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Great ways to cut down on spending

  1. Take lunch to work at least two to three times a week. This saves at least $15 a week, which translates to almost $800 a year.
  2. Take away your main temptation — access to money. Withdraw a certain amount of cash, leave your cards, and check book at home, perhaps even leaving $10 in an envelope for cab fare.
  3. The next time you are at the supermarket think twice about reaching for the more colorful and more expensive name brand. Try a few no-name labels to compare quality — often for half the price, the quality is just as good. And don’t go when you are hungry!
  4. While we are still at the supermarket — plan meals in advance and prepare a shopping list before you go shopping. Studies prove that shoppers without a list buy more items than those who come prepared.
  5. When making major purchases think before you buy! Make a pact with yourself that the next time you want to buy spontaneously, you’ll set the item aside and think about the purchase for a day or two.
  6. Do you need two cars? It can be convenient, but you could be paying excessively for it. Aside from the initial cost of the car, ongoing expenses like registration, insurance, service and petrol cost more than $2000 a year. Even catching one or two taxis, a week is cheaper than running an additional car.
  7. Even better, consider using public transport — plan your time and save on petrol, vehicle wear and tear, parking charges.
  8. Become a comparison shopper by watching advertisements — prices vary day-to-day on a whole range of goods from petrol to food.
  9. Think about buying goods second-hand. Auctions and garage sales serve up budget-priced quality items to the trained eye.
  10. Take a notepad with you and write down everything you buy over a month. You may be surprised by how much is unbudgeted for.

 

Oval: TIP  How to curb impulse buying  Next time you are tempted by an unplanned purchase, ask yourself:  • Do I really need it?  • Will I really use it?  • Will I still like it next month/next year?  • If I don’t buy it now, do I want it so much that I will make a special trip later to come back and buy it?

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