Don’t throw your money away – Part 1

It’s relatively easy for your monthly budget to spring some leaks that are easily overlooked. You may not view it as throwing away money, but that isn’t the correct mindset to have if you plan on saving.

As the famous Benjamin Franklin saying goes, “A penny saved is a penny earned”. An extra R50 in your bank account is an extra R50 no matter how it got there (or even if it never left!).

Here are five tips to prevent you from “throwing away” money:

Stop impulse shopping
Impulsive shopping leads to purchases that you want, but don’t necessarily need. If you have no idea what you are shopping for then you will usually end up making impulse decisions on-the-spot rather than shopping for the best possible price.

  • Make a detailed shopping list.
  • Don’t shop for food on an empty stomach!
  • Take your time so you can make better choices.

Stop buying containers if there are refills available
Many products, such as coffee, spices, cleaning products etc, can be bought as refills so that you don’t need to turf out the containers every time – they cost less and are more eco-friendly.

  • Save your containers and refill them.
  • Shop for larger size refills and save even more.

Stop food from spoiling
Food wastage has been in the news lately with some European countries introducing laws to prevent supermarkets from throwing away food and instead donate it to charities. If you are throwing out food it means you need to plan better. This is the closest thing to throwing money in the bin (besides throwing actual money in the bin).

  • Make it a habit to check the fridge.
  • Plan meals according to the fresh produce you have and the produce that is nearing the end of it’s use-by date.
  • Freeze your leftovers.

Stop being afraid to use coupons.
Some people will jump at the chance to get 15% off an item, or a two for one deal, but having to present the store with a coupon first will make them shy away from the saving. There is no shame in saving a buck, you will be the one laughing to the bank. Loyalty cards are another great way to get some savings out of your shopping trips.

  • Always swipe your loyalty cards.
  • Save slips that give you cash-back or discounts.
  • Plan your shopping trips so you remember to take your loyalty cards, coupons, slips, etc. with you.
  • Also try to remember shopping bags. Having a less wasteful approach to spending is also helpful to the environment.

Stop wasting money on ATM fees
Many people are not familiar with their bank charges. It just doesn’t make sense to spend money to get access to your own money. Luckily, these days debit cards are accepted at most till point, but there are occasions when you need cash on-hand.

  • Try the cash back option at the supermarket.
  • If you must draw cash from an ATM, make sure that you draw from your bank’s ATM.

Feel as though your budget is full of holes? Let’s take a look at it together over a cup of coffee!

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