At a time when prices, in general, have skyrocketed, with a sharp rise in inflation, it is increasingly important control spending to reduce monthly budget. There are some actions that we can put into practice that translate into immediate and short-term financial relief, some of them applied in our daily lives.
Reduction of water consumption
This is an “old” recommendation, as we must try to adopt it as a permanent habit and not just because of the rise in prices. Reducing water consumption, in addition to helping to reduce the monthly bill, is an important action. to help preserve our planet’s resources. It can start with daily acts, like turning off the tap while brushing your teeth and washing the dishes, for example. Another tip is enjoy the shower water which is “wasted” while we wait for it to heat up. It can be stored in demijohns and used to water the plants or to flush the toilet.
Decrease electricity costs
There are several ways to reduce the value of the electricity bill with small gestures in our daily lives. The simplest and most obvious is to turn off all the lights in a room when we don’t leave it. Another very effective tip is to replace the incandescent light bulbs in your home with LED light bulbs. The latter can lead to a savings of around 80% in your monthly budget. So, although this replacement requires an initial cost, it quickly recovers your investment. Also, why not use the “eco” mode of your washing machines and/or dishwashers? These programs are designed to save water and light with each wash. An excellent ally to reduce monthly expenses. Also read: What expenses do you pay on your water bill?
Fewer meals away from home
Having lunch or dinner at a restaurant, or having breakfast at the bakery near your home can be the perfect escape from everyday routines. However, when it becomes a regular habit, it represents a brave hole in the monthly budget.To understand the impact of these costs, it is enough to do some simple math: imagine that every day you take breakfast out, which consists of a coffee accompanied by a pastel de nata. At first, it seems like a very economical option, but let’s look at this example: 1 coffee (0.60€) + 1 pastel de nata (0.50€) = 1.10€ per day.1.10€ x 30 days = 33 €33€ x 12 months = €396In other words, this “small” habit costs approximately €400 a year. value. How about starting to eat the first meal of the day in the comfort of your home?
Going to the supermarket? Only with list and no hunger
Many of us make this mistake and with some frequency: we know that we have to go to the supermarket because we are missing something at home, but we have no idea what. Result: we ended up bring more than what we need because we are in doubt if it is missing or not. In addition to the extra expenses, depending on the type of food, this act can also lead to deterioration of the same due to tight expiration dates. shopping time: do not eat before leaving home. Going to the supermarket hungry will lead you to instinctively buy something to “snack” and that will escape what you stipulated for your monthly budget. At first glance it may seem harmless, but it is a superfluous expense easily avoidable.
Set monthly budget and stick to it
This point is intrinsically linked to the previous one. Plan monthly expenses and pointing out all the expenses is a great strategy to understand where you can save. You can start by creating an Excel file with the “mandatory costs”, such as, for example, housing credit, electricity, water, internet, etc. Then, write down all the extra expenses (such as meals out, buying new clothes, among others) and you will have an estimate of your monthly expenses. Lastly, do a careful and conscious analysis consumption and be surprised by the various alternatives to save some money at the end of each month. Don’t forget to strictly comply with the monthly budget you have set yourself and see the fruits of your effort. Also read: Food waste: you can help the environment and save money
Ever heard of the 50/30/20 rule?
A good method for getting your family budget outlined is the 50/30/20 rule. This formula suggests segment monthly expenses into three parts:50% of the monthly budget must correspond to fixed expensesas mentioned before: the rent of the house, the bill of water and electricity, costs with food and transport, etc.30% can be used for superfluous expensessuch as travelling, eating out and buying new clothes.20% of the amount must be used to pay off existing debts or constitute an emergency fund. Thus, you are always prepared for possible setbacks in the future. By applying this technique you will be able to see if you are spending too much money on non-essential costs, that is, if you tend to exceed 30% of your monthly budget for this purpose. This way, you can immediately start making the necessary cuts to meet your estimates.
Say no to food waste
Laziness or ignorance can lead us to throw away leftover meals that could be perfectly used later. Take some time to plan the week’s meals to avoid wasting food and enjoy what’s left to take away for lunch the next day. Only pasta left, but no accompaniment? It’s okay, just add tuna or sausages and you have another simple and quick meal with zero waste.
Consider investing your savings
In times when inflation does not give a truce, as now, the “stopped” money starts to lose value. This happens because there is a decrease in purchasing power, so the ideal solution is to start investing your savings. Inform yourself with your bank or research the best alternatives for you and your family. You can start by investing part of your money in a Retirement Savings Plan (PPR) or Savings Certificates, for example. In any case, the ideal is to start with small amounts of money invested in products that ensure greater profitability and risk more as you gain experience.
Renegotiating could be the key
We often look at the renegotiation of contracts as a consequence, that is, we see it as the last alternative to avoid defaulting. review the conditions of your contracts – whether personal loans, home loans, insurance, internet, among others – can actually help you save a few hundred euros. The first step is to do a search for know the existing alternatives on the market and then contact the contract supplier and ask for a reassessment of the contract. The solution is to find an option favorable to both parties. Thus, it could be a cut of services that you don’t use, matching the lowest prices of the competition, reviewing policy deductibles or reducing the spread, in the case of a home loan. Read also: Renegotiating credits: 7 tips that can help your financial situation