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15 things to quit buying to save money!

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Do you waste money buying things you don’t need? I do! In this article, I will show you 10 things to quit buying to save money.

Advertisements and tv commercials continuously bombard us with stupid things to waste money on.

With our hectic schedules, we are not always aware of the many ways that we are throwing money down the toilet.

If you want to be smart with your money and learn how to spend less and save more, you’ll need to figure out what you are wasting your money on.

Now let’s talk about where your money actually is going and some the changes you can make right now to stop wasting money on things you just don’t need.

Here’s my list of 15 things you should stop buying right now to save money:

 

 

15 things to quit buying to save money

Sky/Cable TV

When I was first learning how to live on a budget, Sky TV was one of the first expenses I cut.

The truth is, most of the time with Sky you’re paying for a bunch of channels you don’t watch. Streaming means you’re more likely to use what you pay for every month.

For example, we have:

Altogether, I pay about £25 for these channels compared to the £75 I used to pay for Sky. That’s a massive saving if £600 per year!

If you haven’t made the switch from Sky/cable to streaming yet, that’s 600 reasons to give it a shot.

Related post:

Would you like to cut back your expenses, to save money? but don’t know where to start? Then see the post below:

 

 

Gym membership

I have been guilty of this, having a gym membership I never used.

The money would be coming out my bank account every month, while I’m trying to convince myself I would start to use it.

You need to get rid of it – ASAP

If you haven’t been using it regularly and consistently for months on end you are not going to do it now.

According to This Is Money, Brits waste a collective £25billion a month each year on subscriptions they don’t use or want, and a massive 12% of that is on gym memberships alone!

That’s a whole lot of money!

If you don’t use your gym membership, look at alternative ways of exercise instead. I have invested in resistant bands and an exercise bike. I prefer this way, and there are plenty of workout tutorials on YouTube to follow.

If your finances are tight, then this one has to go!

 

Branded food/drinks

People love brands names, but in my opinion, the majority of the time, you are paying just for the name!

I have ditched name products and shop at Aldi and sometimes Lidl majority of time. There are alternative items of food/drink, are just as good if not better in some cases.

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The money you save week in week out is massive!

The Same goes with clothes, I use to buy brand and designer all the time. Not anymore, there are cheaper alternatives out there, such as Boohoo, Primark and ASOS where you can look smart for cheaper.

As long as I look good and feel comfortable in my clothes and shoes, that’s all that matters to me, not what branded name I’m wearing.

Top tip:

See my post on cutting back grocery spending:

 

 

Bottled water

We tend to not notice how expensive and how much it adds up when we are constantly buying bottled water.

A lot of us are also brought up believing that tap water is less healthy and more poisonous because of the smell of chlorine but there is a simple solution to changing that.

if you put a jug of water covered in fridge the chlorine taste will disappear, you just need to make sure that you replace it every 24 hours because there wouldn’t be enough chlorine to prevent bacteria growing if you keep it in the fridge for longer without changing it.

I used to love sparkling water and it had to be a particular brand because of the bubbles, it cost £1 per litre plus the average bottle of water is about 80p.

If you drink about 5lts a day on average as a household and each bottle cost 50p that means you will spend £2.50 a day on water. That is £17.50 a week, £70 a month and a whopping £840 a year.

 

Eating out

Eating out is a nice treat for every now and again, but when you get into the habit of dining out because you can’t be bother to cook, it becomes and expense game.

After a long day a work, when you’re tired, it’s just the easier option. I’ve done it before, we’ve all done it at one point of time. The thought of cooking after a stressful day is a chore, but there are ways around this.

Batch cooking food is a great way to give yourself a break from the kitchen. For example, you could cook a batch of meals at the weekend and then freeze them. Each day you will then have a meal prepared without having to cook from scratch.

I do this with my workout meals for the week, it saves me a lot of time.

For a family of four, just by eating out a few times a month, you are talking about a few hundred pounds/dollars per month, if not more.

Top tip:

Supercooks is a website that helps you re-create recipes from leftovers.

Just list out the ingredients and let SuperCooks tell you what to cook! Never again will you have to stare at those leftovers in the fridge and wonder what to do with it.

 

 

Branded fizzy drinks

I know fizzy drinks aren’t the healthiest and I’ll admit to drinking more of them than I probably should. However, I don’t drink alcohol anymore, so it’s nice having something I really like to sip on of an evening.

I know plenty of people that will only drink one of the other of the leading brands of fizzy drink, especially cola, but with the introduction of the sugar tax and supermarket offers seeming to be less frequent we found we were paying between £1.50 and £2.00 a bottle.

Giving up fizzy drinks completely would, of course, have been the most frugal thing to do – but we found this ended up making it a sort of forbidden fruit and we’d end up popping to the corner shop and getting some even though the prices were crazy expensive just because we were craving.

So as a money-saving compromise we decided to try and find an alternative that was reasonably palatable. I’ll be honest, nothing does taste quite as good as the branded ones but we have got used the cheaper version and the savings are worth it.

Our favourite is Aldi’s own brand Lemonade and Orangeade. At around 40p a bottle it’s about a 3rd of the price of the real thing.

 

Pre-packed/ prepped fruit and vegetables

It comes as no surprise that convenience cost more money. supermarkets charge you to cut your products for you. Prime example:  FRUIT; you buy a whole pineapple (800g and peeled yourself) and it will cost you £1, you buy pre-packed chopped pineapple and for the equivalent size you will pay £4 meaning you are being charged £3 for conveniences. This premium expense goes across most pre-packed products.

vegetables

Solution: Buy food that is fresh and whole and pay yourself the premium and chop it up yourself. This goes for microwave meals and grated cheese as well.

Savings: Using the pineapple theory as an example, if you a super pineapple fan and you buy it twice a week which is equivalent to buying one big one. That is £4 a week, £16 a month, £192 a year

Just to add up the total savings just from the three items above before we continue, we have saved a grand total of £1542/ $2000.

 

 

Brand named medication/drugs

From allergy pills to pain relief and everything in between, the brand-named versions of over-the-counter medication/drugs are sometimes up to four times more expensive than their generic counterparts. That’s insanity!

When looking for tablets and medicines, check the active ingredients on the side of the box to help you find a cheaper alternative to the expensive branded versions.

medication

You can even go one step further and check the PL Code, which is a unique number given to each drug on the market.

Sometimes the exact same tablets made by the exact same manufacturers are packaged in different boxes and sold at very different prices.

Find out more from the Money Saving Expert.

 

Items just because they on sale

In the past, the sale section used to be my weakness. I would buy items just because they were on sale. I thought the deals were too good to pass up. Even if I didn’t really need the item, I convinced myself to buy it by saying “I might use/wear this someday”.

Now when I think about my previous spending habits, that logic seems kind of silly. Today I stopped buying items just because they are on sale. Instead, I only buy items if I need them or I have the money available in my budget to purchase them.

 

Starbucks/fancy coffee

Oh, who doesn’t love a fancy coffee? But seriously, if you’re a bit of a coffee addict and find yourself popping into your favourite coffee shop on your way to work every day, think about how much the cost of those coffees is adding up over a month!

Cutting down the coffees so it’s an occasional treat rather than an everyday thing can make huge savings.

You don’t have to give up coffee of course – invest in a good thermos or travel mug and bring your own with you.

 

Takeaways

This one is hard; I’m a total sucker for a takeaway! Especially when you’ve had a hard day and you just don’t have the energy to cook. The option of someone else cooking your food and bringing it to your door is just so tempting!

They are expensive though, so trying to reduce the number of takeaways you buy can really save money on your budget.

A great idea is to make sure you include some really easy meal options when you go shopping, so that when you’re feeling exhausted you still have something super easy you can just throw in the oven.

 

Impulse purchases

As a former shopaholic, I know all about making impulse purchases. That rush of excitement when something catches your eye and the instant feeling of gratification when you’re about to make a purchase.

But after the purchase has been made, those happy feelings seem to disappear as quickly as they came. Soon they’re replaced by feelings of guilt or frustration regarding the impulse buy.

One of the ways I’ve been able to improve my spending habits is by asking myself the following questions before making a purchase:

  • Why am I here?
    Am I here because I’m bored? Is it because I’m sad or feeling lonely? Did I have a bad day?
  • How will I pay for it?
    Can I afford to pay for this using cash today? Do I need to put it on credit?
  • What if I wait?
    Do I really need this? Will I still want this a month from now? Does this purchase align with my spending goals and values?
  • What else can I do with this money?
    Is this the best way to spend this money? Can I use it for something else? Can I put it into my savings or towards paying off debt?

 

Impulse items near the checkout

The checkout lane at the grocery store is a danger zone, my friend. The aisles are filled with crap that you don’t need but is oh-so-tempting, am I right?

There are two ways to avoid falling into the impulse buy trap when checking out.

One, commit to developing serious tunnel vision when it’s time to pay. Or two, take advantage of your grocery store’s pick-up service.

Most of the time pick-up is free when you have a minimum dollar amount on your order. Letting someone else shop for you means you don’t have to worry about spending on impulse.

 

Uber-ing everywhere

You may think that getting around isn’t too expensive, but if you do it enough times, it can be. It might be like a reflex for you at this point, but if where you’re going isn’t too far, try to resist the impulse of using that all too familiar app.

 

Gadgets

Nowadays, the gadgets we own have become a status symbol; if you don’t own the latest iPhone, then that’s just sad. Here’s the truth: that kind of thinking is not only shallow, but laughably immature. As early as now, you should have the mindset that your material possessions are good for as long as they serve their purpose.

 

15 things to quit to save money – Final thought

Making small changes to your shopping habits is one of the best money saving ideas out there.

These might only be small purchases and a few pounds here and there, but it makes a difference and it all adds up pretty quickly.

Just by cutting out these unnecessary purchases, you could save thousands in a year. I don’t know about you, but I’d say that’s worth giving up my daily Starbucks for.

What are your money saving tips? I would love to hear them.

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