As September creeps ever closer, so does the No Spend Month challenge! I have been thinking about what I need to do in order to have a successful month. I feel like there are always months which are more expensive. August is one of these months for us. But, as the whole “back to school” season starts, it seems like a good time to take stock.
- How To Have A No Spend Month
- The No Spend Month Challenge!
- The No Spend Month Challenge: Planned vs Impulse Spends
- How To Save Money – My Money Saving Tips!
Whatever your reason for attempting a No Spend Month, it needs to be planned. Organisation is key to it working for you. You might need to spend slightly longer because you’re meal planning and writing a shopping list. Making your lunch the night before to take to work with you in the morning. Making notes and to do lists if you need them. Being conscious of your time and decisions will help.
Here are the things you can do to prepare for a No Spend Month:
- Write down all of your direct debits. This is purely so you know when your biggest payments go out of your account. For most people, things like mortgage/rent payments, gas/electricity and water will all be by direct debit. So, knowledge is key, after all!
- Do an inventory of your food cupboards. Write it down if you need to, but have a look at the food you already have in. How many meals could you make from that, if you were a bit inventive? I’m sure most of us could make a few meals from our stock piles!
- Meal plan as many meals as you can. This can follow on from the last point; try and make a list of all the meals you want to make during the month. Sometimes, buying foods in bulk can be much cheaper than smaller amounts. If you can plan what the majority of your meals for the month are, you can probably buy some things in bulk in order to save some more money.
- Plan things to do that aren’t going to cost you money. On your days off, try and find alternative activities to do that are free. Things like going out for a walk, taking a picnic, going to your local library. That way, you are spending less and hopefully doing more!
- Fill up the car with petrol. This might seem a bit cheeky, but I’m going to fill up the car with petrol today. I’m going out anyway and spending, so I might as well? Although travel is a fixed expense in a way as I need the car to get to my work, petrol is still a cost throughout the month.
- Think about your No Spend Days vs Spend Days. So, for me, I’m going to try and have NSDs throughout the working week and then spend at the weekend. This gives me a clear distinction between spending and not. Give yourself an aim; if you want to try and have 3 NSDs during the working week then aim for that. Remember, the more days that are spend free, the better!
- Write down your goal for attempting the challenge. For me, it’s to try and save some more money towards our Ultimate Dream Fund. I’ve been very hit and miss lately so I want to get back on track. Why are you doing this? What’s your motivation? Have this written down and somewhere visible, so on the days that are tough, you can see it!
I am looking forward to starting this. I am seeing it as a restart; as all the schools go back it seems like the perfect time. September seems to be a quiet month for many and a subtle refocus will be good. After the expense that are school holidays, it’s a time when people start to feel the pinch. Also [dare I say it] Christmas suddenly seems a lot closer!
If you want to join in, then come across to Facebook where over 100 people are now joined in the challenge!
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