The high cost of living forces many of us to review our expenditure and make a few changes and cut backs. A large percentage of our income goes towards household expenses. The best way to successfully save money is to start cutting costs around the house. Save on Housing If you are renting a house or flat, negotiate with your landlord to lower the rent. However, be reasonable in your request by making valid points. Find ways and means that could benefit both you and your landlord. You could offer to take responsibility of all maintenance needed in the house or flat in exchange for your rent to be reduced.
While renting, save money and make an asserted effort to purchase your own home. If you are a homeowner, do your utmost to make your bond repayments more affordable. Make additional payments when you can, invest any extra income into your home. For example, use a portion of your annual bonus to pay extra on your home loan and also arrange to increase your monthly instalment with your salary increase.
This way you shorten your bond repayment term, saving you thousands in interest in the long run. Save on Groceries Another huge household expense that could do with serious cut backs to save money. Buy your groceries in bulk and opt for generic brands, most times they are just as good as household brands but cost much less. Do your grocery shopping when the supermarkets run promotions, this usually happens at month end. Join rewards programs offered at most retailers to receive coupons and vouchers to use against your next purchase.
Save on Utilities Electricity, water and phone bills can get quite heavy when not controlled. Practise responsible electricity and water usage in your home at all times. Even if you are renting and these costs are inclusive, do not overuse as it could cause your rent to increase. Install a prepaid electricity meter for your house so that you can monitor your electricity consumption. This pay-before-you-use system works better because you know exactly how much you spend on electricity instead of being surprised by a high electricity bill at the end of the month. Using water responsibly in the house can save you thousands of rands every year. Check pipes and taps for any leakages, this way you prevent yourself and others in your house from wasting water unintentionally.
If you have children teach them to not waste water and the importance of using it sensibly to save money. Opt for a prepaid landline to limit the amount of time spent making phone calls which in turn decreases the amount of money spent on using the phone each month. Save on Home Security There are ways and means of protecting your home from intruders that cost less money. Keep the perimeter of your property secure with high walls and gates to prevent intruders from getting into your front or backyard. Install burglar bars on windows and security gates on the front and back doors of your house.
Having a couple of dogs on your property is very useful as they have a natural instinct to protect their grounds. These security measures as an alternative to alarm systems could save you thousands each year. Save on Insurance As a homeowner, you have the responsibility to protect your asset as well as its contents by taking out insurance. Even those who are renting should have insurance that covers their home contents. However, over time insurance premiums become quite costly. Save money each year by getting different homeowners insurance quotes to find a more affordable solution. Save on Home Maintenance Repairs and various maintenance in and around the house costs money, especially when the service of professionals are required.
Therefore in this case, prevention costs less than cure. Do regular maintenance around the house. Rely mostly on DIY methods and only make use of home maintenance services when you are unable to fix the problem yourself. This way you spend less money on home maintenance. Maintaining a household is a huge financial responsibility for the owner and those living on the property. However, by constantly finding ways to save money within the household, maintaining it need not cause financial strain.
This article was first published on MoneyVine: http://www.moneyvine.co.za/money/advice-tips/how-to-save-money-on-household-expenses/