How to live cheaper and keep the quality you are used to


With the recent downturn in the economy combined with the price hikes from retailers along with the austerity measures in place from the UK government and local authorities many employers are imposing a pay freeze or minimal rises, some even face a pay cut. The result of this is that a lot of people will have to review their finances and make changes to lifestyle.

Make your own mince

Why is supermarket mince so expensive? After all minced meat is usually the left overs from cutting other joints and other cuts. You can make your own quality mince quite easily, all you need is a sharp knife and a cheap & simple mincing machine.

Cheap Mobile Phone Calls & Text Messages

Are you paying a monthly fee for your mobile phone? If you are not a high user, take a look at a Pay As You Go (PAYG) tariff and just pay for the actual calls you use.

You'll need to be out of your contract period or you may have to pay a contract release fee, however, this may still work out cheaper in the long run if you are near the end of the contract.

Cheap Holidays

Why not explore a different holiday option this year? With many people working to a smaller budget, then a cheap holiday is now something to be considered. The problem with going for a cheap holiday is that you don't know what you are getting yourself into, however there are some recognised names bringing their low cost skills into the holiday market.

Make the most of supermarket loyalty schemes

We often use our local Asda store and there's been a lot of publicity for the price guarantee scheme. There's been TV ads and lots of posters in store.

I'd previously ignored this as a marketing gimmick, however out of curiosity, I decided to bung in my last 4 receipts (you can only enter receipts up to a month ago), 3 of these offered me a voucher!

A few minutes effort and a decent reward - That's a result and I now have just under £5 in vouchers ready to use on my next shop.

I'll need to remember to set myself a reminder to put in my receipt each week.

Save money by growing your own fruit & veg

What is more satisfying than good quality food? How about a few fresh strawberries on your breakfast in the summer? What about a baked potato you grew yourself?

Most basic fruit & veg are easy to grow even for the beginner, there are many books in the local libraries or you can take a look through our books selection.

Save money by buying better quality meat

Another surprise is meat quality. Cheap meat can often dramatically shrink when cooked. Check the small print on the packaging as often cheap meat contains added water which cooks off leaving you with a much smaller dinner. Fatty meat also tends to shrink leaving a small meal.

Save money by buying more shopping.

It may sound an odd suggestion for someone trying to live cheaper, however, it is often cheaper to buy more than less.

Take a simple chicken dinner. Ignoring any ethical debate about animal welfare, a portion of diced chicken is a couple of pounds, a whole chicken can be had for just a pound or 2 more and this with a few minutes chopping will give you 3 or 4 times the quantity of diced chicken. Pop the extra in the fridge or freezer (if it has not already been frozen) and you have tomorrow's dinner meat ready.


Vouchers are an excellent way of saving money. Often a quick search can find a money off voucher or discount code for many of the traditional retailers and on-line retailers. Many retailers are offering discount vouchers as an incentive to get you through the door and to spend with them rather than elsewhere.

There's a good article in a "quality" newspaper about voucher codes which is worth a read.