According to research, with the Covid-19 situation, 50% of Malaysians worry about job and income security, and 51% can’t survive more than 2 months with their savings. We seem to be moving forward towards recovery now, as more and more businesses are allowed to resume operations. However, the fact remains that some have lost jobs, or had their salary reduced. In times like these, losing part of, or the source of income is difficult. If you’re looking for ways to spend wisely with less money, here’s how to survive with less income!
1) Eat At Home
By that, we don’t mean food deliveries. Even though it takes up slightly more time, cooking at home can save you some money, especially if you know what to get and where to get them. Go for rice/grains, beans, rice products (rice vermicelli) and eggs, which tend to make you feel fuller for longer. You can also opt for soups and stews, where they can be kept for a longer time, and also use practically mish-mash of ingredients. Just in case you don’t have time to cook every single meal, set aside a time and prep your meals ahead. Check out 6 Freezer-Friendly Meals You Can Prepare Ahead for ideas!
2) Shop Wisely
Before you go on your grocery run, check your supplies and create a shopping list beforehand. When you shop, stick to your list so that you don’t get any unnecessary items. Also, it could be a good idea to compare prices, so you know which places provide groceries at a lower price. Some places sell certain items cheap and others expensive, so it’s up to you to do the math and decide if you want to go different places, or buy at one place where it’s more worth it.
3) Think About Rent
If you’re renting a place and it’s a little on the high side, consider moving elsewhere with a lower rent. Alternatively, if you have a spare room at your place, you can also consider renting it out to earn some money that way. We understand that perhaps moving around or having someone move in with you may not be the best idea at the moment, but you’ve got to weight the benefits and risks with your income/savings. However, if you’re living in your own place, you could be smart about utility usage, which will help with lower bills.
4) Avoid Unnecessary Spending
We don’t know about you, but the MCO has actually taught us that plenty of things we used to do were just a lifestyle habit, and actually unnecessary. Sure, they’re things we do with friends and things we do for our pleasure and entertainment, but also quite unnecessary. We’re not saying cut it out completely; just be more selective about where you spend your money. For example, you could cut down on online shopping, which will help with unnecessary credit card spending.
5) Reduce Outings
Related to the item above, if possible, head out less. We know everyone’s pretty excited about being able to be out and about and hang out with friends again, but maybe you don’t have to do it as frequently. Where you go also determines how much you spend, so if you have plans to meet up, choose an affordable place. Alternatively, if it’s company you crave, have your friends come over, and you can just chill at home with lively conversation and a couple of snacks.
6) Use Apps For Good Deals
Well, alright, if you’re going to be online shopping anyway, why not use some apps to help you save some? Different apps have their own specialty, such as cashback, exclusive deals, coupons etc. so it depends on what you’re looking for. You can check out ShopBack, PrestoMall and MilkADeal, besides the other more common sites like Lazada, Shopee, Taobao and Zalora.
7) Create A Budget
With a budget, you’ll have a clearer idea of how you’ll be spending your money, and make sure you stick to it, no matter what. Also, in your budget, remember to allocate some funds for saving, and yes, of course, make sure you do it. Even with tight finances, it is still important to save, because you never know when there might be an emergency. With a solid plan, you’ll be able to make your money last.
8) Treat Yourself!
We’re not talking about high-end, ultra-luxurious treats. No, no. Every once in a while, remember to indulge in your little favourite things, such as an item you’ve had your eye on for a while, or maybe your favourite meal. Treating yourself can make it feel like you’re still enjoying some pleasures in life, and can actually motivate you to keep going. With these occasional indulgences, you’re also less likely to go on a massive shopping spree in the name of “treating yourself” due to absurdly tight control over a long period of time.