You’ll be surprised at what you can save

2013-07-14 14:00

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Neesa Moodley-Isaacs looks at a few tips to turn a molehill of saved cents into a mountain of banked rands

1. Take a packed lunch to work instead of buying sandwiches from the canteen or takeaway around the corner. If you pay an average of R25 for lunch three times a week, that quickly adds up to a saving of R300 a month.

2. Shop smart. Check the unit prices on products versus the quantity you are paying for. For example, you might find it’s cheaper to buy a 1kg tub of margarine in one shopping trip instead of two 500g blocks over two shopping trips.

3. Slow down. If you are contemplating a purchase that is not an absolutely necessary item, give yourself a week to think about whether you really need it before you hand over your hard-earned money.

4. Watch your ATM fees. Use your own bank’s ATMs wherever possible and avoid making several withdrawals over a short space of time. Rather, work out how much cash you need and then make one withdrawal.

5. Cancel or downgrade your satellite TV subscription. Consider spending more time together as a family instead of watching TV. If you downgrade from DStv Premium to DStv Compact, you’ll save R4 200 a year.

6. Save on your phone bills. With Telkom’s 7pm to 7am Callmore time, BlackBerry’s BBM service and WhatsApp, you have little to no excuses for high phone bills. Make calls only when you have to.

7. Check your car insurance premium yearly. Your insurance should be adjusted on a yearly basis to account for the fact that your car depreciates in value each year. However, not all insurers make this adjustment automatically. You snooze, you lose.

8. If you are on chronic medication, shop around for the best price. Although we have a single exit price for medicines, the dispensing fee differs between pharmacies and this can add up to a hefty yearly saving. Find out which pharmacies are approved by your medical aid scheme and also look out for national chain pharmacies that can offer you lower prices.

9. Instead of shelling out for new uniforms constantly, check out your school’s second-hand shop. You will pick up good, quality clothing that is priced reasonably and is only likely to be used for one year or even just one or two terms, depending on your child’s growth rate.

10. With the price of petrol at an all-time high, consider forming lift clubs for school and for getting to work. But inform your insurance company first.

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