“The best way to save money is not to lose it.” –Les Williams
Let’s take a break from our stock market series and talk about money saving tips. A lot of websites and blog now offers money saving tips and this blog may be probably one among the thousands.
Its one thing to talk about how to save money it is another thing to actually do it. Taking action may probably be the hardest between both.
I do not claim to be the best when it comes to saving money, but I do have some trick up my sleeves. Here is some money saving tips that I have personally experienced and applied throughout the years, hope this will be a blessing to you:
1.) Be electric consumption conscious – Simply monitoring your electricity could save you a lot of money. This involves turning of appliances and lights that are not in use. Shifting to energy saving light bulbs will definitely help. We turn off our electric water dispenser and our refrigerator during the night time. (The coldness already stored in the fridge is enough to last to preserve the food till morning) Buying new home appliances makes a lot of difference in electric consumption. New home appliances are more energy efficient than old appliances. In the long run you save a lot on electricity. So if your air-conditioning unit is more than 5 years old, its time to replace it. It is recommended that you replace your refrigerator if it is already more than 10 years old. When we started becoming more electric consumption conscious at our house, our bill went down by almost 25 %.
2.) Save loose change – Loose change may seem insignificant. I started collecting my loose change and after more than a year when my piggy bank was full, I saved more than P 10,000.00. ($200.00 U.S plus) Who would have expected that this would amount to that much?
3.) Recycle – This is a new program that I have started to implement. I know that there is a little money to be made in recycling, but I did not really take action until just recently. So more than 3 months ago I instead of throwing away plastic and glass bottles and containers I started collecting them. Now I have 4 sacks of plastic bottles and containers ranging from cooking oil containers, ketchups, shampoos, mineral water containers, various beverages and other stuff. I am placing this in my garage and will be selling this at the end of the year, I’ll let you know how much I made from recycling (I estimate that I will fetch more than a thousand pesos from this)
4.) Not buying from convenience stores – Filipinos have commercialized “convenience stores” but we also have our small scale convenience stores called “Sari-sari” store (mom and pop stores) .This is your friendly neighborhood store where you go to when you run out of shampoo or cooking oil. This may be all right if you badly need the stuff. But if your everyday needs in the sari-sari store you might end up spending more than you expected. Take note that sari-sari store buys their stuff from the grocery store. So it is expected that they are more expensive than the grocery stores as they have already added some profit to their selling price. On the other hand the grocery stores buys directly from the distributors or the manufacturing company. When you buy directly from the grocery stores, you keep the “middle-man” out which is the sari-sari store making you save in the long run. The difference may not be so obvious when it comes to small items. The difference may only range from P 1.00 to P 10.00. But if you add all of this together and stretch this computation for a year you will see that buying from the grocery store and keeping a reasonable supply is definitely much more cheaper than regularly buying at the sari-sari store.
We have a neighborhood “mini wet market” about less than a mile from where we live. They sell various meat and vegetables products over there. The main city wet market is about less than 3 miles from where we live. So the question I have to face is should I ask our house helper to buy from the city we market or the neighborhood wet market. This question can be answered by a simple cost-benefit analysis. Going to the neighborhood market cost about P 10.00 back and forth. Going to the city wet market costs about P 15.00 back and forth, a price difference of P 5.00. But for each item you buy, let’s say 1 kilo of chicken, the price difference is from P 3.00 to P 5.00. The price for vegetables is definitely much more cheaper in the city market than in the we market. With all this in mind, it is more sensible to shop at the city wet market than the neighborhood wet market especially if you buy in bulk. Just like sari-sari stores, the neighborhood wet market is expected to be much more expensive since what they offer is convenience. A little inconvenience could save you a lot of money overtime.
5.) Eating out less – I think nobody would argue with me bringing lunch from home to work is definitely much more cheaper than buying lunch outside. Frequently eating outside especially in restaurants will surely make a dent in your pocket book. If you are a “leisure eater” and would like to satisfy your gastronomic cravings by trying out new restaurants, just try to schedule and limit your restaurant visits to once a week or once a month. This is far more economically beneficial rather than impulsively eating at a restaurant anytime you like.
More money saving tips in future posts ! Check out this blog once in a while.