Money / Budgeting in general

Soldato
Joined
6 May 2009
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18,089
I have always seemed to budget and organise my money pretty well. I earn less than quite a few of my mates but always seem to have more money or be able to afford things like holidays and new clothes.

A couple of them wonder how I do it and all I can tell them is to create a spreadsheet of income and outgoings.

We have booked Ibiza a few weeks back and some mates are worried about saving for it (we go in July) I have withdrew £700 for a savings 'pot' which should cover most of it, the rest of my pay I will get by on until next time this month and I will still be able to go out etc

I watch a few holiday programs and couples moan that they have been saving for 2 years for a £2000 holiday between both of them!? Surely an average person can save more than £85 a month if they want to!

Are there any other things that I could advice my mates do to save money other than the speadsheet?
 
Associate
Joined
7 Jun 2008
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Spalding
Separate account (ISA or similar) and transfer X into each month, on pay day, thats what I do.

Also £700 for a week in Ibiza wont last you long!
 
Man of Honour
Joined
24 Sep 2005
Posts
34,158
The biggest black hole for money is buying lunches. Seriously, a starbucks sandwich and a coffee will set you back £6. 5 days a week, well, that's £30 gone right there.

It adds up to a frightening amount. Honestly, I think I must have spent a grand on coffee alone over my time at university, which is just insane.
 
Caporegime
Joined
12 Mar 2004
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29,760
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England
The biggest black hole for money is buying lunches. Seriously, a starbucks sandwich and a coffee will set you back £6. 5 days a week, well, that's £30 gone right there.

It adds up to a frightening amount. Honestly, I think I must have spent a grand on coffee alone over my time at university, which is just insane.

What a rip off, you can buy fish and chips for about £2 or have a full meal at pizza hut for £5.
 
Caporegime
Joined
29 Aug 2007
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27,475
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Auckland
Are there any other things that I could advice my mates do to save money other than the speadsheet?

If they're continually broke, it requires a change in mindset. Often, people don't want to save, they want the immediate gratification of buying that game, or those pints, or those clothes, or that nice takeaway. The problem is that unless they earn a sufficiently decent wage then they're not saving much.

I'm guessing you're younger as you mention Ibiza. The only way your mates will save the money is if they consider each non-essential purchase they make between now and then as negatively affecting their Ibiza holiday 'pot', as you put it. That shirt, $100? $100 less to go in the Ibiza pot. That night out on the lash, $150? $150 less to go in the Ibiza pot. You get the idea.

A spreadsheet will only reflect their poor behaviour and is only really useful if you've made the mindset change already. I suppose it could help 'jolt' them into saving more when they see how much they're wasting but that's chance and not guaranteed.

They will only save if they want to and whilst I admire you're desire to help them, I'm not sure how it'll work out. But best of luck anyway :)
 
Soldato
Joined
7 Nov 2009
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18,926
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Glasgow
I don't budget, I just hope I have enough in my account. It hasn't caused any major problems so far!

The biggest black hole for money is buying lunches. Seriously, a starbucks sandwich and a coffee will set you back £6. 5 days a week, well, that's £30 gone right there.

It adds up to a frightening amount. Honestly, I think I must have spent a grand on coffee alone over my time at university, which is just insane.

Sainsburys meal deal is your friend. And doesn't your university have a coffee place?
 
Permabanned
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4,742
[FnG]magnolia;18684972 said:
If they're continually broke, it requires a change in mindset. Often, people don't want to save, they want the immediate gratification of buying that game, or those pints, or those clothes, or that nice takeaway. The problem is that unless they earn a sufficiently decent wage then they're not saving much.

I'm guessing you're younger as you mention Ibiza. The only way your mates will save the money is if they consider each non-essential purchase they make between now and then as negatively affecting their Ibiza holiday 'pot', as you put it. That shirt, $100? $100 less to go in the Ibiza pot. That night out on the lash, $150? $150 less to go in the Ibiza pot. You get the idea.

A spreadsheet will only reflect their poor behaviour and is only really useful if you've made the mindset change already. I suppose it could help 'jolt' them into saving more when they see how much they're wasting but that's chance and not guaranteed.

They will only save if they want to and whilst I admire you're desire to help them, I'm not sure how it'll work out. But best of luck anyway :)

$150 on a night out on the lash? What on earth are you buying? Champagne?
 
Man of Honour
Joined
24 Sep 2005
Posts
34,158
Sainsburys meal deal is your friend. And doesn't your university have a coffee place?

Even then, that's £15 a week, £150 a term, £450 per academic year. It's a huge waste.

And no, not really. I'm currently having only instant at home and sometimes a 30p coffee from the vending machine in college.... blergh :p
 
Man of Honour
Joined
24 Sep 2005
Posts
34,158
£15 a week on lunch isn't bad at all, you have to eat so it's hardly a waste.

I currently spend £2-4, do I win? :D

Admittedly, that is only a miserable protein shake.

You can save soooo much money by packing your own lunch, it really is tossing away money not doing it.
 
Caporegime
Joined
12 Mar 2004
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England
People who buy their lunch must be mad. You can buy a 500ml bottle of coke a day for £1 or buy a 2L bottle for £2 for the week. Make a sandwich for like 20p or buy one for £1.50.
 
Soldato
Joined
25 Sep 2006
Posts
14,106
What a rip off, you can buy fish and chips for about £2 or have a full meal at pizza hut for £5.

£15 a week on lunch isn't bad at all, you have to eat so it's hardly a waste.

Making your own lunches as taking them to work will save you a fortune.

Loaf of bread £1-ish. Sandwich fillers -£3-4 for the week. Lunch for just over £1 a day? win.

I'd rather make my own lunches for work and treat myself to a nice meal out every 2/3 weeks than eat food from the works canteen/petrol stations and I'd still be able to save money.
 
Caporegime
Joined
20 Oct 2002
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69,527
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Wish i was in a Ramen Shop Counter
The problem is that I am trying to cut down on bread. And no pasta salad either! Also i like a different thing everyday. So today's sandwich (if i make one) I like something different tomorrow. So that pack of ham i bought for £0.99 will be used like twice and then out of date. I end up buying some chicken, some salami, turkey, before you know it, i will have spent about £20 on ingredients on sandwiches, and half of that will go out of date before i get around to it...i might as well buy what i want on the day.

Add the fact that I don't get up early enough to make it that morning, and I dont like soggy old sandwiches from the day before (I.e. Cheese and pickle).

So, lately its been the combination of

1 - http://www.mashhouse.co.uk/

They do £5 lunch menu. Sausage, mash and gravy, or chicken wrap, or pie and chips.

2 - slug and lettuce on a Monday, half price on all food. Shared an ultimate platter on monday for £3.

3 - wetherspoons...actually quite expensive! A chicken salad is like £6.30!

4 - EAT, i get their daily soup for about £2.85

5 - Costsa, Starbucks, Pret a manger etc

6 - there's also pizza express (not going there again, £10 a head!), some buffet place at around £10 a head, baguette de monte (now and again) but i found this 99p baguette place in town...amazing! I have no idea how they make enough money to stay open.

There is a sainsbury downstairs, but i have set bought lunch from there....it's like £3 for a meal deal, i rather have soup and some free water from the office tbh.

Another thing of mine is that I buy a lot of fruit from sainsbury, their £2 packed stuff, or grapes...so that's another £2/3 on top most days.
 
Man of Honour
Joined
27 Sep 2004
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25,822
Location
Glasgow
$150 on a night out on the lash? What on earth are you buying? Champagne?

You're not questioning spending $100 on a shirt though? As pointed out it's in NZ Dollars so if it makes more sense to you then multiply the figures by 0.44571 (conversion back from NZ Dollars a few moments ago on XE.com). The actual figures don't matter hugely though as it's just about the principle of understanding finite resources.

As mentioned packed lunches can save you a bit of cash, however I tend to mentally set it off against the time taken to make it and my general dislike of doing so.
 
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