How To Spend Less Without Really Trying

I always come across articles that focus on reducing your spending and they’re always pretty simple things. The tips usually includes bringing your lunch to work instead of buying, cutting down on the number of coffees/soft drinks you purchase or reducing the amount of times you eat out. Whilst these tips are helpful, what do you do when you already do these things?

For me personally, I can’t really follow those tips – I already bring lunch from home. All I drink at work is water and tea and we’ve already cut down how often we eat out.

So I’ve had to find other areas in which I can reduce my spending.

  • Paying off my credit card every month in order to not accumulate any interest.
  • Every year I shop around for my insurances – car, contents, building and health. I’m lucky that health insurance is no longer an expense for me as my partners work covers it for us but it’s still worth checking them in case you can get a better rate for the same or better cover.
  • Every two years I check my phone and internet providers to see if there is a better option out there. If you have Foxtel or cable TV you can also check out new packages in case there is a saving there. Alternatively check out streaming services like Netflix, Stan and Presto.
  • Speaking of phones, I used to always pay an extra $10 a month for the phone that I wanted despite not really being into phones. The last phone I got came free with the contract and I saved myself $240 over the 24 months and to be honest I didn’t even care that my phone wasn’t the latest model.
  • Shop around for a mortgage loan. A couple of years ago, my partner and I moved to a new loan where we ended up with a lower rate. The difference was 0.1% but it meant a saving of $200 a month, that we can then put back into the mortgage as an extra payment. This time around we are looking at refinancing in order to borrow more to do renovations but it still means we can get a lower rate.
  • When things are on special, I buy in bulk for necessities. These can be things like toilet paper, toothpaste, paper towel, soap, dish-washing and washing machine detergents.
  • Drive instead of drinking. I’m not a huge drinker when I’m out but if I have 3 or 4 drinks it means I can’t drive and so have to get a taxi or an uber. Most of the time its a waste of money. Now I just drive and have one drink instead.
  • Be realistic about gym memberships. I quit mine about a year ago only to join another one four months ago. Unsurprisingly I haven’t gone since before Christmas so I’ve wasted around $70.
  • Have people over instead of going out. My fiance and I regularly have friends over for BBQs or dinner and whilst it can get costly, it’s still cheaper than eating out on a regular basis. You can even trim down the costs more if you delegate people to bring things like salads, dessert, bread or soft drinks and alternate whose house you go to.

The downside to these tips though is that the difference isn’t immediately visible. Its not like the time I quit smoking and had an extra $50 – $75 a week. But I guarantee there are creative ways in which you can cut down your spending without really trying too hard.

What are your money saving tips?

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