Yep, I’m not buying anything for 30 days! …She says for the tenth time. But no, really, I’m going through with it this time, out of necessity more than actual self-discipline.
My boyfriend and I are lucky enough to live rent free in a beautiful part of Sydney, but of course the goal is to buy a place of our own. We started forcing ourselves to save up a deposit by putting aside the amount we are saving by not paying rent into a high interest account, which seemed to be going well. Unfortunately we may have to move out soon, which means we’d have to start renting, and not be able to save any amount further than that based on our current lifestyle. I mean, it’s not like we live extravagantly, but I only work part time and my boyfriend is self-employed. There’s a couple of other factors that have come together to push me into starting this no-spend challenge as well:
- My rego is due and everyone who has to pay rego knows it’s a pain in the butt
- Our quarterly power bill just arrived and it’s a whopping $700!
- I went a little bit nuts in the Priceline skincare and haircare 40% off sales, so although I have no money, at least I have enough products to last for the next 3 years
- I just started a postgrad uni degree and rather than cop the 25% loan fee and potential interest rates, I decided to pay for it upfront
- I ran out of laundry powder and while googling to find a DIY laundry powder recipe, I got all inspired by the hoards of ‘thrifty living’ blogs
Ultimately, I’d like to make a lifestyle change to a less consumerist existence, but since I’m a creature of habit (and let’s be honest, retail therapy is the best thing ever), this 30 day challenge is just a step towards that direction.
So what’s the difference between a no-spend vs a no-buy? All my previous frugal-living challenges have been no-buys, which dictate that you must not buy any non-essential products. On the other hand, the philosophy behind a no-spend is that you cut down on luxury spending in all areas of life. That includes groceries/eating out, parking, entertainment, etc.
Since I’ve gone through frugal phases before (although this is the first time I’ve committed to doing it for a length of time), I have a number of techniques to help me stick to it: