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What 'kit' saves you the most time &/or money?

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What 'kit' saves you the most time &/or money?

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Old Style MoneySaving
13 replies 1.3K views
se999se999 Forumite
2.4K posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Old Style MoneySaving

Currently between houses but using the free time to make sure I've not missed any obvious money savers, especially old style. So would like to know what I'm probably missing, I thought others might find it useful too so I've put down my recommendations too:

My first one is the computer, we use it constantly for price checking & buy lots on line, but also use for selling clutter on Amazon/ebay. Also using the cashback sites now. Also use it for researching things e.g. have found a planting calendar so now know the right time to buy bare rooted trees/bushes for new garden. Saves on postage with emails & going to start e-cards, and about to start using Skype to save on phone costs. I suppose there could be a thread on how much does your computer save you by itself!!

Second essential is drain unblocking kit. 1 plunger, 1 bendy wire thing & a pair of stilsens . The plunger and the bendy wire thing do most s type sinks, and for the bottle trap ones I need the stilsens to get the leverage to get the bottom bit off (why do sinks block when OH isn't here!). It must have saved us a fortune in not calling out plumbers.

P.S. Forgot for the computer, home exchanging for cheap holidays :D


  • squeakysqueaky Forumite
    14.1K posts
    10,000 Posts Combo Breaker I'm a Volunteer Board Guide
    It used to be my toolkit. Quite apart from being a working engineer where every change of job required some different tools to the ones I already had I was an enthusiastic DIY'er and fixed my own cars so I've got around three grand's worth. Nowadays, with not working, no car, and the house pretty much sorted it doesn't save me as much.

    My computer, largely but not always via MSE, has saved me not only its own cost but paid for my broadband too.

    Some people look at me sideways when I talk about Old Style as if using a computer is a contradiction in terms. I point out that the Old Folk took adavantage of all sorts of new things as they came along. First chance she got my mum bought a 2nd hand copper with a wringer... then a 2nd hand twin tub... then much later - a NEW automatic. Neither she nor I would dream of going back to the old way of boiling up the copper. But we both bought the best deal we could afford and made the best use of limited resources.

    It's the attitude of mind you have, not your posessions.
    Hi, I'm a Board Guide on the Old Style and the Consumer Rights boards which means I'm a volunteer to help the boards run smoothly and can move and merge posts there. Board guides are not moderators and don't read every post. If you spot an inappropriate or illegal post then please report it to [email protected]. It is not part of my role to deal with reportable posts. Any views are mine and are not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.
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  • se999se999 Forumite
    2.4K posts
    Thanks for the quick reply Squeaky.

    We've always had to buy what our friends politely called 'houses with potential', so have accumulated our DIY kit too over the years. DS1 & 2 used to call the DIY warehouse stores Daddy's toyshop, as we were always having to repair/renovate where we were living. :D

    We're not really into possessions either, and also did a 'major' de-clutter prior to last house move and it does save time & money, because you can actually find things easily and you don't accidently buy duplicates because something is hiding in a corner. Our current system is not to buy something unless we know exactly what we need it for, otherwise I'd rather have the money getting interest in the bank :D We also have a couple of boxes to accumulate things for carboots/amazon & ebay, so that we can de-clutter as we go!

    We've had to basically try to make the most of what we've had at the time and not bothered too much about the labelling it old style or not. I think we've been seen as being efficient with what we have, but with 'green' tendencies, and occasionally a bit strange when we home educated for a while & home exchanged. :D

    What I do like about this section of MSE is that there are lots of friendly people who have overlapping areas of interest, and it's a nice place to join in, so thanks for your work on the board Squeaky :T

    P.S. Going to join Freecycle as soon as we get our new house, got DS1 to join it already.
  • LoadsabobLoadsabob Forumite
    662 posts
    I'm with you on the computer. The Internet in particular saves me absolutely HEAPS of time in research, going to get leaflets (adult ed, Arts Centre, Local Film Guide), finding out what's on, price checking (saves me money there, too), buying train tickets etc. The other night I checked in minutes whether my boyfriend could cook his pork sausages from frozen (I'm veggie, and he's never frozen them before!). When I THINK how much time I would otherwise spend comparing prices in shops, waiting in travel agents, searching for books, going to the library to look things up. It's amazing! And of course, Excel, the spreadsheet budgets. That would take HOURS if I were working on paper (especially when I'm so uptight I'd have to copy it all out neat, too!
  • elonaelona Forumite
    11.8K posts
    I love my breadmaker and slow cooker - and of course this site.

    It is like an encylopaedia in itself!:j
    "This site is addictive!"
    Wooligan 2 squares for smoky - 3 squares for HTA
    Preemie hats - 2.
  • BWZN93BWZN93 Forumite
    2.2K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    Id definately say my computer too!

    It has saved me money by:

    Joining freecycle
    Music & Film downloads which I would otherwise have to pay a lot more for
    Entertainment - I dont go out to be sociable!! :D I come here!
    Ebay - I love it!
    Job hunting - saves waiting till the once a week newspaper
    House hunting - Ditto
    online banking - no more overdrawn for me!
    Recipe Ideas - Learning to cook
    Free Online Eductation - I dont have to go to a college and do it
    Saves my phonebill - msn messenger is a genius idea
    Saving stamps - Emails
    Joining mailing lists for free manufacturers vouchers (saved a bomb with that!)
    No paying for 118 directory enquiries - just type it in and away I go
    Ditto with directions
    Freebies - I order useful things for free!
    Cashback and reward programmes online are quite good too, although im still waiting for my Greasypalm chq....

    But I have spent on buying Sims2 and University expansion pack - but I see it as £50 well spent, as It keeps me entertained, and id never have to buy another game again as my sim families continue on for generations, and only buy the expansion packs if they look interesting.

    I love my toolkit too, my dad kindly gave it to me, its nice and compact, and can do millions of home jobs myself without having to wait for help, and have been known to fix the odd dead car or two, much to the amazement of male contemporaries. :D

    As much as I hate to admit it, mobile phones too - being able to be contacted and contact others is a good thing, even though I occassionally want to throw it at a wall when im getting hassled! :mad: I have fixed that though now - I got a free sim card and only give out that number to people if it is absolutely necessary, everyone else gets the home phone no. ;)

    Apart from that, everything else is pretty much luxury, although I wouldnt like to do without my craft bag, it has my quilting, knitting and cross stitching projects in there, and a fairly comprehensive sewing kit, no holey socks and missing buttons in this household!

    Jo xx
  • LoadsabobLoadsabob Forumite
    662 posts
    Ooh yes, I forget, I've just used my first £5 voucher on Amazon for being on the Juicy Panel. And free directory enquiries, yes, I'll never do it by phone again!
  • se999se999 Forumite
    2.4K posts
    Loadsabob - What's the Juicey Panel?
  • nightsongnightsong Forumite
    517 posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Combo Breaker
    Something I've only just got together is a car cleaning kit. In the past I either used the carwash (not often cos it always seemed like a real extravagance), got in a very bad mood hunting around for the bits and pieces to do it myself, or had a dirty car :D . Now I have a dedicated bucket (79p from Tesco) which contains the sponge, chamois, little thing for scraping the dirt off the windscreen, etc. I've also finally learnt that you can use a feather duster on the dashboard, works a treat.
  • LoadsabobLoadsabob Forumite
    662 posts
    jw1096 wrote:
    I wouldnt like to do without my craft bag, it has my quilting, knitting and cross stitching projects in there, and a fairly comprehensive sewing kit, no holey socks and missing buttons in this household!
    Jo xx

    Ooh, this has made me feel all cosy and inspired! I'm slowly getting it together, but I think that will save me money, as well as being something I find really enjoyable - knitting, and also making my own simple clothes (I'm sure I'll be able to manage simple wrap skirts!! I'm looking forward to building a buttons box, too - how sad it that? I always remember my Gran's and Mum's button boxes, and I want one!!
  • LoadsabobLoadsabob Forumite
    662 posts
    se999 wrote:
    Loadsabob - What's the Juicey Panel?

    Hello - it's a panel of people who receive surveys / questionaires by email, and whenever you complete one, they credit your acount with cash equivalent. I think you can only cash it in £5 at a time, and only for Amazon vouchers, but that suits me down to the ground. The surveys are quick, sometimes interesting, always directly from JuicyBrains, not from outside companies etc. This company does research for them. You answer a couple of questions each time to see if you're the kind of person they are looking for for that particular questionaire, and if so, you go ahead, if not, you usually get 25p for your trouble. A completed questionaire can give you 50p-£1, I guess. I only hear from them once a fortnight at the most. I figure it's worth it for my thoughts and observations, such as they are! -
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