I’ve spent a lot of time over the last 10 years looking for great tips to save money.
Whether it’s in dedicated money magazines or just by searching Google or Pinterest, there are always great tips to save money out there but there are also some really frustrating ones as well.
If you’re looking for savings tips that often frustrate people more than do good, you might want to check these ones out. Yes they are useful (and we have covered them here at Savings Guide) but boy do they annoy me.
Remember, while the tip itself annoys me, each tip in their entirety do have some merit that you shouldn’t be ashamed to progress.
Just stop spending
This is the tip I always find the most irritating. If it was that easy, I’d be doing it already right? It’s not particularly helpful – it doesn’t address the how or the why, which in all honesty, is exactly what you need to figure out before you just stop spending.
Make your own gifts
I feel sorry for any family member or friend who receives a handmade gift from me. I am not the crafty type, in fact I am more of a Pinterest fail type. If you are the creative type, knock yourself out and make gifts but honestly, unless your product is good and you’d want to receive it, give it a wide berth. You should definitely re-think gift giving as part of your savings strategy though!
Have a garage sale
I love garage sales but they are generally other people’s garage sales. I had one about a year ago when I was about to move house. I enlisted the help of a friend who brought along her own stuff and early (very early) on the Saturday morning we were ready. We had a steady stream of people who came through and looked at our stuff but it was weird. First of all, I was not expecting so much haggling, especially over items that were literally $1. I wasn’t expecting so many questions or weird requests. I wasn’t expecting people’s kids to come through and wreck things. And I wasn’t expecting to feel so weird watching people pick through my stuff. All in all, I made a few bucks but certainly nothing to write home about. For all the time and effort it took to set it up, I ended up having more success and less creepy interactions with people on Gumtree.
Tip from Savings Guide: Often a $30 ad in your local newspaper about the garage sale can drive an incredible volume of extra people through your door.
“Hide” your credit cards
It’s like playing hide and seek with a 4 year old. I can see your feet hanging out from behind the curtains! I know where you are! Chances are if I hid the credit card, there’s a good chance I’m going to know exactly where to find it. You can deal with your credit cards in better ways! Like cutting it up or doing a balance transfer and then cutting it up.
Shop around for groceries
I really don’t like supermarkets – too much noise, too many wayward trolleys and too much choice (have you seen how many types of tuna there are now!?). The idea of going to more than one of them to get the best price on toilet paper is not appealing in the slightest. And is it really that much of a saving if you’ve had to spend more time and more petrol driving around to save 40c?
Cut your own hair
There are some great Youtube tutorials on cutting your own hair but it’s a bit of a risk. Unless you have a crew cut and a pair of clippers, or you are Vidal Sassoon’s protege, don’t do this. Do look for a better priced hairdresser though!
Eat less meat
As a carnivore, this is not do-able for me. Neither is buying cheap cuts of meat all the time. I would rather scrimp on something else so I can have a decent steak that is not going to feel like a leather boot when I chew. Stews and casseroles are great for using cheaper cuts of meat and I love mince for its cheap and versatile options but my Scotch fillet needs to stay!
Get a second job
Before I took on this writing gig, my regular employer asked me to fill in an application for outside employment. It’s not because they want to censor me or don’t want me to make a bit of pocket money, but because they want to know that any additional work I do is not going to affect my ability to do my real job or fatigue me to the point where I am a danger to myself and my colleagues. This is a fair point. If you’ve got the time and energy to take on a second job then go for it but think about your physical and mental wellbeing (including the physical and mental exertion of both jobs), your other commitments (study, family, social) and most of all, whether those extra dollars are going to get taken by the tax man.
Don’t buy coffees
This is one of those lifestyle tips that I find really hard especially when it’s not a big amount of money. I totally understand not buying lunch everyday but a $2.5o coffee that I really enjoy, that protects my colleagues from crabby Nyree is almost a necessity. Sure, $2.50 a day is equal to about $650 a year but if it’s the one thing I buy a day, I enjoy it and I’m prepared to save elsewhere then surely that’s OK?
Use cash only
For some people this works well; they have their cash and that’s all they spend or they use that fancy envelope budgeting trick. Not me – I can feel that money burning a hole in my pocket and it encourages me to say yes to buying things that I would otherwise say no to if there was no cash in my hand. See item above. If you can’t have cash on you because of the temptation, then don’t.
What money saving tips really annoy you?
Next time we’ll talk about the really awesome savings tips that you absolutely need to have in your life and I’ll road test a stealthy savings method to put more money aside for the future!