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Five Ways to Reduce Your Monthly Spending

Many people find that rigidly sticking to a monthly budget is a very effective way to end up saving money that would have otherwise been spent.

Many people find that rigidly sticking to a monthly budget is a very effective way to end up saving money that would have otherwise been spent. However, before you adopt this strategy for yourself, it is worth giving some thought to some of the most powerful and straight forward ways to reduce your monthly spending. Here are five helpful things you can do in order to try and save more money.Considering these ideas may also inspire you to come up with some of your own.

1) Try to take advantage of forms of free entertainment:
Reducing the amount you pay for entertainment can be a great way to save some money. Many people pay for a vast range of entertainment, including broadband Internet access, extra TV channels, movie subscriptions,concerts and sporting events. If you think about the forms of entertainment that you pay for on a monthly basis, it might be easy to see that you can do without at least one, especially given that you can access alternative forms of entertainment for free. For example, there may be open museums and scenic parks nearby, as well as friends and family who might want to visit you just to have a cup of tea and a conversation.

2) Be shrewd about looking for a gym membership:
Exercising is an excellent way to improve your health, but you might be able to reduce your monthly expenses if you are careful when selecting which gym to use. Look around online in order to find out whether there are any useful discounts being offered at local gyms, and ask people you know whether they think their current gym provides them with good value for money. Alternatively, you might choose to exercise at home using light weights and resistance bands (which does not involve paying a monthly fee).

3) Reduce the amount you spend on food:
There are lots of small changes that may help to save some money on your food purchases in order to reduce your overall monthly expenses. For example, you may find that regularly making your own lunches for work will help you to reduce your monthly budget (given that eating out for lunch can be more expensive). Similarly, reducing the frequency of your dinner dates so that you plan one or two per month might end up leaving you with some extra funds left over at the end of the month. If you do not enjoy cooking, try to make it more fun by looking up some creative recipes or by asking your partner (or friend) to help.

4) Think carefully before buying new clothes:
If you love acquiring fashionable new clothes, you could cut your monthly expenses by trying to be a little more discerning when it comes to these purchases. When you are drawn to a new pair of jeans,think about whether your current jeans really need to be replaced,and when you lift something that you think you might only wear once or twice then take a moment to consider the money you could save by putting it back on the shelf. A similar strategy may work when it comes to frequent purchases of music, books and cosmetics.

5) Take care of important items:
Remember that if you take good care of your possessions then you may save the money you would otherwise need to spend on replacements. In addition,think hard before deciding that you really do need to buy a new version of an item. For example, if your electric toothbrush stops functioning then it may be possible for it to be used as a regular toothbrush until you have more money at your disposal.



Cathrina Hulse
Multimedia Journalist
Annette Belcher
Multimedia Journalist
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