101 ways to save money

101 Uses For is popular and let's hope it stays that way. Our second book is presently called 101 tips for self sufficiency; we will certainly dip into this section for ideas. So post away and let's try and get at least one thread up to 101.
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mrsflibble
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101 ways to save money

Post: #117243 mrsflibble
Wed Jul 30, 2008 7:50 pm

We're a little on the skint side. We've cut out take-aways and normally only take soph swimming on the 50p entry for adults day (today was an exception which came out of the family allowance ;) ). I make a lot of her clothes and don't buy much for myself; when I do it's second hand.
If I'm putting the oven on it has to be for more than one thing; for instance today we had toad in the hole for dinner but I also roasted some squash to freeze fo soup bases and a whole chicken leg to be stripped for jim's sandwiches.
We tend to stick to own brand/economy products and I'm not afraid to try economy products. Don't start on at me about organic box schemes, it's not a viable option for us right now.
Our meat this month was all reduced.
Diesel for the car is a must, but when James is off work we tend to walk a lot. On local-ish journeys (i.e. basildon to grays) it's actualy cheaper to take the car than it is the bus. Again, please don't have a go at me for having a car and using it.

So how else can I cut costs?! please enlighten me!!!!!
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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #117249 The Riff-Raff Element
Wed Jul 30, 2008 8:09 pm

Sounds to me like you're already doing an awful lot - cutting out the take-aways is a good way to save: the mark up is just appaling on those things. When I've been skint I saved a bit by buying bulk where I could to save a few pennies, given up meat and lived on soup and pulses - possibly easier if you're single with no plans to get into a new relationship. Not for the first few weeks anyway until the bubbling settles down :mrgreen: - and baked my own bread, which I worked out to be cheaper than buying it, even if the oven had to go on. And if you're in the habit of multi-tasking with the oven anyway...

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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #117250 snapdragon
Wed Jul 30, 2008 8:12 pm

It really depends on how long you expect to be on the skint side MrsF - making clothes is great and a long term saving but if it's more short-term you'd need to concentrate on daily expenses.
Food - when in very skint situation i'd always buy meat that would 'stretch' - minced and stewing meat instead of chops/burgers and make meat and vegetable pies, shepherds pie, meatloaf all with added pulses and grains -- basically trying to make a (previous) week's worth of meat last a fortnight, with the addition of veggies to make it stretch.
Stop the daily paper
Avoid waste (which I'm sure you already do)
Car journeys - try to shop less often if you have to travel for the shops, or shop whilst on the way to or from work if thats practicable
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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #117251 Ratty
Wed Jul 30, 2008 8:15 pm

This probably sounds silly but I use every tea-bag twice! Thus doubling the amount of time a box of tea-bags last!

Buying things on BOGOF or reduced which can be frozen or used up quickly.

Wee wipes! They really do save the cost of toilet paper!

I'll try to think of more but you're doing loads already MrsF :mrgreen:
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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #117256 tiggy
Wed Jul 30, 2008 9:01 pm

I can recommend breadmaking especially if you can make a weeks worth and freeze it.My husband is the baker in our house and also makes homebrew which is a massive saving as we both like a few scoops.Eating mostly vegetarian food keeps our bills down and all my cooking is best suited to cheaper cuts of meat if I make meat recipes,usually about twice a week.We also make extra amounts of stuff that will freeze so we arent tempted to the chippy if nobody can be bothered to start cooking ,sort of home made ready meals.Plan meals and shop to a list, freeze small amounts of leftovers which can be used up in some other "creation" at a later date.Hunt energy vampires! what gets left on ,what is surprisingly greedy, what still consumes electricity even when it appears totally switched off [our washing machine is one of these which has to be switched off at the socket to be properly off] Good Luck and do tell us anything that works really well for you .

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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #117261 Ratty
Wed Jul 30, 2008 10:29 pm

Do a finance over-haul too. We have recently changed our car insurance and moved to a capped rate for our energy suppliers. Oh and moved to a 0% balance transfer on our credit card. This has probably saved us over £50 a month. We use http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/ for finding the best finance deals.

And I'd highly recommend you use your awesome design and sewing skills to get yourself selling on somewhere like Etsy or Ebay MrsF. Seriously, do this!
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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #117262 Annpan
Wed Jul 30, 2008 10:30 pm

My current fave is lentils in all food stuff, most food just seems SO expensive these days, but a handful on lentils can stretch a lasagne, cottage pie, tomatoes sauce to twice as many meals. Peas and beans are good for bulking out meat or cutting out meat too. Dried is even cheaper.

Cut out all takeaways - they are so expensive, you could feed your family for a week on that money.

Cut out fizzy juice and even squash - We stretch one litre bottle of squash between the 3 of us a month.
Same goes for chocolate biscuits, crisps, etc. especially if you get these in the regular weekly shop.

Take a picnic, whenever you are going out - I have been know to take sandwiches when going shopping in town.

Switch energy supplier and (for anyone that hasn't been listening to Martin Lewis) get a capped rate NOW...NOW... no really NOW!!! we managed to switch on Monday but most of the products are being removed from sale now... beware giant energy price hikes in the near future.


Something I heard recently was that it takes 3 weeks to establish a 'habit' so if you can change your lifestyle to more economical then in 3 weeks it will seem perfectly normal and become second nature.
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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #117302 red
Thu Jul 31, 2008 8:20 am

not helpful if in rented accomodation, but we switched to a water meter and reckon on saving a packet. if you are on a meter, don't flush the loo unless necessary.. have a house watering can to collect water in when you need to run the tap (eg until the hot water comes through)

keep financial records, and see where your money is actually going, then you know were to target. Divide your available cash into daily amounts (after bills, diesel etc) then try to spend slightly less than that a day. When I first had my son we were so broke, sometimes I would be looking at an 80p budget for a day..you can dumb down meals alot and still eat healthily - beans on wholemeal toast.

make soup. cheap and filling

if buying chicken, it is actually cheaper to buy a whole bird and cut it up yourself, then buy the separate parts, and then you get the bones to make chicken soup with as a bonus
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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #117391 Milims
Thu Jul 31, 2008 7:34 pm

Go shopping towards the end of the day. Lots of stuff is reduced to clear at about 5pm - sometimes even down to pennies. Go for stuff that you can freeze - or with veg stuff you can use in the next couple of days. As for fruit - supermarkets seem to put a sell by date on them that runs out before they are even ripe enough to eat! :? I just picked up 2 large, organic chickens for less than £5 each - half price - one is in the oven now for tomorrows tea/ curry the next day/sandwick filling and soup and the other is in the freezer.
Look around for banks that offer a budget account - one that you pay all your bills out of. Set up a payment system from your current account for the total of your monthly bills (either monthly for the lot if you are paid monthly or 1/4 of the total if paid weekly IYKWIM). They usually offer an overdraft facility that is the total of your bills, without interest or charges, on the proviso that the payment system is set up so they know the money is coming in. That way you know your bills will be paid and you won't have to pay OD interest or penalty charges if pay day and bill day don't co-incide. Also if you put your bill money to one side like this you know exactly what you have left to spend on the other stuff so you aren't tempted to rob Peter to pay Paul!
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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #117676 LBR
Fri Aug 01, 2008 11:53 pm

Throw odd bits of this and that in the crock pot. Add a bunch of spices you like about 15 minutes before it's done. Easy way to use up food and have a meal.

Eat legumes instead of animal products.

Drink water instead of other liquids.

Buy ingredients, rather than pre-packaged foods.

Grains are cheaper than noodles.

Buy the least expensive produce per serving.

Eat before you go grocery shopping. Saves from impulse buying.

Buy clothes from thrift/charity shops, garage sales, etc.

Swap haircuts.

Try to keep the indoor temperature as close to the outdoor temperature as you can tolerate.

Take a sink bath every few days instead of a real one.

Use baking soda for deodorant and for brushing teeth.

Don't use the oven in the summertime.

Only flush the toilet when you absolutely have to.

Get rid of cable/satellite tv.

Write down every penny you spend/earn. Keep a running total on paper and in your mind.

Give away things rather than buy new things. Makes the house neater and saves money.

Avoid people who are bad influences on you. Make contacts with other frugalites.

Do not renew periodical subscriptions unless you need them for your profession or other important reading.

Check out books and films from the library, rather than buying them.

Use coconut or olive oil for body lotion. Healthy lotion is pricey.

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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #118192 QuakerBear
Wed Aug 06, 2008 11:38 am

Shop around for all your utilities.

With regards to the flushing the loo thing, I tell Mr. QB, "if it's yellow let it mellow, if it's brown flush it down". This could work with your daughter.

Start making Christmas pressies now.

Reduce your use of the bathroom light, just leave the door open.

Take baths together if you don't have a shower.

And in the mean time have a big supportive hug. Things may be tight now but they probably won't always be.
QuakerBear

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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #118203 Thomzo
Wed Aug 06, 2008 12:27 pm

I've been racking my brains here but came to the conclusion that I'd be teaching grandmother to suck eggs with you Mrs F. I doubt you waste much money anyway. So I was wondering if there was anyway you could make money without it interfering with your full time job of Sophie raising.

Have you thought about doing something like delivering leaflets or becoming an Avon rep? You could do both of these without a car and take Soph along for the walk.

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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #119035 Flo
Tue Aug 12, 2008 12:10 pm

Have you joined your freecycle group? You can often pick up bags of clothes, toys, or replacement household items this way.

Have you any garden space or spaces for tubs where you could grow cash crops like salad items which are easy and the seeds are cheap? These are things that produce food far in excess of the cost of the packet of seeds.

Have you thought about the items you use for cleaning? Surprisingly distilled white vinegar and soda bicarbonate will cover most of your household cleaning stuff and once you find a source for them are far cheaper than the items sold in the supermarket.

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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #119042 the.fee.fairy
Tue Aug 12, 2008 12:24 pm

I agree with you getting an etsy account MrsF. Ebay's ok for selling mainstream thngs, but Etsy's for the indie specialist!

Sell lots of crap on Ebay. When i'm skint, i tend to take a fiver to a boot sale, pick up some bits and pieces and then sell them on on Ebay. Usually, i manage to at least douoble the outlay (especially if i manage to pick up clothing for 50p a go...).

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Re: 101 ways to save money

Post: #119488 sleepyowl
Fri Aug 15, 2008 10:29 am

I put a bottle filled with water & sealed in the cistern ofthe toilet, buy economy veg when mine is not flourishing, but thinking of going to Dudley market as it is cheaper still. Switch things of when not in use & use energy saving lightbulbs, I tend to switch off the dryer function on the washer drier when we have decent enough weather & always have it on a max of 30C
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