Stop wasting money on these frivolous spends

Whether you’re on top of your money or hugely in debt, it’s still important not to waste the money you work hard for on silly things! Lots of ways to save money are pretty straight-forward, like quitting cigarettes or opting for public transport instead of taking your car. But what about the things you haven’t even considered? You know when you swipe your card, it’s probably not the best spend, but it’s just $5 right? Wrong, and here are some tips on how to stop wasting money on frivolous spends you didn’t even think were that bad.

  • Never grocery shop when you’re hungry or have lots of time to kill. You will just end up buying things you will end up wasting. The less time you have and t he less hungry you are, the less tempted you will to walk down every aisle indecisively choosing things you don’t actually need, and certainly weren’t on your list. I usually do my groceries just after finishing work so I literally only get the stuff on my list, because I’m so keen to get it over and done with.
  • Don’t buy clothing at full price. Look in your local op shops or for the higher end fashionistas, pre-loved clothing stores and recycle boutiques. If there is an item you have fallen in love with, do your research. Websites like TradeMe, and Facebook groups like Walk in Wardrobe have revolutionised the way we can buy our second-hand clothing and are worth checking out. Check online for other distributors or buy straight from the brands website, often it can save you lots on the mark-up retail stores charge you. It’s worth waiting for a product to be shipped and lots of places offer free shipping over a certain amount.
  • Save money on gas by keeping your tyres inflated. Lots of us wouldn’t even notice, but it can really worsen your gas mileage. Save money on gas by checking your tyres regularly.
  • Stop looking at discount sites. Although you may be saving up to 70% on sites like Groupon, it doesn’t matter how you’re saving if you weren’t planning on buying it. No matter how much you tell yourself you would have spent more than that, you would have thought twice before spending large on dinner anyway! Only look on these sites for products or services you actually need, or have budgeted for like taking your partner out for birthday dinner. These sites can become quite addictive so quit the habit before you’re throwing money at it every week for specials that provide no real value to you.
  • Stop buying branded products and opt for the generic or store brand instead. Usually the ingredients are no different at all, and you’re just paying for the fancy packaging and marketing. Of course don’t skip good specials on the good brands, but sometimes you haven’t even realised there was a budget brand of soap that’s significantly cheaper. The same goes with medicine, there is usually an alternative generic brand that is far cheaper.
  • Don’t pay too much attention to expiration dates. Of course if it’s milk or bread, I’d adhere to guidelines. But when it comes to dried goods (i.e. the majority of your pantry) you have a bit more time to play with. If they have been stored in a dry, cool place they should keep for a lot longer than the expiration date. Lots of the time they are simply there as part of food and safety procedures, even honey has to have a best before, and is the only food that never goes off. You can also use websites like to see the actual shelf-life expectancy.
  • Learn simple car repairs. In this day and age there is a YouTube tutorial for just about everything, and that includes lots of basic car maintenance you have to pay your mechanic to do. Teach yourself how to service your car, how to check and replace your spark plugs or even replacing air filter. Lots of the time you can get the parts pretty cheap and you don’t have to pay them for labour. Doesn’t mean you should try all repairs yourself, but if you think you’re capable you probably are!
  • Stop wasting money on cleaning products you can make from basic cupboard products. Instead of spending big bucks on fancy drain cleaners, coat it in baking soda, and then pour vinegar and watch the grime fall away. Shampoo is designed to get rid of grease from your hair, and works like magic on shower filth. Put vinegar into a spray bottle and spray in areas prone to growing mould. Basically any cleaning product you can think of, can be made with a few simple ingredients, and is all but a Google search away.