I’m so weak. Instead of trying to eliminate The Latte Factor, I’ve decided to prioritize.
You may think coffee comes out pretty low on the list of priorities, but then you obviously have never met me. So, instead of just giving up and accepting that I’ll never have saved a million dollars thanks to the Latte Factor, I’ve thought up some alternatives. If you love your coffee, pick from the following list and banish it from your life. Or pick all of them, if you’re an especially diligent person.
Cut any of them, and set aside your savings and you have yourself a Factor of Your Very Own.
The CD A Week Factor
We all want to be hip and happening. Lots of people I know are prey to the CD a week habit. With so much music available free (and legal) now, it’s a habit that can afford to go. If you want a dose of music, try Spinner which showcases new albums online every week.
Or enter an artist’s name into YouTube and listen to their YouTube channel. Triple J Unearthed and Myspace are fantastic resources, and you get the extra benefit of being so ahead of the curve and bragging about it to all and sundry.
The cinema is a wonderful experience. I pretty much don’t care what I see- I love the popcorn and the seats and the way the lights die down. Except that these days it’s $20 per visit, and that’s it’s not the cheapest night out under the sun. Replace it with movie nights at home- you might end up watching the same romantic comedies again and again, but budgeting hurts. Do a DVD swap with friends, or get addicted to the latest ABC drama.
A Quick Drink Factor
It was a tough call, and not one I relished, but something had to go and, in this instance, alcohol was the one. I don’t mind a drink, really I don’t. But I needed to protect my savings, and I couldn’t drink both alcohol and coffee and save what I needed. So I stopped drinking. The money you save if you don’t drink is terrifying, and can be anywhere between $20 a week to an amount obscene. If you’re serious about saving, pub nights every night might have to be the thing to go.
Nothing Too Taxing Factor
It starts to rain, or you’re tired, or you don’t feel like the walk. Whatever the reason, too-frequent taxi rides can creep into our existence in a rather insidious manner and end up costing us a lot of money. Plan ahead, and only use taxis for emergencies You could save yourself a lot more than the usual Factor if you can stick to public transport or car pooling, no matter how annoying it is waiting for the slowest bus driver in existence to get down Parramatta Road.
$5 T-Shirt Factor
The purchases are so small, you don’t even think to mention them. A Cotton-On shirt here, some new thongs there. Those little clothes purchases that seem such a steal at the time. Two singlets for ten dollars! You convince yourself that you need it, and don’t even notice how much this Factor eats into your budget. Stick with the clothes you own, try clothes swaps or take up sowing. Put your Factor to good use, like vacations or credit card repayments.