Captain Crunch at The Sun newspaper asked me for my eight top money-saving tips. You know what? After blogging about money-saving tips and ideas for the past five-and-a-half years, it isn’t easy to pick out just eight. Here is what I came up with:
1. Contrary to belief, chain stores are great for haggling. Shoppers report a 71 per cent success rate at Currys and PC World. (See: Become an expert haggler in four easy steps.)
2. Invest in an inexpensive slow cooker. They use less electricity than conventional ovens and are a great way to make stews and soups in place of pricey ready meals. (See: Eye on a slow cooker? This post is for YOU.)
3. Do your supermarket shop on a Sunday about 30 minutes before closing time when lots of fresh food products are heavily discounted. I have found whole roast chickens for a penny apiece and loaves of fresh, sliced bread for 10p. (See: Seven good reasons to shop after 7 pm.)
4. Always cut the coupons out of newspapers and in-store magazines. Websites such as supersavvyme.co.uk are also a good source of money-off vouchers.
5. When you arrive at the supermarket, begin doing your shopping in the freezer section. Avoid the temptation to pile lots of relatively expensive fresh fruit and vegetables in your trolley. Frozen veg are just as nutritious and often a fraction of the price. (See: Shopping for fruit & veg: six money-saving tips.)
6. Draw inspiration from group boards on Pinterest. The website is a great tool for money-saving tips. Check out the group boards where UK money-saving bloggers club together to share our thriftiest finds. (You can follow me on Pinterest here; my favourite group boards include Thrifty Tip Round Up and Thrifty Parenting.)
7. Here is an old cobbler’s tip to make shoes last longer: never wear the same pair two days in a row. Give them a chance to breathe and recover. This goes for all shoes, from old trainers to designer heels. (See: Top thrifty shoe tips.)
8. Cleaning products from the supermarket can be expensive so I wash my clothes with soap nuts, which grow on sapindus trees in China and India. Put three or four soap nuts into a knotted sock in the washing machine and they will clean clothes beautifully. (See: Nuts about soap nuts.)
What did I miss?