If you've written a list of all the things you spend money on in normal times now you can look at each item to see how to cut costs.
Treat saving money as your new job - a battle - a war that you have to win.
So you are NOT out of work - you just have a new job - money saving.
This is somewhere where you really can cut down spending - there are lots of cheaper foods that are just as filling.
You might need to learn to eat a different way, and not buy things just because that's what you would have eaten. Yes that will be difficult.
Plan the weeks meals, stretch meat by adding vegetables, lentils etc. You have to realise that you can't afford meat every day. Most of the world manages with very little meat and waste nothing.
Have a look at websites that give ideas for thrifty food and use what you have.....
A list from 2015(and I know that's 5 years out of date but it's just an idea)
Jamie Oliver has a new programme, quickly made especially for Strange Times. Called Keep Cooking and Carry On. It started last night and was supposedly thrifty - although his idea of thrifty and mine are different, but his bread dough looked pretty good.
I could find more but that's enough to start with
Water and Sewer Charges
I think if you are on mains sewer ( as opposed to my septic tank drainage here) then you are charged for waste water based on the amount of tap water you've used - if you are on a water meter - please correct me if I'm wrong. By cutting down on water use you'll save in two places.
You might not like some of these ideas but remember you've got a battle to win.
- Never let water run down the drain without thinking what you are doing - look at it as money. Catch cold water when you are waiting for hot, use it for loo flushing, soaking clothes or saucepans.
- I've never had a dishwasher so don't know if they really do use less water than a washing up bowl, which is what the manufacturers claim but either way - don't use the dishwasher for just a few things.
- Rather than using a big washing up bowl - wash-up by filling the biggest thing you have to wash (ie saucepan) with hot water and W-up liquid and then use a brush to wash everything else from the soapy water in the saucepan. I always do this when I've used the bowl of my Food Mixer - it works.
- Don't put more water than you need in a kettle, and don't then tip it back out again down the drain the next time you want to fill and boil it.
- Share bath water and bath or shower less - you can't afford to be squeamish about this. If you are at home all the time you're not getting dirty. The majority of the world's population don't have enough water to bath or shower everyday, but they still manage to stay clean.
- Always use the short flush on the loo and flush less often - as above don't be squeamish. Just use the loo brush more often after flushing.( the rhyme used to be - if it's yellow let it mellow, if it's brown flush it down!)
- Use the shortest wash on the washing machine and DON'T wash things until they are dirty. If you are at home they're not going to get very dirty. Get everyone out of the habit of putting their clothes to wash everyday. (Obviously I'm NOT including knickers/pants in the wear more than once thing! although even that was quite common until around the 1950s/60s ) Now you are at home you can hang things like bath towels out to air to use again.
The cat was due for her routine flu jab this week but that's been cancelled. The vets are emergencies only. The same with my expensive dentist appointment in April - they too are doing emergencies only.
The mower hasn't gone off for repair yet - they are still working as they can collect mowers and deliver without seeing anyone - but their repair bloke has an injury, so off work until next week.
I now have a boiler problem - it's working but smelling a bit odd. I rang the boiler man and he too is still working as he can work...... wearing gloves......on the boiler without getting anywhere near the house owner. I guess they are able to keep working as it would be dangerous for everyone if boilers or gas or electric couldn't be repaired and were running when faulty. Hope he'll be able to fix it soon as the weather is turning colder.
I was surprised to see the window cleaner turn up - not an essential job really but he is self-employed, works alone, doesn't need to see anyone, has his hands in and out of soapy water all day and said he'd keep going while he could. He was only doing outside windows of houses out on their own not ones close together in town with people around. He said (we spoke at a distance of a lot more than 2 metres!) he's been moaned at for doing his job and had other people ring up to ask him when he is coming as he's overdue.......including a care home, full of elderly people, who wanted him to do inside windows too! Like damned if he does and damned if he doesn't.
Hope it's not too long before I can see the grandchildren again - this serious little man, nearly 8 weeks old now, is growing up fast.