Simple Savings Newsletter - July 2017


How are you going? Thank you to everyone who has listened to our first podcast and taken the time to send us your feedback. Our mission is to help as many people as possible to break the cycle of having no money. If you like what you have heard so far, please let others know about Simple Savings and what we do.

We love making these podcasts for you and aim to provide listeners with good, honest discussion on as many money saving topics as possible. So if you have any suggestions of what you would particularly like us to talk about, please let us know and we will do our best to fulfil your request!

We've had some fantastic new hints coming in lately, so if you haven't done so already, be sure to check them out on the Simple Savings website. There's always something new to learn there!

All the best,

New Podcast! Keeping Up with the Joneses

Decades before any of the Kardashians had even been born, unsuspecting consumers were aspiring to keep up with the Joneses - an imaginary 'perfect' family who had it all. These days, you can find examples of the Joneses everywhere, from TV to Facebook and Instagram. But how much do they influence your spending? And what can you do about it? In this new podcast, Fiona and Jackie discuss how to see the reality below that perfect veneer and find ways to put yourself first.

To listen, click here.

Bonus Podcast Printable - Vault Members Only

Our podcast is free for everyone to listen to but we wanted to add a little something extra special for our loyal paid members. So we have created a printable worksheet to be used in conjunction with our podcasts, to help you identify any of the sinkholes we talk about in the segment and to encourage you to stay on track when it comes to protecting yourself from future hiccups. If you are a paid member, you can access your copy from the Downloads area, here. Enjoy!

Best of the Forum

Suffering from the winter doldrums? Head to the Simple Savings Forum! You'll always find a warm welcome here and plenty of inspirational discussions to rekindle your 'get up and go'. Here are some fun and interesting chats we've got going on at the moment - there are lots, lots more!

Teenager allowance

JellyBeanMamma wants advice on setting up an allowance for her almost-15 year old. How much should it be? What should it cover? Should she increase the amount with age? All these questions and more are answered here.

No money - but I have bread and eggs

Poor SKM has been having a rough time in her household with surgery and medical bills. Money is short - can the members help her to come up with ways to stretch the food she has on hand? You bet!

Year 2 of our 5 year plan

Martha and her hubby are one motivated couple! With a wedding already paid for, a new home and debts to pay off, they have a lot of goals - and they're going great guns at ticking them off! Keep up with their progress in this enjoyable and heartwarming thread.

Winter garden challenge anyone?

Mary L has been keeping green fingered Forum members motivated through the winter by getting them to share updates and photos of all their gardening plans and crops. This thread has stacks of helpful information to get your garden growing through this challenging time of year!

Not a paid member? Become one today!

The Simple Savings website has two areas - one for free members and another for members who pay an annual subscription. Being a paid member entitles you to heaps of additional whistles and bells, including printable downloads and resources and thousands more money saving tips, all neatly categorised for ease of browsing, as well as 24/7 access to our Savings Forum, affectionately known as the Savings Super Highway! Membership costs just $27 to join, and $21 for each year thereafter. We also offer a 365 day 'no questions asked' money back guarantee, so you have absolutely nothing to lose by joining and seeing what we're all about! Becoming a paid member is easy, simply click on this link.

Best Members' Blog

One of the many benefits of being a Vault member is that you can win $100 cash for writing your own money saving blog! Getting started is easy. All you have to do is log into the Vault, click on 'My Desk' at the top right, then 'Blog'. Then get writing! We love reading all your money saving trials and tribulations and really appreciate the effort that goes into each one.

This month's Blog winner is Nikki C, who has learned an unfortunate lesson on the perils of credit cards!

Oops! Mastercard is not my friend...

Until last year I had never had a credit card. And then I saw those daggy characters on the Coles Mastercard ads on TV. "$100 off a shop" - yes please! And Flybuys every time I use it? Sounds great. As long as I'm only using it for things I was going to buy anyway, and pay it off straight away, there's no problem, right? Seasoned SS'ers will recognise how dangerous, and insidious this thinking is. But I'm not seasoned; and I really was having fun going "tap, tap, tap" in cafes and shops, and ordering things online.

Twelve months later, I haven't had to pay any interest, and I have been making payments every week, but this is what I've learnt: 1) being good with money in the past is no guarantee that I will continue to be good with money (kind of like sobriety for an alcoholic, you really only do get one day at a time) 2) that without a savings goal it is easy to let my money get frittered away. 3) having access to credit for the first time is a rather heady experience- I found myself feeling rather powerful (I consume, therefore I am) and much more prone to impulse buys. 4) there's a reason why so many of the threads and blogs here talk about credit card debt, and how difficult it is to get out of, and that's because it's a common experience, and so easy to get into.

I had been congratulating myself for beating the system and getting my free groceries, and I just didn't pay attention to the hundreds of dollars I let slip away. Yesterday I realised that this credit card just isn't my friend. I've taken it out of my purse and put it away, grateful that I'm getting off so lightly. I'm conscious of having to learn all over again the importance of being loyal to my budget, and staying true to my values, not those of business and consumerism. So here I am, a little red-faced, poorer than I might have been, but hopeful that I can learn how to save, and spend mindfully, again. If I keep paying attention, and ask questions, and learn from others here, then this credit card lesson will hopefully soon be behind me.

Thank you for sharing your experience Nikki, we love your honesty!
You can read more of our members' blogs here.

Hint Competition Winners

Thank you to everyone who has sent in their favourite hints. We love reading them all! We have received so many terrific ones lately, it's been impossible to choose just one winner! The following ladies each win themselves a year's free Vault membership for their fabulous mindset and resolve. As these tips show, saving money really is fun!

I'm no poverty stricken pensioner - I'm a Money Magician!

Living on a pension can be miserable or fascinating, choose your preferred option! Since I prefer fascinating I play a game with myself. How many days can I go without spending anything? My records so far is five days but I'm working to improve that. This means really judicious planning when I make out my grocery list! It means thinking very, very hard before a purchase, do I really need it? Do I have anything at home that I could use instead? Is it something I could borrow? Could I trade for it? I retired two weeks ago, having decided at 69 that I didn't want to sell one more day of my life, so it's game on! I'm currently on day three of my challenge looking to beat five days and set a new record. I'm planning on being a Money Magician instead of a poverty-stricken pensioner! Don't wish me good luck though - it's not about luck, it's about planning, determination, and finding frugal fun!

Contributed by: Coral C

Relive that 'brand new' feeling - with the stuff you have!

I have accidentally discovered I LOVE living with less stuff! It all started when I packed up my house to move, however the move was delayed. Rather than unpack I just left out enough stuff to last what I thought was a month, including clothes. Doing this soon made me realise that many things I had previously thought necessary were not! Since I began living this way I have so much time on my hands as I don't have stuff around. I'm also not buying anything new as the move could happen soon, so whenever I need something, I go 'shopping' in my boxes! It's made me see how much I already love the clothes I own and has got me thinking, rather than buying new clothes, what if we packed things away instead, so that we 'forgot' about them? That way, when you want something special, you can just go shopping in your stash, without spending a cent! We don't often really appreciate what we have - but when you take it away and then 'find' it again after living without it, it's like having that same good feeling you had when you first got it, all over again! Works great with children's toys too!

Contributed by: CC

Got a great savings tip? Send it in to us and you could win a 12-Month membership for FREE!

At Simple Savings, we love to hear of all your ingenious ways to save money. Don't be shy, send them in to us and your tip could win a spot in our newsletter! The winner receives a full 12-month membership to all areas of the site, valued at $27 and giving you access to thousands of fantastic money saving tips to help reduce your costs in all areas of life. To be in to win, send your tips to us here

Simple Savers Facebook Group - 85,000 Members and Growing!

Love Facebook or hate it, the Simple Savers Facebook group is a great way to learn even more tips and enjoy reading other members' successes. It's absolutely free to join and is a terrific source of friendship and knowledge, with over 85,000 members and growing by the day!

Joining our busy Facebook community is super easy. Either search up 'Simple Savers' on Facebook or click this link and request to join. Once you're in, let the fun begin!

Savings Story: $3900 saved for two days work!

Renovations need not cost the earth. We just bought our first home and it had a hideous old kitchen with brown contact, broken stove elements and musty cupboards that had seen better days. We wanted a new kitchen but it was going to cost $4000. It was money we didn't have, so I used my brain instead and renovated our entire kitchen for under $100.

I bought:

  • Two bottles of oven cleaner at $3.99.
  • One second hand element from the dump for FREE!
  • Two tins of paint from Kmart for $17.99 and $36.99
  • Curtains that were faulty and discounted to $20 for two pairs.

I stripped off all the contact, cleaned the cupboards and painted the inside with flat acrylic paint. They are now white and clean inside. Then I cleaned the oven and fitted the element from the dump. It looks great. Now the oven will do us until we get that mortgage out of the way! I then removed the cupboard doors and gave them a coat of enamel paint. I took the door handles off, cleaned them with oven cleaner and refitted them - they came up like brand new! Finally I hung my bargain curtains and my new fresh, white kitchen looks lovely.

My husband was very impressed. All it took me was two days' work and $82.96 of supplies. Best of all, I saved $3900 on a new kitchen.

Contributed by: Aspiring

Bye for Now

That's all for this newsletter. Should you have any further questions or need help with any other money saving matter, please drop us a line. We are here to help!

Until next time,