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Please come share you frugal living tips!

(61 Posts)
ErrorError Wed 04-Sep-13 00:08:12

Trying to save money on general household things, so just want to share a few ideas I've implemented in my house, and any other tips would be most appreciated if you'd like to share. Some require a small about of investment that hopefully will save me cash in the long run and eventually pay for themselves.

- bought a toothpaste squeezer to get the last bits along the edges, rolls up tight for easy disposal.
- bought a 'sticky buddy' roller thing for cleaning up pet hair/lint etc so not to waste time faffing with the vacuum and also electricity too.
- only use a pea sized blob of toothpaste (this is what a dentist recommended, you apparently don't need a huge slug of it across the brush like in the adverts.)
- use a pea sized blob of handwash and lather it well first.
- saving money in other areas means I can afford the luxury toilet roll, which actually lasts longer as you use less, instead of the cheap 2ply loosely rolled scratchy ones, which are a false economy.
- through some trial and error, managed to measure the exact amount of powder needed for a full washing load, which is less than the suggested amount, leaving it clean and fresh but without that residue-y feeling you get.
- buying cheaper cat meat and mixing biscuits in to bulk it out, cats don't care and will eat anything, but I was spending a fortune on those pouches before.
- batch cooking and freezing individual portions in those little plastic takeaway trays. usually soup so just have to throw everything in the pan and not have to pay too much attention to it.

Considering investing in a steam cleaner to eliminate the need for chemical products which can be pricey and harmful. Any recommendations/opinions on these?

A friend does a lot of couponing, and I'm not that dedicated timewise to trawl the net and print them off etc, but will try to use a few that I happen to spy in magazines.

Please feel free to share yours! I'm sorting my life out, decluttering, recycling, becoming more organised, and shaving costs in all directions. Makes me happy! smile

ErrorError Wed 04-Sep-13 00:54:46

Ah crap, typo in title!

CharityFunDay Wed 04-Sep-13 00:57:43

Fun-size Mars bars make ideal normal-size Mars Bars for dwarves.

SoldAtAuction Wed 04-Sep-13 01:21:30

I try not to waste money on bits of tat, I'd rather have fewer, but nicer, things.
Better quality goods last longer, I find.
I also try to buy second hand where possible, to create less waste and save money.

ErrorError Wed 04-Sep-13 01:28:14

I agree Sold, I'm decluttering most of my tat at the moment and trying desperately not to replace it with more. Especially re: clothes. I've just given loads to charity, and in the process realised that 10 primark 'falls apart at seams after second wear' tops are equivalent to say 3 dearer but plenty of use tops.

My spelling is bad today, tired!

PomBearWithAnOFRS Wed 04-Sep-13 01:30:16

Just don't spend any money on anything that is not essential, and define essential as food and clothing only if you will either be hypothermic or indecent without it.
Pay the mortgage/rent and council tax first, as they are the ones that will lose you your home if you don't, then buy food, having meal planned.

YoungBritishPissArtist Wed 04-Sep-13 02:37:00

Don't buy fabric conditioner, you don't need it.

toobreathless Wed 04-Sep-13 03:10:29

Only buy items such as fairy laundry detergent/dried cat food/dishwasher tabs/shower gel when half price approx every 6 weeks or so & bulk buy then.

Eat meat less (twice a week here) batch cook & freeze.

Cats down graded from pouches to cans. Automatic cat feeder if going away for up to 3 nights rather than cat sitter.

Day trips which allow you to get in free for a year and go back several times (e.g Yorvik, Viking museum in York) always take picnic.

Starbucks reusable mug - saves 25p a time off coffee.

Second hand clothes- hand me downs/eBay.

Reusable nappies or buy off Amazon. Got 134 size 5s for £20 including delivery.

Children's centre for free activities for under 5s. As good as the £££ for private baby sensory/rhyme time etc


Collect up those irritating tiny carrier bags sold shops give you- use as nappy sacks.

All big direct debits come out on 2nd if each month making budgeting easier for rest of month.

All childcare vouchers saved when realised expecting #2 to cover all childcare costs for DD1 for my mat leave.

CharityFunDay Wed 04-Sep-13 03:17:00

Starbucks reusable mug - saves 25p a time off coffee.

In what alternate universe is this a money-saving tip?

Starbucks isn't exactly cheap, so if you're that strapped for cash then save money by taking your own coffee everywhere in a thermos.

MammaTJ Wed 04-Sep-13 05:48:18


Much cheaper to get DS his lactose free formula on prescription! grin

Forgetfulmog Wed 04-Sep-13 05:53:18

Don't buy laundry powder, use the Eco Balls from Ecozone - last for 1000 washes and you only need a short washing machine cycle so saves electricity too.

Reusable wipes

Shop in Lidl

Buy meat from a butcher and less often - may be slightly more expensive but you actually get more meat for your money as its not pumped full of water and other shit

noisytoys Wed 04-Sep-13 05:56:11

Got a higher paying job - I know its not possible for everyone but the difference in disposable income is massive.

silverten Wed 04-Sep-13 06:28:14

Careful with scrimping on washing powder though- my MIL did this, got carried away, her clothes weren't exactly fresh and her machine started to really smell...

Forgetfulmog Wed 04-Sep-13 06:30:08

Silver - you can clean out the washing machine using soda crystals and white vinegar.

Wow noisytoys, thanks for that "useful" tip there

marl Wed 04-Sep-13 06:37:08

Forgetful Mog, Can we have more information about how exactly to clean the washing machine with that? What are the proportions? Ours is quite disgusting, but I've never heard of that!

iamusuallybeingunreasonable Wed 04-Sep-13 06:39:22

Who the Jeff needs a toothpaste squeezer, hands work perfectly fine, how ridiculous

Forgetfulmog Wed 04-Sep-13 06:40:01

Ok cup and a half of soda crystals (or as much as you can pack in the detergent drawer) on the hottest (90 deg of possible) longest cycle and then a cup of white vinegar on another hottest longest cycle.

Got rid of the crappy build up in our washing machine and I use reusable nappies so if it can work on mine...grin

CoTananat Wed 04-Sep-13 07:05:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CoTananat Wed 04-Sep-13 07:10:10

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

madasa Wed 04-Sep-13 07:41:56

If you have a slow cooker, cheap meat cuts cook beautifully

antimatter Wed 04-Sep-13 07:46:48

CoTananat - I think this is very good tip to cost everything yearly or monthly.
Costco has many items which are cheper to get there than in my Sainsburys - sugar is one of them (apart from loo paper)

I am going to buy those ecozone balls as less detergent on clothes makes perfect sense to me (apart from savings made)

silverten Wed 04-Sep-13 07:47:16

Not sure it was build up of detergent, mog, more the lack of cleaning power. I'm all for economy, and the manufacturers usually tell you to use too much of their product, but this was getting a bit silly...

Soditall Wed 04-Sep-13 07:50:20

Make a meal planner,since we've been doing this and switched from Asda to Lidl,local market and butchers for our shopping we've saved thousands each year.

We got a waitrose card this year(they're free) well worth getting if you work/shop/do school runs near one you can pick up a free coffee(several different types)or tea every day,no purchase required.Receive a free newspaper of your choice when you spend £5 or over.Shop there and they enter you into a free prize draw every month to win the cost of shopping.
You can pick up the waitrose magazine for free and you also get specific money of offers for card holders.

I bought my husband a Tassimo coffee maker last year and it works out so much cheaper than our past frequent trips to coffee shops and the coffee taste's amazing.

Sign up for emails for specific theme parks,zoos,farms,hotels that you use regularly to make sure you don't miss out on money off offers.

Use Facebook to gain free entry's and money off days out.I recently won a family ticket for a family farm for my family and all I had to do was like the page.

Sell on unwanted items,if you don't want to ebay there's always Preloved,Friday freeads,Gumtree or add them on your facebook page.
If you don't want to have to photograph everything there are loads of places that buy clothes,shoes,boots,bags and belts by weight,the best price in our area is 70p per KG.

MortifiedAdams Wed 04-Sep-13 07:51:19

Plan ahead - far far ahead. I want to.take DD to EuroDisney in 3.5yrs and want to help celebrate my mothers fifitieth with a 'girls weekend' to NYC in 4.5yra

Neither of which can I just pull the money out for. I have got two tins - I put £1 a day in each tin. I can usually scrabble together two pound in change a day which would otherwise go.on coffees or magazines.

When im.ready to go.on these trips.ill have 1200 in the Paris tin and 1400 in the NYC tin. All for a pound a day.

AntoinetteCosway Wed 04-Sep-13 07:55:40

Make your own bread. I figure that each loaf I make costs about 30p. And is delicious grin

YY to slowcookers and batch cooking.

No need for fabric conditioner.

Break a dishwasher tablet in two-you only need half each time.

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