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How to save money

Late last year, I received a free ‘Survival Guide‘ published by Central Singapore CDC. In it were money saving tips, where to find jobs, and where to go for financial assistance, written in 4 languages: English, Mandarin, Tamil and Malay.

HOW TO SLASH YOUR UTILITY BILLS:

Keep ’em off
– Switch off electrical appliances at the plug point when you are not using them.

Use a Flask (save up to $360/year)
– Switch on your electric airpot only when you need it.

Cool Temperature (Save at least $50/year)
– Set the thermostat of your air-conditioner at 25 degrees Celsius, deemed the optimal temperature by experts. Each degree you raise the temperature takes $25 off your bill a year.

Desktop Helper (Save at least $240/year)
– Don’t keep your computer running if you’re not using it.

Four Ticks is Best (Save up to $590/year)
– Buy only appliances, like refrigerators and air-conditioners, with energy efficient labels. The more ticks an appliance has, the less energy it uses. The difference in an electricity bill between a four-tick and a one-tick air-conditioner could be as high as $460 a year, and as much as $130 a year when it comes to refrigerators with four ticks.

Better Bulbs (Save at least $20/bulb/year)
– Use energy saving or compact fluorescent bulbs, and watch your bill drop by $20 a bulb a year.

[help]Did you know?
The appliances which consume the most electricity are: Air-conditioner, storage water heater, electric airpot, rice cooker, steam iron, oven, dishwasher and refrigerator.
[/help]

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MONEY SAVERS water

Five-Minute Shower
– Keep your showers short. Turn off water while soaping.

Use a Thimble
– Attach one of these water-saving devices to your taps, especially the ones at the kitchen sink. Thimbles can be bought at kitchen equipment outlets, hardware shops and home improvement stores. To get a free thimble from PUB, National Water Agency, call 1800 284 6600, or send an email to PUBone@singnet.com.sg. Give them your mailing address and they will post a thimble to you.

Bottle Helper
– To reduce the amount of water you flush away, fill a 500ml bottle and put it in your cistern. Make sure the bottle touches the floor of the cistern. But don’t let it touch the cistern’s mechanism.

Re-use Water
– Don’t wash your vegetables under a running tap. Wash them in a basin of water. Then use that water to flush our toilet. Collect the water from your washing machine too, to flush the toilet.

[help]Did you know? You save water by using a glass of water to rinse your mouth when brushing your teeth instead of doing so with running water.[/help]

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MONEY SAVERS food

Frozen Option
– Opt for frozen meat rather than fresh cuts. It could reduce your bill by up to 50%. Frozen cuts are just as tasty as fresh ones, and as nutritious.

House Brand Advantage
– Buy supermarket house brands and items produced in Singapore and the region. They cost less.

Less Meat, More Veg
– You could substitute meat dishes in your diet with bean and tofu dishes. And eat more vegetables. These are cheaper and healthier.

Buy in Bulk
– Some essential items like rice can be much cheaper when bought in bulk. If the amount is too much for your household, ask the neighbours or your family members to share in the purchase.

[help]Did you know? If you go to the market or supermarket with a list of what you have to get, you are less likely to buy items you don’t need.[/help]

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MONEY SAVERS managing your money

Pay yourself first
– Save at least 10% of your take home pay each month. You should have an emergency fund equivalent to 3 to 6 months of your take home pay.

Just say No
– The salesman is persistent and you are tempted. The best response is to say “No thanks” and walk away.

Track Expenses
– Jot down in a notebook what you spend your money on. This will allow you to track where the money goes and where you can cut down.

Work out a Budget
– Determine how much you have to spend each week. First subtract your savings from your salary, then your regular expenses, for example, school fees and utility bills. Divide the remainder by four.

[note]For example:
Take home pay: $600
Less 10% savings: $60
Less utilities and other bills: $300
Remainder: $240
That gives you $60 a week for food, etc.
[/note]

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5 Responses to “How to save money”

  1. shikhar Says:

    i liked the ways to save our money.Its good that you are helping us in our bajet

  2. Superbrandcheesepie Says:

    (i) shop around for the cheapest mortgage rates – and ruthlessly switch mortgagee banks whenever
    rates drop, or use the new lower rate to negotiate a lower rate with your own bank
    (ii) save the water from your wash basin and washing machine to flush the toilet or mop the floor
    (iii) save the water from washing your vegetables and rice to water the plants
    (iv) never use your loose change , and instead systematically put all loose change into a piggy bank at the end of each day – you’ll be shocked
    how much you manage to save each month. The average frugal adult generate $100-200 worth of loose change a month
    (v) purchase slightly out of date bread , damaged biscuits, dented tins, bruised fruits and yesterday’s cakes. These are often
    marked down and can save you a bundle.
    (vi) never buy a new car; always buy a preowned car (but check its history and state of repair carefully). 35% of the
    depreciation of a car occurs within the first 18 months, and within 60 seconds being purchased a car depreciates
    15% (simply becoz once it is sold even once it becomes factually ”a used car”). The best buys are 3 yr old Continental cars.
    Its amazing what fantastic bargains can be had at the 3 yr old used car market segment. $60,000 SAABs and
    $85,000 Benzes are possible finds. Remember: the solid body work of a Continental car does not depreciate
    with time. Alternatively, buy a 20 yr old car* in good condition, invest in a new parts, and drive on the minimum possible
    expenditure. (*the only 20 yr old cars you should buy are those made by Toyotas, Mitsubishis and Mercedes Benzes – nothing else).
    (vii) iron only the ”visible parts” of your shirt: collar, shoulders, upper sleeves, cuffs, front of chest and the upper half
    of the back. The rest will immediately crease up once you put on your shirt (or are tucked into your pants), so ironing those parts
    are just a waste of energy. Office workers who work in frigid air-conditioned offices do not sweat at all and therefore can launder their shirts after
    wearing it for two days. Spray a little strach to keep the visible parts looking flat and ironed.
    (viii) pack lunch to office, and never buy coffee/tea. Use the office pantry. Bring your own 3-in-1 drinks.
    If you like fruit, bring your own. Drinks and cut fruits generally have the highest mark-up when sold
    in food courts and hawker centers.
    (ix) rotate between two pairs of leather shoes – it’d prolong their life span by at least 50% by allowing the leather to rest and breathe
    on alternate days. Polish only the front part of the shoes becoz that is the only part people see – every other part of a shoe will likely
    be hidden by your pants (when standing) or table (when sitting). Resole leather shoes – as the soles wear out before any other part.
    Prolong the lifespan of the insides of a shoes by inserting in-soles immediately upon purchase of a new pair of shoes.
    If you have to walk a lot commuting to work, wear black color no-brand canvas trainers or tennis shoes, and only switch into your office shoes
    left at your office, to save wear and tear on the good shoes.
    (x) purchase products and condiments (eg jam, biscuits, coffee) with screw-top glass or thick plastic bottles, and use these as your kitchen
    anbd fridge containers. You will Never need to buy kitchen containers and jars ever again.
    (xi) save one empty bottle each of shampoo and bath gel, and half-fill them with refills. Then top the bottle up with water till full.
    Voila. You enable your shampoo and bath gel to last twice as long, because modern shampoo and bath gel are so thick anyway
    even at half-dilution you can achieve satisfactory cleanliness.
    (xii) take and save TWO extra paper napkin from the office toilet each day and bring it home in your pocket. In one year
    you save 700 paper napkins – that’s like buying seven packs of 100 napkins each which you can use as servettes at home.
    Take two more extra from the office canteen each day and you effectively get 14 packets of 100 napkins a year.

  3. snow Says:

    Take two more extra from the office canteen each day and you effectively get 14 packets of 100 napkins a year- This is robbing. Gosh not a good way to save money

  4. Amanda Says:

    @ Superbrandcheesepie: Those are amazing tips! I’ve taken a few down to try and implement! Thanks a bunch!

  5. Linda Says:

    Cook x2 or x2.5 portion of rice and save half to cook fried rice for the next day. This saves electricity on rice cooker. A all-in-one fried rice also saves money, gas and water to wash up crockeries.

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