When we work hard to make and save up money, the last thing we want to experience is losing it all because of a home repair, or to see half of our weekly wages go towards taxes and rent. Unfortunately, those things are mandatory and we can’t live in a broken house nor can we ignore paying our bills. Since a lot of our money goes into living costs, it makes sense to cut down on unnecessary purchases and stretch our pennies as far as we can.
You don’t need to be frugal to save money and get more value. All it takes is a little planning, some clever tricks and an efficient mentality to control your spending. Here are five tips that’ll help you get more value out of your purchases.
- 1. Bargain Hunting
Let’s say your microwave is broken. It costs £20 to buy a full-priced cheap replacement from a store like Argos. The frugal among us would probably call that a bargain and snatch it up instantly, but notice it’s a “full-priced” microwave. In other words, £20 is as much as the microwave is worth. Now let’s say you look on Amazon for a cheap microwave and you find one that costs £30. £10 more, so maybe it’s not worth it, right? However, if you look closely and see that it’s discounted from £50, that’s a saving of £20—a saving worth as much as the budget microwave from Argos! While £10 more might seem like you’re spending more money (you are, there’s no denying that!) you’re also getting something worth over twice the value that will work better and last longer. Of course, you’ll need to check reviews and features, but finding a fantastic deal is the fun in bargain hunting!
- Offers and Coupons
Many retailers and services offer extra value depending on how much you spend. It’s a tactic to get you to spend more, but at the end of the day you’re the one saving money on purchases, so why not? For example, you might find an online coupon for a local restaurant. It could say something like “50% off a meal for two” which doesn’t make sense if you want to eat there alone, but it could be a fantastic budget night out for you and a friend to visit.
On the internet, you can find plenty of similar deals. For example, places like MariaCasino.co.uk sometimes offer deposit bonuses. You’ll get an extra £20 (or something similar) for simply signing up—that’s a free £20 right there! Amazon offers similar deals. If you deposit £100 in gift card balance to your own Amazon account, you’ll get an extra £10. If you planned to buy something from Amazon anyway, why not snatch up that extra £10?
- Buying Refurbished or Second-Hand
Let’s face it, we can’t all afford expensive technology when it comes out. Spending upwards of £800 on a new phone or tablet device is ridiculous, so why not purchase something refurbished or second-hand? Despite the worries that everyone goes through, they usually come with warranties that are as good as manufacturer warranties, and since they’ve been refurbished or used it means they are (usually) in working condition.
You can find amazing bargains on eBay for everything from technology to video games to even shelves or desks. Craigslist is also another good example of a website where you can buy and sell items for cheap prices.