Great 'How do you stop yourself spending?' Hunt

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  • lurvlyloz
    lurvlyloz Posts: 877 Forumite
    i keep my credit card in the drawer at home so i cant be tempted into buying anything i cant afford. i tend not to cary cash so that when the sandwich van comes round or the lads say "fancy a pint" at lunch i can say no coz i havent got any cash on me. this saved me loads. i bring my own lunch to work so works very well for me. i also have designated weekends where i do not spend at all. these are "STAY IN" weekends. i watch telly/dvds i already , see friends for a cuppa which i walk to, eat food that is in the freezer and do not spend a penny. this one or tiwce a month def helps toward the other weekend where i do spend money. swings and round abouts i guess :D
    Facing up to things - nov 2012 total 9334.95
    back to work after baby -Jan 2014 - total [STRIKE]6905.28 [/STRIKE](1 credit card) £3535

    Debt Free Date March 8th 2017 (31st birthday)
  • nomadgirl
    nomadgirl Posts: 29 Forumite
    That is the wickedest idea I've heard for yonks!! Absolutely brilliant and am opening the door of the freezer AS I TYPE!! It's not just a way of saving money but of dealing with an impulsive nature. Perhaps I should do the same with chocolate....hehehe!! Thanks
  • LameWolf
    LameWolf Posts: 11,234 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Anniversary Combo Breaker First Post
    I put everything we get in and everything we spend, right down to the last penny, on an Excel spreadsheet. Regular outgoings (eg council tax and similar) are "earmarked" as soon as my husband gets paid, so that the money isn't used for anything else.

    I'm terrified of being in debt, and it's actually quite hard to pry money out of my hot little hand at the best of times, but I insist that we never, ever buy anything we don't have the funds to pay for.

    For little items (you know, bars of chocolate, kind of thing) if my husband says "let's have that" I'll retort with something like "What?? That's 77p. That's fifteen shillings and fivepence!!:eek:" (Or whatever the amount he wants to spend is;)). Shows my age, I guess....:rotfl:
    If your dog thinks you're the best, don't seek a second opinion.;)
  • LMac
    LMac Posts: 274 Forumite
    First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    infj wrote: »

    If anyone can solve the chocolate problem, my weighing scales will thank you!!

    Try melting the chocolate and dipping fresh fruit in it, and leave to set. Still get the chocolate hit, and you get the fresh fruit as an added bonus. Blueberries, strawberries and raspberries are great...pineapple not so much...:D
  • Julia4J
    Julia4J Posts: 17 Forumite
    To answer the question: It's called 'self-control' which develops with practice, strangely enough!
  • See, I'd love to do this, and I'm full of admiration Sparkly for your efforts. I have the same problem with keeping a mental budget - but I'm easily tempted by travels, presents for people and right now the sales!

    I already have a few accounts with the same bank (household account for rent and bills, current account, ISA, e-saver). The e-saver is where I put my rent from payday until the day it's taken out - there's a three week lag. So I don't feel I can really use it to also save for holidays etc, although I suppose it wouldn't be too confusing.

    Is it quite difficult to open lots of these small accounts? Does it look funny on a credit rating? Should they be with different banks?

    Thanks all.


    I only use two banks and have mainly current accounts with one and ISAs with the other. I find keeping funds for different things totally separate is the best way to motivate yourself to save - I love knowing that I have £X to spend on my next holiday and £X to spend on clothes/treats for the month and not having to think about the division of funds within one account. I hadn't actually given any thought to the effect on my credit rating, but I can't imagine having lots of accounts, all in credit, will do it any harm. I used to only have accounts with one bacnk, then when we got our mortgage, I decided to open a current account with the same bank to try and 'hide' money from myself & my regular bank accounts, but then I started to use it more and more to save up for birthdays & christmas, so I know what's in the account down to the last penny at any given time!
  • I've limited my spending in 3 stages last year having got to a stage where I had increasing debts and no savings by poor money management.

    Stage One
    Was to do a Martin's money make over. I took a little extra as a remortgage and cleared my large bank overdraught which was costing a pound a day (now zero) . A large credit card balance which I was only paying the minimum each month and a high APR loan.

    Stage Two
    Was to reduce all my utility bills and insurances and to stop impulse purchases and unplanned spening. I save nearly £400 a month from stages one and two.

    Stage Three
    Was to set an accurate budget for the year and create a monthtly spend. I used the piggybank method which other forum users have used. In my case I found it easier to use the same bank. My money goes into my Halifax Reward bank account which pays me £5 a month.This pays all my direct debits. I then transfer fixed amounts by monthly standing orders to 5 Halifax web saver accounts.
    1. Xmas/Birthdays
    2. Car Maintainance
    3. Home Maintainance
    4. Annual Holiday
    5. Personal Spending Float

    I also have a Halifax instant access ISA account which I use for long term savings and emergency fund.

    I draw a fixed amount of cash each week for food, entertainment and fuel. If I dont spend it all by the end of the week I draw less out the following week. Any balance in my current account at the end of the month is payed into my ISA and personal spening float.

    I know I have all my eggs in one basket with my bank but the advantage is that it can be easily managed online and instant transfers between accounts made.

    What a differece a year makes! From being in constant debt to the point of saving and the peace of mind that it brings.

    The ironic thing is this exercise and discipline has made me less likely to to waste money even though I can afford to spend more! :)
  • Bloomberg
    Bloomberg Posts: 665 Forumite
    Great 'How do you stop yourself spending?' Hunt

    What are your top tips for controlling your spending impulses? How do you stop yourself reaching for your cash or card? Please share with other MoneySavers.



    View past Great Hunts.



    [threadbanner] box [/threadbanner]

    I think that the best way a person can stop themselves from overspending is to change their mind set. The main thing you have to do in the first instance is a budget. In addition credit card provides an excellent spending diary so that at the end of the month you can see just how much money you have actually spent/wasted on non essentials.


    The biggest hurdle is to get some savings behind you. Once you have money to go out and buy a few things then you are not so bothered about having new things all the time. When you have very little money you want everything that you see. You will also find that the more money you have the more you want, this also helps reduce spending.
    Money is a wise mans religion
  • Richard019
    Richard019 Posts: 460 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    I've always been quite tight with my spending, and more unusually other people's. I think I was only about 8 or 9 when I said instead of an egg at Easter my mum should just get me random chocolate bars I liked to a similar price. That way I got more chocolate and she spent less. And the usual argument of not taking kid's shopping is they cost you money, my mum went for the monthly shop without me one month and spent £40 extra (at a time when our main monthly shop was only about £60 normally). I still have to remind her of that when she says I cost her money when we go shopping together.

    I also got pocket money from quite a young age rather than my mum just buying me what I wanted. Then when I was older I had to use my £6/w paper round money to pay for all my sweets and my football tickets every couple of weeks (at the time it was £8 a game for 25 games a season). Those two things get you good at controlling things. It's not much use for individuals now, but for teaching kids it's good.

    The point someone made about looking at a £1 spend as being £1 less for the rest of your life is a start, but add on interest as well. At 17 I said that by the end of that school year (first year 6th form) I'd have about £1k in the bank. This was the October and i had £200 with EMA payments my only income. My mum laughed and said if I had anything over £500 she'd give me half again, and my aunt said she'd give me quarter. Of course everything from that point became "£1, no wait, that's £1.75 really". I now have a similar thing using my mortgage and the renewal dates working out that spending £10 now is actually nearer to £20 by the time you add on 20 years compound interest.

    Now my tactic is not to carry money, I don't like it being out of my bank accounts in the first place because while it's in my wallet it's doing nothing. If it's in the bank it's earning me money, either interest, reward payments, cashback etc. Unless I'm going shopping for something I try to leave my wallet at home where possible so that I don't have my card with me. If I see something I want I can't get it then so I have to think about it. If when I get up the next day I can't be bothered to go and get it then obviously I didn't want it to start with.

    The spreadsheet monitoring my spending, partly to work out what I was spending on what, partly so that I can identify every transaction on every account I have if I ever get audited. I'm self employed (on the side of being a student) and nobody I know can understand how I live as well as I do on the income I have so I suspect keeping track is a good idea. If they struggle to understand it knowing what I'm like I can't see a stranger coming in to look at things believing it without any record being in place. That reduces the sppending more down to the fact I don't like filling it in so I've no desire to make extra transactions to put in.

    Regular mystery shopping jobs for the takeaways, pubs lunches etc helps as well. Due to the way it's done it means it regulates how often you go, but also means you're hardly paying anything when you go.
  • VfM4meplse
    VfM4meplse Posts: 34,269 Forumite
    Combo Breaker First Post I've been Money Tipped!
    I don't buy anything I can't use, or consume (eventually). That stops souvenirs and junk from accumulating.

    However it does not stop me from buying more clothes...!
    Value-for-money-for-me-puhleeze!

    "No man is worth, crawling on the earth"- adapted from Bob Crewe and Bob Gaudio

    Hope is not a strategy :D...A child is for life, not just 18 years....Don't get me started on the NHS, because you won't win...I love chaz-ing!
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