Wednesday, 25 November 2020

3 Tips to Save Money Around the House

Pixabay


Being a homeowner can be expensive. First of all, you have your monthly mortgage payments and utility bills, and on top of that, there are all kinds of additional costs to contend with. Repairing and replacing anything that breaks, shopping for groceries, and hiring professionals when things go badly wrong. It’s a financial battlefield, and the costs can become overwhelming.


But there are several strategies and tactics you can adopt around the house that have the potential to save you a great deal of money. By being smart about your spending and finding cheaper ways to do things, you will put less pressure on your finances and have more disposable income to spend on whatever you want.


Here are a few tried-and-tested methods for saving money around the home.

Lower your energy bills

Your energy expenditure is one of the most consistent costs that homeowners have to face, but there are several ways to reduce this expense. Being smart with your energy usage will not only save you a lot of money, but it will also reduce your household’s carbon footprint. Start by turning off lights whenever you leave a room and unplugging appliances that aren’t in use. Save water by taking shorter showers and not leaving the taps running when you brush your teeth. Heating bills are often one of the highest expenses, particularly over winter, so try to only use it when absolutely necessary. Instead of cranking up the radiators, try keeping warm by wearing multiple layers, having a hot drink, or getting your blood pumping with a home workout.

Do your own repairs

When your car breaks down or your kitchen tap starts leaking, do you immediately call in a professional contractor to help you out? This can be a costly solution, so why not help your finances out by learning some basic home improvement skills? So next time you find yourself with a blocked sink, don’t call in a high-quality plumbing service to fix it, but instead, open up YouTube and see if you can learn to repair it yourself. Many household fixes are easy enough to do with just a little instruction and the right tools. You’ll be able to find plenty of DIY tutorials online to give you the information you need.

Be a smarter shopper

Groceries, clothing, and household items are undeniably necessary expenses, but are you spending too much on them? You can often find coupons online to help you save money on goods, or try grocery shopping at the end of the day when some items will be marked down. For food you regularly use, it will usually be cheaper to buy it in bulk, as long as you can handle the heavier shopping bags. One of the most effective ways to reduce your food costs is to plan all your family meals for the week and only buy the ingredients you need. This will reduce waste and prevent any unnecessary purchases. Take a look at this list of delicious family recipes for inspiration.



Thursday, 22 October 2020

Travelling With Kids: Essentials For Stress-Free Road Journeys

Many parents have the best intentions to travel and enjoy adventures with their children, but sometimes, stressful journeys can make planning the next break a less appealing prospect. If you love to go on road trips, and you want to make getting to your destination hassle-free, here are some essential tips. 


Image credit: https://www.pexels.com/photo/concrete-road-between-trees-1563356/


Invest in a reliable car

There’s nothing more frustrating than planning a road trip to have to cancel or postpone as a result of mechanical issues or a fear of not making it to your destination. If you like to hit the open roads and organise spontaneous trips with your family, it’s beneficial to make sure that your car is up to the job. If your vehicle is coming to the end of its life, you need more space to accommodate new members of the family, or you don’t feel confident driving long distances, it could be time to start looking for a replacement. Set a budget, browse different makes and models and think about what kinds of features or benefits are most important to you. When driving with kids in the car, safety is a priority and you may also wish to look for interactive entertainment options like those available from Audi, a large boot and plenty of space in the back to get children in and out of car seats and boosters easily. If you don’t want to spend a lot of money on a brand new car, you could look at used vehicles or consider options like contract hire or PCP (personal contract purchase), which enable you to pay monthly. 


Make use of technology

Technology plays an integral role in enhancing vehicle safety and increasing comfort, but it can also make a difference when it comes to entertainment and having fun on your car journey. Children can now watch TV shows and films while they’re in the car, and you can also use technology to make calls to catch up with friends and family en route, play music and create your own bespoke playlists and listen to podcasts. 


Plan your route in advance

If you’re driving long distances with children, it’s crucial to make sure that there are places to stop and to plan your route so that you know where you’re going and how to get to your destination. You’ll need to stop frequently for loo or nappy change breaks and to stretch your legs and have something to eat and drink, and you might also need to top up your tank. Plan where you’re going to stop and check traffic before you set off. You don’t want to sit in huge queues for hours with restless little ones in the back. Where possible, it’s best to avoid peak times and to try and set off early in the morning and in the evening.


Keep everyone fed and watered

Most parents will know all-too-well that being ‘hangry’ is a thing when you’re a child. Before you leave home, make sure you have plenty of snacks and drinks with you to keep tantrums at bay. 




Travelling with kids can be great fun, but often, getting to a destination is stressful. If you’re planning a road trip, or you’re going to visit friends or relatives who live far away, take these tips on board for a pleasant, trouble-free journey. 



 

Friday, 16 October 2020

Ways The Internet Has Helped Families Run More Efficiently

 Although there is a constant battle between the internet been the best thing since sliced bread and it been used too much, causing stress, and less focused children, there is certainly no denying how much the online world has helped busy families to become more organized and efficient. 



Image by Марина Вельможко from Pixabay 


Some of the ways it has helped include: 

Online Food Shopping 

Long gone are the days of dragging your small children to the supermarket. If you have ever been the parent who is having to deal with an over-tired two-year-old in the middle of the supermarket then you will probably be extremely thankful for the fact you can now avoid this completely and do it all online. You can sit back, relax with a cuppa, and do your shopping from your sofa at the end of the day when all the children are in bed. And you can even add in the bits you’ve missed through the week right up until the day before it arrives, you don’t get that with the store. 

Medical Help 

We can get doctors’ appointments, counseling, prescriptions, etc. all at the click of a button online. With the help of tools like Zoom, it has become incredibly easy to have your medical concern looked at in the comfort of your home without the need to travel to a doctor’s surgery. This is again something that is brilliant for parents who have small children. And although you need to visit a medical professional such as your opticians in person, you can choose your glasses online from sites like Eyeglasses.com

Working From Home

Although this is something that has now been thrown on people because of Covid-19, it is something that many people are starting to realize what the hype was all about. Many businesses have even started to offer the option of permanent working from home which could help families out majorly. Imagine not having to fit in the school run and your commute and how much extra time that would give you to spend as a family. Not to mention the fact that your working day could even be more relaxing, with research to suggest that the work commute is one of the most stressful times of the day. 


Working from home also has other hidden benefits. That load of washing that usually waits until the end of the day to be sorted can now be done on your screen break and you can get another load on. You could quickly run the hoover around or dust in your afternoon break, or you could prepare tea ready for the evening on your lunch. How about your daily exercise? Because you’re not commuting you could go for a run or walk in the morning, or even on your lunch because of the time you have saved having your fridge and kitchen across from you working from the home office. 


These are just a few of the ways the internet is making today’s families more efficient. Have you noticed any benefits of the internet for your family? Please share some in the comments. 


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