Licensed financial advisor and author Helen Baker shares easy ways to cut costs.
With inflation, it's hard to determine if there is a way around it. Grocery shops become a nightmare and even your daily commute seems like too much.
Here are three things you need to consider that can help you combat inflation:
1. Change your habits
Getting a different outcome (that is, lower costs) means doing things differently. For example:
- Pay with cash instead of cards. You'll avoid overspending as you can only spend what you have withdrawn from the ATM.
- Have groceries delivered rather than shopping in-store. This saves time, fuel and you'll avoid temptations to impulse buy.
- Change what you eat. Cook at home more, eat less meat, use cheaper brands, stockpile on-sale items, cook in bulk and freeze meals.
- Top up fuel on cheap days, not when the tank is empty.
- Don't go crazy as some prices start falling again – things may still get worse before they improve.
2. Defer what you can
Certain spending can be pushed back to when finances aren't so tight.
For example, payment plans allow you to pay off certain debts gradually over time, rather than as a lump sum.
That will free up cash for other things. Free or cheap second-hand furniture and clothes can push back the cost of replacing that broken sofa or torn jacket.
3. Cancel the unnecessary
Chances are you're currently paying for things you don't really need.
Are you actually using that gym membership on a regular basis? Reading that subscription magazine or newspaper? Using all those TV services?
If not, cancel them. Do you have unused items in storage? Sell or donate them.