Shopping is one of those activities we do daily, often without thinking. At the same time, it’s when our hard-earned cash leaves our wallet for good. And once it’s gone, it’s gone forever.
If you think you should be a little mindful about how much and where you spend, you’re not wrong.
Warning, this is not a guide to easy and comfortable spending. A lot of what’s written below is detailed and even time consuming. But if you’re struggle to save money or you’re on a mission to save, you’ve come to the right place.
Before we start, I’ll be a pain and remind you that you should really have a budget. It’s such a good way to balance your relationship with money and know how much you’re currently spend and where. If you haven’t got one already – here’s one that’s simple and easy to use.
Ok, now to my tips. Some of them you may already know, but never use. Maybe because the discount may appear too small or a lot of work. This guide is no different. You won’t save anything, until you actually implement these ideas. So, snap out of it! If you change nothing, nothing will change.
Here we go:
- Sign up to newsletters when you're considering buying anything. You'll get 10% off at most websites. Discount might only be valid for 14 days, so time it well.
- Sometimes when subscribing to a newsletter you need to provide your birthday - means you'll get a voucher gift every birthday. Bonus!
- Buy online entertainment book - works even for weekly grocery shopping. You can use it to buy e-gift cards that will save you 5% (5% of say 300 pw = $15 per pop x 52 = $780 per year.
- Movie tickets (especially important if you have little kids - going to movies more often) – Use your NRMA membership/Optus account /Entertainment book. Can be up at 40% discount!
- Like to have a drink? Buy your alcohol cost effective way - Check all the Woolies/Coles receipts before buying alcohol, you can get some great deals.
- One more tip on grog - Check newsletters for any sales e.g. Dan Murphy’s when there's a good wine sale. Take advantage of any free shipping or click & collect.
- Shop online if you can (deliveries or Pick & Collect service) and keep an online grocery list of your usual weekly purchase. This will deter you from over buying or impulse buying. This also shows you when items are on sale. If it's a good sale, buy up & store it, if you can.
- Always keep all your warranty receipts. Many items are covered under replacement warranty for 1-2 years e.g. kettles, etc. A little bit of heat and a receipt in your hand can result in a freebie.
- Don’t be ashamed to check weekly grocery catalogues. They come out on Wednesdays. Don't feel loyal to only one store. Shop between Woolworths/ALDI/Reject Shop & Coles depending on the specials.
- Never (ever) pay full price for toilet paper, Napisan, dish washing detergent, hand wash refills. They’re always on special somewhere.
- Buy beautiful hand wash bottle with your hand wash - once it runs out use cheaper hand wash refills.
- Cook in bulk and freeze. Simple and cost-effective.
- Birthday cards – people leave them to last minute, which often results in impulse purchase of an expensive card. Instead, buy a box of blank cards from newsagent. This works out to be approximately $1 per card rather than $5 you pay for convenience (on the day you need it).
- Always Google the item you’re buying, even if it's at the store while purchasing it. The chances are, you can find it cheaper elsewhere. Most places will price match because they don't want to lose your business.
- Subscribe to any discount sites. E.g. Ozdiscount. It will save you hundreds, if not thousands.
- Buy birthday presents/Christmas presents during the sales (EOFY, January, etc). But always check return & warranty policy. It might be not worth it to buy too far in advance.
Did you find these tips helpful?
Article by Michal Bodi | Senior Financial Planner
General Disclaimer: This article contains information that is general in nature. It does not take into account the objectives, financial situation or needs of any particular person. You need to consider your financial situation and needs before making any decisions based on this information. Please seek personal financial advice prior to acting on this information.