Tips For A Fatter Wallet


Tip #1 Beware of Bulk Purchases

On the surface, buying in bulk seems like a great way to save money. When you buy in bulk, the price of each individual item tends to be lower. The more you buy, the less each item actually costs you. Although this seems like a sure way to get a deal, bulk buying often costs people more than they realise.

Imagine that your favourite shampoo is sold at $12 for a 200ml bottle. You find out that you can buy a 1 litre bottle for a mere $48. What a deal! For about four times the price, you receive 5 times more shampoo. So you buy it and then spend the next year and a half using the same shampoo. However, you might end up using it up in less than a year because, with all this shampoo sitting in the shower, there is no point skimping so you use twice as much as usual and you are back buying another $48 bottle in six months time. Or maybe you get tired of using the same shampoo and switch to a different brand before finishing off the monster bottle. This is a common problem with bulk buying.

You may want to go for group purchases with your friends instead. This will mitigate the habit of paying more than you should.

Tip #2 Hand-me-downs

This year I have been on a constant move. I have stayed in 3 different places within a year and I have learnt a precious savings lesson: Hand-me-downs are helpful items in generating enormous savings. I have benefited from receiving items such as bed frames, TV console, dining table, curtains and cupboards and the total savings is more than a thousand dollars.

If you have children, you may want to make an approximate calculation of the amount you can save on the toys, clothes and necessities if they are hand-me-down items. The savings can be substantial.

Tip #3 Save Energy, Save Money

Do you know that…

  • After switching off your appliances (e.g. televisions, VCD, DVD and CD players) with the remote control, many of them continue to draw power?
  • Standby power accounts for up to 10% of your electricity use?
  • The electricity of the air-conditioner is equivalent to the energy used by about 32 fans?
  • The lower the temperature setting, the more energy used by your air-conditioner?

A cent saved is a cent earned.

Tip #4 Buy Generic

There are many supermarkets that have “house-brands” of products which serve the same purpose as more well-known brands. These generic brands are usually cheaper and can be just as good. However, since cheap deals are not necessary good deals, it is important to be a prudent consumer and find out which products work for you and which ones don’t.

Tip #5 Bring your own water

This is a classic money saving trick. If we were to calculate the amount spent on drinks when at a shopping centre or food outlet, it would add up to hundreds of dollars within a year.

By carrying a bottle of water everywhere you go especially when you eat out, not only will you save money, it is healthier too.


This article was written by Ferris Wee, Institute For Financial Literacy, Financial Literacy Trainer.