I want next year to be my most frugal yet.

(90 Posts)
TheHippywhowearsLippy Sun 27-Oct-13 08:15:43

So I've decided that I want to save as much money as possible next year in order to pay of debt & become more self sufficient.

Right now I meal plan, sell things at car boots, we don't drink or smoke, I walk pretty much every where but a car is essential for school runs etc.

I was thinking of starting the year by bulk buying the essentials for the first 6 months possibly the full year depending on what the item is.

Can anyone help? Give tips, what should I buy in bulk if anything at all? Or anything else you can think of.

Much appreciated!

graceholl Sat 09-Nov-13 01:09:40

I've never ever EVER bought branded painkillers! And have never not noticed. Nurofen as one e.g. is a big fat waste of £.

Does anyone use coupons? I know it's a U.S. thing but I'm jealous and want to know where I can find them.

I also subscribed to a magazine today (yes extra pennies I know) called The Simple Things (a 6 month Direct Debit was around £19) which is thrifty, frugal-focused. Looks like a brilliant read. Definitely worth doing over buying glossies monthly IMO. Just a heads up for anyone who may be interested smile

Alwayscheerful Fri 08-Nov-13 07:35:51

I bulk buy rice , pasta, tinned tomatoes, cous cous, tea, coffee, sugar, orange juice & squash, ground almonds, nuts, dried fruit, dried apricots, icing sugar, porridge & weetabix. Use buy dates are generally long.

Toilet roll, washing up liquid, toothpaste, shampoo, conditioner, shower gel, washing powder, cleaning products I bulk buy or buy on offer.

Butter, flour, soured cream & cheese I buy in catering packs but keep an eye on the use buy dates as they have a shorter shelf life.

I have registered with approved foods and buy a range of items depending what is available, such as delabelled tescos finest caremellised onion chutney, jams, honeys, treats, items such as cous cous are often 10p a pa ket and make good store cupboard essentials.

Fluffycloudland77 Thu 07-Nov-13 19:31:31

I wish I could convince my dh about that, even watching the chief scientific officer the royal pharmaceutical society on watchdog didn't convince him hmm angry. I make him buy his own now grin

Co-codamol is what you want wink, codeine knocks you right out <addictive substance disclaimer>

Thatsinteresting Thu 07-Nov-13 19:26:44

Boots/Tesco/Asda etc paracetamol own value brand is about 16p and is exactly the same as the branded products. When we looked at the ingredients lists for medicines we switched to just paracetamol with a hot water, honey and lemon for colds or with a chocolate biscuit for headaches and saved loads. We do keep value ibuprofen for flu type aches and shops own brand sudafed with decongestant for really rotton colds.

TheHippywhowearsLippy Thu 07-Nov-13 13:38:57

Now that we are all down with the flu I've decided its probally a good idea to bulk buy medicines that have a good long date in them. Things to buy, headache tablets, flu tabs, lemsips etc. thinking the £ shop is probally the place to go for these, or maybe tesco/asda own brand would do.

graceholl Wed 06-Nov-13 14:10:33

If you live/work near a Waitrose, their loyalty card gives you a free tea or coffee every day. If you buy coffee/tea on your commute or go out with other mums etc could save a small fortune potentially!

TheHippywhowearsLippy Sun 03-Nov-13 20:38:13

Some more great tips on here thanks smile

Currys have some great deals in at the min with vouchers for )£10/£20/£30 etc on until Wednesday I think just incase anyone's looking for Christmas savings.

Am starting to line my upstairs curtains with old curtain linings. Have lots & lots of old curtains so may as we'll use those. Also saved about £7 this week not using the tumble dryer smile

LonelyGoatherd Sun 03-Nov-13 19:15:49

can I join? 2014 is the year that the debt all goes, so that we can start to overpay mortgage in 2015. If I get work (self-employed), household appliances don't break, etc etc, it should be achievable... <famous last words>

MisForMumNotMaid Sun 03-Nov-13 15:37:23

Iceland is Easy jet end of July out / early Aug return as they released tickets. It was a fluke really, but you can predict (I've now learnt) when tickets will be released. An offer came up on Groupon, way more than we could afford so I thought I'd check prices. Couldn't believe it. Day later and some flights had gone up to over £100 with Easter ones being over £200 so I booked. The whole holiday will be a over £1000 though so lots to save yet.

MinimalistMommi Sun 03-Nov-13 15:05:52

ms £37 flights to Iceland shock
Is that in school holidays?
Tell me more how you managed this fantastic price?!

MisForMumNotMaid Sun 03-Nov-13 13:32:57

We're trying to build up a little savings/ rainny day pot. Lots of extra ideas to copy thank you.

Here's some of my thoughts...

We moved in the summer and I've been playing with the electric use thing which is quite interesting.

With heating I'm currently playing with using the 1 hr boost function rather than timmer - except in the morning when its on timmer for an hour. I have a little rule about not feeling guilty about hitting the 1hr button if I/ we feel cold. We have snuggly fleece blankets by the sofas and in the conservatory and I encourage the children to wear socks and slippers. First mention of cold the response is put a sweater on rather than heat the house for us to live in summer clothes. I think we probably have it on about 20% of the time it would be on timmer.

We use UHT milk which I bulk buy at Costco. Likewise I tend to bulk buy toilet roll and kitchen roll. I use value cleaning products, aldi dishwasher tabs and laundry detergent.

I have price points for just about everything in my head so I can determine if an offer is good and not just that the discount makes it look good - also when an offer is really good that its worth stockpiling. For example we use lots of mature cheddar. I don't pay more than 50p/ 100g. Aldi do an everyday value 827g block for £3.97. If I'm in one of the other supermarkets thats my price point.

I havea coupon wallet. I cut them all out when I see them. You never know when you might use them. Kenco milicano are always doing £1 off vouchers and frequently the refil packs are on offer at £2. Combine the offers and its only £1 for nice coffee (i like it).

We've booked our first full week family holiday next year we got £37 flights to Iceland. We've paid for a rental cottage. Just need to save for passports, car hire and food. I'm planning a big ebay blitz pre Christmas to clear space for new toys and raise some cash.

confusedofengland Sun 03-Nov-13 09:50:34

Have only skim read, so don't know if other people have recommended the same things, but here's my twopenn'orth

- Go to supermarkets near closing time for cheap (75% off or more) fruit, veg, deli products, chilled products, meat, fish, bakery goods. Times will vary from store to store, so just ask a member of staff from that area what time they reduce their prices. I tend to do this around twice per month & stock up enough to last roughly a month & freeze.

- If you can't find reduced bargains, try Farm Foods for basics - 2 loaves of Hovis/Kingsmill for £1.50, 2 x 4 pints milk for £1.60, 30 bags crisps (own brand) for £3 etc

- Use loyalty cards whenever they are offered! I have a 'free' coffee from Costa once a month or so & am currently saving Nectar points for a Eurostar trip (or money towards it). It helps to think of bonus offers in terms of money eg 25 Tesco Clubcard points can be worth £1, so if I gain 25 clubcard points I am saving £1.

- A rather specific one, but if you have DC & fancy a trip to Disneyland Paris, consider annual passes if you are going for more than 1 day. We are just back from there & got annual passes for me, DH & DS1 (DS2 doesn't need ticket yet as only 2). They cost just 30 Euros less altogether than if we had bought 2 seperate day passes. Other theme parks/attractions may do the same thing.

- Use Groupon/Wowcher etc for days out, presents, haircuts etc. We have just bought a day at a big local farm park for 2 adults & 3 DC for £9, would normally be about £30.

- Use Nectar or Topcashback or similar when you buy anything online.

- Check you are getting all benefits/funding etc you are entitled to. I did not know that DS2 may be entitled to free nursery funding because of his speech delay until the SALT mentioned it. The funding has still not been confirmed & it may only be a small amount if we get any, but all these things are worth investigating, as we are paying for it anyway.

Bluecarrot Sun 03-Nov-13 09:21:31

m.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-24757144. Low tech ways to save money smile

Bluecarrot Sun 03-Nov-13 09:05:18

Hoping to have a frugal year too. I hope it every year in fact!

Baby is due on 6th January so I refuse to compromise on heating costs for her ( though for now us older ones have to suffer a little) So I need to make cut backs in other places.

1) food is a major expense for us so keep trialling stores value brands and only buying brand names when on a good offer ( we luckily have plenty of storage space!) I use mysupermarket price alerts for items we don't compromise on or dont need to buy weekly/ dd needs Mitchum deoderant, DP wants lynx... Our multivitamins, loo roll, etc)

2) fridge freezer is on its way out so I'm keeping an eye out for sales on ones with larger freezer compartments. Since I'm not panic buying I can research, haggle etc

3) bulk cooking ESP leading up to birth of baby. Lots will be stuff DP or dd can reheat in the microwave themselves.

4) adding lentils or chickpeas to foods to bulk out since neither dd or DP want to go meat free.

5) splitting shops with my mum. Eg taking advantage of bogof or 2 for £x on short shelf life products like milk, bread etc. I'm the only one in the house who likes brown bread- my mums takes a third if my 50/50 bread in exchange for 1/3 loaf of her whole grain.

6) waiting to do errands in car til I have a few in the same area. Sometimes its cheaper to order online and pay postage than to drive to somewhere where I have no other errands to do.

7) sign up for petrol price alert emails.

8) look out for deals on grocery delivery. I bought a 6 month tesco delivery pass for £30. Not only does it save petrol, allowed me to browse deals at my leisure and plan better using what's in my cupboards, but I don't impulse buy at all. My shopping bills have come down by around a third.

9) basically everything you are going to do, ask what value you are willing to spend on it. I get 10 cards for £1 in card factory... Or similar. The cards aren't m&s quality but they look ok and it's the handwritten message inside that counts. I have a list of events that are coming up, and bulk buy in one go.

10) have a go at making quilted blinds for smaller windows - layering fabric and batting ( I'm using ikea fleece blanket though cotton or wool probably better) and some blackout material or one of those silver emergency blankets? I've read great things about them but in process of getting two rooms redecorated and can't make blinds til after plasterer has been so I know actual window size!

Can think of more but need to get out of my cosy bed and get some housework done!

MinimalistMommi Thu 31-Oct-13 17:20:57

Really worth checking out reduced sections of supermarkets, just got yellow stickered cauliflowers for 25p each and pots of fruit for 20p each and a whole pineapple for 20p. Not organic (and I 95% of the time buy organic) but at that price I couldn't resist. Going to make a huge cauliflower cheese tomorrow.

MinimalistMommi Thu 31-Oct-13 10:05:25

Agree, every penny counts, we're not so badly off but we are renovating cottage so a lot of money needs to go into that so I need to save elsewhere. Nothing wrong with being savvy and saving every penny we can!

gingysmummy Thu 31-Oct-13 09:39:09

Thanks for your replies i will try making risotto in mine i'd never thought of that before,and yes it does make perfect sense that it's only the pot that is heating.My oven is def packing in, i batch cook every week including cakes for packed lunches and they came out awful think it could be the over door seal that has gone.I have bought a really cosy hooded cape/bedjacket from primark think it was £8 in a cat design and my ds and dh wear onsies trying to keep heating costs down as that is where most of our money goes due to having a crap electric bolier

Littleredsquirrel Thu 31-Oct-13 09:30:12

Dont be embarrassed about that though Hippy. We are in the same position. We are relatively well off but we need to spend less since we have to start making inroads into our mortgage and I became self employed six months ago so still working on building up the business and have relatively little security.

Every penny counts.

TheHippywhowearsLippy Thu 31-Oct-13 09:24:42

Oh dear Mini your right, I really do come across like we are short on cash. We're not really that bad it's just I am a massive tightarse who is determined not to waste money like I used to. It's just I am honestly ashamed for my pre marriage spending, it was thoughtless & looking at the hoards of designer shoes/handbags in my wardrobe that I havn't worn in ages reminds me of that everyday. (Makes note to sell them on EBay)

Primark onesies sound good I'll have a look in there today, thanks. Might pick up a few bargins for Xmas too smile

MinimalistMommi Thu 31-Oct-13 07:45:50

thehippy if you're short on money people say on money saving expert that the Primark onesies are really warm and only £8. The adult onesies are £10.00.

Littleredsquirrel Wed 30-Oct-13 23:25:07

Tip for getting the fire going quickly. If you are still using the tumble dryer and haven't cut it out due to cost, keep the lint. It burns really well and makes it a doodle to get the fire going.

Pollaidh Wed 30-Oct-13 23:03:37

Some washing tips...
- change out of smart work clothes when you get in, before cooking, toddler wrangling. Some will last another day and no risk of ruining silk tops with splatters.
- I stopped using fabric conditioner as a broke student. I've never missed it.
- lakeland sell dry cleaning bags and sachets for cleaning dry clean only clothes in the tumble dryer (20 mins on low). Much cheaper and easier than dry cleaning. Even then I only do that with clothes you really can't wash. Most supposedly dry clean clothes, cashmere jumpers etc can be washed on wool cycle with delicate liquid.

Littleredsquirrel Wed 30-Oct-13 22:23:41

I also went to decathlon today hunting for thermals for the kids. Found some decent ones at a really good price. Ski trousers were also £14 and they had beautifully soft fleecy jumpers in kids sizes for £1.50 perfect for lazing around the house.

Littleredsquirrel Wed 30-Oct-13 22:21:11

The DCs had onesies from next for Christmas last year, a gorilla and a reindeer and they a still going strong despite masses of wear.

Generally I find landsend very good for good quality fleecy PJs and they always have discount codes flying around and cash back on quidco.

Littleredsquirrel Wed 30-Oct-13 22:19:32

I have switched my energy supplier this evening using the Martin lewis energy switching club thingy. Should save me £469 a year just on electricity!!!

Have also been round to see what I leave switched on. Skyboxes are in constantly but have found out I can put them on standby and they will still record so that's useful. Cooker clock is always on and can be turned off and the DCs night lights aren't really needed anymore. I've also unplugged all the random chargers lying around the house!

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now