This time of year brings out the thrifty-ness in me. I love to save money all year round but especially at Christmas which is the most expensive time of year for us as a family. One of my most popular posts is how to save money on maternity leave. As I never returned to work after the birth of my first child I’ve been taking my own advice ever since! I thought I would share some of my money saving tips and would love to hear yours.
Our biggest monthly expense is our mortgage but due to careful budgeting we’ve managed to move and upsize to a lovely new house whilst relying on one salary. There are loads of handy sites to help you manage your money and find the best deals, such as this handy mortgage calculator page.
I always make sure to shop around for the best deals and actually enjoy any chance to save money. Sometimes I feel like a Coupon Queen and I’m no longer embarrassed to hand over loyalty cards and coupons it if saves me some money. I especially like taking advantage of deals which benefit my family and we’ve enjoyed free day outs at Legoland and other places, and fun Lego kits, thanks to picking up a different newspaper.
As the children grow up I’ve honed my eBaying skills to sell their old toys and clothes. I also love charity shopping and have found some amazing toys for them which are as good as new. I’m thankful that my children are as happy to shop in a charity shop as the local toy shop. I was really proud of my 4 year old when he recently bought his younger sister a Peppa Pig plush for a charity shop with his pocket money. He’s already learning how to manage his pocket money and the smile on her face when she opened her gift was priceless.
I swear by weekly food planning and, although it’s not my favourite job, it makes a huge difference to our weekly budget.
At this time of year there are plenty of ways to have a wonderful Christmas but not break the bank. I made an early start on making some handmade gifts for my family and also made sure I shopped around and got lots of deals on the presents I bought! Fingers crossed we will have a wonderful family Christmas and we will be able to treat ourselves with the money we have saved too.