Daily spending can often leave you feeling a bit, well, robbed.
Whether it’s being caught out by a few supermarket impulse purchases or never being able find the best deal, it often seems like you’re splashing out more than you should.
Thankfully, we’ve rounded-up some simple hacks to help you look after yourself, your home and your finances, so you can stop worrying and focus on the things that really matter.
Know your dates
Households are wasting £346 worth of quality, edible food due to confusion over food date labels according to Anti-food waste innovator, Too Good To Go.
Before you throw ‘out-of-date’ food in the rubbish, carefully check the dates on the packaging. The ‘use by’ date, is about safety and the most important date to remember.
Foods can be eaten (and most can be frozen) up until the use-by date, but not after.
You will see use-by dates on food that goes off quickly, such as meat products or ready-prepared salads. For the use-by to be a valid guide, you must carefully follow the storage instructions.
But according to the Food Standards Agency, the best before date is about quality and not safety. The food will be safe to eat after this date but may not be at its best in terms of flavour or texture.
Put five aside
Do you always over spend at the supermarket? Curb your impulse spending by always putting back five items after you have finished your shop, online or in store.
This will help you work out what items are essential and cut your costs quicker than you might think.
Get a sweet deal with Honey
Plugins you can install on your browser can remind you to check whether voucher codes are available, potentially securing you a discount.
Worth a look are Pouch and Honey which, when downloaded to Chrome or Safari, will automatically list voucher codes at the checkout, so you never miss out on a deal.
Have you switched your tariff only to have a cheaper one launched just days later? Or felt pressured by a telesales agent? Not to worry, it is not too late.
All consumers who switch energy suppliers are entitled to a 14-day cooling-off period where they can switch back without incurring any charges.
Bag a free Beano
If you have a little Beano fan (or even a grown-up one) in your house, head to the publication’s website to download its Golden Beano comic totally free.
To get your PDF copy of the comic, simply click/tap on the image and either print or save to a device of your choice.
Benefit from your breakdown cover
Did you know your car breakdown policy may come with a large number
The AA, for instance, offers 25% off an English Heritage membership, a 10% discount at Halfords and free eye tests at Vision Express with discounts on prescription glasses as well as a free three-month supply of disposable contact lenses.
During the pandemic, most car breakdown providers will assist customers that work for the NHS even if their policy wouldn’t usually cover them.
And some providers, such as Green Flag, will attend to the car of any NHS worker for free, including non-members.
Beware of supermarket tricks
Believe it or not, supermarkets can mark regular goods at different prices, depending on where they are in the store.
If you’re buying snacks such as nuts or dried fruit, they can be much more expensive in the snack or health food area than in the baking products aisle, while cotton buds are cheaper in the baby aisle than in the health and beauty section.
Use some elbow grease
WD-40 isn’t just for squeaky hinges, it’s also brilliant for cleaning your home. Cleanfluencers Kat and Nat from Twinkle Cleaning Duo, say it will make your stainless-steel appliances and metalwork shine.
And if your little one has put stickers or cellotape on your walls, spray some WD-40, leave for 30 seconds and wipe away.
Think like a burglar
Semi-detached houses in the South East are at most risk of being burgled, and between 3-5pm is the prime time for burglars to strike, according to an analysis of crime statistics by 247 Blinds.
So, make sure windows and doors are locked and if you have a burglar alarm, use it!
And take packaging for new expensive goods to a public recycling bin, rather than leave it outside as it can attract burglars.
Be on alert
Google Alerts is a great, easy-to-use tool for savvy online shoppers. Set up alerts for topics by entering keywords and Google will email you new content that contains these terms when it is published online.
Add additional criteria, such as frequency of the alerts, the clothing size and the local area or country you want to see content from.
Focus on terms such as retailer-specific coupons or discount/promo codes, sales, freebies and giveaways, and you can get Google Alerts to do the hard work for you.
How to get your Metro newspaper fix
Metro newspaper is still available for you to pick up every weekday morning or you can download our app for all your favourite news, features, puzzles… and the exclusive evening edition!
Download the Metro newspaper app here.
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