Cheque, Please: Cutting A Monthly Food Bill In Half

Cutting a monthly food bill in half

Men, women and children love food. It’s the fuel that keeps us going, but it’s also tasty and delicious. There’s nothing better than sitting down to a family meal and chewing away the rigours of the day. And, it’s not like you have to be Gordon Ramsay to enjoy the dish. He may have three Michelin stars, but he’s never put a fried egg on top of beans and toast! A side-effect of loving to eat is the cost. Sadly, too many people overspend and put their finances at risk to indulge their taste buds. Anyone that wants to stop should look at the following and take note.

The Pareto Principle

In short, the Pareto principle states that 80% of the outcome comes from 20% of the causes. So, you can save money by revolutionising a small amount of factors. Yep, it is this simple as long as you pick the features that doing the damage. An obvious example is eating out at a restaurant. Although you may do it once or twice a week, the cost takes away a huge chunk from your budget. By cutting down to one meal, or none at all, the food bill shouldn’t be as high in the future.

Organic Produce

Supermarkets have all the answer these days, which means picking up fruit and veg is simple. Just park up, throw the groceries in a trolley, and enjoy a coffee in the Costa café afterwards. What every homeowner has to know, however, is that growing fruit and vegetables is straightforward. The trick is to create a patch of land in the garden and add seeds which don’t require lots of time and effort. For example, rhubarb grows like a weed with a little water and some extra nutrients. Carrots and potatoes are effortless, too. Anyone that wants to go to the next level can build a greenhouse and try and grow exotic produce.

Free Range

Plenty of people hate the idea of producing meat but love to buy it from a shop. Ignorance is bliss in many ways. If you aren’t squeamish, keeping livestock is a fantastic way to get a fill of protein without paying over the odds. You’ll need a nice piece of land, mobile field shelters and lots of food, but the hassle is worth it in the end. Not only do the cuts last for weeks, but you know what is on your plate and from where it came. At the moment, supermarkets aren’t one-hundred percent truthful about their sources.

Bill Analysis

Don’t assume there isn’t any waste regarding your food bill. It may feel that way, but when you look at it properly, there will be things which can reduce the costs further. An excellent tip is to buy ingredients and cook meals that are low in cost yet produce a great amount of food. That way, there is plenty to go around if the hunger pains don’t go away without splashing out. Plus, the remainder of the dish can be used during the week for lunches.


It’s your choice, so which option will you pick?

Family Finances: Here’s How You Can Budget Better!


Managing money can be tricky, no matter who you are or how much you earn, chances are you feel like you don’t have have enough. Family life can be expensive, and so most of us are on a budget and living frugally. But there are a couple of ways you can make your finances run more smoothly, here are some things to consider.

Save Money on Your Outgoings

You might think that your outgoings are pretty set, and when the bills come in you pay them without thinking too much about it. However there are lots of places you are probably paying too much when it comes to your bills, so every once in a while it’s worth sitting down and checking and making sure you’re getting the best deals. Run utility quotes through a price comparison website, if you could be saving money here then make the switch. Save money on power in the first place by switching to energy efficient bulbs, using the heating carefully and switching off appliances and lights when they’re not in use. Start writing grocery shopping lists and meal plans and shopping smart- this could save you hundreds over the course of a year.

Consolidate Debt

One of the biggest drains in many people’s budgets is debt. This is because it’s easy to accumulate and when you do, you pay more interest. It can get to the stage where you can only afford to make the minimum payment each month so you’re not actually reducing the amount of the debt. When this happens and you’re over committed, you best bet is to contact a debt charity or company before you start falling behind. They can often work to have payments reduced and interest frozen, and recommend different plans you can sign up to to get your debt paid off without falling behind financially. Another option would be to take out a loan or credit card and use this to pay off all of your other debts. That way you’re only paying one lot of interest and can work out easier and cheaper.

Plan For The Future

Unfortunately many of us live paycheck to paycheck, this is particularly dangerous because if we’re hit with an unexpected expense it could mean scrabbling around for money. For this reason, it’s so worth planning for the future. It could mean starting a savings account so you have access to cold hard cash if you need it. It could mean stocking up your store cupboard with tins and dried food for leaner times with money, that means you can always rustle up tasty dishes without many fresh ingredients. You could look into will writing services and funeral plans should the worst happen, that way you know your family is covered financially. And you could take out insurance plans that suit you, whether it’s health, life, dental, pet, contents and buildings insurance. That way if anything happens you’re covered and don’t end up out of pocket. Work the monthly insurance cost into your budget, you will save yourself a lot of money and hassle if you need to make a claim.


Use a Budgeting App

Budgeting can be tricky, working out exactly how much you have coming in and what goes out- especially when things can change throughout the month. These means that old pen and paper methods can be less effective, so instead of ending up in a pickle try using a budgeting app or tool online. You can easily adjust amounts, they will show you the dates and amounts of your bills, exactly what needs to be paid and generally keep track of everything. When there’s such great technology out there, it makes sense to utilise it. That way you can keep track of spending and bills right from your smartphone or laptop.

The more money you earn, it’s likely the bigger the house and higher outgoings you have- so whether you earn a little or a lot most of us are in the same boat when it comes to finances. Following these tips will help to free up extra cash so that it can be put to better use elsewhere, and you’re not just lining the pockets of big companies paying unnecessarily.

How do you keep your family’s finances running smoothly? Are you on a tight budget, if so what do you do to ensure you’re sticking to it each month?

The Art of Saving and Spending Wisely

What does it mean to spend your money wisely? You could always follow some money saving tips, but that’s only touching the tip of the iceberg.  There’s an art to saving and spending your money wisely, and it takes a lot of deep thought and self-discovery in order to utilise correctly. It goes without saying that managing your money can become a slippery slope if you allow yourself to purchase too many things and constantly skip bills. Don’t grow a habit of bad financial decisions. Instead, follow this guide that will teach you how to spend and save your money wisely.

Keep those wallets secure if you want to save money.

Learn How to Save Your Money

The first thing to learn is how to save your money. Many people think that simply sticking your hard-earned cash into a savings account is a good bet, and for several reasons. First, it’s called a “savings” account so it should, as the name implies, help you save money that can be used later on. It’s one of the simplest forms of saving money, but it’s also one of the least effective. Although interest will naturally build up over time, there’s not much interest to be hand in typical savings accounts, but your money does succumb to one negative effect: inflation. If your money sits in a savings account, it’s not going to be useful in several years time when inflation causes it to lose value.

To prevent this from happening, you should be investing your money into things such as property, a business venture or even antiques. Anything that holds its value (or even rises in value) is a better investment than just sticking your money into a savings account. It’s not the easiest thing in the world, but it’s the far superior way to save your hard-earned cash.

Understand How Credit Works

Credit is important for a number of reasons, such as being able to borrow money when you’re in a pinch or take out a mortgage on a new property. Your credit rating depends on a number of different factors, but the idea is that the less money you owe and the quicker you pay your bills, the better your credit rating is.

It’s fairly easy to get a poor credit rating. You simply miss out a few bills, forget payments and perhaps even miss paying your rent a few times, then you’re going to be put on a bad credit list that is shared among most banks. This makes it difficult to get anything from a mortgage to a simple loan. In cases like this, you may want to consider a homeowner loan that places your own property on the line. It sounds risky, but if you calculate it properly and you’re able to pay it off, this will greatly increase your credit rating. However, if you aren’t spending your money, you won’t be able to build a credit rating. This is why taking out loans is great—because you can use them to slowly increase your score so that, in the future, you have an easier time taking out a loan or mortgage from the banks.

Final Words

The general ideas of spending and saving wisely is to always understand the alternative options you have, as well as the deeper implications that spending and saving have on your financial situation.

Who Knew Choosing Toilet Roll Was So Hard!

Who knew that choosing toilet roll was such an arduous task… it is though isn’t it?

Scanning the aisles in the supermarket, you are faced with double lined, triple lined, aloe vera lined… arrrrrrrgh I really just want to wipe my sizeable behind with something soft… not that hard really is it?!

MadernoCollection have clearly been faced with the same decisions as myself and have put some serious thought into their ‘Annual Budget Roll’ – their findings from a survey compiled with students from Swansea University.

They looked into softness, absorbency, the length of the roll and the individual sheet size. They pretty much covered all bases!

Their findings can be found on their Annual Budget Roll page with some fun facts too! I am sure you will be as surprised as myself at the results! I will not spoil it for you but it looks like I shall be changed supermarkets!


Check out Sim’s Life for other posts!