Many people will be looking for ways to make their money go further in 2023 as the cost of living crisis continues to hit personal finances. The Mirror says that those who are unsure of how to get on top of their finances could find inspiration in a Reddit thread titled “Share ONE budgeting tip”.
Created earlier this month, the thread has accumulated over 120 comments containing hints and tips on all things money and budgeting. Some are very simple hacks while others may take a little more organisation, but overall the personal finance advice shared by these Redditors is actually pretty clever.
One of the first comments on the thread related to food shopping, and we have all experienced going into the supermarket for a handful of things and ending up spending much more than we originally planned. Reddit user rileyyj001 said before they shopped for fresh food they always checked their freezer and cupboards first to see if they actually do have ingredients to make stuff and added: “The meme is true, ‘We have food at home!’”
In response to this comment, another user ridingfurther shared how their shopping list played a vital part in their budgeting tip. They said: “On my shopping list, I include a ‘not’ section too, to remind me of things I commonly buy but don’t need this week, generally butter/cheese, carrots/onions/potatoes, beans/pulses, herbs/spices. It helps stop some ‘just in case’ purchases.”
Lists seemed to be a popular method of budgeting with the Redditors. Sunny_bearr48 shared how they had recently started making a “wish list” of all the purchases they intend to make and waiting for a month before doing so. They said: “It really led to more conscious spending, even when I thought I needed stuff, I don’t like buying a lot at once so I think a lot about the purchases on the list.
“And after a month I have a great idea about what a good price is, how badly I need it and less guilt when I actually make the purchase.”
Creating spreadsheets was also a popular choice with some users sharing how mapping out all of their purchases, both small and large, and colour coding them with how expensive they have helped them see and understand their spending habits. Some of the most practical methods of curbing expenditure were simply to “delete all shopping apps!” with another saying “unsubscribe from marketing emails”.
The aim of this was to stop yourself from “browsing” if you are bored, and to prevent the tempting offers from reaching you. In response to this, frumpyflorist said: “Use a spam email account for any purchases you make so that the marketing emails go to that account instead of the account you use for everything else. No more impulse shopping when ‘deals’ come through in your email.”
When it comes to household bills, Reddit user Lindsey-905 advised people to put aside a chunk of time once a year to call all their providers and services to try and negotiate for a better deal and “if necessary, be prepared to leave a service and try another for a better deal”.
They said: “I have had my internet ‘first year’ 50% off deal extended for going on 3 years now. My phone plan is excellent and frugal, and in October I lowered my auto insurance by $53 a month for the same coverage (and actually a little better in a few areas). It does take a little time and effort, but when you consider how much it saves over the course of a year, it’s completely worth it.”
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