Save The Day
Tired of end-of-the-month Salticrax? Make your money last much longer
1. Switch Off Your Geyser.
‘A geyser uses plenty of energy, which has an enormous impact on your electricity bill,’ says Chris Boshoff, a financial expert. Switch off your geyser when you leave for work in the morning and only switch it back on in the evening. Chris also recommends having a shower instead of a bath, as it uses almost half the amount of
2. Start A Potluck Club.
Instead of going out and spending a small fortune on expensive restaurant meals, entertain at home. With your group of friends, come up with a monthly schedule of who will host the dinner and when, and for each gathering, every person brings something to contribute, such as a starter, dessert or wine. This way, you will see your buddies while saving money.
3. Cut Down On The Take-Aways.
If you love a cup of java in the morning, invest in a coffee machine rather than buying that daily cappuccino. If you’re guilty of buying lunch every day, put aside 20 minutes in the evening to make a salad or a sandwich for the next day. Think about it: if you’re running down to the corner cafe and spending R25 on lunch daily, you will be out of pocket by R525 every month. That’s the price of a full tank of petrol!
4. Shop Bigger And Better.
Plan ahead and do a thorough grocery shop once a week or month. Day-to-day shopping can result in unnec-essary, impulse buys that eat into your wallet. Always take a shopping list and stick to it. ‘If you buy something else, add it to your list so you can account for where your money went to,’ says Chris.
5. Pick Frozen Vegetables.
Buying in bulk may make it difficult to keep fresh veggies, so choose frozen ones instead. There’s also very little nutritional difference, so don’t think you’re missing out on the added value. If fresh products are not used straight away, they will lose nutrients and become rotten, which means you’ll have to toss them (and the money they cost) in the bin.
6. Save On Bank Costs.
Use your credit card instead of your debit card. Once you receive your salary, make sure you deposit all of it into your credit card account right away. ‘Most transactions on credit cards are free, and it can help you earn interest on a positive bank balance, as well as build up a good credit history,’ says Chris. If, however, you don’t have a credit card, use your debit card instead of cash as the transaction fee is lower than drawing money.
7. Read Store Leaflets.
These are really good to compare prices of items across different shops. It can save you a couple of rands every month and even add up to hundreds at the end of the year.
8. Join A Lift Club.
This is perfect if you live near a colleague – it will cut petrol costs and minimise the general wear and tear of your car. ‘Find parents in your neighbourhood or friends of your children who can share the responsibility of driving your kids to school or to play dates,’ says Chris.
9. Be Creative With Leftovers.
There’s no need to waste food when you can transform it. Last night’s leftover dinner can be today’s lunch, fruit past its sell-by date can become a delicious smoothie, or veggies on the verge of becoming vrot can be turned into soup. Think about what you can do with something before binning it.
10. Renegotiate Your Insurance.
When you apply for insurance, you are quoted on your risk profile – the younger you are, the higher your risk and the more pricey your premium. ‘When it’s time for the annual increase, ask your insurer to give you a new quote. Your premium will most likely drop,’ says Chris.