There is nothing worse than the thought of completely going without things in a bid to save money and while this can be beneficial, there are some things that you can cut down on rather than totally giving them up. Doing this will not only make you less unpopular with your family, but it will also make the process of saving money appear to be just that little bit easier and more achievable long term. Here are just some of the things that you can cut down to save money.
Soap Powder & Fabric Softener
I like branded liquid capsules and fabric softeners just as much as the next person, but they are some of the things that I can save money on without making life uncomfortable. I save money by buying own brand liquid capsules (the Tesco ones are not that bad actually!) and cheaper fabric softener. I will though always look out for offers. Tesco often have price reduced fabric softeners or soap powders, and if I have the budget, I will buy several when they are on offer if the price is good enough so that I save more money over the month.
While I am sure the silkiest most quilted toilet tissues are just divine, I can live without them. I do not quite venture into the lowest end of the product range as I think some of them are not actually that great value long term, with 5 of us in the house the cheapest loo rolls seem to disappear quickly! I do by own brand or any that is on offer but if the budget is particularly tight, I will go further down the scale to whatever I can afford.
Just like loo rolls, there is just no need to buy the silky smooth enriched with essence of youth and vitality etc ones, although I would love to be able to afford to. I buy own brand ones, although if we all have a cold and start to get sore noses, I may treat us to a box or 2 then… The own brand ones I buy are much cheaper and at least once a month they are buy 2 for £3 for double packs. The savings all add up.
I love my cat, but even he does not warrant steak while we eat minced meat. I tend to buy him cheaper brand food and large bags of biscuits. There is quite a large difference in the price of cat food, each week you can save pounds, not pence.
Some breakfast cereals are difficult to replace with a cheaper, own brand alternative but in my house, we also eat lots of the common ones, like honey nut cornflakes and sugar puffs. Own brand alternatives are bearable so we buy them when we can to save more money.
Toiletries are an opportunity to save money. You can buy own brand equivalents for soap, bubble bath and the likes for example. Often supermarkets have multi pack deals on lots of things such as shampoo and toothpaste, so it can be worth stocking up and saving money in the long run. Razor blades are terribly expensive nowadays, with not much change from a tenner for a pack of 4 Gillette Fusion blades. You can save money by buying much cheaper own brand alternatives, or like me you can go the electric shaver route. I was a bit doubtful at first.
Biscuits and Snacks
I am a sucker for biscuits and snacks and my kids love them too! Until our local shop stopped stocking them, we used to buy a lot of broken biscuits. This gave us a wide selection of top brand biscuits for peanuts in comparison. Now (or until we find a new stockist) we buy own brand biscuits mainly, especially for lunch-box chocolate bars.
Own brand medicines are part of the generics market, where after a certain amount of years medicine makers must make the recipe freely available so that other companies can make it. By law generics must follow strict guidelines and recipes, so you are literally paying 3-4 times the price for a box, not the contents.
I know that I take my internet connection for granted. Having worked in the IT sector in some form or other for many years, a lot of my life has been dependent on the net. In the age of fibre internet and companies having to offer unlimited internet that is well, unlimited there is much wider a choice of products that are useful to all, rather than technophobes who do not actually use it. Gone are the days where I had to pay a premium price, I now use standard fibre internet providers. My Plusnet line is only £19.99 a month and my BT one is a little more. (I must have 2 for work reasons). You can get a good deal on Plusnet fibre broadband if you take their phone service too. I think Martin Lewis said that it is one of the best deals in a while if you pay the rental in advance.
You may notice that I have not resorted to “no frills” products. My aim is to be as careful with my money as possible, without feeling the impact on my daily life. And if I need to some weeks, I can always resort to no frills as an extra option.
What do you cut back on to save money in your house?