Top Ways to Cut Back on Household Expenses

Top Ways to Cut Back on Household Expenses

Living paycheck to paycheck has pretty much become the norm for me, and I know I’m not alone in this struggle. It seems like more people than ever are just trying to get by on what little they make nowadays, looking for ways to stretch their dollar further.

For me I have found that making a few changes in my life and my spending habits where household expenses are concerned has really helped to turn things around. While I wouldn’t exactly say I’m swimming in extra money, I certainly feel less stretched at the end of the month. Here’s a look at the tips I found to be the most helpful.

Start Eating at Home

It’s amazing how fast you go through money when you are eating out on a regular basis. I would start the day with breakfast at home, but then I’d grab a coffee mid-morning, go out for lunch, then get takeout or eat at a restaurant for dinner at least a few times a week.

Out of curiosity I kept all my receipts for dining out and takeout for a whole month to see how much I was spending. The total not only shocked me but left me a little disgusted. We’re talking about hundreds of dollars spent just on food! I’ve found that by planning meals in advance, creating a grocery list based on those meals, and then sticking to the list I am saving a ton of money each month all while eating healthier.

Take a Look at Your Car Expenses

While a car may be a necessity in your life, there are ways you can cut back here. Think about downsizing to a cheaper car, and take a close look at your insurance. I took advantage of very cheap car insurance with no deposit required, which again has saved me a fair amount of money. I also like to plan out my journeys a lot smarter now so I’m not wasting gas driving around in circles.

Go Green and Opt for Energy Saving Items

We all know there is a huge push to go green and make energy efficient choices nowadays, and the great thing is that these usually result in money savings. This includes things such as low flow showerheads and toilets, energy efficient lightbulbs, and energy star rated appliances.

The thing to keep in mind about cutting back on household expenses is that every little bit counts, so the more you can do, the more savings you’ll incur.

Words of Wisdom: Don’t Make Friends With Rich People

While I was at university, I had some rich friends. I don’t mean like, Mummy and Daddy paid for my tuition fees rich. I mean ‘I’m just nipping to Copenhagen for dinner’ kind of rich. I’m dead serious, this girl flew to Denmark, for ONE meal.

Now, I’m not saying I struggled for money. But I was averagely well off I guess. I could afford rent and food and stuff by working a part time job like a regular person. But I couldn’t drop, say, $200 on dinner a couple of times a week.

Do you know how hard it is to keep up with people that have that kind of money? It’s literally insane. One time I worked 2 8 hour shifts on consecutive days. One of my friends left to go to a wedding in Dubai and came back again within that time frame. She literally left later than me on Saturday and was back before my shift ended on Sunday!!! Who goes to a different continent for that long?!

So the whole time I was friends with these people, I spent money that I couldn’t really afford to spend. Because it’s embarrassing to admit that you can’t afford to throw $400 a week away on cabs around central London. Or that you are drinking weird Polish Amaretto liqueur because Disaronno is out of your price range.

Obviously, I couldn’t get a bank loan. Because I was a student who wanted money to drink in bars that only bankers and reality TV stars usually frequent, and therefore a liability. So I decided to go to one of the title loans places near me and risk my god damn car to look equally as ‘fortunate’ as the people around me.

And that’s why I now use 3 mediums of public transport to get to work in the mornings. Priorities people, get them right! Also go found the loan here if for the curious: