Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Mrs Minions money tips...A guide of what not to do

I'm often keeping an eye out for different budgeting tips, ways to save money or make it stretch further. After all, we're all aware that kids cost moolah, & with six minions to our tally, we're definitely stretching the wallet.

With ten years of working our budget around a single income under our belt we're no stranger to most of the saving tips, budgeting ideas & other such related topics that are all over the www. While skimming through one such article the other day I thought to myself, I could probably write something on what works for us with cutting costs or making that dollar stretch further than a maternity shirt.

Then I laughed, & I laughed some more. To the point I scared Clay a little, because after my little episode of hysterics he wasn't all that sure on being carried around in my arms, giving me a wide eyed, discerned look.

I am so not the person who can help turn your 'fiddy cent coins into one hundred dollar notes. My talents lie in finding more unnecessary, but at that immediate point in time {presumably} needed, crap to purchase. 

I am the queen of buyers remorse.

So instead of writing a detailed guide on how to save & spend wisely while to raising a big family, I thought I'd share my wisdom & first hand experience of what not to do. By not following in my footsteps I may just save you some 'dosh after all.

Do not buy a bag of grapes for $27.

Big error & oversight on my part. Do not pick up a bunch of grapes when they are $29.99/kilo & put it in your trolley. Those juicy suckers weigh more than you think. 

If you sign up to a direct selling company to save money & pay off debt, do not spend your profit back on the products you are selling.

I was so good at convincing people to buy Tupperware, I even convinced myself. Okay, not entirely true. I was not so great, but the other demonstrators around me were & had me hypnotized with their glittery words & inspiring examples of mushrooms staying fresh for longer than three weeks in the $60 containers. When I don't like mushrooms. Several years ago I joined up to get out of the house & to feel like I was contributing financially, with the goal of significantly paying off some debt & getting four digits in our savings account. This may work if you put your profits into your bank account or credit card account. Instead spending up big on the products you are selling...To earn more money. Go figure. 

Step away from the Ikea knick knacks

I love me some Ikea. There is also a reason I almost never go there. The last time I went I blew over my spending limit, even after I re-evaluated my intended purchases before heading to the check out queues. When walking through their expertly & effortlessly styled miniature rooms, walking past shelves & racks & center aisle displays of handy little bits n pieces that cost next to nothing, keep a tally of what you are mindlessly throwing into your blue Ikea bag. I tend to forget that the cushions & throws, container sets, cooking utensils, finger puppets, childrens' play food, plus five little stuffed toys & a circus tent will all add up to a triple digit figure. I see all the bargains & lose my mind a little. Step away from the strategically placed impulse 'snatch n grab' stands

Stick to the shopping list. Do not turn left, do not turn right, go straight to Go

Very similar to the Ikea advice, when you go to Kmart for birthday invitations & a gift card...Only buy the invitations & a gift card. If the budget blunders of Ikea taught you anything about my shopping habits, I don't need to expand it any here. Let's just leave it at that.

It's only a bargain if you need it. Or wear it within three years.

I recommend only buying clothes that you know with a 98% certainty you will wear. Especially if the item, or items, are quite expensive, even after taking 40% off the original price tag. There may or may not be a dress or two that cost more than I'd like to admit & never been worn. I take solace in the firm fact I am not alone here.

Fuel savings

Driving 30 kilometers out of your way to save 4 cents per litre is not recommend. It is false economy & legit fuel wastage. Instead, stop at the nearest petrol station on your route. Chances are their fuel prices are the same, & you'll save yourself ten minutes in time & dollars avoiding the detour.

There are more examples I could spout off here I'm certain. If I asked Doug to remind me of some spending shockers I probably won't be able to shut him up. 

So I'm not going too. 

Last words of wisdom to impart you with, 'Do as I say, not as I do'. You'll be fine. 

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