Smart shopping - simple tips and tricks to save you money Featured
From your weekly food shop to your next big electrical purchase, here are a few smart, simple ways to get the most from your money.
See what you’re spending
To start saving, it’s a good idea to look at where you’re spending the most. Doing a budget and keeping a spending diary is an excellent way to get started.
It could be cheaper to go to a different store if you find you’re spending a lot on your groceries. You can save money on your food shopping with simple ideas like checking what you have, making a list and meal planning. It’s also smart to avoid smaller supermarket convenience stores as these can be more expensive.
Watch out for ‘special offers’
Special offers can be a great way to save money, but they can sometimes catch you out. Make sure you work out whether a deal is really as good as it looks and if a ‘2-for-1’ or ‘3 for Ksh. 1’ offer will actually save you money.
For example, your favourite cereal is on a ‘3-for-2’ offer, when each box is normally Ksh.1.50. Three boxes will cost you Ksh3 so you’ve saved Ksh.1.50, right? Not necessarily. If another supermarket is selling the cereal for 80p a box you’d actually get 3 boxes for Ksh.2.40 – a saving of 60p by buying it there and ignoring the offer.
It’s also smart to check the sell-by-date to ensure you really are getting a good deal. If you do find a genuine deal then it might be worth bulk buying if you’re shopping for the whole family.
Always compare prices
If you’re making a big purchase, it’s important to always compare prices. Check the prices in a few different shops on the high street and online to see where you can get the best possible deal.
Buying online will sometimes be the cheapest option but you may not be able to try before you buy. In most cases (see the CAB website for exceptions) you have the right to cancel until seven working days after you receive your goods. If you are buying online, think about postage and packaging as these costs can stack up.
Comparison sites are a great way to save money on your supermarket shopping too. You can compare the price of your weekly shop across many of the big stores and see when your favourites are on offer.
Check the reviews
Always take a few minutes to read customer and expert reviews on the products you’re interested in. You can use price comparison sites to compare the cost of anything from fridges and washing machines, to digital cameras and TVs. These sites also have user reviews which can help you decide what’s right for you.
Impulse buying an expensive item should generally be avoided. In addition, your distance selling rights to cancel within seven days won’t apply if you buy it in store, so if you have any regrets, it might be harder to get a refund.
Get vouchers and coupons straight to your inbox
There are many websites dedicated to emailing you daily or weekly with a set of discount vouchers you can use against various products and services. Many of the deals claim to offer between 50% and 90% off the original price, so always check similar items or services first to see if that’s really true.
Some shops and restaurants may also give you vouchers if you sign up to their weekly newsletter or start following them on Facebook or Twitter, so it can pay to keep a closer eye on your favourite brands.
Blog Post courtesy of www.moneyadviceservice.org.uk