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Table of Contents

Alphabetical List of ways to not Spend Money

See Why this document is NOT edited

Watch the Video Play List of all Videos in this series

Below are ways to reduce spending. Ther are over 100 of them. These are just suggestions and just because I list them does not mean that I do them myself.

If ther are other items that you would like me to write about, then email me and I may add them to the list.

contact me

READ THIS FIRST

Before reading each or any of the category items below, read what is directly below here as it has an effect on all the other items

Decision to spend and when to spend

A significant way to reduce spending is not to spend money at all. It is well worth considering if you need the good or service involved. In that respect, an appreciation needs to be made between needs and wants. Just because you want somthing does not mean you need it.

The timing of spending is also significant. Purely by definition, the longer you wait, before spending, the less you are spending, at that particular point in time. By delaying the spending, you also are able to consider if is was necessary to spend on that item or service, at all. See also Shopping Frequency

Good Vs Services

In the last 40 years, average household spending has changed to more on services than goods. Roughly, some time ago people would spend 80% on goods and 20% on services, but today it is the other way around. 80% of spending is on services and 20% is spent on goods. This has happened because in the past only rich people could afford to have things done for them, but with modern technology and marketing, even the poorest of people now spend on services. Some examples of such services are: Internet, communication, entertainment, travel, insurance, money management, fitness, and information.

Many of these services are recurring. They occur every month. Often people sign up for such services and never of hardly ever used them even though they continue to pay for them. Sometimes ther are exit costs of early termination of such service contracts, so it is important, when initially purchasing such a service, that you are aware this.

The least you can spend on services the better. Especially recurrent services. Most that you spend on services, you can do yourself. Unless you can earn more per hour then what you were paying for our services, providing that you do work in those hours, the better off you are performing a task yourself.

In relation to goods in a lifetime the most you spend will be on food

Change

Just because I show, you can save money, don't go straight out and do that, as in your situation, it may not be that you save money by doing that particular thing. For example in the section to do with watches, I point out that a mobile phone is another way to tell the time and is actually a better time piece that I watch. But that does not mean that you should throw away your watch and if you haven't already got one, go and buy a mobile phone. As that would be false saving, because even very cheap mobile phones are more expensive than very cheap watches.

Another example is cooking. I have said modern induction cookers are cheaper to run than conventional electrical hot plates. Again that does not mean that you throw out your present hot plate and go and buy an induction one, because the saving you would make on electricity consumption would not cover the cost of purchasing the new induction cooker. But if you had to replace it, it is best to replace it with one that has a lower running cost.

Change itself costs. If it is necessary to make a change, that change should be done at the minimum cost. But if the change is just to save money and the cost of the change is more than you are going to save, then it is not worth while changing.

A

Accommodation

This accommodation is other than where you normally live. For that see Property

Paying Twice

If you have to pay for accommodation, for where don't normally live, it implies that you're not currently at where you normally live. This means your are actually paying for two sets of accommodation. Where you normally live and we're going to be staying. Even if you own your own house it cost you to have that property.

It seems crazy to have to pay, for two sets of accommodation. One way around this is to do something like house swapping. You make an arrangement whereby you live in someone else's house while they live in your house. Another way would be to rent out your house for short period time with something like Airbnb. It may take a bit of arranging, but it can be done. The net effect is you're not paying for the external accommodation.

If you're willing to travel all the time, you could live in your vehicle. Which could be a car and caravan or a motorhome. See caravanning below.

I suppose, if you are renting and you're going to be going somewhere else for extended period of time, you could end the rental. This is something worth considering

Similar to the above would be to stay with relatives or friends.

Accept paying twice

There is a whole lot of different varieties and levels of quality of accommodation. From what I can see, ther doesn't seem much of a correlation, between what you pay for and what you get, as location seems to be a big factor in the price. Unless you consider, location to be something that you get.

Caravaning

We own a small caravan and have traveled all the way around mainland Australia in it. The least expensive places we stay, are at free camps. These are areas set aside, often by local councils, where the travelling public can stay for one or in some cases many nights free of charge. The range of facilities varies greatly. Even though they are free, some have free electricity, showers and sometimes use of swimming pools. Then there are free camps, but it cost to use the facilities. The next stage up are caravan parks that you have to pay for. These range in price depending on location and facilities. Some have all sorts of facilities for young children, like jumping castles and entertainment rooms and associated equipment. These tend to be the most expensive. As our children are grown up and we travel without them, we avoid such caravan parks, as they have facilities that we do not need. Hence we are not paying for somthing we are not using

In our caravan travels, we have met many people who do not have their own house, but are constantly travelling. I have not done the figures, but I get the impression that is far less expensive, than owning your own house, especially if you utilise free camps as much as possible. The only downside, is that if you sell a house and spend many years on the road, it becomes more difficult to be able to get back into living in a house, simply because house prices are increasing all the time.

Holiday Accommodation

This appears to be an expensive form of accommodation, because it's in areas, (Locations) where more people are interested in going. You'll save money on accommodation by keeping away from holiday locations. Just like children friendly caravan parks, children friendly tourist accommodation will be more expensive than the alternative. If you don't need all the facilities required by children and so stay in non children friendly accommodation you'll spend less. Even if you have children you can do this. I find children, left to ther own devises, entertain themselves or each other.

Hotel Accommodation

It seems the more elaborate the foyer, reception area and reception staff, of a hotel the more it costs, because all those things cost. If you can find accommodation that doesn't have these you should spend less.

Timing

The peak times cost more for accommodation than otherwise. If you're able to, you'll spend less by utilising accommodation, in non peak times.

See also Rent and Property

have a look at this guy that stays in places around the world without paying any money:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQCrKxBj5Id79syQEsY2Qxg

Advertising

marketers spend billions of dollars advertising. if they no it does not work, they wouldn't spend the money. most people, if you asked them, would say they are not affected by advertising. the reality is most people are. they are convinced, weather directly all subliminay, to purchase goods and services that they don't want and don't need.

advertisers employ psychologists to create marketing campaigns to convince people to purchase. most people do not know of the psychological tactics that advertisers use.

you will spend less money by attempting to ignore advertising. however that is extremely difficult because advertising is in your face, most of the time.

personally I don't watch television, tend not to read advertisements or billboard signage. if I do happen to notice some of these, I treat them with appropriate scepticism.

Advise

I very rarely pay for advice. I find that most good advice is free. Just like the old saying, all the good things in life are free. If you search around especially on the Internet and are astute, there is lots of good advice for free. The difficult part is determining the difference between good and bad advice. You can even pay a lot of money for bad advice.

If free advice is to spend money, without any financial benefit, then it is bad advice. If it does not involve spending money, but you end up spending less money, then it is good advice. If you do not understand the advice, then it is bad advice.

If you're going to spend money, to get advice, you need to consider what benefit you are going to get from the advice. If the benefit is greater than the cost, all other things being equal, it is worthwhile getting the advice.

It is important to check out the reputation of the person or organisation that is giving the advice. I am always a bit sceptical about younger people giving me advice simply because they have not lived long enough to have the knowledge and experience that is required to give good advice. A friend of a relative that worked at a bank, as a financial consultant, told me, that she did not like working in such a position, because she was not particularly good at controlling her own finances. I'm not sure if she provided that information to her clients. She was qualified, had the appropriate training and experience, to be able to give such advice. This goes to show that qualifications and even experience, are not necessarily, an indication, that you're going to get good advice.

If you can, ask the person giving the advice, about their background. Are they a person that knows how to save money? Does the advice involve money? Would they do, what they are advising you to do? Are they willing to give you references to people, they have provided advice to? What is their motivation in giving you advice.

All the above also applies to me. Do not accept everything that I say. Check it out by other resources as well.

So that you no, the reason I give this advice for free, is I wish younger people to have the knowledge to be able to live in a financially secure environment, like the way I live. I have no need for any extra money, but I do have some need for gratification. If you are grateful for this information and have benefited from it, just send me an email, anonymous if necessary, to say so. That is all the reward I'm looking for.

contact me

See also Legal and Information

Alternatives

When you are making a purchasing decision always consider alternatives. And the most important alternative is not to purchase at all. Or even if you do purchase the item, the timing of the purchase. See Decision to spend and when to spend heading at the beginning of this document under Read this First and also shopping_frequency.

Alternatives could be many things. Like same product but different brand, complementary items like water instead of wine (they both quench a thirst so satisfy a need) or a different way to achieve an objective.

On checking on what I have written I see I have used the word “alternative” in writing about accommodation, cars-purchasing, cleaning,credit_cards and entertainment just to list a few.

I have use the word 23 times. If you no how you can search for the world “alternative” in this document

Aluminum Foil

It appears to me that aluminium foil is mainly used to store hot food. Or that it is used to save the need for cleaning up metal containers. Like all packaging it's a one time use item and therefore you will be saving money by not using it at all.

If the food you wish to store is not hot then consider using Glad Wrap which is less expensive than aluminium foil. Better still consider using the free fruit and vegetable bags. See Plastic Bags

If the food you wish to store is hot, also consider letting it cool down, before you store it, alleviating the need for the aluminium foil.

Again a bit of knowledge and a change in behaviour can save you money.

Antiques

It seems silly, that most things, the longer you keep them, the less they are worth, until a certain time and then, they start to appreciate in value.

I pointed out to a friend of mine, that an almost antique motorbike, he owned, was now worth, many times what he had paid for it. But he pointed out to me, that if he had just left the money, he paid for it, in the bank, it would have accumulated to more, than he could get for the motorbike, today.

Antiques can be like Art. Ok if you are a dealer and no what you are doing, but otherwise, you are just paying a premium price, for something thats old and may not even still be able to do, what it was built for.

See Also Art

Art

This is generally a cost, like any other, unless you are purchasing it, as an investment. From what I can see, you need to be on the inside of the art world, to be able to successfully purchase art, as an investment. Unless you are on the inside, dont invest in art. Art, is definitely somthing, you do not have to purchase.

Art is a bit like fashion. It is appreciated differently by different people. But Art is very easy to create. So why not create you own, that cost nothing, but your time. It can be as simple, as stone or rock you find on the road. A shell on a beach, packaging that would normally be thrown out. It does not even have to be creative. Copy others ideas. Amazing, so cheap to make but can be extremely expensive to purchase. Somthing, is being manipulated

See also fashion

Artificial Scarcity

the major way that marketers are able to increase the price on the commodities that they sell is via artificial scarcity. they will use some methods to artificially make it appear that a particular item or service is scarce, when the reality is the items are not scare.

years ago I used to do work for an organisation that was in the furniture business. I was told that furniture retailers always wanted an exclusive on a product. if they had an exclusive on the product they could sell it at a much higher price compare two products that many people sold.

because basically the same piece of furniture could be configured in different ways in terms of size, style, colour, shape or whatever the manufacturer was able to often provide ther customers, retailers, with an exclusive product. however in reality the underlying product was was exactly the same, that they was selling to other retailers. but the end user, the consumer, would think that they could only buy the item from one retailer and so had to pay more for the privilege.

the same situation can apply to white goods. some retailers say they are the only ones that are selling a particular TV set stereogram whatever. often the difference between what they are selling and their competitors are selling, is only the model number. the products are identical.

a manufacturer can be forced to come up with a model number for a particular item that is unique to a specific retailer, simply so that the retailer can so they have an exclusive on that particular product, when in reality they don't. the only thing that is exclusive is the model number.

information and data are often artificially scare because of intellectual property laws. information is definitely not scarce. it's prolific. not only is it prolific but if you give someone information, both you and the person you give it to have it. but because of specific laws, intellectual property laws, which themself are artificial, someone taking advantage of those laws are able to dictate the price that the information is sold for. even if the information was not there's in the first place. the classic example with this is social media such as Facebook. what are Facebook selling? they selling ther uses. if you use Facebook you are the product that they are selling.

if anyone were to set up a website that was identical to Facebooks and used all the data from Facebook, I am sure that Facebook would sue for intellectual property violation.

all the information that Facebook users put on Facebook is not scarce, yet because of the intellectual property laws, Facebook can pretend it scares and therefore only allow Facebook users to see it.

you will spend less money if you purchase items that are not artificially scarce.

B

Banks

Once upon a time, it was free to use banks and they actually paid you money, for you having your money, in there bank

That has all changed. It completely depends on the bank, and the type of account you have in the bank. My experience is, that banks want you to jump all sorts of loops and hoops. Ther ultimate aim is to maximize their profits, which is fair enough, as that's what they're in business to do.

I don't pay any bank fees or charges. But to do that and maximise the interest I get on my investment, I have to have multiple accounts and transfer money from account to account. Moving money within one bank, seems to be reasonably easy. No doubt because banks are in competition to one another, it is both costly and difficult, to transfer money, from one bank to another, particularly for larger sums.

What I do find extremely annoying, is that all banks seem to think, computers don't work outside normal bank working hours and so use that as an excuse to charge or not pay interest to ther advantage

But there are some other ways were by you can move money outside normal banking hours. One is PayPal. Another that I have no experience with, what so ever, is Bitcoin.

UPDATE: The Australian banking systems was forced by the Reserve Bank of Australia to come up a way to transfer money between banks and individuals within a few seconds any day at any time (24 x 365)at no cost to the user. It is called the New Payment Platform See https://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-10-04/how-will-instant-payments-actually-work/9010400 and has been operating since the end of 2017. One of the trade names it operated under is Osko. https://www.osko.com.au/.

The banks dont seem to have promoted it much, such that not many people are aware of it and so still use the older systems where ther can be delays of days, in transferring money.

However even though you can get money from one person or institution to another within a few seconds with the new system, for the purpose of fees and charges and interest calculations the banks still use ther traditional banking timings.

My experience is, that it is best to jump hoops and loops of the banks and not pay banks fees and charges. You need to research, which types of accounts allow you to do this and continue your research and read all the correspondence that banks send to you, as they can, and do change their conditions, so that it may be necessary to change the type of account or even bank that you are using.

See laziness

Utilize the free banking functions

You can spend less money, by utilising all the free features, that the bank give you, in terms of Internet banking.

Functions that I use are: BPay view. Rather than bills coming in the mail, I receive them via my bank and can pay them, via internet banking, wherever I have an Internet connection, in the world, and also, I can store the bill, directly on my computer, at that time or even later.

Pay Anyone: Allows me to transfer money, up to a daily maximum, to anybody else's bank account.

Download transactions: Allows me to record, to a spreadsheet, every single entry, in every single account, so that I can do detailed analysis, of where our money is coming from and going to.

Funds transfer: Transfer money between different accounts, that we have.

Belts

The first belt I can remember having, I had for many years. The more recent belts, I have purchased, don't seem to last as long. I noticed though, that modern belts, have fancy colouring and patterns, on them, which inevitably wear off, and make the belt look bad.

I had considered, buying a belt that doesn't have the covering, only to find, that no such belts exist. I've now taken to repairing my existing belt and colouring it where it has worn, as it is just the appearance of the belt, that is the problem, not its functionality.

Other things, I guess, I could have also considered, are, adjusting my trousers, such that I do not needed a belt, having elasticised trousers, using a piece of rope or wearing braces.

These are just some examples, of showing how often, ther is more than one way, of solving problems or even recognising, that there is a problem

Behavior, the way you do things

Your behavior, the way you consume, can make a big difference that how much you spend.

Some examples. Im currently writing this at my local large shopping center. For a number of reasons. I dropped my Wife off at the bus stop, outside the shopping center, for her to catch a bus for a appoint she has. We could have 2 cars. We used to. But we realized by changing our behavior we were able to easily manage with only one car. Even, excluding car running costs and taking into account the cost of public transport, we are saving $1,000s on registration and insurance.

I could have driven home, after dropping off my Wife, but that would have meant, I would have had to drive back hear, again, to pick her up, in a few hours time. It also would have meant, I would have to have lights on, possibly use heating or cooling, water for the toilet, toilet paper, soap, wear out our furniture and other thing, I have not even thought off. But the shopping center is providing me with all those things, for no cost to me. Hence I am not spending that money. I did not purchase anything, at the shopping center. But I did walk around, in ther air conditioned comfort, was extremely entertained, by looking at all the things I do not need to buy. Apparently some philosopher, named I think, Plato used to do that 1,000s of years ago.

Further, in this same situation. The shopping center, normally has free Wifi, but at the moment it is not working. As I normally write this directly on to my Wiki web page, I could have used, my phones internet, to do so. My deal, I have on my phone, I pay for only the internet, as I used it. A deal, that is now, very had to get. But, by adjusting my behavior, I am writing and saving this, to my laptop and will put it on this web page, when I get home. My home internet, as currently all are, is far cheaper to use, than my mobile internet. I have paid less, than could otherwise been the case, just by my behavior. Personally, like to write, in locations other than just when im at home. I often write, when in the car.

I try to make sure I eat before going shopping. It saves the need to eat whilst out. But See Work or school lunches under Food

Even, whilst supermarket shopping, most people will purchase more or more expensive food, when they are hungry, than if they are not.

Before my Wife retired, I would ride my pushbike, to the shopping center. Other than saving the variable car costs, I got fit and healthy. No need for a Gym. See Fitness

A thought behavior, I have, is to think, what are the cost implications, of my behavior.

Books

Even though I do a lot of reading, I rarely buy books. Most of my reading, I do on the Internet. I find it much easier to read that way and also I don't get cluttered up with books all around the place. I also like to be able to look things up, while I'm reading, which is very difficult to do from a book as they are not hyperlinked. The advantage of not buying books is there is no cost. I don't pay for anything I read on the Internet.

Whenever anything is referred to that is in a book I can usually find the same information by doing a search on the Internet .

If you prefer to read something in a physical book then try libraries rather than buying the book. Most libraries are free.

If you want to physically own a book, consider buying them second hand rather than new if the second hand ones are cheaper.

If you need to buy a reference book because it has information you require, look around to see if that same information is available on the Internet or built into some computer software. An example. Some years ago we bought a book called Camps Australia. It was about $30 or $40. We later discovered an app called WikiCamps, which was $6 and had far more information, was more up-to-date with more functionality, than the book and could be used by multiple people at the same time on multiple devices. Which is what we do.

Seems to me the main reasons books are still around, other than those people that like them, is so information is less able to be copied, and so shared.

Also see subscription services and magazines

Brand Names, Dont Buy Them

Even if you ask sales people, they will tell you that you have to pay extra for brand names. Paying extra would be ok, if you got somthing extra, that you benefited from. But in most cases the extra you're paying for is the promotion and advertising, which the company has done on that brand name. In which case you're just paying for the fact that is more well known.

Often the equivalent unbranded product or services may be exactly the same. Even if they are not, is it worthwhile paying multiple times difference in price for something that does exactly the same thing? In my opinion it is not. Generally you'll spend less money, by not buying brand names.

Broken but Still Works

As I'm writing this I'm wearing a pair of glasses where the hinge on one side is broken. When I say broken, I mean that the arm moves up and down or even though the screw is tightened up. It's been like that for well over 6 months. When it first started to happen I could have purchased a new pair of glasses. But I've now used these ones for over 6 months without having to purchase new ones.

The same can apply to many products. often what is broken is just an appearance thing. the product still works perfectly ok.

If you wait until something's fully broken, you will end up spending less money.

C

Cable TV

Why would you want to pay money for the privilege of watching advertisements. That's what I consider cable TV to be.

It appears that most people purchase cable TV to get a better variety of TV programs than is available on free to air TV. If you want variety of entertainment, equivalent to TV, you are better off looking at videos on the Internet. Because of streaming video, many traditional TV stations, around the world, stream their programs. Hence rather than being restricted to the few hundred of channels that are available on pay TV, when with Internet streaming you can get thousands of TV channels. There is even dedicated free software that allows you to do this. One example is Kodi https://kodi.tv/

In addition to the traditional commercial TV stations there are many Internet only equivalent to TV stations. You don't need to purchase a TV broadcast licence from a government, to be an Internet TV provider. Anyone can do it. YouTube channels are just one example.

Most of what is broadcast, on free to air and cable TV, has been previously recorded. The Internet, has more recorded video than any cable TV provider would have. It's only a matter of being able to find it, on the Internet. The free Kodi program in only one example of how to do that.

If you only want to watch certain movies, you can purchase them one at a time on the Internet for only a few dollars, rather than having to pay a monthly fee to a cable company.

If you prefer to pay to watch programs, it will be less expensive to subscribe to one of the video on demand service, Such as Netflix or Stan, that you can purchase on the Internet than to use a traditional cable TV provider. But then there are even better ways than that. See subscription services

Cars - Purchasing

The first question is whether to purchase a car or not. That will depend a lot on your personal circumstances. Do you need to trave? where from and to? How far? How often? How well is the area you wish to travel in serviced by alternative ways of traveling, such are public transport and how often and reliable is that public transport?

As any good car sales person will also tell you, regardless of the financial considerations involved, motorcars very much have deep emotional personal feeling associated with owning or driving them. Most people purchase cars based on how they make them feel. If you have a need for those feelings you have to weigh that against your ability to save money.

A friend of mine who buys and sell cares for a living, pointed out to me that when you purchase a car, you are in fact generally purchasing the number of kilometers the car is going to be able to travel. With a few exceptions the more Kms a car has traveled the less it is worth. As ther are an entire range of cars in terms of makes, models, styles, configurations, colours and the like, ther is not a common $ per Km factor. Nor will you be able to determine when you purchase any particular car the number of Kms it will last, when it is likely to break down or if you will be involved in car accident.

Based on my experience, brand new cars are not worth buying. Because they immediately lose a large part of ther value. Regardless that a brand new car has the maximum kms left it can travel, it has a premium price associated with being new. To illustrate my point assume a situation where you purchase a brand new car drive it 100 kms and then take it back to where you bought it and ask how much they are willing to buy it back from you. It would be the most expensive 100 kms you are likely to ever travel. But to continue my illustration imaging you where a person that new about somone in the above situation and you offered to buy that car. You could get a car far cheaper than the new car price.

Most modem cars are far superior to ther predecessors. They are far more reliable, fuel efficient, comfortable, safer and more importantly will last much longer. But the attitude about cars is the same as it has always been and is reflected in the statement my friend made above. The more kms a car has done the less it is worth. So the ideal second hand car to purchase is the youngest with the highest number of Kms traveled. You will find these are $1,000s cheaper than those with lesser kms. Because modern cars last longer and that cars with high kms have usually by necessity have accumulated those kms in less stressful highway driving they should last longer than ther less kms equivalents.

A few years ago I purchased a 3 year old Subaru that had 180,000 kms on the meter. At 3 years it is usually expected that a car should have only done 60,000 kms. Hence it had done over 3 times the usual. But I paid about $10,000 less than and a car that had done 60,000 kms. In the over 4 years I have been driving it nothing mechanical has gone wrong. Of course if I were to sell it I would get less than a car with less Kms , but not $10,000 less. Bottom line is to buy the newest, second hand car, with the highest Kms.

Car depreciation

The below web site, although for the US, shows a calculator for calculating the value of cars after varying periods of time, depreation. What is revealing is that on average new cars lose 9% of their value in one minute, half ther value in 5 years an practically all there value in 10.5 years. That is for the US that does not have GST.

https://www.omnicalculator.com/finance/Car-depreciation#how-fast-does-the-car-value-decrease

Car extended warranties

Some car sellers cars, sell cars with an extended warranty. Considering that the extended warranty does not start until the manufacturers warranty comes to an end, and you may be required to pay for the extended warranty upfront, these extended car warranties, do not seem to have much value associated with them. Especially when you consider all new goods, including cars, sold in Australia have to have a statutory warranty. See warranties. New cars often come with 5 and even up to 7 year manufacturers warranties. There's not many things you would pay for today, that do not give you any benefit for another 5 to 7 years.

As with any extended warranties, you should carefully read the wording of how they work and what is covered. Wording in one I have just read, states:

"	 

The Period of Cover ceases on the first to occur of the following: • upon the expiry of the Cover Term; • upon reaching the kilometre limitation specified in the Proposal & Policy Schedule; • when the Maximum Policy Benefit has been reached; and • if the Vehicle is sold and no valid Transfer of Ownership Form is accepted by Us“

Considering that the “maximum policy benefit” could only be a few thousand dollars, that could mean that you could only have one claim against the extended warranty.

In that same wording it explicitly States what is covered under the policy. There are no doubt MANYE things that are not covered. Two that I have noticed are, diesel particle filters and senses associated with monitoring by a cars computerised engine management system.

Personally I don't think extended warranties are worth it, and even more so on motor vehicles.

See also extended warranties

Cars - Maintaining

The most expensive part of running a car is depreciation. That is the cost of purchasing it initially, amortized over the period of time that you own it.

So the best way to reduce the cost of maintaining a car is to buy a least expensive car in the first place. See save_money_alpha_list#cars_-_purchasing

I was once told by the owner of a car dealership that they make a relatively small amount of money out of selling cars and make more money maintaining cars.

Typically, car dealerships charge more for maintenance of vehicles then do your local mechanic. So you'll save money by getting your car maintained by your local mechanic.

Car dealerships often say that the warranty will be voided if it is not maintained by the dealership. That is false. They also say that only genuine parts can be used otherwise the warranty is voided. That is also false. In addition to the car manufacturers warranty, in Australia, we have what is called a statutory warranty. Unlike the manufacturer's warranty, consumers have certain rights that cannot be excluded. One of those rights is that the product has to be fit for purpose. See Warranties

Car manufacturers indicate what should be and how often items in a car should be maintained. It is interesting to note that older cars usually do not get maintained according to those manufacturer's instructions, yet despite being older, continue to operate reasonably well. I'm told by motor mechanics, for example, if the oil is not changed as often as is stated by the manufacturer that the engine will not last as long. But if a modern car engine was able to last for say 1 million kilometres, which should be so, by doubling the time between oil changes it will only last half that long, it would mean the the car would last a half a million kilometres. If you don't intend to keep the car for that long, it's not worth while having the oil changed as often as the manufacturer says. In these circumstances is then possible to half the cost of maintaining a car.

If you read the items that have to be maintained, according to the manufacturer, very few are actually items that need to be changed, like oil, filters and brake pads. Most of the maintenance in modern cars is simply checking. It may be possible to acquire the knowledge of how to check these items yourself. Look them up on the Internet or on YouTube videos, such that you are able to do those checks yourself. The more complicated things you can get done by your local mechanic.

Modern cars are controlled by computers. Car manufacturers use the laws associated with computing software, copyright, to exclude information from consumers and your local mechanic so that you are sometimes forced to use the dealership. However there are certain aftermarket software that your local mechanic may be able to purchase to enable them to maintain your car. It is worthwhile considering this when purchasing a car.

Cameras

As apparently there are more cameras in the world than people, it is not necessary to purchase a camera to take digital photos, nowadays. Just buy a camera memory card and whenever you're at an event, where people are taking photos, ask if you can use their camera, to take photos with your memory card. If they say ok you are taking photos without the need to buy camera.

With so many other devices such as mobile phones, tablet computers notebook computers, dash cams, and such, that have built-in cameras, it may not be necessary to purchase or own, a separate camera.

Digital cameras are very inexpensive. Purchasing an expensive camera will not make the photos that you take any better. Photography is both an art and a science. Because of digital photography, taking a reasonable photo is more art than it is science, so the camera itself becomes less important.

My first digital camera cost me $99 and only stored 10 photos that were lost when the batteries were removed. Basically it was just a webcam that had photo taking capabilities. As I only used it to record history I was not particularly worried about the quality of the photos. Over the years I've purchased a number of digital cameras and the quality of the photos, for the price paid, has increased dramatically, because of technological change.

I recently purchased for $40 a GoPro knock off video camera that comes with a waterproof case, that I can, and have used for underwater videoing. I also use it as a video dash cam. It takes very good video. I also mounted on a quadcopter and take aerial video. All for only $40. You don't have to pay big money to get a good camera.

Charities, giving to

Personally I don't do this. However I do donate a lot of my time and effort and provide material like this, completely for free. I believe that information is power and giving people information is more of value to them then giving them money. It is just that they, don't know that

My biggest concern with donating to charities is the amount of money that gets to the intended recipients. My second concern is what they do with the money.

Considering that even some affluent people often do not know how to manage money why would those that are poor be any better.

I have heard the argument put that is useless to give money to the poor as all they will do is waste it. I know that is not always true and it depends on circumstances.

I'm reminded of a program I once watched that was set last century. Just before boarding a train a rich uncle gave his young adolescent nephew a coin and provided the advice that a fool and his money are soon parted. The boys said, that's good advice but, thank you anyway. The inference being that the uncle was a fool to give the boy the money.

However I do think it is important to give advice before giving anybody any money. In the case of charities I have no idea what advice they give before giving people money or for that matter what they do with the money. That's why I don't give money to charities.

It seems immoral that most charities get most of ther money from relatively poor people rather than rich people. That those that can least afford it, give the most. but I guess it's also immoral that some people are thousands of times, if not millions of times more wealthy than others.

Cleaning

Cleaning would have to be one of the biggest wastes of money. The time spent doing most cleaning could be used for far more productive efforts.

Do you clean the inside lining of every draw in the kitchen every day. Most likely not. Why. Because it is not necessary. Yet a few seconds after you clean anything, it will not be at the same level of clean. A way to spend less money is to clean less often. The less often you clean the more money you save by not making purchases associated with cleaning. Make your own decission as to how often you do cleaning, but appreciate that it is an endless task.

Consider, are you cleaning for yourself, for others, or what you feel, others may think of you.

Marketers use shame and the supposed health risks of things not being clean as a way to entice people to clean and so purchase cleaning products that are often not needed. Regardless of a what some marketer once espoused ther is no relationship between cleaning and religion. The health risks of something not being cleaned are typically over exaggerated by both marketers and the mass media. Do your own research on what clean level is regarded as a health risk. Dont believe what marketeers say. Legally they do not have to tell you the truth.

Marketers invent machinery to supposedly make cleaning easier and a entire range of cleaning chemicals most of which are basically the same. Look throughout your house and see how many cleaning machines and cleaning chemicals you have. Then think, if I did not have them, what would I do. If you do not have a dishwasher you would have to wash the dishes by hand. But if you had to do that you might not use as many dishes and cooking utensils. You would not need as many of those items if you clean each one as soon as you finish using it. You would also not have to purchase dishwasher powder or rinse aid. Consider the same for all other cleaning machines

When you run out of a chemical cleaning product, look to see what other cleaning products you have that could be used instead. Like when you run out of floor cleaner, surface spray or bathroom cleaner chemicals, investigate what alternative chemicals you already have that you can use. Like basic detergent. Often the base ingredients of cleaning chemicals are all the same but are strengthened or diluted for a particular purpose or have a different smell or are packaged differently. If you do some research, you will find that ther are a lot of basic things that cost far less than the cleaning chemicals that are sold in supermarkets, that can do the same, and in some cases a better, cleaning job. Eg lemon juice and sometimes even tap water. For example, if you have cut some fruit on a plate, ther is no need to use detergent to clean it. Water is sufficient. You are only diluting the fruit juice. If these basic things work then dont buy the supermarket products.

The more you have the more you have to clean. De-cluttering means less cleaning. Before you purchase anything consider what it is going to take to clean it or if it has to be cleaned at all.

If you have a choice as to what items you use, also consider the cleaning factor. If you can use something that does not have to be cleaned, use it in preference to one that does. Going one step further, do you need to do the function that requires an item to be used that will then require cleaning. Consider cooking toast. You put bread in a toaster, that at some point has to be cleaned. The toast is placed on a plate, that has to be cleaned. A knife, that has to be cleaned, is used to spread margarine on the toast and perhaps another knife, that also has to be cleaned, may be used to put another spread on the toast. But, as an extreme, consider eating the un-toasted slice of bread directly out of the packet. Nothing to clean. Or to go even further, dont eat even the bread and you wont put on any weight and will save on buying bread.

If everyone in a household has ther own drinking glass and they clean ther own glass as soon as they finish using it, ther could be no need to use any detergent. A simple rinse with a very small amount of water could suffice. Ther is also no way of cross contamination.

Personal cleaning, hygiene. Same applies as for all other cleaning. Do you have to shower every day. Will a wash suffice. If you no that you are going to get dirty twice in a day, do you have to shower or wash after the first time getting dirty. Ther are ways to get clean without bathing, showering or washing with water. You do it when you clean other things, why not with your body. If only some parts of your body get dirty only clean those parts

Clothing. How often do you wash your shoes in hot soapy water. Most people never. Yet you wear shoes every day. Why then are some other cloths washed after one days wear. How dirty do cloths have to become before they are washed. The longer between washers the less money spent, and the longer cloths last. I used to ride a pushbike to work and back every day. On arriving at work I would shower and change from my riding cloths to work clothes. I would put the riding cloths in a sealed plastic bag and use the same riding cloths for a week. It saved a lot compared to daily washing. Of course it also saved by showing at work than at home.

What is Cleaning and Clean

Think for a minute about what cleaning really is? It's only moving something from one place to another. If you wipe something up with a sponge and then rinse out the sponge all you're doing is taking the dirt, mixeng it with water and putting it into the sewerage system. Which eventually end up in a river, a creek or the ocean.

If you vacuum carpet and then empty the vacuum cleaner into a rubbish bin which is emptied and take to landfill.

All cleaning is, is moving some items, which some people regard as dirt, to somewhere else.

By logical deduction, clean is something that has something moved from it. It costs, to move things.

See also Stains on Cloths

Clocks

They are not needed. Many modern products come with clocks built into them. microwave ovens, ordinary ovens, computers, tablets and mobile phones.

Standalone clocks as a general rule do not have any way of automatically adjusting themselves to the correct time. Whereas anything that's connected to the Internet or the mobile phone network do , hence they are a better clock.

See also watches

coffee

One cup of coffee a day can be addictive. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caffeine_dependence

If you're presently don't drink coffee, don't start. If you presently do drink coffee, try to give it up. There are many drinks that are less expensive than drinking coffee. Like tap water.

Based on the number of coffee shops around it would appear that either coffee drinking has become a fashionable thing to do, (see fashion) or a lot of people are addicted to coffee. If you have to drink it, make your own and put it in a thermos, rather than buying it at a coffee shop. That way you will spend less.

See Also Food

Cloths

Most people have too many clothes and pay far too much for them.

All you have to do is look at any shopping centre and see how many shops are selling clothes as opposed to other products. Retailers seem to make more money out of clothes than anything else, otherwise they wouldn't provide as much space for them

You can only wear one set of clothes at a time yet most people have enough cloths to be able to not wear the same clothes for months. Once again clothes seem to be a way of showing conspicuous consumption.

You should only buy clothes when the old clothes are no longer usable. See also below about using old clothes as work clothes.

If you have to go to some special occasion were certain dress standards apply, consider buying the clothes second-hand and selling them after the event or even renting the clothes. It is not cost effective to purchase cloths to only wear once.

Clothes are an item where buying second hand is generally well worthwhile. Many charities have clothing stores where you can buy good quality clothing at a fraction of the price you would otherwise pay.

Even when clothes wear out or become stained they can still be warn. In 2 respects. As a fashion statement. See Stains on Cloths. Or as old work clothes. Whenever I work in the garden I wear clothes that have been ripped or torn or worn out that I would otherwise would not wear. It seems senseless to buy work clothes that are able to be damaged, when you can wear pre damaged clothes.

If you wish to be truly fashionable consider setting your own fashion standards. Become a fashion leader, rather than a follower

See Fashion

Communication

Today the methods of communication are greater than ever and because of technological advances the cost of communicating is the lowest it has ever been. This is a double sided sword. Even though it is cheaper ther are more ways for marketers tp exploit the situation.

Communication is primarily a service. Over a period of time you will pay more for the service than what you will pay for the goods associated with it. Some people associate communication with the cost of purchasing an item (goods) such as a phone and are hoodwinked into thinking they get a better deal by paying so much a month (a service), a lower amount, rather than an outright purchase, a higher amount.

With all communications you need to consider the overall cost over a period of time.

Decisions based on previous usage history

Unless you have never used a phone or the Internet before, you should have some idea of what your typical usage is. This may be detailed, on your phone or Internet bill. Many people do not realise that even though they may not get a detailed bill or a bill at all, showing the Number of calls made or data that have used, that this information is available online. To be able to make an informed decision, about the cost of communication, you need to have that usage information. Otherwise you are making decisions without the required information. An exploit that marketers use. With the required skills and knowledge it is possible to download phone and Internet usage information into a computer spreadsheet so that you can do calculations to determine which deals, would be best for you.

I had a landline with a phone company where I did not make many phone calls. At the time I chose to go on a plan that had a low monthly fixed cost with a high cost for each call made, as I had calculated, based on previous history that this was lowest cost way to go.

The phone company changed the way they billed me. They offered me for a fixed price per month, that was higher than what I had been paying, a deal that included unlimited local and STD calls. On doing the figures I discovered I would be worse off on the new deal, because I did not make many calls. I knew this because I had, the call history. I change to a different phone provider. Having that history of previous usage allowed me to end up paying less.

Data and voice almost the same thing

On the older landline telephone system to speak to somebody a physical connection had to be made from the person making the call to the person receiving the call on a dedicated telephone line . With modern technology, that is no longer the case. The rough equivalent to the one telephone line can now handle many 1,000s of telephone conversations, because voices are carried within data rather than a voice signal. That is why the cost of communicating has come down dramatically. However telephone companies still have ther base charges, for calls, based on time distance and a connection fee. Like they always have. Because they can make more money that way

The phone companies have records going back over many years of how many phone calls each of their subscribers have made. It is called, “big data”. Based on this, they set up new charging structures so as to maximize the income they will receive whilst minimising the load on ther network, for profit maximisation. Not for the convenience of their customers. As with my example above it is important to not just accept a deal that a phone provider puts to you.

All included or pay as you go

Based on your previous history of usage you need to make a decision if you want to have a all included type deal or a pay as you go deal.

Should your usage patterns change you should review the deal, to make sure you're getting the deal with the lowest possible cost.

The benefit of an all you can use to plan is that you don't have to worry about how many calls you make, as they are all included in a fixed cost. However you need to make sure what is and what is not include. What used to be called the fine print on a contract but nowadays which is deeply hidden in web pages. Calls to particular numbers with particular prefixes may not be included and if charged separately maybe on a timed basis rather than a per call basis. Calls to certain overseas countries may not be included.I once had a situation where I had broken down in the car and had to contact a car club to get the car running.. I was not a member of the club that at the time. Unbeknownst to me I was ringing on a number that was not included in my normal call costs so was charged for the time of the call. That one call cost me over $30 which made the breakdown even more expensive. I later discovered a switchboard number for the same car club which would have cost me only a few dollars had I used it instead.

If you're using a pay as you go communication service, like all other things, in these documents, it is best to minimise the number of calls you make so reducing the cost.

One way of doing so can be achieved with, what some people call “Pranking”. That is ringing a number and letting the phone ring only one or two times and then hanging up. The person you are ringing can see that you are trying to call them, via calling number display, and they ring you back so you dont pay for the call. This is utilising where the person that finally makes the call has an all included plan ,so it's not going to cost them any extra to make that one call.

Yet another way, is to not make a call at all, but communicate via some other methods such as email, a webpage form or an online chat. Sometimes when dealing with businesses this can be done and has the advantage of having a record of a conversation that took place. See dealing with organisations

When making overseas or long distance calls consider using a computer or mobile phone applications like Skype , Vibre or Signal. All these use Internet data and are not charged on a time or distance basis ,and have no connection fee. You are only charged for the data you use.

I find it interesting that phone companies still charge a connection fee when in fact there is nothing done to make the connection. It is all completely automated just like when changing web pages on the Internet. Why do phone companies still charge a connection fee ? Because they can.

Internet ISP Chargers

Just like all marketers Internet service providers will try and differentiate themselves from their competition in some way. In reality, other than the difference speeds of the service they provide ther is very little difference between one provider and another, possibly other then their customer service. So best to go for the one with the least price.

Mobile Phones Communication

Everything that applies to the above also applies to mobile phones with a few exceptions.

With the exception of one major provider most mobile phone companies have deals with unlimited calls and unlimited SMS messaging. The differentiation between each plan seems to be how much Internet data is included. The more you pay the more data you get.

The differentiating factor between mobile phone providers is the coverage they have. Coverage is where physically the mobile phones will work. Unless you're going to be traveling around Australia outside of major cities it's no advantage to pay a premium price for mobile service that has a better coverage .

I have traveled around Australia, once for a period of 6 months. But I do not use a mobile provider that provides better coverage. I only purchased a prepaid mobile Internet service at the places where I needed that coverage at the time. Doing so just requires changing the SIM card in the phone.

Mobile phones whilst overseas

If you use your local mobile phone provider whilst you are travelling overseas you will be doing whats called roaming. That is where that countries mobile provider will charge your provider and who then finally charges you, to use your mobile phone services. This is a very expensive way to use a mobile phone when your overseas. Even if you receive calls, you'll be charged for the call and at roaming rates.

Whenever I go overseas I always purchase a SIM card from an overseas provider and then only for data. Via, Skype, Viber or signal I can then call back to Australia or have Australians call me and I'm only paying for the data. The cost of data is substantially less than the cost of roaming.

Mobile vs landline vs Wifi Data

You'll find that mobile data is a lot more expensive than landline Internet data. However via Wi-Fi it is possible to use your landline Internet data when you're at home on your mobile phone.

Because I have unlimited Internet service at home I am able via wifi to use my mobile phone to ring people overseas who are also on Wi-Fi and speak to them for hours and there is no incremental cost at all to myself. As opposed to what it would cost if I made a mobile call, most likely hundreds of dollars

In many places there is free wifi. like shopping centres, McDonald's, supermarkets and the like. On our around Australia trip we even found a free wifi out in the middle of nowhere in the Kimberleys in Western Australia.

Computing and Technology

The old saying that you get what you pay for generally does not always apply and definitely does not apply , in most cases, to computing and technology.

You can get a better technology often by paying less money and in some cases by paying no money as opposed to paying for it. Particularly with software. As with most products, marketers put in many bells and whistles into their products in a bid to get users to buy the more expensive product.

With computers, this is computer speed and features that you probably, most likely, will never use. The slowest part of using a computer is yourself, So when you have a computer that is twice as fast as another computer, most of the time, the computer is spending twice as long sitting there waiting for you to give it instructions. So why buy a faster computer.

I am a computer professional and have been using using computers since 1967. In the past I also wrote computer software. Even if I was going to write software today I would still not need a fast computer. I have not purchased a desktop computer in the last 20 years as they are more expensive than notebook computers and far less versatile. Most of my computer use today, I do on my mobile phone, simply because it is far more versatile than even a laptop computer.

I don't buy brand name models Brand Names and usually buy the cheapest I can. Because modern computing devices are far more reliable than that have ever been, they will last a long time. It is usually the physical parts they get moved that are more likely to break down then there electronic components. Hinges and where cables get plug in and out are what tends to break down. For the price that I pay for mobile phones and computers I could buy 2 of what most people buy.

After speed, the physical features of computing devices are what tends to determine their price. However sometimes the incremental price between a computer that has not got certain features compared with one that has, is more than if you purchased the feature as a separate addon. For example, one laptop computer maybe $200 more expensive than another computer but has a smaller storage (hard drive) but for $100 you can purchase an external hard drive that has twice the capacity of the more expensive computer. By having the hard drive external, also has the advantage of being able to store the data separate from the computer, from a security point of view.

See also least expensive way to use the internet and mobile phones

Cosmedics

I'm not a woman and have no experience with using Cosmetics.

However, I remember a story of someone telling me that their husband worked for a glass container manufacturer. One of his customers had contacted him to get a quote for producing a perfume bottle. It was a very specific design, quite out of the ordinary and because of this it would cost an absolute fortune to make. The customer said don't worry about the cost, as whatever it costs we will pay, because women do not purchase the perfume, they purchase it because of the container.

Apparently most cosmetics are like this. The container and packaging are worth far more than the product they can contain.

It could be them, that cosmetics brands are all much the same, with the differentiating factor being there containers. If that is the case then buy the cheaper ones. I would suggest the other differentiating practice, are brand names and fashion. See Brand Names and Fashion

Like all things in these notes you can save money by using less or no Cosmetics. You could even start and new fashion, of wearing less or no cosmetics. Personally I feel a woman's face, without cosmetics, always looks better than one, with them.

How often you wear cosmetics must to be another factor in reducing ther costs. The less you use them the longer they last

I have no idea of what cosmetics are made from but I'm sure there must be ways of making your own. See Make things

Apparently, regardless of the advertising claims, no chemical ingredient has been made that can reduce the aging process of skin. It is permissible in advertising codes of practice and laws to lie. It would seem then to be a waste of money to purchase anti aging creams.

Cost Plus Pricing (markups)

In the past, this was the way a lot of items were priced, especially in retail. A retailer would add a markup (profit) to the purchase price to determine a selling price.

In our more modern and sophisticated markets, this is becoming less common. Even the economists, supposed, laws of supply and demand, have little to do with a price that something sells for.

I once spoke to the manager of a large retail variety store. He told me the story of a set of steak knives that he purchased that was a very good quality, looked good and were at a very good buy price. He applied his normal markup, and put them together with the other steak knives on the shelves. They did not sell very well, even though they were the cheapest steak knives on the shelf. He increase the price to just below the most expensive steak knives, they sold out in no time. It appears that there was a perception, that because they initially were the cheapest steak knives, considering they were of a better quality and appearance against the other ones, that they had to be something wrong with them. When the price was bought more in line the other steak knives, the perception was removed and so they sold. Those people that bought them before the price went up, got the better deal. This is just one example of where price does not have a relationship to cost. Knowing this can save you money.

I like to speak to retail salespeople. Whilst doing so at a major Electronics retailer I discovered that they had three different price levels. The price tag price, another price that was even lower, if a customer ask for a better price, and yet a better price yet again if you it was asked for, again. I have also been told that the tag price, includes some margin (markup) for customers that take up the offer of interest free terms. In other words any one that accepts the tag price is paying the extra margin for those people that would normally be purchasing the items on interest free terms, even if they were not using the interest free terms.

A few years ago we bought a large screen TV. We went around all the appropriate stores in our local area, to get prices, including the one above, that has the 3 prices. My daughter rang a retailer outside our local area, that did have a store in the local area, and got a better price, by over $100. From this, it would appear, that different locations have different markups. Because of this, it is well worthwhile, ringing around retailers outside your geographical area

I used to sell software to furniture manufacturers. They told me, the most common thing that the furniture retailers required of them, was to give them an exclusive on a particular make model, or range of furniture. That way they could have a much higher margin than otherwise would be the case. In some cases these manufacturer were able to comply with this by subtle changes to the furniture. Even though multiple furniture retailers would each claim to have an exclusive, the reality was, they were basically selling the same product as other retailers also selling the almost exactly the same product, but with a lower markup. Look carefully at the product you're buying. Often, what appears to be different makes, models and ranges are all exactly the same. Knowing this can result in the spending of less money.

Retailers sometimes advertise, that they will not be beaten on price, such that if you find a comparable product they will beat the price by some percentage. I have discovered that often they consider a product to be different just because it has a different model number. The manufacturer makes a special deal with a retailer so they get an exclusive product, that's exclusivity only being an extra letter or code on a model number, simply so those retailers can differentiate themselves from the other retailers. Don't believe the advertising of being able to match anyone else's price. Compare product specifications, to see it different model numbers, are, in fact different.

A very well known manufacturer of Technology has arranged it's marketing so that it is able to have far higher markups than it's competitors. So much so, that it was the company with the highest market capitalisation in the world. It built a perception that it's brand was superior to its competition, by directing it's marketing at consumers emotions. They bought the brand, because it made them feel good. Because of this, retailers would sell that brand even though they made a loss in doing so. This was verified to me by the managers of a number of electronics stores. The company's is Apple. If you purchase Apple products you're paying a premium for the privilege, because of the higher markups, that in this case, goes straight back to the manufacturer.

Some consumers assume that the difference in price between certain products has to do with something about the way the product is manufactured or it's contents, when in reality the difference is the amount spent on advertising of that product. Toothpaste is a good example. Note 2 prices of the different brands of toothpaste relative to the amount of advertising of those brands. You'll generally save money by buying less advertised products.

Some services have no cost at all for those that are providing it. Largely for historical and technological reasons. In telecommunications, telephone calling number display and call connection fees are examples. All telephone service providers for landline phones charged $6 a month for calling number display. The cost of the technology that allows this to happen has been paid for many times over. The markup for this service is therefore an infinite percentage, because there is no cost. When you receive a mobile phone call you do not pay a separate fee, to see the number of the person thats making the call. Likewise with call connection fees. The technology that does this has been payed for many times over. Again no cost, such that there is an infinite markup %. Each time you call up a different page on the world wide web internet, you don't pay a fee for doing so. Some phone providers are not charging a connection fee. All other things being equal, going with such could save you money. Unfortunately, at this stage, the same cannot be said for calling number display on landline phones.

Conspicuous Consumption

Conspicuous consumption is where people consume, just to show that have the capacity to consume, or would like to have that capacity. The truly rich don't need to do that, so conspicuous consumption is an indicator of people trying to be what they're not.

Often the tables turn around the other way, rich people pretend not to be rich, so that they are of less risk of criminals or scammers, trying to take ther money away from them.

A friend told me she had her young granddaughter staying with her and took her shopping to buy her a dress. After the young girl selected the dress the grandmother said I will now negotiate with the shopkeeper to see if I can get a better price. The granddaughter said if you do that, I don't want the dress. being a bit bewildered thegrandmother asked why. The granddaughter said if you get it cheap I won't be able to go to school and tell my school friends that I got an expensive dress. it would appear that some people learn conspicuous consumption and think it's something they can brag about, when they're quite young.

Consuming just for the purpose of showing off is more likely to have a detrimental effect, than any emotional positive effect and results in being less wealthy.

Containers

Ther is no need to buy containers to place items in. A number of years ago an organisation called Tupperware sold thousands and thousands of plastic containers to store food in. People would buy the food that was already in some sort of sealed container and then place it in the Tupperware container, perhaps with the idea that it would last longer. Although Tupperware, is nowhere near as popular as it used to be people still do buy plastic containers to put food in or even leftover food. The ideal situation is not to have any leftover food. See cooking. But even if you do, there is no need to purchase containers. The packaging that many products come in, both glass and plastic can be used over and over again and can be used for products other than what was originally in them. A free example I use are Vegemite jars to store biscuits and lollies.

Quite often the packaging that items come in, even if they are not resealable, can be used to store the food products for quite some time. As an example, I purchase unsalted peanuts that come in sealed plastic packaging. I could transfer them into a jar, but rather than doing that, I cut a small split in the top of the packaging and then simply fold-down part of the packaging and stop it from unfolding by putting a rubber band around it. The rubber bands I get for free. They are quite often wrapped around the ordinary or junk mail I receive. I can use the same rubber bands over and over again. I rarely purchase rubber bands. I also use bread ties to seal the top of plastic bags. Again no need to purchase them. I have been using the same ones for many years.

When putting items into a freezer in a plastic bag, there is no need to even have a seal on the bag at all. I have discovered that if you fold over the end of the plastic bag that is more than sufficient to stop air getting into it from a freezing point of view. The food comes out after being in the freezer for a many months quite ok.

I see items being storing in large plastic tubs.Yet shopping centres throughout cardboard and sometimes even plastic containers that items have been packaged in. often large outside printed cardboard boxes can be stronger and better for storing large items. If they need to be made waterproof that can be done so by wrapping them in freely obtained plastic bags and packaging and sealing them with sticky tape.

You will not spend money by using free existing packaging rather than purchasing packaging containers.

Convenience

This is what many people pay a lot of money for. Some do not even realise but they are paying for it.

When you buy food at a fast food store or a restaurant you're paying for the convenience of not having to purchase, cook and clean up. Whilst I'm writing this, directly to this website, I'm paying for the convenience, of not having to write on a piece of paper, having a book printed and published and having it distributed. When you live in a community, it can be more convenient to have a community rubbish collection, rather than having to arrange your own rubbish disposal. But you pay for that convenience, in council rates

Although convenience does cost, sometimes there is a cost benefit, the benefit exceeds the cost and other times, there is a cost deficit, the cost exceeds the benefit. Timing also comes into this. A cost might be over a short period of time, whereas the benefit may not be realised for many years. In businesses, this is called, “return on investment” and “payback period”. Convenience is not worthwhile whenever there is a cost deficit or the payback period is not for a long time into the future.

To determine if a cost-benefit does exist, requires the knowledge and skills, to be able to do a cost benefit analysis. Something I'm not going to explain in those documents.

A major problem with the cost benefit analysis is most often, the actual costs and benefits are not compared with the projected ones. Also there is a problem of the distinction between real benefits, items that can have a value put against them, and intangible benefits, that cannot be valued. Eg Safety.

Our house, has a swimming pool. It is convenient to have, if we want to go for a swim, rather than having to go to a public swimming pool or the beach. Most likely I could calculate how much it would cost to travel to a swimming pool or beach and compare that with the cost of having and maintaining the pool. I cannot calculate how much benefit we derive from swimming (intangible). Because we live in Queensland, we are able to use the pool about 8 months of a year. When we first purchase the house I would use the pool virtually every day. I felt (intangible benefit) that the convenience of having a pool was worthwhile. In more recent years, I swim less often. The convenience is reduced somewhat. I will stop paying for the convenience, im no longer getting.

I just did a rough count and we have over 30 places we can sit in our house. Chairs couches and like. It is convenient to be able to sit in almost any room. Should we have visitors it's convenient to have enough chairs for them to sit on, rather than having to go out and hire additional seating. But at what cost. When we first got married the visitors used to sit on the floor. It seems that convenience, becomes more important as you get older. My observation is that younger people are willing to pay more for convenience than what we did in the past. Younger people, could save more money, over their lifetime, by having less convenience. Convenience does cost.

Replacement vs Convenience

A few years ago the air conditioner in our living room, remote control, stopped working. We have a different make and model air conditioner in our master bedroom but it turned out it can be used to do most of the functions of the living room air conditioner. Therefore I did not spend any money buying a replacement remote control. But it's inconvenient having to go into the bedroom all the living roomto retrieve remote control.

Also to do with air conditioning, our living room has an open arch connection to our lounge room without a door. To be able use less electricity we could have got a door installed between the two rooms. To get it done by a professional would probably cost about $1,000. Rather than doing that we purchased a bifold room divider, which we only put in the door way when the air conditioner is on. Its inconvenient to have to use it, because the bifold room divider has to be moved from its storage location into the doorway, but we spent less money by not not getting a permanent door installed.

The convenience of longer opening times

Stores that have longer opening hour times, have to pay more in wages per week than otherwise is the case. To recoup those costs, they have to have higher prices. again you're paying for that convenience. If you can, dont and you will spend less.

Cooking

Cooking is good. It is better to cook then to purchase pre cooked food or go to a restaurant. As you can see, in other parts of this document, it is better to do things yourself, than to pay someone else to do it for you. It cost nothing to do something yourself, hece, cooking is better than paying to have someone cook for you.

The reason we cook, is so we can eat. However it is not necessary to cook all food. Most of the food that is good for you, does not require cooking and even food that traditionally has been cooked can be eaten uncooked and may actually be better for you, uncooked. The more uncooked food you eat, the less it's going to cost you.

Other than the cost of time, cooking that just involves mixing items together, is less expensive than cooking that requires heating or cooling, because of the cost of heating and cooling, as part of cooking.

Where cooking requires heating, it is incredible that most people cook based on what they have always previously done, without taking into account the relative cost of appliances that produce the heat. Electric and gas cookers cost more to run per unit of time then do microwave ovens or induction cookers, yet people will always default to the devices, they have used before, rather than using cheaper to run microwaves and induction cookers.

For many years I have cooked deep fried potato chips. Because the oil sprays around quite a bit I cook them outside. For many years I did so on a gas ring using LPG gas. Some time earlier, I had purchased an induction cooker to use in a caravan. It dawned on me, that I will be better off using the induction cooker to deep-fry the chips then the LP gas burner, as it was far less expensive to run. Recently the induction cooker packed in and I had to buy a new one, which incidentally, was far less expensive than the initial one I had purchased. On unpacking it inside the kitchen, I thought there's no reason why I could not use it inside as the primary cooker instead of the 4 Burner electric hot plate that we had. The induction cooker is far less expensive to run and purchase ($50) than an ordinary electrical hot plate.

We also have a toaster oven, which we use far more often than the full size oven, built into the kitchen, mainly, because it's what cheaper to run and cooks much much faster. I had thought that if I were to build a brand new house why do I need to have a built-in oven and built-in hot plates. It will be much cheaper to use and purchase, multiple single induction cooker hot plates, then the four burner induction cooker hot plates that normally come in some houses. Same applies for the oven. Even though these small toaster ovens, are not as big as a built-in kitchen oven, it will be possible to have multiple small toaster ovens and cook with them rather than the large one, and the cost of these small devices, would be much less than the built-in ones. I have also thought is there a need to have a 4 Burner stove? In the whole of my life I have never used or seen used, all the 4 burners at the one time.

For $200 you can purchase 2 induction cookers and a toaster oven and cook most everything, compared to the cost of over $2,000 for built-in stoves and ovens. Should those items ever need replacement the cost will also be far less. Some people may consider this not economical, because it could reduce the value of ther property. However the reduction in the value of the property will probably be far less than the increased cost of cooking over many years. It appears that many people simply want appliances in a kitchen to make a kitchen look good and the usefulness and cost of running of these appliances is not a consideration .

The quantity you cook makes a big difference to the overall cost. The more you cook the more it costs, in energy, food and ingredients. A lot of food goes to waste and gets thrown out. That is basically throwing out money. It seems to be some sort of social thing, that people that cook and waste lots of food, have some better social standing. Showing off that they are so rich that they can waste money.

Excessive cooked food that is not thrown out has to be stored. Typically this is done in a fridge. Again it seems to be a social thing, that the bigger the fridge, the better off you are. When in reality, the bigger the fridge, the more it costs and the more it cost to run.

Even though in many recipes they talk about preheating ovens, oils and the like it is not necessary. It makes no difference to the final product . Don't believe me, try it yourself. That's what I did and why I no longer preheat items before cooking. The preheating is just a waste of energy and therefore money spent, that is not required, to be spent.

Covers for Mobile Phones

They are not necessary, as far as the glass surface is concerned. Modern mobile phones glass surface is made of what is called gorilla glass. It's almost impossible to scratch.

I keep my mobile phone in my pocket with keys and many other items. I have no scratches on the screen of my phone yet it has scratches all over the back cover and the brand name it's virtually worn off and is unreadable. But the phone still works well

I have dropped my mobile phone multiple times. It has a small crack in the top right hand corner of the screen. But it still works fine. I think that happened by having pressure put on it when I was sitting down with it in my pocket.

If you're concerned about the appearance of your phone you could buy a cover but the resale value of your phone, should you wish to ever sell it, will not be much different, regardless of it's appearance.

Based on the number of organisations that are selling mobile phone covers it would appear it is a profitable business. But these phones covers don't make the phone work any better or provide any additional functionality.

Credit Cards

First do you need one.

How they work

The benefit of having a credit card is convenience and the free credit they offer. BUT ONLY if you use the free credit. The way most credit cards work, is that you make purchases that are accumulated on your account up to a preset limit. The card provider, each month, will send you a statement, showing the total amount accumulated and the date it has to be paid by. They will also show the minimum amount that can be paid. Different types of credit cards will provide a different number of days from when you receive the statement and when you have to pay it. That time is called the interest free terms. HOWEVER it is only interest free if you pay the total amount owing. If you do not pay by the required date you will be charged interest. BUT not only from the date of payment, but from the date that you purchased the item(s) concerned. The calculation of this is so complicated that I have yet to have credit card providers representative, to be able to calculate it. Im not sure if you purchase something and 10 years later you have never paid that full amount owing, in any month, that you are still paying interest, calculated, based on 10 years or only the last month. Whatever, you will be paying interest on the interest. That is if you pay anything less than the full owing balance, you will be being charged interest. The next month, interest will be calculated, again, on the amount owing, which will INCLUDE the interest of the previous month. And so it will continue in future months. Interest on interest on interest and so on. If you do not understand this concept, do not have a credit card.

It appears ther are now new regulations, such that credit card providers have to show on statements, how long it will take to pay off a credit card, if only the minimum amount is paid. This is often decades (10s of years). Also on these statements, is how much interest will be paid over that period of time. It can be multiples, of the total amount owing. Again if you do not understand this, dont use a credit card.

Paying any Interest

If you are using a credit card and are paying interest you are wasting money. Credit card are one of the most expensive ways of obtaining credit debt. Credit card interest rates are up to 4 time more than other forms of paid for credit.

If you cant handle them

I know of a person that new her partner so well, that when a bank sent him a credit card, she immediately cut it up, as she new he would spend it to it limit and they would be forever in debt. If you no this about you self, dont have a credit card. Ther are alternatives. See Below

Dont have to use the limit

Just because a credit card has a limit, does not mean you have to use it. Just like because you have a weekly income does not mean you have to spend it all.

My Number 1 rule for credit cards usage.

DO NOT PURCHASE ANYTHING ON A CREDIT CARD UNLESS YOU HAVE THE MONEY IN THE BANK TO BE ABLE TO PAY IT

I put it all in capitals, because it is that important.

Alternative to credit cards

Debit cards are one alternative to credit cards. Debit cards are for the money you have in the bank. They only allow you to spend the money you have in the bank. Generally you can not spend more than you have in your bank. Another alternative is cash.

Using interest free days

I have used a credit card for over 45 years and other that when I have made a mistake, I have never paid interest. I pay the full amount owing on the day it is due. With modern internet banking that is easy to do and can be set up so that it is done automatically. But I do it manually, because it forces me to look at and analysis the statement, to see where I am spending our money. See below.

Whenever possible and for large value items I purchase then at the beginning of the month so as to maximise the interest free days. To not have to pay interest the statement closing balance has to be payed on a certain day. That date will be depend of the type of credit card. See below. But regardless of its type, you will get more interest free days, by purchasing at the beginning of the month. As As example. If you get a statement on the 25th of every month and you will be paying the full balance by the 15th of the next month, in 31 day months, you get 21 days interest free. If all your purchases were done on the 25th. But if you did your purchases on the 1st of the month, you get the full month, 31 days, plus the 21 days, so 52 days interest free. That is 52 days not using your own money and at no cost. No interest.

Actually you may be able to get a few more free days because credit card providers have to get the information from whoever you purchase from, to themselves and then process it, so that it arrives on your statement and then get the statement to you. Even with computers, that takes a few days, so in the example above, you may make a purchase on the day you normally get the statement, the 28th, but because of these processing delays, it will processed in the next month. You may get another 3 day.

You may be thinking, this is all, not worthwhile. Consider, that I have been doing this for over 45 years. That is 45 years of using, for free, someone else's money. And I hope to be doing so for the next 35 years. The sooner you are able to utilize this strategy the bigger benefit you will get and so spend less.

Different types of Credit Cards

I just checked on my bank's website and they have 7 different types of credit cards. It seems that some have different types of rewards points schemes and some have different interest rates, ranging from 10% through the 20%. I would imagine, if I investigated further, that each of them would have a different annual fee and may have different terms and conditions in relation to of how interest is calculated and when it's calculated. Actually, some have no fees, for the 1st or few Years, but subsequently, all do.

Personally I don't think rewards points are worthwhile, so I would just be looking for one it which has the least annual fee. However, having said that, the card that I have at the moment, does accumulate reward points, which can be used to pay for the annual fee. That factor needs to be taken into account.

Then there a whole lot of other things like complimentary travel insurance, extended warranty insurance, Link's to a particular airlines, reward system, priority telephone support and the like. All really very complicated, so to make it difficult for you to make a decision. Exactly what the marketers what. Combined with that, is that they can change the conditions at any time, meaning that you have to constantly be comparing types of credit cards and the organisations that are supplying these credit cards.

Analysis the statement

As I purchase, practically everything, on my credit card, I do a detailed analysis of what I've spent. I do so by downloading the transaction from the banks website into a spreadsheet and then categorise every single entry. Using the spreadsheet I can then determine exactly how much I spend on each category. By doing the analysis I can also check to see if I've been incorrectly charged for anything. This can sometimes happen. Most credit cards suppliers have limitations on time, that you can dispute an amount. This is usually only up to when you pay your statement. It is therefore very important that you do look at this statement and preferably do the analysis like I do above, as it forces you to look at every line item. It is amazing how easy it is to forget what you actually purchased at a particular store.

Mistakenly forget to pay

I don't know if it only applies to my bank, but occasionally I have made mistakes and not paid the full balance by the required date. Only occasionally, has that happened in last 45 years. In ringing the bank, and telling them about it, they have been good enough to reverse the interest charges. I point out to them, they should look at previous statements, so they can see that I've always payed on time. You wont no if you can do this, unless you try. As an aside, having a good payment history, gives you a good credit rating and puts you in good stead, should you ever need to borrow money.

Cruses

These now seem to be a popular form of holidays.

False comparative costing

A mistake, that seems to be made as far as the cost of curses is concerned, is when comparing them with other types of holidays, is the price in total compared to the price per day.

Perhaps, it's been something that was started by travel agents, but they will often say it will only cost you so much per day. They are taking the total cost of the cruise per person and dividing it by the number of days in the cruise. If travelling as a couple this is a false calculation. Cruses consist of 2 components. Accommodation and travel. On a per couple bases, the accommodation part has to be the price per ticket times the number of people divided by the number of days. As an example if it is $700 per person, for a 7 day cruise, for a couple its not costing $100 per day, but $200 per day.

The same applies on the travel part. If you are comparing it with say car travel, where say you hire a car, you don't pay per person, so the more people you can get into the car the less it cost per person. Which is not the case with cruising.

When you purchase the cruise

The marketers of cruisers are very similar to the marketers of airline travel. To make a decent profit they need to fill the ship. This may mean that the best prices can be at different times out from when the cruise sails. If you're in the situation of being able to go on a cruise on a week or few days notice you may be able to get better prices. This has been our experience. Just because they are cruses, does not mean you have to book months or years in advance.

Onboard costs

Once you are on a cruise, you are a captive market. You cannot shop around for better prices for the onboard costs, like, alcohol, extra food, entertainment and the like. The organisations that run those cruises are aware of that and price these on on-board costs appropriately. They also make it very easy for you to accumulate onboard costs. You don't actually have to have cash. They just charge them to your account. Unless you keep a running total of what you're spending, yourself, you can get a very big shock at the end of a cruise, when you see the amount of onboard credits your have racked up . However, there is usually some way of finding out, on a daily basis, what you have spent. This could be via the TV in your cabin or some online function. You'll spend less money by not spending anything on onboard costs, or at least being aware of how much you've spent at any point in time

Included Onboard credits

To induce you to buy, some cruise deals, provide, included onboard credits. A certain amount of money you can use to pay onboard costs. All other things being equal these deals tend to be more expensive.

Onboard costs never seen to be of a value that you can used to the exact amount that you're given in credit. Without checking, often, it may be difficult to know how much onboard credit you have left. This is a marketing trick, used to induce you to spend more than you would otherwise do. If you do have onboard credits, always check to make sure you do not spend beyond its value.

Day Tours

Our experience with cruising, has been that you are better off organising your own day tours, than praying for the cruise arranged ones. Often there are people on cruises that have done the same cruise, many times before. If you can speak to them, find about what experiences they have had.

Utilisation

It is very difficult to utilise all the functions and entertainment that are available to you on cruises. Many are on at the same time. Depending on what you want to get out of a cruise, you might get better value for your money, by utilizing as many functions that you can, that are provided at no additional cost. Like going to the restaurant for every meal, going to most of the information and entertainment sessions and disembarking and re embarking at every stop.

Credit Vouchers

A few times when I have made claims on statutory warranties because the organisation concerned have been unable to fix the fault with the item or replace it,as per the consumer guarantee legislation they have offered me a refund. in all case the refund is in the form of a credit voucher. the reason they do this that they are not returning any money to me. from a cash flow point of view they do not have to part with ther cash. they are also preserving the profit margin in the faulty item they have supplied. Often these credit Vouchers have a expiry period. if they are not used before the expiration date I would lose that money. because of the above, as well as only being able to use the credit voucher with that one organisation, I always refuse credit vouchers, and request a cash or credit card refund. With that I can spend the money anywhere else. or not spend it at all.

Never accept credit vouchers.

See also Gift Cards

D

Dealing with Organizations

Sometimes it is better to pay a little bit more,for a product or service, if you know the organisation that you are dealing with, is not going to give you any hassles. The amount or percentage extra you pay could be determined by previous experience, references from other people or in a worst case scenario, a bit of a guess. It will also depend on your particular personality, how willing you are to deal with not so good an organisations or even the time you have available for such dealings.

Because I am rich in time, know when I'm contractually right, am aware of consumer law, I am more likely to deal with an organisation, that I know have not got a good customer service history, because, they are often are cheaper.

I once dealt with an Internet service provider for a period of two years, were every month they would, incorrectly, overcharged me, for the service they provided. I became very good at getting the overcharge reversed. Once they only overcharged me only $0.04. Even though it cost me more, in time and effort, to recover the $0.04, it became a matter of principle, having the time to do so, I pursued it and got the $0.04 overcharge reversed. I never paid for any of the overcharging.

See Payment methods

If you are like me and dont mind dealing with the above types of organisations, you can end up paying less.

Hints

Some hints on how to deal with organisations that tend to have a bad customer service history, or where you are having a bad experience.

Prior

Prior to entering into any agreement, with any organisation, have everything recorded. The recording could be written documentation, an audio recording of all phone conversations or a saved Internet chat session. Have your own copies of these. Do not rely on the organisations version. Even though many organisations will say they record phone conversations for training and quality purposes, when in reality they do it for evidence purposes, when it comes to the crunch, you will not be able to get their recordings. So make your own. Same applies with Internet chats. Also make sure you have your own copy of the agreement and any documentation associated with the agreement. You should fully understand your rights and obligations under the agreement. You cannot dispute what you do not understand.

Make sure you know any laws associated with the type of business the organisation is in and if there are any regulatory or overseeing authorities such as an ombudsman.

When in Dispute

When you do get into a dispute with an organisation you must first determine if you have a legitimate dispute. You cannot for example dispute a charge if the agreement allows the organisation to make such a charge in allowable circumstances. You can also not dispute things just because you feel something is unfair when it is clearly documented in an agreement.

I prefer, where the organisation has it, to use Internet chats to document any dispute I have. Making sure that I copy all of the chats. If you can't do this and have to do so via phone call, make your own recording of the phone call and tell them, you were doing so.

Always prepare what you were going to say or write, before you start any conversations or chats. That should include identifying yourself, the name of person person(s) you are talking or chatting to, the exact details of the dispute, quoting those parts of the agreement that they have not complied with, and what you wish to happen, for the dispute to be resolved. Articulate these as best you can to the other party.

For Example. “My name is Geoff Greig my customer number is… my date of birth is … and my address is… I am talking to Fred nerk of Xyz Internet company because they have charged me $… for going over my Internet quota of X GB by Y GB. I was not notified, as per clause XXX of the agreement when I reached 80% of my quota. Because of this I wish that the over quota free be reversed”

Never showed any anger or in any way be abusive to the other party.

* Dont Accept Half Way *

Often in these disputed situations, organisations will try and meet you halfway, by halving an overcharge or offering some other incentive. If you know you are in the right do not accept this. Just repeat the part of the agreement they have not complied with and what you wish to happen for the dispute to be resolved.

If the dispute is resolved by them agreeing to do something, say to them, “ so you have agreed to ….” followed by what they have agreed to do. Then ask them if that is correct. Unless you get a yes answer, repeat the above steps.Then ask them how they are going to do it and by what time. The time should be a specific day and time within that day and the method should be acceptable to you.

If they are not willing to resolve the dispute ask them why? After obtaining the answer, say to them , “You are not willing to resolve this because” and say the reason they gave you. Then ask is that correct? If necessary repeat this until you get an answer, of yes.

If this does not resolve the dispute, ask if they have a dispute resolution, department and if so repeat everything above with that department. I know that can be a bit of a pain, but that's where online chats are good. You can just ask them to read the previous chat, or even if they do not have access to it you can paste in the chat that you have copied.

If this still does not resolve the dispute and there is a governing authority or ombudsman for the industry concerned, tell the organisation, you are having the dispute with, that you will be taking it, to that authority, but to be able to do so you have to have a reason why the organisation, does not want to resolve the dispute. This is actually true. If you go to one of these parties you have to prove that you have attempted to resolve the issue. Get them to repeat the reason again, whilst you write it down. Read the reason back to them and ask is this correct.

You will find in 90% of the cases by following this technique, if you in the right, the dispute will be resolved.

In those situations where it is not and there is no governing authority you then have to make a decision if it is worthwhile pursuing. See Legal

My experience is that it does not matter the size of organisations when it comes to customer service. Some do it good, some do it bad.

Debt

By itself, debt is good. It is only the cost, or relative cost of debt that is bad. Debt, simply means you have an indebtedness to somebody else to give them the value back, that they loaned you.

If there is no cost to the debt, such as trade credit and interest free terms, it is always better to use somebody else's money, or value, than your own, provided you can make money on your money. See the introduction about trade credit and interest free terms.

If you have to pay for debt, it is best to pay as little as possible. Usually, but not always, the cost of debt is interest. People, often compare interest rates and go for the lower. That's a bit like comparing prices. It does not necessarily mean that you're getting the least expensive deal. The best way to compare debts is to workout the total cost at the end of the repayment period.

If you're going to be borrowing a certain amount of money, and you'll be paying so much a month in repayments for so many years, you calculate the total amount you will repay and compare that with the initial borrowed amount. The difference between the two is the cost of the debt. A sample I found from a banks webpage. For a $300,000 housing loan at 5.24% interest, the repayments would be $1,654.75 per month for 30 years. Multiplying 1,654.75 by the 12 months ther are, in a year, gives 19,857. Multiplying that by the 30 years, give $595,710. Subtracting the initial Loan of $300,000 gives $295,710, the cost of the debt. The cost of the debt is almost the same amount as the loan. This is something that is often, not appreciated. If you do not understand this , then you should not be going into debt, that costs.

Interest free

Retailers of some products will often advertise that you can pay somthing off, without paying any interest. What they don't tell you is that there are fees and charges, such that you will end up paying more than if you're paying interest. There is often government legislation that stimulates the maximum rate of interest that those that lend money are able to charge. But the same does not apply to fees and charges. This can effectively mean you're paying 100s % interest rates. The way to determine if this is the case is to do the calculations as shown above. If you are unable to do such calculations, find somebody, completely independent of the retailer or money provider, that can do them for you.

Ways of Calculation

Those that lend money, will always stipulate the way that interest and or fees and charges, are calculated. Those calculations will always be to their advantage. For example, in standard housing loans the amount of interest, per month, is always calculated before repayments are deducted from the loan amount, so the interest will always be higher than if it was calculated after the repayment was subtracted. If fees and charges are involved they are also added to the loan amount before interest is calculated, which effectively means, you are paying interest on the fees and charges amounts.

Pawnbrokers and day loans

My recent investigations into these has revealed that you are effectively paying hundreds of a percent interest, even though it's not called interest, per month, on such dealings. Pawning something, or day loans, should be avoided, as, there are far less cost, ways, of obtaining debt.

Signing Agreements

Generally when anybody lends you money they all want you to sign some sort of legal agreement, the wording of which will always be to your disadvantage. You should know that before you sign any agreement. Also know the extent to that disadvantage and what it may mean to you in the longer term See Legal

See also Lending money

E

Education

I have no formal qualifications, but I do have an education, none of which I paid for. I was fortunate in that higher education fees were abolished just before I commenced my higher education. For a number of reasons, I never finished formal education. But I did get free education, see below.

As I described in the beginning of these pages, it is not what you earn, rather what you spend or more importantly don't spend that will determine how much money you eventually have.

As far as I am aware, this is not formally taught in any educational institution.

Most of what I have written, you will not find taught anywhere, as it is not mainstream, so there was no great demand for it.

I think there may be some statistics that will show a correlation between education qualifications and income. The higher the qualifications the more you earn. But I am not aware of any statistics that show there is a correlation between qualifications and wealth. No doubt part of the reason for this is it's a bit difficult to determine average people's wealth. However there are some magazines that document the world's richest people. I have heard that half of the worlds wealth is shared with only 60 people. Actually that is now only 8 people Only 2 of then completed higher educaton and non have Phd's.

Regardless of whether they have a higher education qualification, most of these people, just like myself, would be educated. it is just they, and I, don't have a qualification to prove we have an education.

All education is free. It is just the certification, to say you have an education that costs money.

Part of education is knowledge. Most knowledge is free. You can get a hell of a lot of knowledge today from the Internet, for free. Just like what you are reading now. There are even prestigious university courses, that you can do online completely for free. Provided you do a bit of filtering you can also get a good education just by watching good, as opposed to a lot of very bad, YouTube videos. As your knowledge and education increases, you find even better ways of getting a free education.

I don't know if it's still possible, but a few years ago I used to attend University lectures and tutorials, without being enrolled in any course. I learnt quite a bit. I was not interested in the qualifications and as far as I know, they still allow anybody into university lectures. Perhaps they wont in the future if non enrolled people keep attending.

Degree required

Even though is generally thought, that you have to have a degree to be able to get a good, well paid job, that is not reality. Employers have been lazy and do not want to have go through a large list of job applicants, to determine if they are suitable for a job. They get the education system do it for them. They stipulate that that a degree is required for the job, simply to reduce the number of applicants. Often they don't care what degree, as long as you are degree qualified. This indicates that the qualifications are not important, it's just a way to reduce the number of people that will be applying for the job. Is also often thought by employers, incorrectly, that a person with a degree is of a higher calibre, than one without a degree.

With high levels of unemployment employers are now finding that they are still getting a large number of applicants for each job. They are now adding more stringent selection criteria for positions. But I have noticed that rather than specify a degree is required, many jobs advertisements say that a degree would be preferable or highly regarded, indicating that the degree is not essential. This gives those that have education, without a qualifications, and are smart, an in.

When speaking with people in various occupations, I often find their qualifications have nothing to do with the type of job that they work in. Many people are aware of this and realise the qualification is less important, than the calibre of the person.

There are many people who have hex debts that do not have a job or are working in areas that do not require the qualifications they have and more importantly are not being paid what a qualified person would earn. I've often heard the expression, my qualifications are going to waste

Return on investment of qualification

If you are thinking of getting a qualification you need to work out what the return on the investment of that qualification is going to be. Factored into that should be the time you spend getting the qualification and how much you could earn in that time. Also factor in the concept of having more money, by spending less or nothing on getting a qualification. Even a lowly paid earner, could be more wealthy, then a higher paid earner, simply because they followed what is in these documents.

I have never been a top paid earner, but I am more wealthy, than a lot of people that earn more than I do.

Electricity

The best way to reduce expenditure on electricity, is simply to use less of it.

The best way to use less electricity, is simply to switch off the devices,that are using it.

That all sounds very simple, but most people completely ignore it.

When you drive a car to a shopping centre, most people do not leave the car running while doing the shopping. Yet when leaving a room, most people will leave the lights on, even though there's nobody else in the room. It's easier to switch on or off a light or most other electrical appliances, than starting and turning off a car. It's not an ease Factor. It would seem to be just habit. That's the way it's always been done.

If you want to stop spending money you have to change your behaviour. In the case electricity, it means switching off what you're not using. If you're not in a room you don't need the lights on, the TV going, the air conditioner or computer running, so turn them off.

Some people believe that leaving lights on, is a security measure and will stop people stealing from them. As the modern burglar will steal, in the middle of the day and even when people are at home ,using electricity to pretend you are home, is a waste of money.

Is also thought, by some, that leaving lights on is cheaper than switching them on and off, because you blow less light globes. In a MythBusters TV program this attitude, was proven, in tests, to be false.

When you have to use electricity, you don't necessarily have to use as much. Cooling and heating use a lot of electricity. Consider being in a smaller room, that would require less cooling or heating, than a larger room. Rather than switching on a heater, consider wearing more or warmer clothes. I am currently writing this in a relatively cold room, but rather than turning the heater on, I have wrapped myself in a sleeping bag.

For electrical cooking, consider more energy using efficient appliances, such as microwave ovens, toaster ovens and induction cookers, as opposed to the more conventional electrical cookers, if you have a choice . See also cooking

There is absolutely no difference between the quality of electricity provided by one supplier as opposed to another. All electricity worldwide is exactly the same. It is deceiving if any sales person tries to tell you differently. But I have heard of some, that try to do so to unsuspecting consumers. However by the convoluted ways, marketers differentiate themselves from one another, you can end up paying completely different amounts for exactly the same quantity of electricity. It is therfore, very important to be diligent before signing up for one supplier, as opposed to another.

We once went on a overseas holiday for about a month. Before doing so I went through the house and unpluged every appliance other then the fridge and freezer. In that billing cycle we saved about $300.

I have just got an electricty bill that is $100 less that the previous bill. The 2 differences in the way we use electricity is that I switch off lights and appliances as soon as I leave a room and we have one less person living in the house. Changes DO make a significant difference.

Entertainment

There is an old saying, all the good thing in life, are free. This very much applies for entertainment.

I am reminded of the old story about parents spending a lot of money to give their young children toys for entertainment, only to discover the children get more entertainment out of playing with the box that the toy came in, then the toy itself.

Entertainment can mean different things to different people, whether it be watching television listening to the radio or music, going to a rock concert or sporting events. I am currently entertaining myself by writing this and thinking how people will interpret it.

Just by changing your mindset you can often entertain yourself, at no cost whatsoever.

I often find I'm more entertained by speaking to somebody I don't know and listening to what they have to say. Those people, I don't know, are quite often someone I would just walk up to the street. They are not a person providing an entertainment service.

I'm also very much entertained by doing what I've never done and being where I've never been. That does not have to be done on a big scale, like an overseas trip. It can be as simple as driving a different way to places. A Friend once said when she was younger they would just pick any car and follow it, not having any idea where they would be going, how far they would be going, or when they were going to get there.

Even when you do have to pay for entertainment you could consider less expensive alternatives. I remember going to a grand final football match and was quite disappointed because the winning team won by a very big margin. I can also remember watching my daughter play netball where her team won by one point. I found that to be far more entertaining, but cost far less than the grand final ticket.

Our family, recently went on a very inexpensive cruise. Compared to a previous cruise we had been on, it was of a much lower standard. We knew this, and as a consequence, we set our expectations very low. The cruise turned out to be much better than what we expected and as a consequence we were very much entertained.

Expected outcomes (attitude) has a lot to do with entertainment.

Extended warranty

F

False Savings

Beware of false savings. Many marketers will try and prove to you that you can save money by purchasing their products. They often dismiss the cost of ther product.

As an example. The manufacturers of dishwashers may tell you that you can save money on water and the heating of water by using a dishwasher as opposed to washing dishes by hand. That may be true, but what they don't tell you, is that you are going to have to pay for the dishwasher. The water savings you make , could take a lifetime to recover, when you factor in what you're paying for the dishwasher itself. In business this is called return on investment.

A similar situation arises with most time saving products. For example, if you use a vacuum cleaner to clean hard surfaces as opposed to sweeping with a broom, You may do it quicker so saving time. But unless you use that time to earn more income you are no better off. If you also factor in the cost of the vacuum cleaner as opposed to the cost of a broom you're paying a lot of money to save time that you may not be able to use.

Basically you should be very wary of situations, that say they are able to save you money, but you have to pay money, to be able to save that money.

Then there are situations where there is no real saving at all. If you purchase a product or service that is meant to save you money but you don't ever use it, you're not saving money. An example could be a food processor that you purchased because it cuts up food quicker than if you use a knife. But if you never use it, because it's too difficult to get it out, or clean, then you're not saving money and have wasted money on the purchase.

Think about what you have purchased in the past, and never, hardly ever or not used enough to make any savings. Regardless of whether it was able to save you money it can only do so if you use it. Take this into account in future purchases.

Fast Food

It doesn't seem to be as fast as it used to be. The biggest one in the market, McDonald's, you have to order at 1 counter and then wait until they make it and pick it up at another counter. So some of the convenience of getting food fast, seems to have been diminished.

In the US, I've been told, because fast food is so inexpensive, that a lot of people only buy fast food. I get the impression that because Australia has minimum wages, that, that would be less likely to be the case for us.

Therefore the more you purchase fast food, as opposed to less expensive alternatives, the more money you are spending. You're spent less by not buying fast food or buying it less often.

Fashion

In the evolution of markets, fashion has been used to allow for the increase in consumption, when all basic needs are satisfied.

If you have a product that satisfies your needs, why is there any need for a need to replace that product? Because the old product is now out of fashion?

I'm sure if you're plotted the total consumption per head of population, adjusted for inflation, you would find that more money is spent today than ever has been. One of the many reasons for this, would have to be fashion.

Fashion, allows the same basic items, be sold over and over again, with small incremental changes, be it colour, cover, style, shape, capacity, feature or whatever.

Even attitudes can be fashionable. like the attitude to spend more or the attitude to spend less. I've heard of a fashion call maximisation, as opposed to minimisation. Bigger or more, as opposed to smaller or less.

If you're going to be fashionable, why not be fashionable and spend less money. Be a fashion leader, set your own fashion so that you spend less. An example would be wearing cloths that would normally be regarded as blemished or worn out. Ah, that is already a fashion, torn Jeans. I propose another one stained cloths. Rather than disposing of cloths that have a stain on them, get a pen and draw a circle around the stain and write “Fashon Statement”. Note it is deliberately spelt wrong, to make it even more of a fashion statement.

Another example is hail damaged cars. Or dented or damaged car panels. The look of these, has no effect on the way the car operates. If you purchase such vehicles, they will cost less than ther perfect equivalents. Same applies to repairing such items. If it has no effect on the way the vehicle operates, ther is no need to have the panel work repaired. If you are concerned about what other may think of you, you can do the equivelent of the jeans thing above. Write in big letters on the car, “I prefer a dented vehicle”. You may then become a fashion leader, such that your dented car, with that writing on it, becomes worth more.

You could completely ignore fashion, and so splend less money. If a good or service is doing what it is designed to do and satisfies your needs, ther is no need to replace them, because they have become unfashionable.

Fines

Fines are a way, to induce people to behave in a way, that society does not want people to behave. Generally, they only apply to a person performing or not performing a certain action. Unlike excise, a fine is usually only imposed when a person is found guilty of an offence. So it is possible to do something that society does not want you to do and not pay fine, if you're not caught or found guilty. Generally that's unlikely.

Other than the above circumstances you'll spend less money by doing what society wants you to do, and so not pay fines

Fitness

It does not matter how much money you pay for goods or services associated with fitness, unless you do something yourself you will NOT get fit. Purchasing a gym membership, hiring a personal trainer, purchasing exercise equipment or similar, will NOT get you fit. You have to do the things that will make you fit to get fit. I have to emphasize here, that YOU have to do it. As far as I'm aware you cannot pay somebody else to do exercise for you, and you get fit. Nor, will the fact that you purchase any exercise equipment, make you fit. YOU have to use the equipment. Most people don't. Go to any tip or recycling place and you'll see heaps of exercise equipment there that's hardly ever been used.

Level of and Reason for Fitness

You need to consider why you want to be fit. Personally I want to be fit, cuz I want to live a long time. Another person may want to, be because they want to be able to compete in competitive sport. I would not have to be at the same level of fitness as that other person. Therefore I would not have to work at it as much.

Free fitness

As I've said previously in those documents, all the good things in life are free. The ability to get fit is free. Your body is an exercise machine. All you have to do is move it. Whether that be walking, jogging, running or lifting it. You don't even have to purchase anything to be able to lift your body. Standing from sitting or laying down, walking up stairs or simply jumping up in the air do not require, the purchase of, anything else.

Fitness advice

If you wish to get to that level of fitness that requires fitness advice, again, you don't have to pay for it. Look on the Internet for it or go to the library and borrow a book, about high levels of Fitness. Read about what other athletes do. Or, if you know someone or associate with such people, ask then.

Weight Training

I noticed that weight training equipment can be quite expensive. But because many people purchase it and never use it no doubt you could get it cheap second hand. But why purchase it at all. There are plenty of things around that are heavy. Something that is heavy that is very inexpensive is tap water. Containers to put water in, are also regularly thrown out, soft drink bottles. An old broomstick with bottles filled with water at either end could serve the same purpose as a set of weights. As water weighs 1 kilo per litre it is very easy to also calibrate such weights.

Changing habits to get fit

I find it amusing that people drive to work every day and then in the evening drive to a gymnasium to get fit. They may spend as much time in the gymnasium as they would have if they had walked or cycled to work. Similar thing was grocery shopping. If they were to carry the grocery shopping rather than using a shopping trolley and a car, that may be the equivalent to doing a weight training workout.

Simply standing more often than sitting will increase your fitness at no $ cost.

There is the term, Mind Over body. Just like not spending money is a mind thing, so is getting fit. They both have the same thing in common. You have to do something.

Food

Your Size

Generally the one item you will spend the most on, over your entire life, is food. Most people eat 3 time per day, 7 days a week, 52 weeks per year for about 80 years That works out to 87,360 meals you will eat in your lifetime. At an average home cooked meal cost of $15 for one person, you would be paying $1,310,400 in your life for home cooked meals. If you where to eat out for every meal at $40 per meal, your lifetime meals would cost $3,494,400.

The simplest way to pay less for food, is not to be as big as you are. The smaller you are, the less you need to eat, so the less it costs. MOST people are overweight because we are induced to be so by marketers. Multiply the above lifetime figures by any population to see why food is a gigantic market and that even a small increase in per meal consumption of food has a massive effect of the total market for food. That is why marketers are always trying to induce people to eat more. But it also has a flow on effect. If you eat more you get bigger and when you are bigger you need to eat more to maintain your bigger self.

Becoming smaller is easy. You just have to eat less. As MOST people are overweight most people can become smaller and so will eat less.

These documents are not going to show you how to eat less. But eating is fully within your control. You CAN choose to be smaller and eat less.

Price of food

Generally the more food is processed the more it costs. Buy more unprocessed food such as fresh fruit and vegetables and less processed food like pre-packaged complete meals. Marketers induce you to purchase items by adding more packaging. Especially food. Wherever possible, look for un-packaged foods They generally cost less per unit or kilo because you are not paying for the packaging.

When comparing the prices of food do so on the price per Kilo basis, rather than the item price. Marketers try ther best to disguise the true price of food items, by putting them in oversized or unusual shaped packaging, purely to confuse you. Comparing prices per Kg overcomes the confusion.

When purchasing fresh food, only purchase when you no it is in the middle of its season, so paying the least price. When such items first come into season, and sometimes when going out of season, they can be many multiples of the price they are at in the middle of ther season. Because of packaging, storage and transport methods fresh food can be have wildly varying prices, over very short periods of time, so it becomes necessary to check prices every time you purchase.

Dont just purchase the same food because you always purchase it, especially if the price increases. Look for alternatives. You dont have to always buy the same food. Adjusting your food purchasing regime, not only can save you money, but can introduce you to new food and so experiences in life.

Just because a food is not a brand name, is a generic name or a retails name, does not mean it is any different to the brand name. Often they go through the same process and factories and are just packaged and so branded differently, but are the exact same food. Even if the same base product is different you can adjust your personal tastes, so that you can prefer the cheaper, non branded name, food. I have done this myself with Instant Noodles and Yogurt. I Initially only bought the brand name and changed to the cheaper retail branding. Over some time I now prefer the taste of the cheaper brand. I think this is what is ment by an acquired taste. The ability to change your tastes. It is easily done.

Work or school lunches

You will often hear it is better to make and take your own work or school lunch. But this is not necessarily so. If you eat sandwiches then it most likely is cheaper to make you own, but you need to take into account the amount of bread, butter and other ingredients you purchase to make them, how long you store them and how much you throw out.

My own experience,, for many years is to not take a prepared lunch, but at lunch time, to buy at a supermarket, only enough fresh fruit and a bread roll, that I can eat for lunch. Typically, say, an orange, a banana and a bread roll. I then dont have to store these item at home, or have a stock of them. I consume then within a few minutes of purchasing them, which saves money because my money, is converted into my personal gratification, in the shortest possible time.

This is also an example of thinking logically rather than doing what you always have done or what others do.

Taxed Not taxed

Most food is not taxed. Food that is taxed, is so, for a reason. To induce you not to purchase it. The food that is taxed is fast food, possibly luxury food and alcohol. Ther are alternatives to most of them. Whatever fast food ther is, you can usually purchase, pre made, at a supermarket and so not pay the tax. If you want to, you can make and consume your own alcoholic beverages and so not pay the tax. Or you could change you purchasing and food consumption habits and never buy taxed food.

Liquid Foods (Beverages)

I have already written about taxed food. Same applies to beverages. Alcoholic beverages in addition to being taxed also have a excise, so are effectively double taxed. Again you can brew your own and consume your own beer, but apparently you are not allowed to distill your owner spirits. https://nationalhomebrew.com.au/spirits-topics/legal So dont purchase spirits.

Most soft drinks are also taxed. But most soft drinks are mainly water, with a very small bit of flavoring. You can flavor your own water and so not pay the tax. Like food, most soft drinks are an acquired taste. Many people do not like the taste of water. But like and dislikes can be changed. You have the power to do so.

Bottled Water

If you purchase bottled water you are mainly paying for container, because the water is an infinitely small part of the cost. A comparison of the cost of tap water with bottle water proves this. Other than being filtered, bottled water is exactly the same as tap water. They both come from the same place.

With a very small bit of planning you can put tap water in a previously used, washed, normally disposable, drink container and never pay for bottled water. No need to purchase even the container. If you want to take it to the next level, you dont even need to use your own water. Public taps are very common.

Personally I dont like the smell of the chlorine that is put in tap water for health reasons. So I use a water filter, only to get rid of that smell. The manufacturers of the filters say that the filter canister should be changed every x months. I have discovered that the filter will remove the the chlorine smell after many years of use. Considering the only reason I use the filter is to remove the chlorine smell I have no need to change the filter canister as often as recommended. This is an example of saving money and still fulfilling my personal requirements.

Diet Shakes

As of writing of this part I am currently on I trial of not eating for 6 weeks, to fix a medical condition that I have.

Instead of eating, I'll be just consuming some dietary shakes which are supposed we have all the protein, vitamins and minerals I need to survive.

For a full months supply of these shakes it cost only $156. I'm sure I would spend more than $156 a month on food just for myself. Although not long term, this just shows a away of not spending as much money on food.

See also Vitamins

Have a look at this guy that travels around the world and ears without any money

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQCrKxBj5Id79syQEsY2Qxg

Footwear

You can only wear one pair of shoes at a time. So in reality you only need a few pair of shoes. But in reality most people have many pair of shoes. No doubt because of fashion. See fashion. You will save money by not purchasing as many pair of shoes.

When was the last time you can remember wearing out the soles on your shoes? Did you get the souls repaired? Most likely not because it's difficult to get modern shoes resoled.

But if you want to save money you can use the same 3 R's applicable to conservation. Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.

Reduce your consumption of shoes by simply having less pair of shoes. Reuse the shoes that you have by making them last longer and repairing them rather than replacing them. Leather shoes preserved with shoe polish, on the upper part of the shoe, will last longer than their synthetic equivalents, where you can't use shoe polish. The Soles of shoes will last longer if they have some sort of a coating applied to them. And recycle shoes yourself. Use the parts of your shoes that have worn out on another pair of shoes like the soles or even the uppers.

As shoes tend to be more fashion oriented than functional, there does not seem to be much of a correlation between the price you pay for them and how long they last. In the last few years, I have been progressively buying cheaper and cheaper shoes, only to find the cheaper ones last longer than the more expensive ones. If you keep a record of when you purchased the shoes you can determine this.

I'm not aware of any shoes you can purchase that have user-replaceable souls. This would seem to indicate that shoe manufacturers wants you to buy a complete new set of shoes rather than only replacing the parts that wear out. Same applies with with the upper of the shoes. I have not seen an manufacturer that allows you to change the upper parts of the shoes buy sliding in some sort of a new cover. Yet you can do so with mobile phones.

See also Cloths

Freezers

In reality, they are not necessary.

They are convenience items that do not save money, if you consider the cost of purchasing them and the cost of running them, as opposed to not having one at all. Then there is also cost of all the items that are stored in them, often for months at a time.

We have had a freezer for years. Most of the time it is full of frozen food. It has so much food in it that we don't know what is it. We sometimes buy things only to find out we already had them in the freezer.

When to moved house, we had to empty the freezer. A lot of food got thrown out. When we moved into a new house, we did not use the freezer for over a year. It worked quite well. But then for some reason, unbeknown to myself, we started using the freezer again and it's been full for at least the last 19 years. 19 years of electricity usage and the storage of items that did not need to be stored.

In the last few years we've been traveling around, occasionally, in a caravan. Once for over 6 months. It has an extremely small freezer, as part of the fridge, compared to our home freezer, that's part of our fridge. We're able to manage quite well with that small freezer. It just takes planning.

In years gone by, nobody had a freezer and they all would eat well. You'll save money by not purchasing and, or using a freezer.

G

Gardening

I equate gardening to be like farming, without selling any produce. Farming, but having the expense without the income. Most people have a garden for enjoyment. So it's like entertainment. You may want to consider how much entertainment you're receiving for what cost. There may be other alternatives, so that you can enjoy a garden, without actually having one. like living close to a park, a golf course or the like.

It cost money to have and maintain a garden. If you don't have a garden it won't cost you any money.

Likewise the smaller the garden you have, the less it will cost to maintain.

Gardens grow, that's what they're all about, The more they grow, the more it will cost you to maintain. So if you wish to have a garden, but want to minimise the cost, consider only growing items that grow very very slowly.

Also consider the accessories you need to maintain a particular portion of the garden. Like if you have grass you going to require a mower. But if you don't have grass, you don't need to mow and will save on the cost of the purchase of the mower, as well as it's running costs

Rather than purchasing plants, consider propagating your own or if you don't have a particular plant, sharing the propagation of plants with friends.

Consider, when purchasing plants, how big they will eventually grow. Gigantic trees start out as small little seedlings. In the first house we owned, we planted a small tree in the backyard. It was a Tasmanian blue gum. We did not know that they could grow to well over 50 m. Eventually we had to cut it down because it was just too big to fit in the small backyard. Large trees roots, can work ther way into pipework and can be very expensive to remove. The trees themselves can be very expensive, to be removed, Especially when they're close to buildings.

Yet another thing to consider when purchasing plants or for that matter when purchasing a property with existing plants, is what the plants are. We purchased a property that had a large number of cocos palms. The frons on those palms would eventually die off but remain at the top of the palm, requiring them to be trimmed. That was a very time-consuming task, but not the end of the problem. Eventually The palms grow very tall, such that the trimming could only be done by use of a cherry picker. Each palm would also had thousands of seeds, which caused even many more cocos palms to pop up. In the interest of long-term maintenance, and so cost, we removed all the cocos palms. We eventually discovered that cocos palms, in the area we were in, were regarded as a weed.

Gambling

When you buy a good or service you usually get the benefit from it. If I said to you, give me some money and I might give you some benefit and I might not, you would probably say no. But that is exactly what gambling is.

Organisations that provide gambling services have statistically calculated that they will always make money. Therefore statistically anybody that gambles with these organisations will be losing money.

Of all the things on this list, gambling is the biggest waste of money.

So, don't gamble, at all, ever.

Gas

if you lived in a relatively warm climate and you wish to use gas for cooking, you'll be paying more money than what you would be paying for electricity for cooking.

this is because in addition to paying for the consumption of gas you also be paying a supply charge, regardless of how much gas you use. in fact 2 supply charges. one for electricity and another for gas. you can't easily use gas for non cooking appliances and lighting

many people prefer gas because they feel it is easier to regulate the temperature for cooking. that may have been the case before induction electric cooking. but it's not now.

in a warm climate, if you have the choice, you will spend less money by having an all electric house rather than a combination of gas and electric.

Gas BBQ

barbecue implies cooking outdoors. typically they are gas-fired. however with an extension lead and a portable induction cooker, which typically are far less expensive then gas BBQs, you pay less for the BBQ cooking.

Get what you Pay For

this is an old saying that is basically wrong. it implies, if you pay more money you get something better. my experience is that this is not the case. but neither is it the inverse.

there are many factors involved. you can pay $1,000,000 for a car, that is less reliable, and is far less versatile than a car a fraction of the price. same with many products, especially ones that have fashion involved. there are some services and advice, you can get for free, like what's your reading now, were you will get more benefit then paying a lot of money for the same thing.

if you want to spend a less money, ignore the old saying you get what you pay for.

Gift Cards

Don't by them, because of the reason shown below. Instead, direct deposit to the person you are gifting to, bank account. If you dont have that persons bank details, write or print you own gift card, where they have to fill in the banking details, so you can transfer the funds to ther bank account.

Reason you should not purchase Gift Cards

The main reason is the overall cost. You're exchanging money for something that does not give an immediate direct benefit to the person you're trying to give a gift to. They have to buy something. That is a cost them. Each of the below items also has a cost

The person you give the gift card to, can only purchase items from the store or stores shown on the gift card. You are seriously restricting what they are able to purchase. The prices that store sells items for are higher or less than the value of gift card, meaning receivers of the gift have to add more money or there is money left over on the card which is not enough to buy anything else. Either that money is wasted or more money has to be put with the remaining balance on the card to get what the person wants.

Relatives gave my daughter a gift card many years ago, by the time she went to use it, the store in question had gone broke, meaning she never got an actual gift, other than a piece of plastic.

We have received a number of gift cards over the years some of which have expiry dates. We have forgotten about them and they expired, hence we did not get a gift

Marketers know the all of above and that's why they promote gift cards. The net effect, for them, is they get more sales at less cost. I have no proof of this, however I'm sure that the total value of items redeemed on gift cards would be significantly less than the amount sold of gift cards. Meaning that the people are not getting the full value out of gift cards.

The direct deposit as indicated above is a much better idea and will save money

See also Presents and Gifts

Glad Wrap (Plastic Film packaging)

When this product first came on to the market, everybody thought it was fantastic, because it allows you to put it over a container and seal the contents.

I have discovered that if you put a container inside the bags that you buy your fruit and vegetables in and then tie a knot in the bag or use a breadtie, to shut, it does just as good a job as Glad Wrap. Of course you get the bags, the fruit vegetable go in, for free as opposed to buying the GLAD Wrap

I appreciate that Glad Wrap has uses other than sealing food. In those cases it does not need to be able to stick to a container. No need to buy the genuine brand. Substitute brands can be used that may not stick as good as Glad Wrap, as then you're not using it to do the sticking, and so save money

Glasses Reading

I have had to use glasses for reading since was 40, that was 25 years years ago. Being naive and without the knowledge, I now have, I went to an Optometrist for my first glasses and paid $130 for what I later learnt I could have bought for $4. Inevitably those $130 glasses broke. It was then that I discovered that most people, at about that time in life, require reading glasses and that they were a common article that could be purchased for anything from $4 to many $1,000s.

I initially would keep my glass in the hard case, I was given with them. This became inconvenient to have to remove and replace them. I discovered glasses lanyards that allows you to hang your glasses around your neck. Much more convenient. Except the lanyards would continually break. I looked for alternatives and decided to use a shoelace, that, I did not even had to buy, as I have one left over from a pair of laces. That first lace lasted almost 20 years.

But because the lace was so strong the next thing to break was the glasses hinges. I tried to purchase hingeless glasses, but found these are not readily available. After breaking so many hinges I got to repairing then with a big blob of fiberglass. These repairs were so strong that other part of the glasses frame would break before the hinges. I now put fiberglass on the hinges of brand new $5 cheaper glasses and find that these will out last even more expensive glasses. I did at one time try purchasing more expensive glasses and found they did not last any longer as the $5 ones.

In more recient years I have had to also wear long distance glasses. An Optometrist told me that these are just less powerful versions of the same $5 reading glasses. Numerous Optometrist have told me that even if these $5 glasses I buy are not the exact prescription I require, it will, in no, way effect my eyes, even though in my case each eye requires a slightly different lens.

I could get bifocal lens or progressive lenses in the one pair of glasses. But these would cost considerable more than $10, the cost of 2 pair of glasses. I have found the only time that bifocals would be useful, is when I need to read somthing and key the information in to my small Raspberry Pi computer connected to our big screen TV. I hardly ever do that. In the few instances where I have had to, I can put both pair of glasses on at the same time and look through the appropriate lens. I have also found an App on my phone that allows me to control my Raspberry Pi computer connected to the big screen TV so that I can copy and past information rather than keying it in. This is a combination of knowledge and behavior that has allowed me to not spend as much money. You now have the knowledge, you just have to adjust your behavior.

H

Haggling

A relative went with her, then, young teenage son, to purchase a new stereo system. After he had made his decision of the make and model he wanted, his mother said to the salesperson, can you do a better price than that. The answer was yes and he saved money. He said, can you do that? His mother said of course you can. He was not aware it could be done.

Unless you ask for a better price you will never know if you could have got it. The worst case scenario, would be a no. You have nothing to lose by asking, but a possibility of a gain.

I know a major retail, that has a 3 price, system. The A price, that is shown on the product, the B price, which is only ever given if the customer asks for a better price, and the C price, which is only given, when the customer asks for an even better price. Unless you ask you don't get the B and C prices.

What is Haggling

In the Monty Python movie, The Life of Brian, Brian is being chased by the Romans and ends up in a marketplace. To elude the Romans he picks up a piece of merchandise and says I will buy it. The seller says that will be say $10. Brian says ok. The seller says you can't do that, you have to haggle. Brian being more concerned about the Romans looking for him says ok $5. The seller says $5 I can't sell it for that, what about my poor family, how are they going to survive if I sell it for only $5. Brian still more interested in eluding the Romans, sais ok $10 then, to which the seller says you're not haggling correctly. And So It Goes On. Watch this YouTube clip so see it:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u75XQdTxZRc

An Internet definition of haggling is: “dispute or bargain persistently, especially over the cost of something”. I guess other than the word persistence, it could also be regarded as negotiating.

How to haggle

There is plenty of free information on the Internet on how to haggle. Just Google it. Or words like it, like negotiate.

Buyer's for large retailers can be very good at haggling and setting up the situation before the haggle.

I used to work for Olivetti, who sold typewriters. A buyer from the Myer department store rang olivetti and asked how much would it cost to purchase 1000, of a certain typewriter. The olivetti person said I'll have to check with our head office to get a price on that quality, I will get back to you. About half an hour later the olivetti person rang the Myer guy and gave him the price. The Myer person, I said ok we will have 20 of them, at that price. And they did get them at that price.

Haircuts

In over 40 years of marriage I have only ever paid for one haircut. My wife cuts my hair. I dont no how much that has saved me, but it would be substantial.

Because I dont have to travel to a Barber, I have also saved in not having to pay for transportation costs as well as being able to use the time that I would have been traveling, for other things.

Not everyone would no somone or is related to somone that is able to cut hair. But unless you try cutting hair you will never no if you are capable of doing it. It is not difficult. My Wife, was never trained how to cut hair and still after 40 years recons she cant cut hair as good as a barber would. But the incremental differance between how she can do it and a barber is so small that no one can notice.

Most people do not get ther hair cut every day or every week. Because hair does not grow evenly, at the point where you are just about to have you hair cut, it may not look as good as after it is just cut. Most people find this situation acceptable. They are able to style or comb ther hair so that is not noticed. But if they are in, or have been in a strong wind, such that ther hair is messed up, that is also regarded as being acceptable. With modern fashion it can be trendy to have hair that looks likes it has been messed up, or even cut incorrectly. Therfore, if you are worried about how your hair may look to others, tell them that you are setting a new fashion. You are being a fashion setter rather than a fashion follower. But in doing so you are spending less money.

Or, just by changing your attitude, that you do not care about how others view you hair, you can have you hair any way you want it. Like cut it all off, unevenly, yourself, and let it grow unevenly. That will be the biggest saving without having to involve others. It may also give you the feeling of self actualization, the possible, highest level of self achievement, that not many people ever achieve. And it is just a change in thought patterns. And it will mean spending less.

During the late 60s, I was in the school Cadets. At that time young people had long hair. On going to a Cadet camp, those in charge in the Army decided to give those with the long hair, a hair cut. Being Army barbers, if they were really actually barbers, perhaps they where just Army personal that were give an electric hair cutter, they would basically just shear the hair off in about one minute. The results looked horrible. As this happened over a few days the Cadets decided to get other cadets to cut ther hair for them, to a length that was not regarded as long, and so miss being shawn by the Army people. All these young Cadets had no experience in hair cutting, but what they did looked many times better than the Army shave. This is an example of showing that appearance, like many things, is a relative thing. That the cost of appearance can be very little.

If you do not accept any of the above, and still wish to pay for hair cuts you can spend less money with other techniques. The less often you have you hair cut the overall less you will spend on hair cuts. When you get you hair cut, the shorter it is cut, the longer it will be before it needs cutting again.

Ther are schools and colleges that train hairdresser and barbers. To do so they need people for the students to train on. These schools/colleges charge less than the non training equivalents.

Health Insurance

Australia has universal health insurance, that covers all Australians, for the cost of seeing Doctors or going to a hospital.

Unless you take out the highest possible health insurance cover, you will have to pay the gap between what you are charged for medical services and what your health insurance provider covers you for. As with most insurance, many people do not know this until they make a claim and so are paying for the privilege of paying more.

You will spend less money overall by not having health insurance.

Ever since Medicare has been available, we have never had health insurance, have utilized the public health service available and have been very happy with what we got. This has included in one situation, emergency procedures.

My mother paid for health insurance for many years based on the false assumption that she would not be put on a long waiting list if she had a medical condition that had waiting lists. She never made a claim. If she had, she would have discovered, that because she was on the lowest category of private health insurance, that it would not be worth while making a claim, because she would not have been able to afford the payment gap.

My parents and my wifes parents, who have all passed on, where all treated in ther later years by the public health system and had the best of care that money can not bi.

Other than the above, as I see it, the only reason some people take out private health insurance is to get a private room if they go to hospital. According to friend of mine that has worked as a nurse in both public and private hospitals, those with private health insurance are not getting any more than the public patients that includes the private rooms. She also told me that private hospitals do not have anywhere near the staff, resources and equipment of the public hospitals and so are less safe to be in. I have another friend that had something go wrong, in a operation, in a private hospital, and she was rushed to a public hospital because of the above.

You will spend less money and get better care by not taking out private health insurance.

Hearing Aids

Unfortunately, over last 20 years I have progressively suffered from hearing loss. I have utilised our public hospital system to track the extent of the hearing loss. It was suggested to me that I should have a hearing aid.

In looking around at the retail stores, that sell hearing aids, I've discovered they all only sell very expensive ones. The fact that they are usually in large shopping complexes indicates this. See where to shop

My investigations into what hearing aids are, has revealed that they basically are just small computerized amplifiers. Most of these are proprietary. That means, the organisations that develop and manufacture them keep the technology to them self , via patent and copyright legislation.

I am used to open source free software and hardware in computing. Basically modern sophisticated hearing aids are very small computers, which are mainly proprietary. But they can be open source. There is a bit, but not a lot, of open source hardware and software to do with hearing aids, that I've been able to find on the Internet. Free open source means that the technology is completely open so that anybody can copy it. The net effect of which is cheaper prices.

From speaking to people that used hearing aids I discovered most of them have to learn how to use these Proprietary hearing aids. I was not willing to have to pay the high cost, only to find out that it may not solve all my problems. I found a hearing aid on the internet for $30. It is a very basic one that only amplifies sound and has no adjustment for frequencies. My hearing problems are in the high pitch range, Eg female voices. The one I bought has the advantage of having a rechargeable battery, so I do not need to purchase or change batteries.

I took the advise of the the audiologists I had spoken to and used it constantly for the first 2 weeks. I was surprised that I was able to hear things that I had not hear in years. Like simple background noises or a set of keys jingling.

I now only wear it when I have trouble hearing people speaking to me. Which I understand is what often is the usage patterns of people with hearing aids. I have found other ways of getting beyond not being able to hear other things. See below.

The biggest problem with my current hearing aid is were ther is a lot of background noise. But I am told this hapenens with even the expensive proprietary ones. I have yet to find a device that has a directional microphone with an earpiece that goes in your ear at a reasonable cost, which is what is needed to solve that problem.

As the open source hardware and software of hearing aids becomes more common, I hope to invest in a more technical advanced one in the future, when they sell for a reasonable price.

In the meantime I have saved thousands of dollars by not investing in a Proprietary hearing aid and buying one off the Internet for $30.

Otherways overcoming hearing problems

Without costing anything

  • Ask those that are talking to you to speak louder, explaining to then you are hard of hearing. Most people will oblige
  • When you can, turn the volume up on devises that have volume controls. But be aware that in may be to loud for other people. In which case use subtitles on movies and TV shows. If you watch them via the internet, the subtitles can be downloaded for most movies and TV shows
  • Cup you hands around ears. This simple process can dramatically increase what you hear

That do cost

  • Headphones for devices that accept them
  • Earplugs from mobile phones, tablets and computers.

Holidays

This can have different meanings. To most people it means not working.

I once corresponded, via an email list, with a New Zealand couple that were traveling around Australia, for 12 months, in a motorhome, on an extended holiday. Part way through it, they returned to New Zealand, for a holiday, from ther holiday.

It is often assumed, that you have to go away from your home to be on holidays. That's when the term, “away on holidays” is used. You'll spend less, by not going away on holidays but staying at home. There may actually be more work involved (which you do not get paid for), in being away on holidays, than if you stayed at home.

Ther is an old saying, “a change is as good as a holiday” The change may only be that you are not working. Could be sleeping in a different room or in a tent in the backyard. A relative told me they would go camping a few kilometres away from the home , so should they need anything, it was within an easy driving distance. A good way to not spend much on a holiday.

Holidays away from home emplies travel and accommodation. See Travel Local, Travel Overseas and Accommodation

Get out of a holiday

You should consider what you want to get out of a holiday. If it's a state of mind thing, do you need to be at a particular location to be able to do it. What difference would different locations mean. Is it what you want, or what you think, others will think about you. Have you got out of previous holidays, what you expected. If not, what needs to change to meet your expectations. Can you change your expectations. There's not usually any cost in doing that.

I

Information

All information is free. It is only when it is encapsulated in some way that it can comes under intellectual property, sometimes called intellectual monopoly, laws, that, to use or copy information, can cost money. These are the laws of patents trademarks and copyright.

These are complex and convoluted laws designed to give a monopoly to someone or some organisation such that it may cost to get information. To get information without those costs, you should look for it where it is not encapsulated. The complexities of finding this is beyond the scope of these documents. However as far as I'm aware if someone tells you something, that information, they tell you, is not covered under intellectual property laws. As they say, you should seek your own legal advice.

Intellectual property that is free

There are alternatives to the non free versions of intellectual property. 2 of these are, free open source software and Creative Commons.

Free open source software is computer software that cost nothing to use and can be copied and distributed without the permission of the owners.

Likewise, Creative Commons can be literature that is free to copy and distribute without the permission of the owners.

Don't be misled by the attitude of some people and what is often espouse by marketers, that if it's free it is in some way inferior. Often free open source software and Creative Commons material can be superior to the alternative paid for information.

Personally I rarely pay for information.

See Also Advise

Insulated shopping bags

No need to buy special insulated ones for putting cold stuff in. Just use the normal shopping bags and when at the supermarket take a big wad of their brochures and use that insulate the normal shopping bag. paper probably insulates better than the foil they put on those insulated bags.

Insulation

Insulating a house is good for reducing the cost of heating and cooling. However it usually cost quite a bit of money to get a house insulated. Ther are far less expensive ways. I insulated my entire house for a few hundred dollars by purchasing leftover polystyrene boards from a organisation that used large polystyrene blocks to make floating pontoons for Marinas. Sometimes these boards were varying thicknesses and odd shapes, but they're very easy to cut off or for that matter break to the right size and you can put multiples of them together to make up the thickness of the insulation you want. I installed it all my self. Its extremely easy to do

More recently I've realised that heaps of office paper gets shredded and turns into material that's perfect for insulation. It can be spread in the ceiling cavities of houses and then possibly treated with a chemical to make it fire retardant. If you shred your own documents you can collect enough of the shredded paper to insulate a whole house over a period of time.

You could insulate your whole house or anything for that matter for no or very little cost, so end up spending no or little money on the insulation itself and then far less money on heating and cooling.

I have noticed that some snack food packaging is foil lined on the inside. if that packaging is opened out out flat and somehow attached together it would make great reflective insulation, at no cost.

Insurance

Apparently, insurance was started in the days when merchants would send sailing ships to the ,then, new worlds, to get products that were not locally available, like tea and spices. As the risks of a ship not returning were very high, a number of merchants would agree to send multiple ships, so that the chance of loosing all the ships was lessened. They would all share in the cost of sending multiple ships, so, if, say, only 4 out of 6 ships completed the journey, then the merchants would share the produce of those 4 and so also share the loss of the 2 that were lost. Better to lose some rather than all. It is the same as the old saying of not putting all your eggs in the one basket, and that half a loaf is better than none. This eventually led to the insurance industry where you can pay money rather than the above sharing thing. But it also led to the situation where profit could be made from selling reducing risk.

That is what insurance now is. Paying, to reduce risk. Insurance has been portrayed as somthing that is to expensive to have, but also to expensive to not have.

Self insured

You could save by being self insured or partly self insured. Self insured basical means you dont have insurance. It assumes that you have sufficient funds available to be able to lose somthing without it effecting your general financial situation. Partly self insured is when you take part of the risk. Like not insuring somthing for its full value, or the excess. The excess is basically the amount you will not get it you make a claim.

Assessing the risk

As we built the first house we owned, our selves, I was very aware how much the various parts of the constructions cost. The house had a concrete floor and foundations and that was a substantial part of the total cost. I new that if the house was to completely burn down or be destroyed by the weather that the foundations would be intact. Rather that insuring the house for full rebuilding value I only insured it for the full rebuilding value less the floor and foundations value so not spending as much. However I also had to make sure of the wording of the policy. Some insurance provides have a co-insurance clause. That basically means that if they consider the item to be not insured for its full value, then they are only insuring it for a % of its full value and will therfore only pay that % of any claim. As an example. If a houses replacement value was $100,000 and it was insured for $50,000, they would consider it to be only 50% insured and so if a claim was made for say $5,000 they would only pay 50% of that, $2,500. Some other policy wording will allow claims to be settled upto the full amount insured regardless of the % of the house insured. In other words they do not have co-insurance. It is extremely important to know if a policy has co-insurance before purchasing insurance

Over insuring

You will spend less on insurance if you do not over insure. Insurance providers set ther premiums based on risk. The higher the amount anything is insured for the higher the risk to the insurance providers and so the higher the premium. But, usually, they only pay on value lost in relation to a claim. If it only cost them say $50,000, to replace a total written off car that you have insured for $80,000, then you have been paying a premium based on $30,000 more than you can claim. Unless you have insured the car for an agreed value. Again is is extremely important to read and UNDERSTAND the wording of your insurance policies BEFORE purchasing them.

Insurance providers, I understand, all have double indemnity clauses. This means that if you insure the same item with multiple insurance providers, that you can only claim with one of them. Because of this, if you have multiple insurance policies you need to check what is covered by each one as you may be covering the one item multiple times. Or it could be that someone else has the item covered. When you are in certain paid work, you may be covered by workers compensation. If so it may not be necessary to take out you own coverage whilst working. You may pay less for insurance by reading and understanding ALL your insurance policies and knowing your insured situation.

No need to insure land

If you have purchased a house, dont insure it for the value you paid for it, because part of it, is the value of the land. It is difficult to lose land or for it to be destroyed. The value you insure a house for is the cost to replace it. You cant replace land.

Insurance valuation

I have been part of a body corporate for some time. It is a statutory requirement that the common property (owned by all in the body corporate) be sufficiently insured. To know if it is, a insurance valuer can be hired to ascertain the replacement value. Is cost to obtain such a valuation. Our body corporate decided to increase the amount the common property was insured for, so that the increased premium was about half what it would have cost to have a insurance valuation done. An overall saving. However, because of a administrative mistake on behalf of our body corporate management company, one year a valuation was done. It showed that we were over insured, as we expected, but the reduction in premium was more than the cost of the valuation. It was just fluke that it worked out that way.

We have always accepted, when we get a insurance renewal on our house and contents the automatic increase that the insurance providers calculate. But in searching for better insurance deals I discovered that some providers have information on ther web sites to help you calculate yourself the value of rebuilding you house, based on its age, construction, number of rooms, quality of build and the like, as well as the value of you contents based on, you age, income, quality of items you have and the like. We where over insured and so reduced our insurance costs. These web site are worth using.

Check what is covered

When we got insurance for our first house, we did so before we were living in it, as we where still building, and wanted to have what we had built covered. My wife went to a insurance provider and arranged the cover, but because we were not living ther, provide a different address, a relatives, for correspondence. In the following year, when we go the renewal, we discovered that our relatives house was covered, instead of ours. The person writing out the application have put that address, for the property covered. Our fault for not checking. Bottom line, check to see what is covered.

They keep upping the Amount Insured

Insurance companies just like any other marketers are very good at upselling. like when you go to McDonald's and they say would you like fries with that. Insurance companies don't even ask you. I've just got a renewal for all of our insurance and they increase the sum insured by 10% on buildings. Building costs have not increased by 10% in the last year. I will be contacting them telling them to reissue the policies with the amount insured being less than what it was last year. because I'm willing to take part of the risk. Everyone can do that, and so be spending less money on insurance.

Policy definitions and wording

If you dont understand the wording or definitions in the policy documents, get someone, other than who is providing the insurance, to explain it to you. It will be to late if you find out at the time of making a claim. Many large business that you would expect to be astute, were not aware of the definition of “flood” after the Queensland floods. See Also Advise

Insurance is one of the rare things that you have to pay for, up front.

See also extended warranties which in many cases are just another form of insurance

Internet

You can get to use the Internet for free. You do not even have to have your own equipment. Most Libraries have free Internet that can be used with or without your own equipment.

Other than libraries if you have your own equipment you can get free wifi at many different places. Major shopping centres, fast food stores, restaurants and the like. Once we were in the middle of Outback Western Australia and got free wifi.

Home Wired Internet

If you wish to use the internet from your home, and you have Neighbours nearby, you could share an internet connection, and so the cost, with them.

The least expensive way of using wired internet and getting the maximum amount of usage is to go for an unlimited plan. The least expensive of these are available for about $30 a month.

Do not get sidetracked by wired Internet Service Providers (ISPs), saying they provide a better or faster service, than other ISPs. My experience is that there are too many other factors, other than the ISP you select, that affect service and speed of Internet. You will spend less, by going for the one that charges you less.

But, see also dealing with organisations

Mobile Internet

Mobile Internet is generally more expensive than wired Internet. You will spend less using wired internet. I'm not currently aware, of any mobile provider, that provides unlimited mobile internet.

Generally the more you pay, the more data you get and the cheaper it is per unit of data, provided you use all that you have purchased. If you purchase, for example, 10 gigabyte of data per month that cost you $100, and you use the 10 gigabyte, it has cost you $10 per gigabyte. But if you only use one gigabyte it has cost you $100 per gigabyte. You'll spend less money if you know what your requirements are and you use all the data you purchase.

See also Communication

Immediate Benefit later payment

In modern times, marketers have realise the more they can disconnect the benefit of purchasing goods and services from the payment, for those goods and services, the more likely people are to spend more money.

When I was much younger I used to sell goods door to door for a brand name called Rawleys. http://www.rawleigh.com.au/ This help me support myself through higher education. One of the things that this old established company taught me, was that people will spend twice as much on items if they don't have to pay for it straight away. The way I was taught to do it was to show my product, then ask them to try it, at no cost to them, and I would return at some stage in the future and if they were satisfied with the product they could pay for it. Otherwise I would take it back, and they didn't have to pay anything. Basically I was extending them credit. In a number of years of selling this way, I only ever had one person, not by the product.

I had a relative that own a nursery. When they first started thay only accepted cash. They later start accepting credit cards. At that time, there turnover immediately doubled.

It is a natural human trait to do things and not appreciate the consequences of the future. Marketers know this and as a consequence will adjust their marketing strategy so that they can take advantage of it. Many retailers now have a 30 days no questions asked return policy. Just as I discovered over forty years ago people that buy things very rarely return them. Even for a refund. Some retailers have 24, 36 and even longer months free credit with nothing to pay until the end of the time. Once again providing the benefit immediately and the payment at some point in future.

Then there is the contract with mobile phones. You don't pay until the end of the month. Also with many other types of contracts. Of course the biggest one of these is credit cards. You getting the benefit immediately and not having to pay until some point in future. Think of all the situations where this exists in your life.

I'm not saying that you should not use these functions, but you have to do so with the full knowledge that it has future consequences. Some time in the future you will have to pay. And most likely it's going to cost you more to have the benefit of being able to pay in future. My general rule is that I will not purchase anything that I could not pay cash for at the time of purchase And it is the best possible cash price.

Every time there is a purchase situation where you will get benefit without having to make an immediate payment, consider would you purchase the item or service if you DID have to make an immediate payment, all things being considered. If the answer is no, then don't buy.

Improvise

rather than going out and purchasing something to satisfy your wants or needs it is often possible to improvise. That is using something else that you already have.

As an example. I bought a new mobile phone that has a different type of charging cable connector. The cable is relatively short compared to the cables I previously had purchased. I could have purchased a new cable with a new connector, but rather than doing so I purchased an adaptor which converts from the old format the newer format.

I later realised that I didn't have to purchase anything. I already have electrical extension leads. Rather than using a longer cable I just plug the charger and cable into the extension lead.

Ironing

This is a complete waste of energy, effort and time. It does nothing for the cleanliness of items. You will save money by not ironing.

If you want cloths to look pressed, do what they did in the military for many years. Put your clothes between the mattress and the bed.

J

Jewellery

Very small items that cost a lot of money, because ther made of things that they supposed to be rare.

Diamonds as an example are not rare. One or a few organisations around the world control the supply of diamonds such that thay appear to be worth more than what they really are worth.

Buy any diamond ring and take it back to the jeweller the next day and see how much they give you for it. You'll be lucky to get half what you payed.

The same might even apply to gold jewellery.

The average person wouldn't have a clue what is a diamond and what is a piece of glass or for that matter what is gold and what is brass.

I have heard that with expensive jewellery, in the millions of dollars, that insurance companies will not allow people to wear them in public. So they get a fake version of it made up that people wear whilst the real thing stage in a volt somewhere.

So if you're going to buy jewellery by the fake stuff, and don't tell anybody that it's fake.

I did this for a birthday present to my wife. I gave her a necklace with a large diamond hanging from it. Of course it was all fake. She got many comments about how nice it looked, yet it only cost a few dollars. So what's the satisfaction of wearing jewellery? How it makes the wearer feel or how the wearer feel when other people make comments about it.

You will spend less money by not buying Real jewellery, but buying the fake equivalent of it.

See also watches

K

knowledge

Knowledge is free, if acquired the free way. See Information

But by itself knowledge is of not much use. It has to be put together, with understanding and skills.

Put together knowledge, understanding and skills and the advice in these documents and you will save money.

See also Education

L

Lasting

often marketers will have a number of products that appear to be similar, but have different prices, based on how long they are expected to last. the higher priced items are meant to last longer. this may not necessarily be true. but for the purpose of this segment we will assume it is.

let's say there are 2 products. and one is twice the price of the other, but it is supposed to last twice as long. you will spend less money,now, by purchasing the cheaper item. paying money, now, for a benefit you're not going to get until sometime in the future means spending more, now.

in another example let's say one product is only 50% more expensive than another but will last three times as long as the cheaper one. the only way to work out which is best to buy, is to take the purchase price and divided by how long it's going to last, be that per year, month or day on both products and compare then. but then you also have to factor in the cost of money. be that interest on a loan or interest on an investment.

even after taking the money cost into account, even if the cost per year is less on one product then another overall higher cost product, there is still the fact but you are spending more, now, then you otherwise could.

remember the overall objective, is to spend less.

all the above assumes thers no maintenance on the products concerned. product maintenance costs are just another factor that has to be taken into account.

if you're confused that's what marketers fulley intended.

Laziness

Laziness is a double sided sword. Laziness can cost you money but also save you money.

By being lazy you could be spending more money than otherwise you need to by not following some of the advice elsewhere contained in these documents. It does take some effort to do some of the things.

I worked as an accountant in the early years of my life when electronic calculators first came on the market. There were people that were employed as calculator operators. I showed a calculator operator how to do multiplications and press the memory + button instead of the equals button, so that when a list of multiplication had been completed, by pressing the memory recall button the result of the additions of the multiplications was displayed, rather than having to add up all the results of the multiplications The calculator operator turned to me and said, but that is just being lazy.

I thought about this for quite some time. It was true that doing something so that you did not have to do something else could be regarded as laziness as lazy is defined as unwillingness to do work or use energy. Work usually has a value associated with it. Everything you purchase has a value associated with it. In that sense, money can be equivalent to work, and so by being lazy you could be purchasing less work. But you are spending less money. I think, in industry or business, they call this, efficiency.

You need to be aware of where laziness can cost you money and we're laziness or efficiency can end up in you spending less money. Consider it very carefully as marketers, that are professionals are getting people to spend money, will use many methods, that will may appear to be saving, that are in fact costing.

Some such methods are expiring benefits on loyalty schemes, insurance that automatically increases the sum insured, business automatic direct debits via banks and credit cards, subscriptions and making the same purchases, because you have alway done so, without shopping around for better prices.

See also False Savings

Lazeynes can allow others to control your spending behaviour. Other than government taxes, no one can force you to spend your money the way you dont want to. YOU need to be in control.

Most legal costs are a waste of money. If you have a dispute with another party you will spend far less money by arranging a settlement, your self, than going through the legal system.

Before checks

It is best to make sure you do not get into a situation where you may have a dispute. Where ever possible do not enter into legal agreements, unless you have full knowledge as to how the agreement works. That means reading it all and understanding it. If you dont understand it, get someone to check it for you. That person should not be the other party or in anyway associated with the other party.

It is generally better to enter into agreements on your terms than the other parties terms. You do NOT have to accept other parties terms. You can negotiate terms of an agreement. Read fully all agreements before accepting them. Dont accept that, it is a standard agreement. Even those standard agreements can be changed.

When selling property a Real-estate agent presented me with ther standard agreement. It had a numerous clauses, I did not like. One was that even if the sale fell through we would still have to pay the commission. Another was we were responsible for collecting the funds from the other party. We crossed out all the clauses we did not like. The agent accepted it.

In a a property rental situation, I also crosses out clauses. One agent said we could not do so because it was a standard agreement. It was a standard agreement developed by the Real estate and Stock Institute. An organization that is ther for the benefits of ther members, Real estate agents, not us. I found another agent that would accept the cross outs.

A younger friend of my daughter wanted to purchase a car on finance. I read the finance agreement for him. It had numerous clauses that I would not have accepted. One was that if he fell behind in payments that the finance company would automatically be granted power of attorney of ALL his assets. Another, again, if he was in default of the agreement that the car could be sold at any price to anyone, including the finance company itself and he would still be responsible for paying out the remainder of the loan. He went ahead with the finance anyway. At least he nu, what he was getting into. Most people dont

In these situations where I have found clauses that I want removed, I have been told, “oh, but we would never do that”. My argument, then is, if you say you would never do that, then you will have no problem having the clause removed.

The biggest problem I have come across with standard agreements is the termination clauses they have. Usually the other party can terminate the agreement by simply giving you a period of notice, but for you to terminate it, requires them to be in breach of the agreement or be bankrupt. That would require a costly legal wrangle to prove. Entering such an agreement could puts you at serious disadvantage. I have been is such a situation. The point here, is that it is possible to have these termination clauses changed, at the time they are made, but not during the agreement. If the other party does not want to change it, it may be an indication that you could end up in dispute with them.

Agreements that are regulated by law

You cant help living in our present society without entering into legal agreements. Utilities, communication, technology, governments, all get you to enter into agreements, even if you may not realize it. A lot of these are regulated by legislation and often ther are free legal or sudo legal services that are associated with such agreements. like various industry Ombudsman. You will save money by initially using such services.

Ther is also consumer law and small claims tribunals, when dealing with non government entities. Then ther is legal aid, if you qualify for it. See also warranties] **Utilizing Lawyers** If you do need to use a lawyer (which should be a last resort) , if they are a good lawyer, they will ask you to sign an agreement that outlines the fees they charge and what they provide, for those fees. But that agreement, will most likely say, that you should seek your own legal advice before accepting the agreement. To do that you would have to get the services of another Lawyer, who should also have such an agreement with that some clause. And so it goes on. This should give you some idea of the perils of dealing with Lawyers and the legal system in general. You may be surprised, the number of people that end up suing ther lawyers. Again the standard agreements come into play here. You can alter theses. I thoroughly recommend that your agreement with you Lawyer has limits on the amount of time and money that they can bill you for. Considering that the least expensive Lawyers charge $100s per hour, it does not take long before they can rack up substantial charges. If the agreement stipulates they have to notify you of each increment of, say, $1,000 before they do any more work, then you are less likely to get a big shock when you get the bill. Ther is an old joke that goes, I was walking down the street and saw my lawyer, to whom I said hello. When I got home I found a bill from him for communicating with me. It is also important when dealing with Lawyers or any profession that provides advise, that only one person, preferably that is astute with money, provides instructions as to what has to be done. When I was involved in a community organization unbeknown to me another person had instructed a consulting firm to perform work that cost $10,000s that the community organization did not have. In courts, tribunals and the like, it is not necessary to have a Lawyer or Barrister representing you. You can do it yourself, or in some cases have a non legal person represent you or assist you. I am not a Lawyer and have no legal training but have represented myself and others in courts and tribunals. I have paid for legal advise and used it, myself, in tribunals. Knowledge is power. **The Legal System** Somthing that needs to be appreciated is what somone on the opposing side, said to me in tribunal. People go to the legal system for justice. But instead of getting justice, all they get is the law Another thing about the Law, generally those with the most money, win, in the long term. ==== Lending Money ==== You will spend less money, by never leading money. Those that do this for a living, rarely, alway get fully repaid, so its unlikely that you would do any better. The worst people to lend to, are relatives and friends. Because of the relationship, some of these people feel that they do not have a obligation to repay. If you insist that repayments have to be made, you are very likely to lose them as a friend or end up with estranged relatives. I no of families that often ,supposedly borrow, but never repay. In reality it is a gift. It should be talked about as such. If they wish to refer to it as a load, then see below. When I was much younger, I had sold a computer system to a business that was not able to proceed with the sale because they could not get finance. I asked the branch manager of the computer company if they where willing to provide the finance. To which he said to me. If a bank are not willing to lend them money, why would we. If someone asks you to lend them money, ask them if they have gone to a bank or any other money lender. If they say those organisations will not lend them money, make the same statement as above. It is better to be upfront, especially with relatives and friends, than to lose a relationship. Regardless of above, if you still want to lend someone money, do so on the basis of it being a fully commercial loan, with them making all the arrangements. Get them to get all the agreements and legal documents from a bank or money lender and them, to alter the documents to read that you are the lender. I would suggest that the interest rate should be higher than a money lender, because you would be taking a higher risk. The collateral, security for repayment of a loan, should also be more that a money lender would ask, for the same reason. My last suggestion is that ther should be a clause in the loan agreement that if at any point they are in default of payments, that you automatically get full power of attorney over them and so are able to sell anything they own to anyone you want, including your self, for any amount. If you think that is harsh, it is what is standard in many loan agreements. See [[save_money_alpha_list#legal|Legal

My experience is those that need to borrow money from individuals, rather than the traditional money lenders, are the worst at repaying. They do not do anything that is contained in these documents. If you feel you can not say no to ther request for a loan, refer them to these documents and especially this topic. Written words, often can have greater effect, than spoken words.

See also legal

Letter Box

The house, I currently live in, had a timber letterbox that appeared to be made by the previous owner. Over a period of time the timber rotted and I repaired it, multiple times, with little aluminium tabs. Eventually it got to the stage where there was virtually no wood the screw into to, affix the metal tabs.

I could have gone out and purchased a new letterbox. But I thought outside the square, and decided to use a microwave oven that had recently packed in. I checked the specifications of Australia Post, as to the size and opening required for a letterbox and now have the only letterbox in the street that complies with those regulations. Basically it's the best letterbox in the street because it has a big swinging opening door which is glass and I can see in the back of a it, if there is any mail without opening it. It also is very big, meaning it can handle a lot more mail than the tiny little ones that are sold. Great for when we go away on holidays.

Other than my time, it cost me nothing. Actually it probably saved me money, in not having to take the non working microwave oven to the tip.

This is just another example of where thinking differently can save you money.

Loyalty Schemes

These are designed, by marketers, to induce you to mainly purchase from them. That would be ok, if you could predict the future and no that a particular marketer always had the best prices. But as nobody can predict the future, with 100% confidence, that is not possible.

Points

Those screams that give you a certain amount of points each time you purchase something, may have rewards that would be less than a discount you could get from another retailer. That coupled with the fact that you can only use your rewards at the places specified, may make the scheme not worthwhile.

Money can be spent practically anywhere. Loyalty reward points cannot

The free ones are not free

Even the supposed free loyalty schemes do cost. You are paying for them by providing information to the marketer about your purchasing habits. That information may only be used by that market or maybe also onsold to other organisations. You have to read the fine print, to find out. Today, individuals purchasing habits is valuable information, which can be traded, just like any other commodity. You have to determine if it's worthwhile providing that information, for the reward you MAY get.

Paying for them

Considering all the above, personally, I don't see any of advantage in paying to subscribe to a loyalty scheme. You're paying for the possibility of getting some reward in the future. I would prefer to not pay, now. The known is always better than the unknown

If you do wish to pay for one, you need to work out if it is going to result in you, spending less, in the longer term. You then need to actually monitor if you are spending less, and if not, make the appropriate adjustments. I’m not aware, of any of these paid for loyalty schemes where they will refund your subscription if you don't actually get more benefits than what you paid, to belong to the scheme.

Associated with a credit card

Many banks have credit cards that allow you to accumulate points, that can be converted to rewards. Those type of credit cards usually have an annual fee. The above applies to them as well. One benefit of using a credit card with loyalty points rewards, is if those points can be converted to amounts used to reduce the credit card balance. If you know how much you spend on a credit card in a year, which will be detailed on a credit card statement, you can compare that to the annual fee, to see if it is worthwhile. If it is not worthwhile, make the required changes.

See also Credit Cards

Cents off per litre petrol

A number of supermarkets have schemes whereby if you purchase a certain dollar amount of goods, usually $30, you can get 4 cents per litre of the price of fuel. That saving, on filling up a average tank of fuel, works out, at about $2. That just under a 7% discount on the $30 purchase. I dont think getting a 7% discount on groceries is worthwhile, especially if you were induced to buy something, you most likely do not immediately need, to get you up to the $30. Compare how much it would have cost to purchase the same item, at a supermarket that does not have such a loyalty program. It does not take much shopping around to save 7% on a $30 grocery bill.

See Shop around for better Prices

Opposite to loyalty schemes

Many marketers now have schemes, whereby, if you're a new customer you get a better price or deal then existing customer. This is sometimes associated with the term, churning. Churning is the number of customers that an organisation turns over in a period of time. At different points in time, an organisation may be more interested in acquiring new customers, then maintaining their old customers, so they put in place schemes, to induce consumers to switch from another organisation to them. This could be in the form of reduced prices for a period of time, or extras being provided at no additional cost. If it is a product or service you need, then it may be worth pursuing. But be aware of, when and how, the special promotion will end and take appropriate action before then.

Some organisations will offer those same introductory deals to their existing customers. Some don't. It's important to be constantly checking to see if such deals exist. Marketers rely on consumer complacency and lack of knowledge

See laziness

If you are an existing customer of an organisation that you know is offering special deals to attract new customers, and you are not offered it, contact them and tell them you are considering going elsewhere and ask them for that special deal. All other things considered, it may be well worthwhile ending an association with an organisation and then rejoining them, just to get the special deal.

See also Banks

M

Magazines

Physical magazines even worse to buy the books. Typically you only keep them for a short period of time read the information and then dispose of them. Because of ther very nature, they tend to only have information that can be used for a few months. Having just checked out a newagent, I see magazines cost anything from $10 upwards.

Because I'm a member of a number of libraries, which cost me nothing, via an app called Libby, I am able to get many magazines onto my phone completely free. Even if you don't have a phone or use technology you can go to libraries and borrow or at least read magazines for free.

If you have to physically possess an own a magazine it's better to buy them second hand.

Your spend less money by never buying magazines.

See also Newspapers and Books

Mail

To post an ordinary letter cost $1. Assuming that Internet costs $1 per gigabyte, Sending an email of one gigabyte would be equivalent to sending, 631,243, A4 pages. If you could type at 20 words a minute, you would have to do so, non-stop for over 4 days to create that many pages. The bottom line is that email is far less expensive than conventional mail.

Make Things

After making a decision that you want to purchase an item, investigate if you can make it. Look up, making the item on the internet.

Some examples are. All cleaning chemicals. Many are just diluted detergents or commonly available items like vinegar, fruit juices and baking powder. Cleaning devices, use old rags instead of sponges or disposable paper towels. Use packaging, rather than purchasing containers. I have seen how to make fans and air conditioners on YouTube videos. Toys as presents for children can be made out of scap material, wood and packaging. Greeting cards can be made from older greeting cards. If you have the ability you can even make a car or battery powered bike from otherwise discarded items. Art can be made from virtually anything including junk mail and packaging. You can even make, build you own house. See Owning a House at 24

Recently the inside lining for the bonnet of my car how come away. The small plastic plugs that held it in place were no longer big enough to hold the lining because the now damaged holes in the lining were larger than the plastic plugs. I cut up pieces from an aluminium drink can and used them as large washers. The lining now stays in place perfectly. Being under the bonnet they are not visible. Just takes a bit of thinking outside the box to come up with the idea of using cut up bits of an aluminium drink can as a washer.

The list is endless. Consider, at some point in time all the things that we commonly used today, never previously existed and where made by people. You dont no if you can make it, unless you try.

One advantage of making somthing yourself, is that you end up with a senses of achievement, from do so.

You can go overboard in making things. The aim is to reduce spending. In making things, you should only do so, if it means you will end up spending less. In determining that also consider, if in the time you take to make somthing, you could have earnt more than you would have saved.

Makeup

See Cosmedics

Materialism

The more material items you buy the more you're spending. The less material items you buy the less your spending.

Marketers will have you believe that buying things makes you feel good. Which initially probably is true. But in the long term it's not. According to this article:

https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/dec/09/materialism-system-eats-us-from-inside-out

“Buying more stuff is associated with depression, anxiety and broken relationships. It is socially destructive and self-destructive”

It goes on to quote a number of studies that proves this.

Being less materialistic and spending less money it's not only good for you financially but also emotionally.

Mobile Phones

Money

Money usually cost money. It's called interest.

However there are ways of using other people's money for free. Trade credit and interest free periods are two ways. See Owning a house at 24.

It is best not to have to borrow money. Except in one circumstance. That is when the cost of borrowing the money is less than the return that you get on using the money. Unless you fully understand this concept and the risks associated with using money, don't borrow money.

If you follow all the other advice given in these documents you should be in a situation where you are able to save money. You should preferably use those savings instead of borrowing money.

It appears that the reason people borrow money is they want some benefit now and are not willing to wait to get it. That is, wait until they save enough money to be able to purchase the item, without borrowing. It's a timing situation. Immediate gratification as opposed to waiting for a period of time for the same gratification.

I'm in the fortunate situation where I do not have to wait, because I have sufficient savings, to enable me to go out and buy most things. I'm also a very impatient person. I don't like waiting. When I see something I want, I want it straight away. However when it comes to purchasing anything, experience has taught me that the benefit that I perceive, is not the benefit that I eventually get. The expectation is always better than the event. I feel real good about thinking how a new car is going to make me feel when I drive it down the street. But when I've purchased the car I can't think about how it's going to make me feel as I now already own the car. The only way I can get that feeling back again is to think about something else I could purchase. The Fantasy of what is going to happen is better and what actually happens. Actually, the longer I can keep the fantasy going, the longer, I feel good about it.

Even though I am impatient, if things come too easy for me I don't get as much gratification as I otherwise would.

I've discovered I don't need to purchase things to make me feel good. In fact it's the exac9t opposite, by not purchasing something I feel better.

My feelings are vindicated in a recent article I discovered that quotes studies talking about materialism

If I can do this, other people can. It just takes a change in attitude, that is the way you think. Look for examples in other parts of these documents.

See also What is Money and for a bit of fun see My Anarchy Currency

Money Management

If you are paying someone else to manage your money, you must be very well off and very trusting of the person or organisation you are paying.

My experience has been, that those that I would consider are good enough the be able to manage my money would not be interest in doing so. They are more interested in managing ther own money.

Those that wish to offer me ther services of managing my money, I find are not as good as managing money as I am. If they where, they would not need a job of managing money for other people. They would only manage ther own money.

If you are considering getting someone to manage your money, ask that person where they get the majority of ther income from. If its for that service they provide, then they are not able to manage ther own money, so in my opinion are not sufficiently qualified to manage my money.

I find that people that make a living out of managing other peoples money, like fund managers, may no about making money but no very little about not spending money, so are not as wealthy as they could otherwise be. Ther emphasis is on increasing income, rather then reducing spending and so are like the majority of people that spend all they earn, so are not particularly wealthy. If the difference is between making more money or having more money. Which do you prefer?

In consideration of all this, you will have more money, by not spending money, having other people manage your money.

Multiple of things

Marketers will always try and confuse consumers or induce them to spend more by including or excluding multiple things.

A simple example is in pricing, where one item is more expensive to purchase than 2 or more. This induces you to purchase something, the extra items, you may not want or need.

Another is where rather than giving you a reduction in price you will be offered somthing else thrown in for nothing or at a reduced price. Car sales people do this with accessories. It will nearly alway be that the extra item(s) are of less vale, than a reduction in price. I heard of a person that was offered a free life insurance policy as a part of a deal for a new car. It ended up, that the0 on going, life insurance was very expensive, with very little benefits.

Inkjet printers are an example where the multiple is excluded. It can be almost cheaper to purchase a new printer than to buy a printer cartridge for a printer. But the cartridges of the new printer are often not full so in reality it is not cheaper to buy the new printer.

You will spend less if you consider the “multiple of things” concept before making any purchases.

N

Nappies, Disposable

Disposing of nappies is disposing of money, as is the case with most one time use products.

When our first child was born we purchased two dozen cloth nappies. We used the same nappies, for a second child and eventually used the same nappies as cloths to wash the car and other items.

Interesting that the cloth nappy cleaning product Nappysan, is still sold but no longer to mainty clean nappies. It is now sold as a whitener for normal washing.

Even with the cost of washing and drying Nappies, it will still work out cheaper to not buy disposable nappies.

Most people do not buy disposable clothes so why buy disposable nappies.

Newspaper's

Most newspapers around the world are going broke, because people don't read newspapers. They get their news via the Internet or TV. Another reason people used to buy newspapers, was so they could see what was available for sale. The Internet has taken that over as well. Job vacancy advertisement for another reason. Very few jobs are now advertised in newspapers. Other than for wrapping rubbish, the Internet has taken over all the functions of newspaper.

Therefore I do not see any need to purchase newspapers. You can spend less money by not buying newspapers.

O

Online Shopping

One of the benefits of online shopping, other than having to not physically go anywhere, is that you do not get the immediate gratification from the item you purchased, if they are physical items. You are then less likely to impulse buy.

I would imagine that the psychologists that help online marketers set up their websites are aware of this and take appropriate measures. Exactly what they do I don't know but I could probably find out by doing a search on how to arrange the layout of an online selling website. Having that information would make me be aware of how I'm being influenced by the layout of the website, such that I could take appropriate action to be not influenced.

I have noticed that some websites use peer group pressure to influence you to bye. They have pop-up messages that say somebody in a suburb, and name your suburb, just purchased such & such. Its very easy for the website to no what suburb you are in. Theres no way of you knowing if somebody else in your suburb did purchase that item. They don't necessarily have to tell you the truth. Ther is no need to purchase something just because somebody else that lives near you purchased it

The difference between an online store and a physical store, is because of information that has been collected about you, via many online ways, and your internet browsing habits, what is presented to you, when you are visiting an online store will be a lot more directed specifically to you. The products, at the price breaks, with the features that are specific to you, are more likely to be presented. This could be an advantage to you. However, in a similar way, that same information that's known about you can be used by the online marketers to influence you to purchase items that you had no intention of buying or maybe not even aware existed.

A way to stop this from happening could be to have multiple accounts with the major technology companies such as Google Apple Microsoft Facebook Twitter and the like, and rotate which accounts you use at different times. They are then less likely to accumulate as much information about you. This may not be to practical.

Perhaps knowing all the above will make you less likely to be influenced by the psychology of the online marketers, such that with the knowledge of everything else that's written on this page you'll end up spending less.

See also shopping method

P

Paper Towels Tissues

Anything you buy, use once and throw away is wasting money. Never more so than a paper towel and tissue. After you have a shower most people do not dry themselves with paper towel, that they throw away. Conventional bath towels are used over and over again and last many years even though they get washed. Paper towel can be eliminated completely. Other products such as sponges and rags can be used to wipe up spills and whatever paper towel is used for.

Same applies for paper tissues. You can use handkerchiefs or similar cloths, that get washed and reused.

The marketers of paper products have done a very good job in trying to convince everybody, via advertising, that it is healthier and less expensive to use their products than the reusable equivalents. Marketers are allowed to lie when they advertise and they do.

If you find for personal reasons that you wish to use paper products consider using packaging paper, that you get for free, rather than purchasing paper products.

See also toilets , nappies and wrapping paper

Payment methods

How you pay for goods and services, can have a significant difference on the total amount you end up paying. Especially over a longer period of time.

If you pay cash, you no longer have the money. Whereas if you pay via credit, you still have the money. If you are able to utilise trade credit and interest free terms, that have no additional cost, you will be spending less and importantly have your money longer.

See the introduction on Trade Credit and Interest free terms

An older form of payment is checks. Basically they are a form of short-term credit, because when you write out a check, typically it is posted it in the mail and takes some time for receiver to receive it. They then have to take it to the bank and deposit it in their account. The bank then have delays before checks can be cleared and so the money arriving in receivers account. That time delay is free credit.

I once wrote a computer program that recorded, when checks were written and when the bank clear them. The organisation that utilised it were able to invest the amount that had not being cleared, on the overnight short term term money market. The interest from that investment paid, for what I charge to write the program, in its first day of use.

Whenever possible I pay for everything on credit, Usually by credit card. But my number one rule, is that I never purchase anything on credit, that I could otherwise not pay cash for. Any saving that is to be made by using credit, is quickly removed if you have to pay for that credit. Praying for credit is interest

Money speaks louder than words

An old saying goes “money speaks louder than words”. If you're ever in a dispute with someone or an organisation, If you have not paid them, or not paid them in full, you'll be in a better bargaining position than if you had.

I always make sure that I get what I'm paying for before I pay for it. In the few situations were that hasn't been the case, it has cost me more.

Whenever I've had to pay for construction work by trades people, I only pay for the amount of work that is completed and always hold back some money until I can fully verified that the work has been completed correctly. Most tradespeople will accept this. Any of that don't, I would be very suspicious of.

See Also References

Direct Debits

I have heard of situations where people make arrangements to pay by direct debit. Investigating this I have been told, that the way to stop a direct debit is to close the bank account that the payments are coming from. I'm not sure that is true or the correct legal situation. Whatever, I strongly suggest you do not use direct debits, or any method of automatic payment. That way if Something goes wrong, you have not paid. I like to see each bill before I pay it. Direct debits or automatic payments do not allow me to do that. Hence I don't use them. I have had many situations were have been incorrectly charged for goods or services. I read on forums where people are being charged month after month incorrectly but are unable or do not know how to stop the payments because of direct direct debits or automatic payments.

See also dealing with organizations

Peer Group Pressure

because of what I have written here, some people may feel that some of the suggestions I have made are going a bit over the top. I have had people criticize me because of my methods of not spending money. this is because we live in a society where the concept is to spend money. everybody does it so why shouldn't I? this is called peer group pressure. most people don't want to stand out as being different to the crowd.

a friend of mine told me on the situation where some people he new would go to the trouble of catching a bus to the airport rather then catching a taxi. he said, I don't know why these people do this because they can afford a taxi. what he did not realise is the reason they are able to afford the taxi is because in the past they hadn't taken a taxi. in other words, they had spent less money.

the peer group pressure is that if you can afford something you should purchase it.

your spend less money if you ignore peer group pressure, in this respect. but that can be extremely difficult to do.

Perception Vs Reality

Reality of what you have spent

Just because you are told, or even workout yourself, including detail calculations, how much you were going to spend, that does not mean that is what you do spend. Individuals, small businesses, corporations, multinationals and even governments all are absolutely lousy at estimating what they are likely to spend. This is proven by the number of times you see reported about cost overruns. If they are not able to do it, what chance have you got.

Divide and conquer

If you acknowledge that it is very difficult to estimate what you are likely to spend, you can use the divide and conquer technique to minimise the possibility of overspending. The divide and conquer concept came from the old military strategy of rather than fighting a big army, you use some techniques to split a big army into a group of small armys, and so conquer them one at a time. The concept is now used in business to take a big problem and divided it up into a number of small problems and solve them one at a time.

In case of the spending problem, the big thing you split up is time. The time between when decisions are made. If you use the traditional monthly cycle as the basis of making decisions, if you overspend, you will not know about it until the end of the month. If you do it on a weekly basis, you will not know until the end of the week, daily at the end of the day, hourly at the end of the hour. You can use banks or credit card providers, to give you monthly figures but you will have to come up with some other arrangement to get weekly, daily or hourly figures. See below

You can even get better estimates of future spending based on commitments.

I had a job in the days before computing, with a manufacturing company that would send out purchase orders to supplies, indicating what quantity x price of components they would be buying over the next three months. I would keep a running list and total of these so it was known what purchasing commitments would be in the future, broken down into months. I need to explain what are running list is. Especially one with dollar values.

Running totals

Prior to the use of computers, To save recalculations rather than having a list of numbers that are added up, you would keep a running total. That means, that you have two columns. The figure column and the running total column, to the right of it. Each time a new figure is entered the running total is calculated. It can look like this:

Amount Running Total

Amount Running Total
25 25
15 40
36 76
18 94

The total is 94. If the figure 10 was put under the 18, 104 will be put under 94.

The advantage of using this running total method, is that you would know by doing only one addition, what the total is every time you put in an entry.

With this method, you would know exactly how much you have spent every time you add a new row, when you make a purchase or commitment to spend. If you are shopping in a supermarket you would even know the total it is going to be, at the cash register, before you get there.

After you spend, you generally can't go back and un-spend it. Therefore the decision about spending has to be made BEFORE you spend. If you keep a running balance as shown above, and record every time you spend or make a commitment to spend, you have the information about what your total spending is, BEFORE you spend. You will be making decisions based on actual information rather than perceived information

Measuring previous purchasing decisions

Often purchasing decisions are made on the basis of some form of justification. In elaborate situations, this could be a cost benefit analysis. My experience is that not only individuals but also corporate and governments do not go back and measure if the benefits, in terms of cost savings, were actually achieve. So there is this perception in relation to the initial purchase, but in reality it is not know, if there are any cost savings. You may wish to consider this, before making future purchasing decisions.

Perception about spending control

There is a perception that because you make decisions about spending that you are in control of your spending. This perception can be false, because it is done in isolation, without knowing, an important piece of other information. That being how much you have already spent at that instant in time. See above. Marketers use that false perception to take advantage of consumers. They do so by maximizing the time between when a spending commitment is made and when you have to pay. Reward and payment are separated by a relatively long period of time.

A classic example is toll roads. When people have to take the money out of their pocket and pay a toll they far less likely to do so rather than the situation where they a charged the toll and dont have to pay until the end of the month.

An example with an even longer period of times is credit. Many marketers offer terms such that no payment need to be made for up to 24 months. See Debt.

Perceived benefits that dont materialize

Often purchases are made on the basis of a perception that some feeling will materialize in yourself or others. Feelings can change based on a physical location, time or even the weather.

As an example some parents spend a lot of money on gifts for their children, hoping that will make the children feel better. But often all the children want, is ther parents to spend more time with them.

You will spend less money if you appreciate the differance between perception and reality before making purchasing decissions.

Perfume

See Cosmedics

I've just read something that said the reason people use perfumes, is to make them feel happy. I think the reason that people spend money is also because it makes them happy.

I'm reminded of the story of the shirt of a happy man. It goes like this. The King was melancholy. Deeply depressed and sad. He summon all his advisors and doctors and one of them said, you needed to wear the shirt of a happy man. The King sent his troops around his empire searching for a happy man. They searched high and low as it was very difficult to find a happy person. The only happy person they could find was not wearing a shirt. The Kings troops return to the emperor and told him this. He laughed.

So it appears the King was able to be happy without the shirt of a happy man. That may also be the case of a person without perfume or a person that does not spend money.

Personal Trainer

Unless you are a top athlete, I don't see any need to have a personal trainer. If you don't have a personal anything else why do you need a personal trainer. And by personal does that mean that trainers is only yours, or are they a personal trainer other people as well.

I get the impression that personal trainers are just another form of status symbol.

Assuming the opposite is an impersonal trainer, meaning that the training is done in environment where you are sharing the cost of having the trainer, what benefit is the personal one, going to give you over that? Assuming that you need a trainer at all. Why can't you be your own personal trainer? Do personal trainers have personal trainers. If not apparently they don't feel the need to have a personal trainer. If that is the case why do you need one.

You will spend less money by not having a personal trainer.

Phones Mobile

I have purchased a number of mobile phones over a period of time. Like with all technology I find they are becoming less expensive with more features.

As a general rule you'll spend less money buying a mobile phone outright rather than part of a monthly deal. If a monthly deal includes a repayment for a mobile phone you are obviously also pay interest on the money that you're basically borrowing.

Those that market mobile phones seem to be increasing the cost of the upmarket ones. You can now pay thousands of dollars for a mobile phone. Being a person that knows quite a bit about technology, I asked myself what more am I going to get from $1,000 phone that I can't get for a $150 phone. The answer seems to be certain features. Like more memory, faster processor, longer battery life.

I had recently cause to buy a new mobile phone to replace one that I had purchased a few years earlier for about $350. I replaced it with one that was only $150. The new one is a fraction slower, only has half the internal memory of my previous one, but has a longer battery life. The speed of the phone is not an issue because it tends to do things faster than what I can. Slowest part of using any technology is the end user. I had an external memory card in my previous phone, and put that in the new one so the lack of memory was not an issue.

Because the newer phone has a later operating system it has a number of features that I'm able to utilise. Generally the operating system software cost the same no matter if you buy an inexpensive phone or a very expensive phone.

Bottom line of all this is because technology is becoming less expensive there's no need to purchase something that have features that you do not utilise. Doing so is just spending more than you need to.

You will spend less money by buying less expensive mobile phones.

See also communications, computing & technology and least expensive way to use the internet

Photocopying

Photocopying it just making a copy of what's on one piece of paper onto another piece of paper. With modern technology, it is less expensive and easier to scan a piece of paper and, or send it, electronically then to photocopy it. Even less expensive again, can be, to take a photo, of the document, with a mobile phone. It is far easier to file, retrieve copy and secure information stored electronically than paper-based information.

For decades I have been setting aside bills, invoices and receipts to be later scaned with a printer scanner with a document feeder. I now arranged to get most of my bills via Internet banking, eliminating the need to scan them.

For those receipts that need to keep for warranty purposes, I take a photo, of them, on my mobile phone and then copy the file to a computer.

You will spend less, by not photocopying.

Plastic Bags

Why purchase plastic bags, when you are given them for free when you purchase your groceries or fruit and vegetables. Even if you live in a location where they do not give you grocery bags, they still, most likely, will give you bags for fruit and vegetables. If you are using them as rubbish bags you will just use more, but they still free.

There is no need to purchase those resealable one use plastic bags for storing food, as fruit and vegetable bags can be twisted at the top and tied in a knot or have a bread tie to seal them.

Breadties can be used over and over again. Over 40 years ago I purchased a bag of plastic bags that came with a set of bread ties. I am still using those same breadties today. I have never purchased any more plastic bags since.

Both reused glass and plastic jars can be cleaned and used to store food instead of purchasing resealable plastic bags.

Post office box

Why pay for someone to do something that can get done for nothing. If you have a post office box that's what you were doing. Mail is delivered to your letter box. If you have a post office box you're paying for the privilege of having to go to the post office and retrieve your mail.

Unless you have a very compelling reason I don't see any need to have a post office box.

Potato Chips (cold)

I've discovered, ther extremely easy to make yourself. Wash a potato, no need to peel it, slices into very thin slices, wash the starch of the slices, dry them and put them in some sort of rack, in the microwave oven for 4 or 5 minutes. Add salt for taste, if you want. They are nice and crunchy, cost less than buying them and because they are not cooked in oil, they most likely are healthier for you.

I discovered all the above because I wanted to be able to eat potato chips unsalted, for health reasons, but discovered that the unsalted ones are more expensive than the salted at ones.

If you wish to buy potato chips, bye them in the largest packet available, otherwise you're just paying more for packaging. You don't eat the packaging.

The more expensive brands of potato chips, as it appears to me, have just been cooked more. I don't know if this works, but try purchasing the cheaper brands and putting them in the microwave oven for a few minutes so that they're further cooked. They may turn out tasting the same as more expensive ones.

Or do what I do as described in the first paragraph, just cook them longer.

Presents and Gifts

You will save money by not doing it, or reducing it dramatically.

Gift giving although steeped in history, has been dramatically promoted by marketers as a way for them to sell more goods and services. In the past gifts were only given on certain religious days and birthdays. Now marketers have invented other days for giving gifts, such as Mother's Day, Father's Day and Valentine's Day.

It is sometimes said, that it is the thought that counts. In which case send someone a virtual email gift.

I ask people on my birthday, all that I want for a present is a Mars bar. One person every year emails me a photo of a Mars bar. I like it better than the real ones.

If you don't like any of the above suggestions consider making your own presents. They can be as simple as some folded up paper or packaging with some fancy writing.

See also Gift Cards and make things

Printing

Printing is putting information on paper or something equivalent to paper, usually, so other people can view or read the information. Nowadays the majority of information is not viewed or read on paper. There is now less need for information to be printed on paper. You'll spend less money by not printing.

Alternatives to printing are: Displaying on a computer screen, displaying on a TV, displaying on a tablet or phone, displaying on an projector.

Property

This is the most expensive thing most people buy in their life. As time goes on, it is becoming even more expensive, especially for young people, who are extremely disadvantaged compared to senior people, often because of laws that discreminate against them.

The first question is, should you purchase or should you rent. Assuming renting at a modest $300 per week from the age of 20 through to the age of 80, so, 60 years. That works out at $936,000 paid in rent with nothing to show for it.

$936,000 for the privilege of living in other people's properties. Property prices are increasing at a much higher rate than inflation so the above, for the next 60 years, could be many times higher than those figures.

Some young people may say that committing to buy a house reduces your flexibility as opposed to renting a house. I don't see that to be the case. A house that you're purchasing can be rented and used to pay for the rent of another place. The cost of moving from one house to another, makes no difference, if it is own or rented.

Least on Rent

If you have to rent, set yourself an amount that you wish to save to be able to not rent. Then use all the other advice in these documents to spend as little as possible so that you are saving as quickly as possible.

Ther are many place you can stay that are rent free. The first is with relatives and friends. Another if you have a car, motor home or caravan is free camps. See Caravaning in Accommodation.

Then ther is less expensive rent. Generally the bigger the premises you rent, the better the building is or the better the suburb the more you will pay in rent. But if you no how long you are going to be renting, that it will not be forever, you may be willing to do so at a lesser rent and accept the above and so pay less in rent.

The worst property in the best Street

This is what real estate people say you should do. But they make their money on commission on sales. Not by minimising costs.

So how about the worst block of land in the worst suburb. Land, because that's what property is really worth. Not house and land, but mainly the land. Land generally appreciation in value. Houses and buildings depreciate in value. Without going into debt, you can't bye part of a block of land, but you can buy parts of a building, or the materials and or services that make up the cost of a building. I appreciate that even the cheapest of land can be beyond the means of some young people, on very little income. But by using the advice in the rest of this document you should be able to save up enough money to purchase a modest piece of land to build on. If it is still beyond your means, consider grouping together with other people and sharing the purchase of land and building a house.

Just because you're in the worst block in the worst suburb does not mean you have to stay there. If you've done something successfully once , regardless of how long it took, you can repeat it. Perhaps bye the second worst house in the second worst suburb, without selling the first house. The sale of two houses could equate to a nice house. Repeat the whole process again and you may end up with two very nice houses. So it goes on.

The basic concept is to start small and grow slow. Just like how most things work

You will need to check the regulations, but I'm not aware that a house has to be 100% finished for you to live in it. We built a holiday house, but built a inexpensive galvanised metal garage to use as a site office, and as accommodation whilst we built the house. You may be able to do the same thing with a caravan or even a tent. The holiday house, we moved into, when it was only finished to, what is call lock up stage. Only the outer walls and roof completed.

Building yourself

You'll save money by being an owner builder. At a minimum, you will save the profit that is normally made by the builder. Being an owner builder allows you to build, as you have the money to do so, rather than having to pay a one lump sum. This can mean you may not have to borrow money. That in itself, is as an additional large cost saving.

You can download for free plans and specifications for houses. See as an example:

Free downloadable plans and specs

If you want to design your own house there are a number of free designing tools available on the Internet. Do a Google search for them.

Of course there are plenty of ideas for house designs on the Internet as well.

My experience is that councils will accept plans drawn by owner builders. So no need to employ an architect or a draftsman. Another cost saving.

Wherever possible build out of materials that you can work on yourself. For example weatherboard rather than brick veneer. It takes a bricklayer to lay bricks but most people can hammer a nail into a piece of wood. Whatever work you can do yourself will be a reduction in cost.

Wherever possible use second hand materials. Keep your eyes open for houses being demolished and see what you can use from them. Some councils have recycle centres that sell second-hand material, at far less than the cost of the new equivalent. Same applies for prime cost items such as hot water services, heating units, air conditioners, stoves, ovens, complete kitchens and the like. When installing such devices consider that you may want to change them in the future, so make it so you can do so.

Even some complex work that has to be done by tradesmen can partially be done by yourself. For example, what is called the rough in of electrical wiring you could do yourself. All it is, is running the wires from one place to another inside walls before they are plastered. It's just a matter of following a diagram. You then get an electrician to do the final connecting up at the switchboard and connecting the light sockets and powerpoints. Why pay electricity rates for something you can do yourself. A similar thing to be done with other trades people such as plumbers, painters and carpenters. Ther are plenty of YouTube videos that show you how to do these things.

Even if you are the type of person thats not able to do any of the above, you can hire people, that are not trades people, so have a cheaper rate per hour, than a trades person. You may not save as much money as if you're doing it yourself, but you will still save money.

Buying an existing house

It is not very often, but occasionally great Real Estate deals come up. It's just a matter of constantly looking for them. It could take years but they sometimes do happen.

If you are in a situation where you have immediate funds available, you may be able to get better deal on existing property than otherwise. Some people are willing to sell for less, if they can get money quick

If something is very, very, inexpensive there has to be a reason for it. It could be riddled with white ants or have some major structural fault. If you are able to make that assessment yourself, know the cost of rectifying, you might be able to get a good deal. Remember the main thing you are buying is the land. If the property is worth as much as the land you could ignore the building no matter what state it was in. The only consideration then could be how much to get rid of, demolish the building, and its associated costs.

You can make a purchase conditional on certain inspections meeting specific requirements. Like pest and structural inspections. But be very specific in any contracts with such conditions. Like, There is to be no current or previous damage by white ants or other vermin. And building inspection should not reveal any structural faults, that would cost anything to rectify.

Which is much better than just writing, subject to inspections

Sell and then bye

The worst situation to be in, when you are purchasing property, is where you are going to rely on the proceeds of the sale of your present property to finance the new property, where you have already agreed to unconditionally bye. Don't get into those situations. Make it a condition on the purchase of a property that your existing property has to be sold at a specified price. Or take your time selling your present property and then look around for one to buy. I'm not sure if it's just promotional advertising, but I find it amazing that real estate agents put on ads, being forced to sell. I would not like that said of myself.

Moving costs

Consider moving costs when going from one house to another. The more you have, the more it's going to cost to move. If you can do the packing yourself and supply your own vehicles, it'll cost less than using a professional removalists

Stamp Duty

Consider the cost of stamp duty when purchasing. This is a state government tax which is quite considerable. Know what it is before you buy. The amount can be asertained by doing a google search

Conveyancing

This is just the administrative work that has to be done to transfer a title of land from one person or group of people to another. It is not particularly complicated, just time consuming, and can be done by yourself. Do it yourself and you will save money. There are kits that you can buy that explain how to do it. If you know someone that has already recently done it, use ther kit. They are not a one time only thing, it's only the forms, that have to be obtained each time. A lot of government forms are now available on the internet. Standard letters, and the like, can be produced via word processing.

House maintenance

Over the long term the maintenance of a house can be just as costly as building a house. A house that is not maintained will fall into disrepair and the overall property will be worth less. On the other hand, a house that is over capitalised, meaning more is spent on it, than what it's worth, will also end up costing you money in not being able to retrieve those funds, if you ever sell. It's a fine line between maintaining and not over capitalising on a house.

Q

Quantity

The more you buy the more it costs. I have not yet seen a marketer that sells products or services where when you buy more the total value is less than when you buy less. It is only the unit price that is less when you purchase more. The net effect of marketing, pricing, is to induce you to spend more.

The purpose of these documents is to show you how to spend less. By purchasing more, you are spending more. Don't be bluffed into thinking you are saving money by buying in large quantities, because the unit price is less. Purchase less and so spend less.

The one exception to this is where you need to use multiple quantities and you will be consuming them relatively soon. See also,When to purchase. This implies immediate need. If your need is not immediate, you will spend less by not purchasing a higher quantity.

We usually purchase bread, only when it has been marked down at the end of the day. See in Shopping Frequency. My preference is only to purchase enough bread for the next few days, which equates to about 1 loaf. But because, sometimes the bread is not marked down, at the end of the day, we sometimes have to purchase multiple loafs. This means spending more. An alternative is to not purchase the bread on that day at all. If we still have stored bread that's not a problem. Actually it's also not a problem, even if we don't have stored bread because we are capable of not eating bread at all.

A number of years ago my brother in law was with me when I purchased a replacement part for a chainsaw. He suggested that I should purchase two of them, so that when one broke, I would have another one available. The entire chainsaw eventually packed in and I'm now left with a replacement part for a chainsaw that no longer have. He had a garage full of items he never used. In addition to purchasing lesser qualities, I have also learnt not to be influenced by others purchasing habits.

Once a week, I purchase potatoes, to make chips. See Potato chips. I can purchase them cheaper per kilo by buying a large bag full. But as I usually only consume one potato a week, I only purchase the one potato, so overall spend less. If I were to buy a bag full, that would be enough for a years consumption. The potatoes would go rotten in well less than a year. I'm also, then spending less money, by not throwing out rotten potatoes.

We have always had stove cooktops that have 4 burners on them. We have never used 4 burners at one time. Other than restaurants, I've never seen all burners on a cooker being used at the one time. See Cooking Cooking.

Most cars, have a seating capacity for 4 or 5 people. But really do you ever see a car used to it's full capacity. Unfortunately it is difficult to buy a 1 seater car. See Cars - Purchasing

Purchasing lesser quantities, of anything, and you will spend less.

See also Shopping Frequency

R

Reading Glasses

References

If you're going to get some work done it is always a good idea to ask for and check references. Although doing so is time consuming, in the long run you will save money in not having to rectify something that may go wrong.

References are people or organisations, that the person you want to do work for you, has work for before, and are willing to tell you how good a job was done.

My experience is that it is not worthwhile getting work done by people that are not willing to give you a reference.

I had to get a sliding security door, and found an organisation that would do it in the telephone book. They gave me a quote which was very competitive. But when I ask for a reference, he did not want to give me one, supposably for privacy reasons. However he did point to an adjoining property and said we did that work. I asked him for the name of the owner of the property because I knew it would be rented. Again he refused on the basis of privacy. I got another organisation to give me a quote and again ask for a references. He gave me the references then and there and I was able to ring them and speak to them immediately. They said the work was good so I proceeded. I was very happy with the result. But whilst he was doing the work for me, I mentioned about the previous organisation not wanting to give me a reference other than the adjoining property. He then pointed out, all the faults in the security door of the adjoining property.

You have to be very careful in the questions you ask referees. We got a number of quotes from organisations to vinyl clad, our then house, as well as installing new aluminium windows. We got references for all the quotes. For the one we decided to proceed with, we contacted two separate references and got very good responses. However when the work was being done, the person that was doing it, in some parts, was not doing it particularly good job. He was a subcontractor and was not a subcontractor that was used for the references we got. We learnt from that, to make sure that references are for the person that actually does the work. The main contractor made good the work.

Even the professionals can get references wrong. We had a property to rent and got a real estate agent to find us a tenant. I had a choice of applicants but went for one because of the profession she work in. It turned out to be a very bad choice. The rent was constantly late, she became uncontactable and the property was finally left damaged. I asked the real estate agent for the referee they had checked out and then rang the referee myself. The conversation went: Is she a good tenant? Yes. Does she pay the rent on time? Yes, actually she made the last payment last week. I said, hold on, she's been renting from me the last 3 months how come she made a payment to you, last week? Oh, she was behind in rent and was paying it off. Did she leave the property in good condition? Actually I don't know because after she left, we got it completely renovated. She was an elderly person and I think she was happy to get rid of a bad tenant and would have given anybody a good reference.

Its very important that you ask the right questions when checking out referees. One question that should always be asked. Would get the person or organisation to do work for you again. If they say no, why would you want to use them.

If done the right way, getting and checking of references, can in the longer term end up with you spending less, and having less hassles.

Rent

In a lifetime you will spend less money by not paying rent.

If you have to pay rent, you should pay the least amount possible, for the least time as possible.

Generally the smaller the property you rent, the less rent you will pay and the least popular locations have cheaper rents. By renting a small property in a less popular location, so paying less rent, all other things being equal, you should be able to save more and so reduce the time it takes to be able to purchase a property, if you wish and so no longer pay rent, so spending even less money.

A couple, can easily live in a studio apartment (1 room property), The smallest of properties you can rent. Or even rent one room in shared accommodation. Especially knowing, that it should only be for a limited amount of time. Not the rest of your life. Same concept applies to renting in a less desirable location.

After we got married we rented, a one bedroom flat, for 3 years whilst we saved up enough money to start building our house. When we moved into our house we owned it outright.

See Owning a property at the age of 24.

See also Property

Retail Therapy

I first heard this term used in a shopping centre when I overheard someone talking about the reason they were there.

It would seem that some people get some therapeutic benefit out of purchasing items.

This is simply an attitude thing. If you believe you get some therapeutic benefit out of purchasing items, you probably will. However if your attitude is that you don't, you won't.

Personally I get therapeutic benefit out of not spending money. I get a lot of therapeutic benefit out of knowing how much money I have not spent. I have a different attitude then those that get therapeutic benefit out of spending money.

It is possible to change attitudes. It may be difficult but it is possible.

S

Safety

Safe is both necessary and very expensive.

It is often the reason given for something being more expensive than something else. For example the headlight for a car may cost $10. But that exact same headlight in an aircraft would cost well over $100, simply because of the safety involved.

Insurance companies hire very highly qualified mathematician's called actuaries to be able to establish risk and so set insurance premiums, which is what safety is all about.

Safety is also used by marketers to promote or help justify the price of ther products and services. Sometimes safety can be a bit of a red herring. As the insurance companies have all the expert advice on safety and so risk, following what they do in relation to a particular product may be a good indication if you should be paying more for safety, associated with a product, or not.

Services in General

At the introduction so this alphabetical list of ways to spend less money, I highlight the difference between spending habits in the past and what they are now in relation to goods or services. See Intro.

As I said at the beginning, the least you can spend on services by doing the service yourself the less money you will be spending.

A big difference between a service and purchasing an item is you have often have very little to show, after the receiving the service. If you go to a rock concert, you may be able to talk about it with friends and associates but that's all you've got to show for it, other than a feeling.

You might wish to consider are there other, less cost, ways of getting feelings, that those services provided to you. Or if you did not get those feelings, would you be any worse off.

Expectations have a lot to do with feelings. If you have low expectations, and these are met you generally will feel good. But if you have high expectations and they are not met, you will may feel bad.

I always feel good, when I'm able to provide a service to myself. It gives me a sense of achievement. Especially for something I've never done before. As I would be a novice in providing that service, I don't have great expectations about being able to do it, I usually exceed my expectations, which makes me me feel even better.

Maybe you can change your thoughts like this, and so spend less money, and be happier

Save More?

Marketers are quite good at showing you that you can save more on one product compared to another. Or purchasing somthing more expensive than somthing else. Or buying more, bigger, better of a item.

As your objective should be to spend less, saving more may not meet that objective. To put this to its extreams if you where to purchase a small new car for $15,000 that has a normal price of $15,500 you would be saving $500, but if you where to purchase a $120,000 new car that was normal $110,000 you would be saving $10,000, 20 times as much savings. BUT you would be spending $105,000 more to be able save that $10,000.

If you have a need (see needs verses wants in Read this first at the beginning of this document) for a $120,000 car it may worth while buying it to get the bigger saving but even a saving of one dollar may not be worth while if you end up spending more than you need to. You can save less or even save nothing, but end up spending less than an alternative

Your objective should be to spend less rather then save more. That what these documents are all about

See also Specials and Haircuts

Save Time

Often marketers will tell you a product or service is going to save you time. That may be all very well, however there isn't a bank where you can deposit time or a repository where you can store time.

The marketers will then say you can use the time you save to do other things. however depending on the value you put on your time and your ability to utilise that saved time, it may work out to be false economy.

As an example, at the moment I'm using voice recognition to type this. It will probably save me at least half the time as compared to typing on a keyboard. But if I cannot use that time to do something else which is going to earn me money, then the time saving is of no financial advantage to me. But the advantage may be that I have more time to write something else. That's a time thing and not a financial thing. Fortunately I did not have to pay extra for the voice recognition function that I'm using. But if I did I would want to make sure that the cost of paying for the facility was lower,in a given period of time, than the amount of money I could earn with that time saving. I don't earn money on a time basis. Therefore time-saving is of no financial value to me. But I do like that it's easier to talk rather than keyboard.

Shares

I have very little experience dealing in the share market. Those that I have spoke to that know more about it than me, tell me that share brokers are always trying to get you to either sell or buy shares, because they make money every time a transaction takes place. In other words they are working in their own interests and not of that of their clients. The cost of brokerage and the cost of that situation, needs to be taken into account.

As the price of shares can vary dramatically in a very short period of time, and the concept is that you buy at the lowest possible price, and sell at the highest possible price, it would seem to me, that you have to be watching the share prices all the time. The cost of the time to do that, also needs to be taken into account. If you are able to do some paid for work, in that same time and it gives you a better return, you are better off doing that.

I've also heard it said, that you should invest in shares on the long-term and just forget about the ups and downs. An analogy of this, is if you are driving on a crowded stop start Freeway. You can stay in the same lane all the time and eventually get where you want to go to. Or when you see the opportunity, you can change lanes to the fast removing lane and get to where you want, sooner. I always use the second option and have be able to prove that I'll get there sooner. BUT shares are a very different matter. Unlike on the freeway where you can see the traffic flowing in one Lane and stop in another this is not true for share prices. You only see the result after the prices have changed. Unless you are privileged to have some insider information. In which case you are not supposed to be able to use that information.

I don't know the difference between paying a high brokerage or low brokerage price for transacting share transfers. If the net effect is the same, the shares are either sold or bought, then it seems astute to pay the least amount possible for brokerage.

Shaving

Most people do not shave the hair off the top of their head. Instead they have haircuts. See Haircuts.

In a lifetime you will save thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours of time, by not shaving.

If you do choose to shave, you will save money by not using disposable shavers. Disposable shavers are just a convenience that you pay for. If they we're economical to use, barbers would use them, but they don't.

Shop around for better price

One of the assumption that is made in the economic theory of supply and demand is that consumers make rational purchasing decisions. That assumption is incorrect. The vast majority of people do NOT make rational purchasing decisions. Most people make purchase decisions based on emotions that are often completely irrational. Like, in the past, people would decide to purchase particular brands of cigarettes because they saw some celebrity smoking that brand on a TV commercial and they wanted to be like that celebrity. It is not rational to purchase something that you burn and that will kill you. Its not rational to burn money, but thats what smoking actually is.

Another assumption of the economic theory of supply and demand is that consumers will have all information available to be able to make purchasing decisions. This assumption is also false. It is impossible to have ALL such information.

NOTE: Above I have used the term, the economic theory of supply and demand, rather then the usual term of the Laws of supply and demand. I do so because the word, law, implies it is proven as opposed to the word theory which implies it may not be true. In deeper science it is Albert Einsteins “theory” of relativity but in social science it is the “LAW” of supply and demand. The terminology traditionally used, is inappropriately in relation to supply and demand.

Back to prices. Although it is not possible to no all the prices of somthing you wish to purchase or even all the places you can purchase it, often it is possible to shop around for better prices. To not do so is being irrational with the consequence of spend more than you could.

The usual excuse, I hear for not shopping around for better prices, is that they can be bothered. To extend that, what is being said is they cant be bothered being wealthy. Yet these same people say they want to be wealthy. They will do what ever is required to maximize ther income, that is not a bother, but shopping around for better prices is.

Shopping around for better prices takes time and effort. But fortunately because of technology like phones and the internet, it is not necessary to physically to go to shops to be able to find the best prices. It is now easy to find what you want to buy, even if its on the other side of the world and sometimes it can be cheaper to buy ther via the internet.

Timing

Prices for exactly the same commodity from exactly the same supplier in exactly the same location can vary depending on time. An airline ticket is one example. The prices for the same seats change depending on how close to the departure time of the flight, often without any consumer establishable correlation. As a consumer you are not privileged to how many seats have been sold, are expected to be sold or even if the flight would fly because the aircraft has to be in the destination location for a particular reason and consequently they would be willing to run that flight at a loss.

This means that in those situations it is also necessary to shop around for better prices at multiple times.

Experience

We rarely pay full price for bread. Bakers often bake more bread than they can sell at it full price. At the end of a day, bakes will reduce the price of bread so they get somthing for it, rather then having to throw it out and get nothing for it. Knowing this, we only ever buy bread a bit before the shops close. The same can apply to and perishable produce.

Shopping Frequency

Even though most shops are open 7 days a week most people purchase about once a week, but have enough supplies to last for months. It cost money to store everything you purchase, in having a place to store then, in some case at specific temperatures, in the fridge, and ther is the fact that you have converted your money into goods. Generally those goods can not be used to purchase other goods. Even if you were able to re sell them, chances are you will not get what you paid for them.

Therefore the less time ther is between when you purchase items and when you consume or use them the less money you will be spending, all other things being equal. Big business no this and often have complex algorithms to determine when and how often to purchase. In the manufacturing sector this is called, “just in time”. Items used in manufacturing are purchased the closest possible time to when the are going to be used.

Taking other considerations into account you should only purchase enough consumable goods that you can consume in the next 24 hours, as shops that sell such goods are open 7 days a week and most people travel past such shops multiple times a day. If you were able to total up the value of all the readily consumable goods you own you may be very surprised at the figure you came up with. We once had a fire in our laundry and were able to identify the consumable items that were damaged. When we went to the supermarket to value them, the total came up to well over $500. And that was only item in the laundry and happened over 20 years ago. As an aside we did not replace most of the items as we did not need to.

Marketers no that most people will think of immediate saving and not the longer term saving. They package and price goods appropriately. Like instant noodles in packs of six or sell loaves of bread 2 for a price that is less than twice the price of one. This is ther incentive to get you to purchase more. But if the six pack of noodles you would not consume for over a month or the 2 loaves of bread for 2 weeks weeks your price saving may have diminished in the opportunity cost of not having that money for that period of time. Even in paying more in unit pricing, if you had been able to buy only one packet of instant noodles the day you consumed them and the number of slices of bread the day you consumed them, you would have truly saved money. As another example see Work or school lunches in Food. Another factor to consider in perishable foods, is that what you purchase, you may not be able to eat, before it goes stale or bad, so resulting in literally throwing out food and so money.

See also Quantity

Non Consumable Purchases

If you are going to purchase an item that you will only ever use once or use very rarely, consider not purchasing it at all or alternatives items or alternative to purchasing, like borrowing it or renting it. An example would be wedding clothing. Why spend possible $1,000s on a wedding dress that will only be worn once. I have fantastic photos of my Parents at the wedding and only recently discovered my Mother borrowed her wedding dress. My Father was in a Army uniform. When I got married I hired my wedding suit. My Wife had hers made by a relative, and it has never been used since. Even though she still has it, it has a severe stain, because it has been stored for so long.

For more often used non consumable purchases make the purchase as soon as possible to when you are going to use the item. More so the more you pay for the item. For example if you wanted to buy a brand new car (which I would not recommend See Cars Purchasing) and you intend taking a long car trip, buy the car as close as you can to when you are going on the trip. The longer the time you have the money, as opposed to the new car, the more you are not spending

Never had before Vs Replacement Purchases

As in above, if you have never had an item that you wish to purchase you should purchase as soon as you intend to use it. Like if you have never had a computer, digital camera, or mobile phone before, it would be imprudent to purchase them if you did not no how to use them. It would be better to learn a reasonable amount about how to use them before purchasing. See also Education If you want to do some work that requires certain tools that you new how to use, you would save money by purchasing them just before you needed to used them. Considering how often you are likely to use the tools again, it may be worthwhile selling then as soon as you have finished using them. Having tools, laying around, never or hardly ever being used, is not saving money.

Replacement purchases implies a reason for the replacement. A good money saving reason would be if the item to be replaced was no longer able to do what you want it to do. Like a telephone that not longer works, provide you still make phone calls. You should consider, before replacement, if the item is still needed. If you dont make or recieve phone calls ther no need for a phone. Have you considered the possibility of repairing or getting something repaired rather than the cost of replacement? In most cases, but not all, the longer you can maintain somthing, before replacing it, the less you will spend.

Based on the experience you have had with items consider alternatives to same replacements. I, for some time would purchase ties, that connect to my reading glasses so I could hang then around my neck. As they had rubberised ends, they would deteriorate and break after a few months of use. Instead of buying a new one I used a shoe lace and tied a knot where it connects to my glasses. That lasted over ten years, at least 20 times longer the glasses tie. As the one shoe lace was left over from a par it cost nothing. Another example of thinking differently to solve a problem in a different way and so save money.

Service instead of Goods

See also Services in General

On this same theme of the minimising the time between the purchase of an item and its use, it is worth considering whether to purchase an item thats ultimate use is to provide you with a service, or to purchase the service. Consider the purchase of a car or the use of a taxi. They both ultimately achieve the same result, get you to where you want to go. Then ther is public transport that may also get you ther. The car purchase has a big upfront cost, that has a long period of time, that it can potentially provide a service. The taxi or public transport far more closely minimises the time between when you purchase and when you obtain the benefit.

Another example could be devises used to clean, See also Cleaning. Brushes, brooms. cleaners, disinfectants, vacuum cleaners and the like are required. Or you could get a cleaning contractor to clean for you and not have to purchase those goods. Again the time between when you purchase and when you obtain the benefits is minimised.

But in both the above examples you would be paying for someone else to do what you can do yourself. Provide that what you are paying for the labour component, per hour, is less than what you are able to earn per hour and you do use that time to earn money, you may be better off doing it yourself. Saving money can sometimes not be as simple as it first appears.

See also When to Purchase

Software Computer

It is best not to purchase computer software but to use the free alternatives, for 2 reasons.

First, because the software is free in terms of price and second because it is free in terms of usability and rights. Software that you pay for is proprietary and because of that and copyright laws, you have no idea or ability to know exactly what it does. Free open source software, means any person with the appropriate skills, can look at the code of the software and see exactly what it does. It is not only software free in terms of price but also free, in terms of like, free speech.

Everybody's rights are reduced by the sale of Proprietary software.

All types of software are available for free. That includes operating systems, programming languages and application software.

For more information see the free software foundation:

http://www.fsf.org/

Specials

My wife just bought some sweeds at the supermarket because they were on special. At the fruit and vegetable store right next to that supermarket, the sweeds, not on special, where cheaper.

Specials, catalogue items, Red hot prices or whatever don't necessarily mean that it is a lesser priced product.

A friend of mine, that worked in a department, store told me the story of a stereo system that he wished to purchase and he was told that it would be in the next catalogue special to came out, so he should wait. When the catalogue eventually arrived, the stereo, was a higher price than it previously had been.

The concept here, is that when you're shopping around for the best price, ignore all the other marketing paraphernalia. Mainly concentrate on the price and most definitely compare it with other prices from other organisations.

Stains On Cloths

Even though clothes, that have been washed, have stains on them, it does not necessarily mean that they are unclean. Yet most people consider them to be unclean.

I have overcome this problem by taking a marking pen drawing a circle around the stain on the clothing and writing, “ Fashon Statement”. I am making it fashionable to wear stained clothes, just as in the past someone made it fashionable to wear ripped jeans.

No doubt some marketing person will catch on to my idea and start selling clothing ready stained and charge extra for the stains. Why buy pre stain clothes when you can stain them yourself.

Now there is no longer any need to buy stain remover and also you can use less detergent, so the stains remain longer.

Stamps

If you do not mail anything, there's no need to buy stamps. But if you do do need to buy stamps only buy enough to mail the thing you going to mail. There's no need to have a supply of stamps.

See also Mail

Storage Containers

Why buy storage containers when most products packaging can be used and reused over and over again as a storage containers.

Some packaging is better than what you can buy a storage containers. One example, that I have used are the little mints containers. As they are metal, have a reclosable lid and are very strong I use one to keep my hearing aid and phone earplugs in my pocket so they do not get squashed.

Cardboard and plastic boxes are exceptionally good as storage containers, rather than having to buy the equivelent. In years gone by, you could go to the grocery shop and ask for such boxes. It would appear that because marketers want to sell you containers, that now they are very reluctant to give you cardboard or plastic packaging boxes. But you will never know, if you can get them, unless you ask.

Bottom line, you will spend less, if you don't buy storage containers.

Sun Glasses

It appear that these are worn more as a fashion item than a device to stop the glare of the sun. Or to make people, not look as old, considering how often they are worn at night and indoors.

Other and having a tint on the lens, Sunglasses are not much different to reading glasses. See Glasses Reading

I understand that you can get covers that go over reading glasses so they operate as sunglasses. If they cost less than sunglasses, they are worthwhile.

Superannuation

As these documents are only looking at saving money and not making money I will only look at the cost side of superannuation.

All superannuation funds charge fees. In the past some of these fees were hidden in kickbacks that the funds were providing to supposed investment advisors. My understanding is that legislation and regulation have abolished a lot of that because the funds have to reveal if they doing so.

It will be convenient if all superannuation funds showed their returns net of fees. that means ALL fees are taken out before the return is calculated. I'm not sure if that is legislated, and it even if it is, what their definition of fees are.

If you can be sure of comparing multiple superannuation funds, and those funds have compatible ways of showing their returns, then go for the one with the best return.

However be aware of the wording that is used by every single superannuation fund. That being, performance in relation to a previous returns is not an indication of future returns. Or words to that effect.

Shopping Method

Marketers employee psychologists to tell them how people think and what motivates consumers to purchase. A lot of that has to do with the way they arrange their stores. When you walk in to any store it is set out in such away so that you will be influenced to purchase something you may have had no intentions of originally purchasing. This is likely to happen without you even being aware of it.

If you want to see it in action, the next time you're in a supermarket look at what people are doing. They may be trying to find something on a shelf, but to do so they have to look past a lot of other things. To get to the thing they want to purchase they I have to walk past a lot of other things.

The best method to not be influenced by the psychology of the marketers, would be not to go to a shop at all. That can be done with online shopping but then there's the problem of the way the online store is organised. The marketers employ psychologists to set them up as well. Ignoring them probably requires whole other category in this list. So I did add it See Online Shopping

Make a list of the items you want to buy taking into account everything else is written in this document. Decide at which store(s) are you going to buy them. Make a rule for yourself that you will only purchase what is on your list, and stick to your rule. Dont allow yourself to add anything to the list. If you don't know where the item is in the store, ask a store assistant to take you to it. Ignore all the other products and signage as you are being directed to the item you want to buy. Purchase the item and leave the store without looking at any other products or signage.

That all sounds very easy, but you would have to have horse blinkers on not to be able to notice other things. Reward yourself by feeling a sense of self achievement when you next go shopping and only purchase the items that are on your list.

Youl end up spending less using this methodology.

See also Online Shopping

Subconscious Attitude to Money

Although a Marketers ploy to get you to buy their product, this article describes, How our subconscious affects our attitude towards money.

https://www.amp.com.au/insights/manage-my-money/how-our-subconscious-affects-our-attitude-towards-money

knowing this may help you make a decision not to spend money.

Subscription Services

It seems that marketers want to give people the impression that you will get something more if you subscribe to something as opposed to not doing so.

An example would be to subscribing to an online news service. That the only way you're going to get information about a particular news item is to subscribe to their service. Of course this is false. All you have to do is do a Google search and you'll find other web sites that provide the same information for free. In Australia an example would be the ABC website or SBS news. Both of which are free.

Another example would be online movies subscription services like Netflix. They want you to subscribe so they continue to receive money and matter how many or how little movies you watch. If you want to watch a particular movie you're better off using a service where you only hire that one movie. Otherwise there are places quite often you can watch movies on the internet for free.

You'll spend no money by not subscribing to anything

Also see Books and magazines

T

Tax advise

Income tax law is complicated and convoluted. I consider myself to be reasonably intelligent but I have a great deal of trouble reading instructions In relation to completing a tax return. I sometimes get the impression it is deliberately that way so people have to resort to advice.

However advice is only useful if it saves you money. If the cost of the advice is more than what you will save, it's not worth having. If I were to speak to a tax advisor the first question I would ask is, if the advice you give me does not save me as much as your fee we will refund the fee? If they say no, then why should would use them.

See Also advise

Tax Extra

Some people get extra tax taken out of their wages each week or fortnight or whatever as a method of compulsory saving. Considering the cost of money this is unwise because that money had it been put in the bank would have earned interest. You don't get interest on the tax return money that you get long after the end of the year. You don't pay money to buy something and get the benefit of it 12 months later so why do it with your tax money. People with money, know that the idea is to minimise tax, not pay tax before it's due.

Tax Returns

Unless you have a very complicated tax situation do your tax return yourself. It is relatively simple especially now, as you can do it online.

Those that prepare tax returns for people, tell you that you can claim the cost of doing the tax return, as a tax deduction and they may take their fee out of the refund you will get. But they will not be able to tell you if you were going to get a refund, until they've completed your return. If you knew that you were going to get a bigger refund than what it was going to cost, to get the tax return done, you could then make an appropriate decision. But you don't. You don't know if it's worthwhile having them do a return for you, until after they've done a return. Not a good situation. Better off doing the tax return yourself. That cost you nothing, other than your time.

I have always completed my own tax returns and I have a very complicated tax situation. Years ago I even set up my own self managed superannuation fund. But I later discovered because it had to be audited, and I am not an auditor, that the cost of having that done was more than the benefit I would get in tax savings. So I shut down the self managed super fund. At least I had the information to be able to make the decision.

I was the treasurer of a body corporate. The body corporate had funds invested that resulted in an income. Hence a tax return had to be done. However the cost of getting the tax return was more than the income. I arranged to have the money invested in a no interest account. No tax return had to be done. The net result was less money was spent.

See also Advise and Tax Extra

Time - Use your own

Even if your self employed, your most valuable time, is your leisure time. All other things being equal, the more you maximise your leisure time, the better off you will be.

From an Internet dictionary. leisure time, noun, time when one is not working or occupied; free time.

I get the impression that the word free is being used in the context of , like free speech, rather than a free commodity.

Spending money implies using other people's time. Purchasing services provided by others or goods manufactured or obtained from others, taken to it's logical extension, is using other people's time.

Other than all the other ways describing in these documents, another way of not spending money is to use your own time, as you don't have to pay for it.

Doing things yourself

Different people have different skills and abilities. This will determine the extent to which you can use your own time to satisfy your own needs. But don't just assume because you have a need for something that you have to purchase it from someone else. You never know unless you have a go. You could not walk when you were a baby. No one taught you to walk, one day you just stood up and started walking.

Adjusting Needs

Using the definition of leisure time above and taking your account the part about not being occupied, the more you can do yourself, without being occupied, implies a greater efficiency. If you can satisfy your consumptive needs within your leisure time, you'll spend less money. That may mean adjusting what your needs are, which is fully within your control.

Toothpaste

Toothpaste is a reasonably common consumer item. I have used it hear as an example that could be applied to many things that you buy at a supermarket.

Why so many varieties

The next time you go to the supermarket, see if you can count how many different brands, types, sizes and packaging ther are for toothpaste. The last time I did it, I counted about 300. Even though there are so many, if you read the packaging, to see who manufactures them, there are only about 6.

The reason there are so many varieties is simply to maximize the profit of those that are marketing toothpaste. This is done in a number of ways.

One of which is personal choice. In a household, different people may have different preferences as to which toothpaste they prefer. This means that even though there may be a stock of toothpaste in a household, if one person runs out of toothpaste, a purchase has to be made to replenish it, as the varieties of the other people in the household may not be acceptable to that person that ran out of toothpaste. If we took a household, of say, 4 people that all preferred different varieties of toothpaste, that means there would be a stock of 4 tubes of toothpaste within the house, at any one time. Whereas if everybody in the house could agree on the one variety, a stock of only one tube of toothpaste would be needed. That is only for one household. Multiply that by the number of households in the country and you have, in this example, 4 times more toothpaste in each household than otherwise would be the case. At a point in time, that means 4 times more toothpaste being sold. All other things being equal that means more profit for those marketing toothpaste.

Also check out other products they have multiple varieties when your next at the supermarket.

In previous times, most homes only had one bathroom, so each person in a household would share the same toothpaste tube. With the advent of multiple bathrooms each bathroom and in some cases each person, that uses each bathroom, has their own tube of toothpaste.

Toothpaste usage

The main reason people buy toothpaste is to clean their teeth. But marketers have discovered other ways people can use toothpaste. Like to protect their teeth from decay, protect teeth from hot and cold food, reduce gum disease, improve your smile and many more that I can't think of. Of course there's not one brand or variety that does all those things, so the marketers would have you bye multiple varieties, to serve the multiple purposes.

Amount of advertising

When you purchase any product, that has been extensively advertised, like toothpaste, it will be more expensive than the one that has not been advertised. Another reason for having more varieties. The difference in the toothpaste may simply be the the amount that has been spent, advertising it.

Protecting teeth

Scientific research has proven that those living areas that naturally have fluoride in the water, or where the water has fluoride added, have less tooth decay. See this. As fluoride has to be taken orally, I don't see how adding fluoride to toothpaste can be of any benefit unless you swallow the toothpaste. It may be in those situations where the water does not have fluoride that purchasing and taking fluoride tablets could be cheaper than buying fluoride added toothpaste.

Based on the above if you can get everyone in a household to agree to the same variety of toothpaste, keep it in one central location so that all people only use the one tube, only use toothpaste to clean teeth, do not buy toothpaste that's advertised and live in an area that has fluoride in the water you will spend less money buying toothpaste.

These same concepts, apply to many other consumer products you would buy in a supermarket.

Toothbrushes

All that applies to toothpaste also applies to toothbrushes, when it comes to the variety that you can purchase. It would seem logical for a household to share one toothbrush. But there is a stigmatism associated with that, which may not be health-related.

Once when I was at my dentist, I mentioned that I must be cleaning my teeth the wrong way because all my toothbrushes end up with all the bristles bent over. I asked if I was pressing too hard. Rather than answering the question,he said it is better to clean between your tooth where your teeth meet your gums then to clean the surface of the teeth. He then showed me little brushes use for cleaning between the teeth at the gum level. He then said, from a tooth health point of view, it will be better to clean with these little brushes then even if you did not use a toothbrush at all.

I tried what he suggested and found regardless of how much I clean my teeth with a toothbrush, I was always able to remove particles of food with basically a serrated plastic toothpick. I eventually run out of those serrated plastic toothpicks, so bought some of the little brushes. I found them almost impossible to use. I was going to look for more of those serrated plastic toothpicks. Then I thought all they are is a piece of plastic with serrations on it. I cut up a plastic milk carton into the shape I required and use that to clean between the gum line of my teeth. I found it did an even better job then the serrated plastic toothpicks. It also lasted longer because it did not bend as easy.

A specifically cut piece of plastic from a milk carton does a better job of cleaning my teeth then a purchased toothbrush.

You will spend less money by making your own teeth cleaning device.

Travel local

There are multiple ways of travelling with multiple associated costs. Walking, hitchhiking, public transport, private cars, buses, taxis, Uber, trains, planes and virtually.

Walking is most likely at least expensive. Given sufficient time you can walk practically anywhere. Even when using the other forms of Transport, walking is going to be required at some point.

Hitchhiking, although sometimes avoided on a safety basis, can cost nothing. Transportation in general has a gigantic over capacity. There are heaps of empty seats in all forms of Transport, other than walking, most of the time, especially in cars and trucks. The problem seems to be a lack of willingness to share, There is next to no incremental cost, to the driver, in picking up a hitchhiker.

The advantage of using public transport over private cars is that you only pay for it when you're using it. If you own a private car, depreciation, registration and insurance will cost you whether you use it or not. See also Cars - Maintaining and convenience

Within public transport you have buses, taxis, Uber, trains and planes. With the exception of planes, the more people that a form of transport can move, for any given distance, the less expensive it will be, because the cost of the driver and equipment can be amortized over a greater number of users. In business this is called capacity utilisation. Planes are the exception because they have a greater level of risk and so safety. See safety

All the above does not take into account cost markups See markups

Number of people being moved

The number of people in a group can make a difference as to the method of travel that will be most cost effective. For example if one person in a family is travelling by themselves it may be cheaper to travel by train or bus, But if 4 people are traveling together in a family, that would require the purchase of 4 train or bus tickets, that could be more expensive than 1 taxi fare. It's worthwhile considering if you can arrange your travel so you were traveling with other people, you can share the price of say a taxi or an Uber over multiple people.

Urber

Uber can be less expensive than a taxi. Unlike taxes the amount that gets charged on an Uber ride depends on the demand at the time. In periods of high demand that may be more expensive to take an Uber than a taxi. The best thing to do would be to get a fixed price for both an Uber ride and a taxi ride so that you can make the comparison ahead of time.

Virtual transport

Virtual transport can be very inexpensive and can take you, “virtually”, anywhere. You can see places, speak to and see other people practically anywhere in the world and if, that is all you want to do, see somewhere rather than be somewhere, then it is a lot less expensive than physically moving yourself.

Consider why you want to travel. If just to have a meeting with somebody or a group of people, to obtain or give information or just to see what a place looks like, consider virtual transportation.

see the training material I created on virtual travel

See Also Travel Overseas

Travel overseas

See Also Travel local

Because in Australia we live on an island, overseas travel implies using either an aeroplane or a ship. Flying is a lot faster then cruising, if you are on a limited time schedule, and on a per kilometre basis, it is generally less expensive. Cruising on a ship over multiple days implies many meals and a place to sleep. Cruising has become a bit of a lifestyle thing. Those that are time rich, often prefer to taking a “slow boat” than being cooped up in a aluminium tube for many hours. The process of getting somewhere becomes part of the holiday, considering the onboard facilities and functions that are available.

Whatever method is chosen for transportation, The more facilities that are provided the more the cost. Flying can be business class, first class or whatever class. When cruising it's the position within the ship of the room and the size of the room. A bit like accommodation.

Generally, the more facilities you get the more you pay. But timing can also affect what you pay. See Timing in shop around for better price

If you're cruising, you can get better deals the more people you can fit in a cabin.

See Cruses

Hitchhiking on a plane or a ship

Apparently Hitchhiking on a plane is possible : http://hitchwiki.org/en/Hitchhiking_a_plane And it is not new. people have been doing it for years. A very good friend of mine told me that his father hitchhiked from New Guinea to Melbourne Australia via aircraft during World War 2. If you've got the time it's worth trying.

And the same applies for ships and boats. http://wikitravel.org/en/Hitchhiking_boats.

Overseas money

My experience has been if you're traveling in countries close to Australia you can use Australian currency. That includes Thailand and Vietnam. My experience again is that it was less expensive to use credit cards than to exchange to the local currency. However this will depend on the chargers your credit card provider makes. You need to check this out prior to travelling overseas. Read all the fine print. They definitely do have fees in addition to the exchange rate, but often do not disclose what they are on a credit card statement. Using a credit card to make purchases rather than converting Australian dollars to an overseas currency has the advantage that you only pay a conversion fee once. Unless you spend all the overseas currency, when you convert what you have leftover, back to Australian currency you're paying a second conversion fee.

Travel Insurance

See also insurance

Some credit cards come with complimentary overseas travel insurance. If you've got such, then use it. Do not accept what travel agents me tell you about travel insurance. Make all your own enquiries and read in detail what is and is not covered. You will save on travel insurance if you have the appropriate knowledge

Toilet

Whenever possible use somebody else's or public toilets rather than your own. Other than the capital cost the next largest cost in using a toilet is most likely toilet paper. Basically you are buying it and flashing it down the toilet. Even after using toilet paper you still have to wash your hands so why use the toilet paper at all. If possible only wash and do not use toilet paper. It is also possibly healthier.

Toys

I've just been in a major store and found toy vacuum cleaners and leaf blowers. Apparently ther are multiple things, that adults normally use, that are made as toys for children. They all cost money. I have noticed often that when you give children a toy, they end up playing with the boxes the toys come in and get more enjoyment out of that than in the toys themself.

I remember of a study being done where they asked children what they most wanted from ther parents. In the vast majority of cases the children just wanted to spend more time with ther parents.

Youal not spend money by not buying toys but spending more time with your children. And perhaps learn more more about your relationship between you and your children.

Training

Buy training I am assuming, that you do not end up with a qualification. otherwise see education.

If you do not want a qualification, that assumes you just want knowledge or skills, of how to do something. Provided those knowledge and skills are not scarce, you may be able to get them without paying for them, By asking somebody you know or even don't know. You never know unless you ask.

Not everybody that has knowledge and skills, acquired them from someone else. If those people were able to acquire skills and knowledge without help from others, then it is possible for you to do it. Try Googling DIY acquiring skills and knowledge.

The only way of knowing if you cannot do something is to try and do it and fail. Unless you have failed you don't know if you can do it. Even then, failure is only in that instance. Most people do not succeed in most things in their first try. Even the supposed greatest minds. Often the difference between those that are great and those are average, is how often they willing to keep trying, when they fail.

Within some training categories, Competency Based Training is more common. The concept being those that do not have skills and knowledge after going through a certain amount of training, have not failed, but are just currently not competent. The training is repeated and varied a sufficient number of times such that more people, than otherwise would be the case, become competent.

Can a case of DYI training the Competency Based Training approach can be taken.

See also Education and Personal Trainer

U

Usage Quantity

When you buy product where you use a relatively small quantity of it at a time, consider how much you really need to use. Don't take for gospel the manufacturer's recommendations. Experiment to see what you do need to use.

I have been doing this recently with the dishwashing machine powder. I have been reducing the amount of powder I put in the machine each time, and noting how clean the dishes come out. Because of this I am now using far less dishwashing powder then I initially was.

Same could apply for other such items

Utilization

Most things are under underutilised. Most cars are not driven 24 hours today. Televisions are not watched 24 hours a day. Computers are not used 24 hours a day. These are extremes used to illustrate my point. If you purchase something and don't use it to it's maximum it's actually costing you money by underutilisation.

There are not many things that you purchase that you would use 24 hours a day. The closest thing I can think of is a refrigerator. But even then the motor doesn't run 24 hours a day, and you do not constantly put things in it and out of it 24 hours a day, and most the time is not 100% full.

If every time you go to purchase something you think of how often you utilise it, you may have a different perspective on whether you purchase it at all or if you need to spend that amount of money on the item. For example if you purchase a piece of clothing to wear at an event and you know you will never wear that clothing again would have you been better off hiring it. Is it necessary to purchase outdoor furniture for the few times that you may sit Outdoors or would it be more economical to take your inside furniture outside in the few instances when you need it.

V

Vacuum Cleaners

We purchased our first vacuum cleaner after we moved into our house and purchased carpet. It was a model called a Vax that basically was a 10 gallon drum with a vacuum cleaner motor bolted to the top of its lid. I think we paid about $150 for it. I decided to buy it because it had a large capacity so I could use it to vacuum up rubbish as well, . It lasted quite a few years and then packed in.

We then bought a small Sanyo vacuum cleaner for $80. It is now over 35 years old and is still running well. When we moved interstate we need another vacuum cleaner and we bought a second Sanyo, the same model. It was even cheaper than the first one and is still running well

When my wife retired from work, she was given a certain amount of money to buy a herself gifts. She decided to buy a new vacuum cleaner and went for an expensive one that had a powerhead. It was over $300. It was a lemon. Everything that possibly could go wrong did go wrong other than the motor packing in. The wheels fell off, the powerhead head broke off, the automatic cord extension would not work, the casing fell off, the belt for that powerhead broke and a pin on the power lead snapped off. Is now basically unusable so We'll use the Sanyo's instead

Today whilst at the local Kmart, I saw a stand up small vacuum cleaner with a power head and an additional small powerhead accessory that can be used on the end of a flexible hose that can get into smaller places. It was $89. I was concerned because it had a small motor but realised purchasing it from a large organisation, that if it was not suitable I could take it back. There was no need to. It works much better and is more versatile than the previous $300 one we had. However it is only it's first day of use and I will not know how long it will last until we've had it for the next 30 years. On a morning TV program they showed a comparison of the $89 one that I bought with a $890 one, saying specification wise they were basically the same.

My point of this story, is that just by purchasing something that is more expensive, does not actually mean you get a better product. Or a product that does a better job. You can pay less and get more.

Video on demand

This is generally only available via the Internet or by a cable TV providers. All cable TV costs. Some video on demand via the Internet, is free. You'll spend less money by utilising the free ones.

The Internet provided, paid for video on demand can usually be done , by subscription or pay for it as you go. Subscription examples are Netflix and Stan. Pay as you go examples are iTunes and Google Play Store.

Some of the subscription services, will provide you the first month for free, but they require you to use your credit card to get the first month of free. You have to remember to cancel your subscription prior to rolling over to the next month, otherwise you're automatically charged for the next month. I am told, that they distinguish between customers, via email addresses. As it cost nothing to get an email address, provided you remember to unsubscribe before rolling onto the next month, you could continually get free months by setting up and providing new email addresses.

The cost of using pay as you go services like Google or iTunes is usually about half the monthly subscription of the subscription services. Provided the subscription service has the video that you wish to watch, if you wish to watch two or more videos in a month you would be better off using the subscription service.

As not all subscription services have all videos you may find you will have to subscribe to 2 or more services to be able to watch your preferred videos.

An important thing about subscription services is that you cancel them when you no longer use them or if you no, for a period of time, you'll be not using them. For example when you're going on holidays. Otherwise you're paying for something you're not using. It may be a bit of a hassle to cancel a service and then resubscribe to it, but is worthwhile as it will save you money in these situations.

Consider other alternatives. Like purchasing a video and reselling it after you've watched it. Or the traditional video hire stores. Yet another, is to swap purchased videos with friends.

Be aware, because of digital rights management (DRM), sometimes called digital restrictions management, you may think that you buy and own a video, purchased on the Internet in the same way that you purchase a DVD at a video store. The DRM software can make it so that you can not copy a video to another device, or even if you can, only a certain number of times, and also may destroy or make the video unplayable after a certain amount of time. Often this information is not provided, when you purchase online. In the long term you will save money by not purchasing DRM protected videos.

Vitamins

If you have to take vitamins then you're not eating the correct food. Unless you have some special medical condition that's been diagnosed by doctor

If vitamins were as good as they are sometimes portrayed, by their marketers you would not have to eat food. But as far as I'm aware no vitamins marketer, makes that claim. So if you are taking vitamins and eating food you could save money by not taking the vitamins and change your eating habits such that you are getting the vitamins from the food that you eat.

Vitamins are basically just processed food. The less processed food is, generally, the least expensive it is. Taking vitamins is just a way of eating more expensive food. See also food

W

Warranties

Some products come with a manufacturers warranty, but most (see link below) consumer products sold in Australia must come with a statutory warranty (Now called Consumer Guarantees) that generally give you more rights than exist under the manufacturers warranty. One of which, is that the products should be fit for purpose. If you return a product that does not do what it describes on the packaging, or that the sales person said it would do, do not accept that it is not covered under the warranty. It may not be covered under the manufacturers warranty, but that is irrelevant, because, as is the case with all legislation, the statutory warranty (legislation) overrides other contracts, the manufacturers warranty. Also return the item to where you purchased it. That is who you have a contract with, not the manufacturer.

See The Qld Details. Other states have similar laws

Note, in the above, the statutory warranty is only for good sold in Australia. If you purchase somthing from an overseas web site, it is not being sold in Australia.

Extended Warranty

Often sales people, will for a price, offer a extended warranty. I then ask what is covered in the extended warranty, that is not covered in the statutory warranty. I have yet to get an answer. I also dont know how long a statutory warranty last for. But considering that the manufacturers warranty provides less consumer protection than a statutory warranty I dont see the value in paying for it.

Another way I look at it, is if the item lasts as long as the manufacturers warranty with modern manufacturers processes its likely to last for many times longer than that. My experience is that modern products will fail in the the first few months of use if they are going to fail at all.

Extended warranty only one time

I recently discovered that most of these extended warranties are just basically insurance policies that are covered by an insurance company, that retailers on sell. The wording of which says, that you're only allowed to make one claim. The extended warranty comes to an end as soon as you make a claim against it, regardless of how far into the extended warranty time period is involved. That's why it's extremely important that you understand what you are buying when you buy an extended warranty. This when compared to a statutory warranty, makes extended warranties even less attractive, because there's no limit on how many times you can claim on a statutory warranty.

Who is providing the extended warranty

It could be thought that extended warranty is provided by the manufacturer of the product, or the retailer. My understanding that this is wrong. these extended warranties are usually provided by insurance companies. Insurance companies have very long and convoluted policy wording. And they make money out of selling extended warranty policies. So unless you're fully understand the wording of it it's probably not worth while buying it.

See also insurance

Refund or Repair or exchange

Over the last few years I have gone through about 8 electric chainsaws. Most under warranty. The first one did not work straight out of the box. A few packed in the first cut they made. Another lasted about 18 months and packed in. It had a 2 year warranty .On taking it back, I was given a replacement but told that only the 6 months of the 2 year warranty now applied. It also packed in after about 18 months. I bought a different model as a replacement and it packed in under warranty and I was offered a replacement or a refund. I went for a refund and then bought a new one, with it full warranty, which was $10 cheaper that I had orgionally paid. You will spend less in the long run, by getting a refund rather than a replacement or repair, because you can use the refund to buy a new item that comes with the full warranty.

Water

Generally water is free. It falls out of the sky. The cost is usually in collecting it and delivering it out of a tap. This is usually done by government or semi government departments, but in some areas of the world is becoming privatised with its increasing cost because of the profit motive. If you have the ability to choose a were you live, it's more likely that you're going to get cheaper water where is not supplied by private organisation.

Water that comes out of a tap is far less expensive than purchasing bottled water. Marketers seem to be doing a very good job of promoting the benefits of bottled water. But in reality what are they. Cleaner, healthier? According to some consumer guides not necessarily. More convenient perhaps? You have to go and buy bottled water, where as water out of a tap, just turn on the tap and it comes out. Perhaps it's a Prestige thing, look at me, I'm drinking bottled water. After drinking The Prestige bottle water if you fill up the same bottle from a tap, how are the people watching you drinking it going to know the difference.

You'll save money by not buying bottled water, considering that it is over 140 times more expensive then tap water. would you pay 140 times the price for petrol?

Watches

Time information is free. Often it is shown on public clocks and other devises. Many people wear watches and are ok to tell you the time. I dont ware a watch and have not done so for at least the last 5 years. Yet this morning, a young lady asked me the time, because she could see me using my laptop computer as I was writing this, and she nu it would have the time on it.

I mainly use my phone to find the time. It is far more accurate than a conventional watch, because it has its time constantly adjusted via the internet or the Global Positioning System (GPS). Also it can do far more things automatically associated with time than a watch can do. Like show the time anywhere in the world, unlimited alarms and count down timers and a built in calendar and diary. It can also automatically record things associated with time that a watch cant, like when a photo was taken, an event happened or when you are at a physical location.

To me, based on the prices and lack of functionality of watches, they are basically a fashion item. If to want a watch for that purpose you would be paying less to wear a bangle, or a false or knock off watch.

My wife prefers to wear a watch to know the time. You can purchase them for a few dollars. The ones that cost $100s or $1,000s are only fashion statements because they can never be as accurate as a devise connected to the internet and are no where near as functional.

When you present watch stops working, you will spend no money by not replacing it.

Weight Loss

The weight loss industry is quite large. No doubt, because of the large number of people substantially overweight, who have concerns about their health and so want to lose weight.

You cannot pay to reduce weight, other than via surgery.

I am not aware of any weight loss programs, that guarantee to refund your money if you do not lose weight. Based on this, it would appear, those that are marketing weight loss programs are not very confident about what they can provide. Even if you do join a weight loss program and do lose weight there is no guarantee that you will continue, to be at your reduced weight.

Based on the above, you will save by not joining a weight loss program.

There are a number of organisations selling foods, that report to lose weight. like,pre packaged food which has portion sizes, such that the calorie intake is lower than necessary, so that you lose weight. The food is no different than any other food. It is just the knowledge of the portion sizes and appropriate packaging and perhaps delivery, that you're paying a premium price for. The knowledge of the portion sizes can be discovered in multiple ways. Not the least of which is on the Internet.

Rather than paying the premium price, for such food, seek out the knowledge of portion sizes and purchase and consume those portion sizes yourself. You will spend less money in doing so.

Those that sell weight loss programs and weight loss food, advertise by showing people that have lost weight, with before and after weight loss photos The before photos are black and white showing the people in an unflattering way, whereas the after photos are in colour and show the person in the best possible way. They are able to do this because there are no laws requiring advertising to be 100 % truthful. They can exaggerate and lie.

If I was going to join a weight loss program, I would like to know, how many people have been on the program, how many of them have lost weight and how long they have continued to be at the lost weight.

See also Fitness

When to Purchase

As least often as possible. As the entire premise of these documents is to minimise spending, all other things being equal, the less often you purchase the less you will spend overall.

After you spend you generally cannot un-spend, especially if you have consumed the items or services involved. This fact is worth considering. Knowing that you generally cannot un-spend, may change your decision to spend at all, or when you will spend.

Try, immediately after you have purchased, a high value item, to resell it. With very few exceptions, you will not get what you paid for it.

You can save by purchasing some items or services at specific times. Perishable goods such as fruit and vegetables and bread are often sold off, by retailers, near the end of a days trading. See Food. Both Local and overseas travel have lower prices at less popular times.

If you pay using credit you will save, in the longer term, by purchasing at the beginning of the month or as close as possible to the beginning of a billing/statement cycle. See Credit cards

When you pay

Generally when you purchase goods and services you pay for them after you receive the goods or service. This is the most preferred method and is what is generally accepted in business and consumer transactions.

If someone asks you to pay before they provide the goods or service you should be very wary, as it is not the general accepted way of paying.

Ther are a few exceptions. Both as a sign of good faith and also to be legally regarded as a contract, where relatively large amounts are involved, you could be asked to pay a deposit. That is a percentage of the total price, prior to the goods and service being delivered. An acceptable amount would depend on the purpose of a deposit. If it is to finance the supplier because they have to purchase items, then you need to assess their viability. What would happen if they went broke. See References.

If the deposit, is to make a legal contract, as legal contracts have to have consideration, a value, then one dollar should suffice.

Some Industries always ask you to pay upfront. Eg Insurance

See Also Payment methods

Where you Shop

Im current writing this in my local large shopping center, because they have free Wifi.

In front of me, is a small food court that is being renovated. The large food court is also being renovated. Over the years that I have been coming to this shopping center, from what I have observed, most of the stores have been renovated . Its is not that they needed to be, but from what I understand, it is the the shopping center management that forces the stores to renovate. It is part of ther lease agreements. In the long run, all people that shop in this shopping center are paying for those renovations. The shopping center management no, that if they do not have constant ongoing renovations that the average consumer will eventually reduce how often they shop ther.

You will not save money by being average. You will be paying for the average person wanting to see newly renovated shops. You will also be paying for what is more popular. Stores rent space in the larger shopping centers because they attract more customers, because they are more popular But those stores pay far more rent than the alternatives, and you will ultimately be paying more in those stores.

Most likely, after the cost of the items or services they sell, the most expensive part of stores running costs are rent. The stores that sell items at the lowest prices are hardly ever located in large shopping centers.

Large shopping centres and also some convenience stores, tend to have longer opening hours than other stores. This means that their wages cost for a week will be higher than otherwise would be the case. They have to be able to recoup those costs and because of that they will generally have higher prices.

Because of the above wherever possible you will generally pay less for goods and services at non large shopping centers and non convenience stores. Always consider where you shop.

Wrapping Paper

If you need to wrap presents and gifts, there is no need to buy wrapping paper.

Junk mail, and supermarket and store brochures are great for wrapping presents. We have been doing so for years. In doing so you are reusing, in preference to recycling.

Your spend less money by doing the above rather than purchasing wrapping paper. .

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Items to Add to the list

if you've got to here and not found what you looking for, contact me and I will add it to the list. or at least add it to the list below and eventually got around to writing about it

  1. solar panels
  2. moreism
  3. spare items
  4. our economy is not about spending less
save_money_alpha_list.txt · Last modified: 2021/06/24 11:10 (external edit)