5 tips to help you budget this spring

Photo: Yours magazine

Spring is here and while this is great as we enjoy the outdoors; consumers are encouraged to manage their finances and ensure that there is no wasteful expenditure before the end of the year. And with fuel prices on the increase, we’ll all be tightening our belts.

“There is nothing wrong with being more festive between the Spring and Christmas period; just be mindful about your spending patterns and behaviour as this can add undue financial pressure on your finances,” says Este Ochse, Product Specialist, FNB Wealth and Investments.

Ochse highlights a few areas where you can cut costs and save more this spring:
1. Picnics vs eating at a restaurant: There is nothing wrong with eating out but balance this by preparing your own picnic so you can enjoy this time with friends and family without straining your budget.
2. Movies vs DVDs: Movie night is great, but the costs will gradually add up. From popcorn to the odd beverage, chocolate and movie tickets you could spend well over R150 per person. Rather rent a movie and enjoy in the comfort of your home and with your loved ones.
3. Cooking vs Takeaways: Try your hand at cooking a healthy meal with your family or get the family involved in making dinner. There are many simple recipes online that can take you through the process.
4. Shopping for new summer wardrobe vs recycling: We tend to be adventurous when it comes to fashion and keeping up with the trends. Recycle what you have and instead of buying clothes for every new season, save that extra cash for a short-term goal like a special birthday treats or a long-term goal like retirement or education.
5. Gym vs DIY health remedies: You can never cut costs with your health, so ensure that your gym contract suits your lifestyle to the best. Alternatively, if you not the gym type, look out for workout apps which gives you the ability to train at home.

“It’s not easy to always stick to your budget as unexpected expenses will arise. But a great way to start is to ensure that you stick to your savings goals and not over exert your expenses,” concludes Ochse.