to join a new bank then you should certainly consider this into your options.

Open up a separate savings account

I did this to save for my Louis Vuitton purchases and it’s a huge lifesaver because I don’t see it unless I log into my internet banking. You could find a bank that has a really good interest rate but if you are a Muslimah then obviously that is not an option for you as it’s haram but hey, I’m not judging if that’s something you do want to do. I won’t lie, I have done it too.

Direct deposit straight into your savings account

Why not ask payroll at your work to deposit a certain amount of money directly into a separate account so you don’t ever have to worry about it? I use to do this when I first started working full time after high school and I’m pretty sure that’s what Idrus has arranged with his payroll for all our bills.

WIFI

If you’re going out for coffee and want to instagram your food, why not ask for the wifi password at the cafe you’re at? I’m far too shy to do this but I just make sure I use wifi when I’m at home or even when I’m at a relative’s house.

Don’t join a gym

It’s true when they say being healthy is expensive and so are gym memberships. Instead, join a sports team or workout at home. Big W and Kmart sell dumbbells, medicine balls and all that jazz for under $10.00. Find some exercise routines on the internet or Youtube and ask a friend to join you. At least hijabi’s don’t have to worry about wearing a hijab in the gym and they can comfortably wear whatever they want in the comfort of their own home all the while, saving money too.

Track your expenses

I have done this plenty of times through out the years but I eventually get bored and lose track. However, it is a great way to see where your money is going each month and gives you motivation to make a change to your spending habits. Mine is of course, coffee and food.

Take the bus/train

If you live in Darwin, I would not recommend this but anywhere else in Australia or in the world – it’s an option for you to consider. You will save so much money from not fueling up your car every week.

Have a budget

I always hear this term but never really tried it so I certainly will try it this year and give myself a monthly budget to spend. I’m going to have to anyway, if I want to save.

I might try and purchase one classic/staple piece per month. I know it isn’t much especially for a shop-a-holic such as myself but at the end of the year you would still have purchased twelve new items anyway…

You could go cold turkey and not spend anything at all but it’s kind of like when someone cuts out junk food, then one evening you come home from a long day at work and you end up binge eating. I have this problem when it come’s to shopping so give yourself a budget, whether it’s fortnightly or monthly and treat yourself to whatever the hell you want. Just make sure you are putting money aside towards your savings each pay!

Take advantage of huge sales

If you can’t suffice with purchasing something new once a month but you also don’t want to just be throwing money each pay check either. Why don’t you save your budget as mentioned above for major sales such as – Black Friday’s, EOFY Sale, Warehouse Sales, Public Holiday deals etc, etc.

Asos always have sales up to 70% off! That is when you should be shopping and treating yourself. This is certainly something that I am going to attempt to do this year if I can’t handle buying one piece, per month. Or I can do all my shopping whenever I fly to Perth during school break.

Another way to save money that fall in this category is signing up to newsletters as some eboutique offer discount for new members who join up for the first time. This can become an issue though so if you don’t have self control then I suggest to not sign up to any newsletters as it will give you temptation to splurge. Alternatively, sign up, make your purchase then unsubscribe πŸ˜›

eBates

Shea Whitney mentioned this website in her video mentioned above and it’s definitely something that I want to trial. Unfortunately most of the websites that are affiliated with eBates are based overseas so options are limited as some brands may not ship to Australia. It doesn’t hurt to try, am I right?

Be Responsible

Avoid getting yourself into a position where you could get a fine such as speeding or parking fine. Just don’t do it, it’s a huge waste of money that could have been put towards your savings. If you have a car, put additionalΒ  money aside so you don’t have to use your savings come registration or driver license renewal. This should also be applied for your rent, electricity and any other additional bills you may have.

Please, please, please prioritize your bills over anything! It is the most important and first thing to do each time you get paid. I know adult life sucks but unfortunately that is the way of life. Just please do not go on a big shopping spree then come home and realize your electricity bill is due the following week.

Avoid the ‘D’ word

I made a promise to myself when I was a little girl that I would never get a credit card, last year I broke that promise and got one. Allahumdullilah I have never been in debt as I only use the credit card when I know 100% that I can pay it off come pay day. If you can do that, then by all means.. do it! But, if you have no self control… Then please, please avoid it. Save money to buy whatever it is that you want to buy instead of using a credit card. This post is suppose to help you to avoid being in financial hardship and to have savings after all.

Opt for pre-owned items

Don’t be embarrassed to opt for pre-owned items, it would make a world of a difference to your savings. Ebay is a great platform for shopping exactly that and you can read all about it in my previous post.

Give yourself a goal

I am not good at saving but in the last two years I have noticed that when I set myself a goal, it is possible! How do you think I was able to pay for my Pochette Metis and PM Palm Springs Backpack?

In conclusion, once you put all of the above tips into practice your savings should be growing by the month. Why not put the money you have left each month from your budget towards your savings, even if it’s as little as $5.00 – It could still make a huge difference, that’s $60.00 per year.

Do you have any savings tips that you would like to share with me?

Images sourced via Pixabay and Varley

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