Summer is nearly here, and it’s can be so easy to lose track of your spending. Money seems to be flitted away on new clothes, garden accessories and day-to-day living without a thought for the coming months – and that’s when the Christmas panic sets in. The truth is, the more you plan and have to think about what you are spending during the warmer months, the better off you will be; it’s the same for any time of spending, really. However, getting into that mindset is another cup of tea entirely…
Reuse, Rejuvenate, Recycle!
It’s no secret that quite a few of us are buying new clothes each year to fit into the summer trends that seem to be constantly peddled from about mid-February. Brands are trying to get us to buy into their synthetic culture, and if we’re not a part of it then we’re out of the gang. The truth of the matter is that we are leaving perfectly good clothes to sit at the back of our wardrobes for fear of being seen as, like, so totally last season. The best thing that can be done is to pick out a few items of clothing that are strong contenders each and every year; the clothes that never go out of style, no matter how much Vogue is trying to push them to one side. These usually constitute of plain colours or traditional patterns – think spots and stripes and not much more than this. Taking style into your own hands and being confident in what you wear, whatever it is, is just another way to put down the notion of fashion and do things your own way.
Look For Money Off
There are so many sites out there which are great for being able to search for coupons, discount codes, vouchers are so much more – sites like CouponSherpa.com. All you need to do is input the site that you are going to be spending on, and see if there are any offers that pop up from them. A lot of people impulse spend, but directing yourself to a site like this and having to think about what you’re going to be parting with your money on are surefire ways to help you consider what you’re doing and mull over whether it’s an essential buy. On the other hand, it’s also easy to overspend when you know that you are saving money – it’s natural to add more things to your basket with this validation. However, leave them in your online basket and walk away from your computer. Return a couple of hours later and you should be able to pick out which were the impulse choices and which were the much-needed items a lot more clearly. A bit of time away from the situation can help a lot.
Once the warmer weather hits, that’s when the majority of socialising takes place. There’s something about sitting outside with a bunch of friends in a pub or at a restaurant which just can’t be replicated in any other season. The fact that the days are longer tends to keep people out for just that little bit more than they’d realise. It’s a great way to catch up with everyone, but probably not so good for your bank account. If you can’t trust yourself with your debit or credit card, and are adverse to taking cash out with you, consider getting a prepaid card to limit you on your spending. It’s not a killjoy thing to do, it’s a responsible thing to have with you. It’s so easy to get carried away when you’re having fun with friends, but if you know that your money needs to be elsewhere (ie spent on bills or more important things to do with your life), it’s a good thing to have on board.
Have a think about when Christmas decorations are at their cheapest. That’s right – after the season has ended. It’s the same for absolutely everything else, including your summer essentials. If you have the money available, try and buy all of the things that you know that you will need next summer in the sales that occur in the fall. Try and hold off on buying things like garden furniture, chimineas and barbecues until then, as the savings that are to be made can be absolutely huge if you time it right. Make a list of all of the things that you need, have coveted or want for the year ahead and see if it crops up. The best thing to do is make a reminder on your phone and make a list of the websites that have had these items on them to go back to and check. There is some use for being an early bird!
The longer you spend out and about with friends, the more money you will spend. It’s an equation that will never not work out to the same answer. However, there are ways to save money while with friends – and you don’t have to cut the conversation short, either. Hosting a party at your house, rather than a venue that you have to pay for food/drinks at or hire, is a surefire way of cutting costs. You can rotate it between the groups so you’re not constantly hanging out at one place together, but it’s definitely a great way to a) get together without having to spend a lot of money to do so and b) utilise your home to your best ability.
Go Off Peak
If you have children, it’s inevitable that you’ll end up going to one attraction that is in peak season. Whether it’s an overcrowded park, a theme park that you’ve paid through the nose to get into (to have to queue forever to get on the rides!) or a play scheme that is full to the brim, these are all things which are going to ask for big prices when you get there. Have a look for things that you can do together in a free place – like your garden – and make an afternoon of it.