Seriously Saving Money

Now that we have managed to collectively talk ourselves into a recession, I thought it would be a good time to post some serious money saving tips. I write this in honour of my son Adam, who on Monday was made redundant from the Reject Shop. To his credit, he has four I.T. job interviews in the next two days. Well done Son!
This list is a collection that I have been adding to over the past couple of months, and there are one or two that I don’t subscribe to, like the #16. The rest are very sound advice in these troubled times and most also help you to reduce your carbon footprint.
1. Be a one-car or no-car family.
2. Get rid of your mobile phone. Don’t just lower your plan, get rid of your phone altogether. Don’t buy phones for your children. Make them buy their own on pre-paid. They will soon appreciate the true value of money.
3. For your home phone, cut call waiting, long distance, caller id. These are not needs unless they are provided free of charge.
4. Get rid of your cable/satellite TV. This will also save you electricity and give you 15 or more hours a week of spare time and about $50 or more a month back into your pocket.
5. Stop eating out. Take lunch to work with you.
6. Cook from scratch.
7. Drink water from the tap.
8. Grow as much food as possible on your property.
9. Buy used clothing. Use hand-me downs.
10. Mend your clothes.
11. Stop shopping. Only go to the shop when absolutely necessary. Try to limit your shopping to once every two weeks. Buy enough so that you don’t have to go more than that. Don’t ever run to the shop for just one thing.
12. Buy generic. Get the no-name brand food and generic brand medicine.
13. Eat less expensive foods, try: potatoes, beans, rice, soups
14. Turn your thermostat to 25C in the summer, and to 18C (or less) in the winter. Use a fan in summer and put on another layer in winter.
15. Learn to make things instead of buying them.
16. Get rid of your pets (extreme I know), unless they are a food source (chickens, goats, pigs, cows).
17. Cut hair at home. For the price of some clippers and some good scissors, you will have paid for your clippers in two or three haircuts. (Ever wondered why my hair is so short, my clippers are well used!)
18. Use the real thing instead of disposable.
19. Dry you clothes outside on the line, or on a clothes airer.
20. Turn off appliances and lights when not in use. You should be able to reduce your energy bill by at least 50% with a bit of effort.
Most of them are simple and easy to achieve, but all take will power and behavioural changes.
Good luck, we will all need to tighten our belts soon enough.


  1. says

    Hey Gav, all great tips.
    @ Dad…who convinced you dad to cut the home phone and go mobile phone and broadband! Its so much cheaper, I havent had a landline phone for years as the prepaid mobile caps are pretty generous and now with prepaid broadband internet I can surf to my heart content!
    Your electicity consumption can be halved, I did it, even breeding a gazillion tropical fish! They earn me pocket money each quarter with offspring and are funny as heck personalities and play with me like a cat or dog would, seriously!
    There is no excuse like right now to reduce your expenditure to increase your revenue, and continue to find ways to save money even when your back on top of financail hardship, I’m living proof of poverty and I eat well, have hobbies, and clothed fashionably and bathe each night.

  2. john (dad) says

    sorry to here about adam. hope his job interviews go well. by switching our phone from landline and iternet via land line to wireless internet and to mobile phone (own our phone .no contracts) we saved $50 month.

  3. says

    Re #16 we get a discount on our house insurance because we have two big dogs – and they have finally started to chase the possums out of the vegetable garden at night (the dogs not the insurance company) – and it is a proven fact that people with pets are generally healthier and happier so less drain on the medical system

    Hows that for justification??????LOL


  4. says

    Hi Gavin,

    That’s a really useful list, although there are exceptions of course.

    Take caller ID. For me, it’s a necessity and worth the extra few pounds a month I pay for it. When my ex first left, had I not had it then I doubt I would have answered the phone at all – I’d have been too worried it was him. Nowadays, when I decide to have an evening chilling, I don’t answer the phone unless it’s my mum because I know she wouldn’t call in the evening unless it’s really important.

    I couldn’t get rid of my pets either. They’re company for me, and I’ve learned a lot from them. And when little Jack’s purring away on my lap and Poppy’s nestling down on the sofa beside me with her head on my thigh, I’m relaxed and happy. For many, their pets are their only reason for being, especially the elderly.

    Also, my mobile phone is really important to me. I’m worried I’d get ill and wouldn’t be able to get help without it. It’s also important to me that my daughter has a phone so that I can get hold of her in an emergency.

    Otherwise I do most of what’s on your list and the ones I don’t do are things I would do if I could. Like growing veg, but I’d really like to give that a bit of a bash next year and see how it goes. Maybe I can, maybe I can’t.

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