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Alternative money saving tips that won't involve banning your beloved avocado brunch dates.
We're here to help you get into your new home faster - without having to completely cut back your social life, love for the unspoken green fruit!
The S word... (saving) doesn't have to be avoided, you can now still live life to its fullest and get into your new home before 2020! No more thinking about beans on toast, or staying in while all your friends are enjoying themselves - it's all about tweaking your decisions to make sure you're getting the most bang for your buck!
We're not talking about making huge sacrifices, just small changes that add up... It's time to decide what's important to you and what you can live without.
From easy things you can do on a daily basis, to one-off ideas you might not have thought of - why not give a few of these a go and watch your savings rise?
Get tech savvy.
Internet banking is a wonderful thing, the ability to be able to review all your accounts from one handy app allows you to keep an eye on your finances, instantly move money between accounts and set-up automated payments so that you can save without any hassle. However, with technology has come pay pass. An incredible invention that can be a little dangerous. The temptation to tap is too easy, and can be done without a second thought. If you can, try and set aside an amount of money you're happy to spend and stick to it... either only leaving that set-amount in your current account, or getting it out in cash at the beginning of the week.
Kill Bills... or at least compare, cut-down and consolidate them.
Keeping your bills to a minimum isn't always realistic, especially when you are staying in more in an attempt to save, and with the winter chill kicking in, the heater might need turning up. But the question is - are you getting the best deal for your dollar? If you aren't tied down to a contract, it's time to consider whether other providers would offer you a better deal if you switch. Can you get something else thrown in for free, or a benefit for being with a company on a long-term basis? Do your research and know what the competition is offering, most companies with match in order to keep your business.
Warm-up without spending.
Although we're not telling you to completely cut back, does your heating need to be turned up to full blast? Investing in a pair of fluffy socks and a hoodie could be a better way to spend. Adding throws and thick blankets to your living area doesn't just give the space a new lease of life, it can also keep you cosy during the warmer months.
Head for the web.
In need of something new, or want to make some extra money by getting rid of something old - hit the internet! Facebook, gumtree, freecycle, and a whole number of handy apps could have exactly what you are looking for, at a fraction of the price, or even for free! So why not make money on your old stuff or pick-up something new - choosing nearly new is a great way to do so.
Up cycling is on the up.
There's not much a quick sand and a lick of paint can't do. So why not up cycle your furnishing to give them a new lease on life? It's a great activity to do with friends - crack on some tunes and get painting! Swapping out handles, pulls and doorknobs can also freshen up old furnishings in an instant, and it won't cost you the earth!
Start a veggie garden.
Whether it be a few seedlings on your windowsill, a packed full vertical garden, or a full on veggie patch, growing your own fruit and veg can save you a fortune - and there is something fulfilling about serving up a dish when the ingredients are homegrown. Did you know, you can even grow your own avo from the stone?
Your local community is likely to offer events, sports facilities, festivals, foodie fun and more, plus lots of them will be free! It's a great opportunity to meet the neighbours, get involved with the local community or visit friends nearby.
Be pampered without feeling the pinch.
Lots of trainee hairdressers, masseuses, make-up artists and beauticians have got to start somewhere, why not help them in their learning and enjoy some pampering for a fraction of the price? Beauty schools are a great place to go if you are in doubt, as there is always a qualified member of staff at hand.
Or if you don't fancy that, why not have friends over for a DIY spa? Simply ask everyone to bring a beauty product and you're all set! Face and hair masks don't have to cost much - you could even make your own from the contents of your fridge! (Keeping with our avo theme, why not try this Honey Avocado Face Mask for a nourishing skin treat).
Enjoy fine-dining at a fraction of the cost.
Before picking your restaurant for dinner, take a quick look for a coupon code, deal or specials on for your selected date - Groupon, Scoopon, and many other sites highlight businesses in your local area, with up to 70% savings - you never know, you might discover your new favourite place to dine while you're at it.
Clever cocktails and savvy socialising.
Ensuring you stick to your saving plan means finding balance and we know going for drinks with friends, family or colleagues is inevitable so it's time to get savvy and be selective. Keep an eye out for happy hour offers and special drink promotions on certain nights of the week. If you're planning a nice meal out with friends, a great way to save is to take your own drinks. Do your research – many restaurants now offer BYO. Just make sure you call ahead to check there is no corkage fee.
Free fitness sessions.
The best things in life really are free, so ditch the expensive gym pass and register for the free Live Life Get Active fitness and yoga program held at Cockburn Central. If the session times don't suit you, why not hit-up some of the local gyms or recreation centres who regularly offer complimentary lessons and sessions so you can test drive the facilities. These are a great opportunity to try something new, get fit, and save some money. Again, there are numerous apps that will highlight offers in your area.
Split your streaming fee.
Have you already got Netflix, Spotify or any other streaming account? Why not share it with a friend or family member and split the cost? Many services offer a family package, where the more of you sign up, the cheaper it works out to be!
Reap the rewards.
Sign up for rewards cards, join mailing lists and check out discount codes - emails will automatically start hitting your inbox - a great incentive to save. However this doesn't mean you need to begin buying things just because they are at a discounted rate - question whether you actually need them before you get to the checkout.
Shop smart at the sales.
If there is something you really want to buy, but it's not a matter or urgency, why not wait until it is on sale? There are often set times of year that have sales, so do your research before purchasing - it's a great way to save on those slightly more pricey luxury items.
Stick to your shopping list.
Often when we shop for the week, we pick up items at random hoping they turn into a gourmet dish. But in future, before you go to the supermarket, why not plan out your meals and head to the local farmer's market instead? Generally farmer's markets cut out some or all of the middle men which helps to keep their prices down. Plus, having a clear meal plan for the week will save cash in the long run and won't leave you with a fridge full of food past its best. It's also a good idea to adapt your recipes to what's in season – it usually works out far better value.
Imagine your future.
We understand that buying your first home can be tough, but these handy tips and our experienced team can help get you on your way. If you'd like some help envisaging your future home, why not give one of our team a call today?