10 Ways to Save Money Whilst You’re Unemployed
We all fall on hard times, and even if you finally land a job there is still some waiting time before that first pay check comes in. So what to do in-between? Here are 10 ways to save money whilst you’re unemployed.
USE ALTERNATIVE TRANSPORT
Yes, tubes are faster than buses. But they are also more expensive. Although using the buses may mean you have to leave your house earlier to account for traffic jams, buses give you a nicer view and can also accommodate your pocket. Here in London you have the hopper fare, which means you can take as many buses/trams within an hour and only pay the price of one (£1.50).
Plan your meals and snacks ahead of time. Look up the items online and to get the cheapest (and best) deals and to make sure you know exactly how much you are spending. Buy non-grocery items (detergent, toilet paper, etc) at a discount store, and don’t overlook the store-brands; they’re cheaper and offer the same quality as name brands.
Buying loose vegetables (as opposed to pre-packaged ones) will also eb a cheaper option, and try to go to the supermarket in the evenings (when items are often priced-down).
MAKE A SPENDING PLAN
If you put aside your bills, they will pile up and come back to bite you. So don’t ignore them. If you find yourself in particularity difficult circumstances, call the companies up (water, gas, electricity, etc) and ask if they have any option for your circumstances. Most of them will, and they will either spread out your direct debits or will even delay your payment.
CUT DOWN BILLS
Making small changes at home can also save you a ton of money. Take showers instead of baths. Put the washing machine cycle on “quick” (and at a lower temperature) and then hang out your clothes instead of using the tumble dryer. Check that all appliances are off, and remember to turn them off at the plug.
CUT DOWN THE GYM
Even though exercise is important, there are also ways to exercise without having to go to a gym. If the bank account isn’t particularity friendly this month, consider freezing your membership and going for a run instead, or jump rope, cycle, or do exercise at home which don’t require any equipment.
CLEAR OUT YOUR ROOM
Sell the things you really don’t need. This will be a good way to declutter your life and get ready for a fresh start (not to mention getting money while you’re at it). Join local selling-groups on Facebook, or start making use of eBay or similar sites.
KEEP TRACK OF YOUR EXPENDITURES
This might seem like a tedious approach, but keeping track of what you spend and when can give you a good idea of where you have to cut down the most (if you can). Even if it’s a small item, make a habit of writing it down.
DON’T EAT OUT
We’re not saying you are not allowed to have a few days off to relax, but food prices on the streets are far more than you can (and should) afford right now. Eat at home before going out (so you’re less inclined to buy anything) or maybe bring a treat from home along, to avoid temptation.
GIVE UP EXPENSIVE HABITS
You knew this was coming. And it’s not going be easy, but cutting down on habits such as alcohol and cigarettes will save you a lot in the long run. And it’s not just that: dye your hair back to its natural colour to reduce trips to the hairdresser; go au-naturally on the manicure and, most importantly, give yourself a “no-spending” day – a day when you are not allowed to s[end anything.
Instead, stay at home and use this time to clean, or rearrange your room, or sort out your closet, etc. it’s the little things that make a difference when it comes to saving.
FIND JOBS ON THE SIDE
We’re not talking about part-time jobs or jobs below your skill level- we mean, quick, sometimes cash in hand jobs, such as dog-walking, house cleaning, or taking part in surveys. Sure, this won’t make you a millionaire, but it will give you enough to cover at least one week’s worth of food, and let’s face it: every penny counts.
Xiomara Meyer is a drama and creative writing graduate with an interest in psychology and the slightly bizarre. She is part of Hitting Heads Productions.