Interesting read in the paper this morning about a book called, 'Wealthier than you think'. It was written by self proclaimed tight-arse and penny pincher, Paul Squires who says that by following his rules, average Australians can put as much as $50,000 back into their own pockets within five years. He says we are all living beyond our means and letting a river of money slip through our fingers every day. In the article he didn't say what to do with the $50,000.
These are his top 10 penny-pinching ideas.
1. Avoid your family. Christmas and Easter gatherings are expensive and psychologically damaging.
I'm trying hard but I can't see a thing wrong with this idea. Avoiding my family would have saved a giant amount of psychotherapy bills but it was also a good way of getting a free feed.
2. Limit your mates.
All my mates are internet mates so you're using your electricity to post on your blogs which I read. When I read, I'm eating and drinking alone so I don't share with you. You live a long way away so I don't have to visit and you don't get to visit me so I save on house-cleaning products. And if you don't really like me (Mr Squires says this happens) or I don't like you, we can turn each other off or I can leave you on and not hurt your feelings.
3. Ditch "friends" who are living beyond their means.
Hmm! People with Visa debt shouldn't throw plastic cards at others with bigger debts.
4. Don't fall for "special day" marketing, such as Mother's, Father's and Valentine's days.
Nothing about very big special birthdays in there. So all my 'living beyond your means' limited internet mates can still send me cyber wishes in July. I will then have a cyber party and youse can all get cyber pissed and I'll sit here eating a real cake.
5. Don't volunteer for committees. It can become a financial burden.
I'm right with this. I've done my time on the kinder, school, canteen, fete committees.
6. Don't buy jewellery.
I knew it, he's lost me. I love my shiny things.
7. Have a weekly black-out night to save on electricity.
I like candle light as well as the next person but read a book with my eyesight, oh laugh. What does the man do, go to bed at sundown? Of course if you have a 50 square house with 200 lights you probably could save a bit on the bill. I'll give this one a miss too. Although I could navigate by the light of the computer and the TV and the lights have gone out while I was in the middle of a shower so I know I can dry myself in the dark but still he's really getting pinchy here.
8. Buy a standard TV, not a home theatre package.
Right, I have two geriatric televisions, one hooked up to the DVD and the other's hooked up to the video but I don't have them going at the same time especially not on black-out nights. I didn't buy either of them, a plus and I didn't buy the DVD, a plus and the video is 10 years old, a plus and I tape movies instead of going out.
9. Dress your children in hand-me-downs.
Has this man tried to tell a teenager that they can't have the latest craze?
My father-in-law was great at this hand-me-down stuff. If anyone in his street died he was on the door step before the flowers wilted, shoes, reading glasses, anything. He'd have taken the pennies off the eyes if they still had viewings at the house.
10. Don't be super-sized. Avoid two-for-one deals.
I spend half my shopping time in the supermarket working out if I'm getting a good deal on two-for-one deals. I work out the cost difference divided by the time the goods will take to run out divided by how many pension days that equates to and when that's done, I'll buy it because it looks nice or smells good.
This is not good. I consider myself an excellent spendthrift but I'm heading towards penny-pinching in a big way.
But where's my $50,000?