Frugal Ways to Survive Hardship

12 Jun

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We’ve all been there – suddenly realising that you’ve got no money and you’re not due to be paid for a while. You may have miscalculated your budget, or some kind of emergency could have cropped up meaning that you had to spend most or all of the disposable income you had to hand. You may have been handed an unexpected bill or felt the need to grab an opportunity that was almost too good to be true. Whether it’s your own doing or not, lasting out through a period of hardship – be it 5 days or 5 months – takes a little ingenuity and some forward planning.

Surviving until you’re paid again is going to take two things: saving money and making money. If you can save money on the things you usually do, then you won’t have to spend as much. This can help if you’ve been left with very little to get by on, or if you need to make the absolute most out of what you’ve got. Making money will give you a cushion and should make life a little easier. If you’ve been left with very little to feed yourself with, for example, then making a little more is only going to help you.

Saving Money

If you need to stop spending as much on your essentials immediately, then you’ll need to be clever. Food is an area where many savings can be made. You don’t have to live on 11p noodles from a bargain supermarket when you don’t have a lot of money – there are ways to eat well and nutritiously on very little cash. Go to your local supermarket in the evening, as this is the time they’re likely to make the last minute discounts on fresh items. You can usually get enough vegetables to make a thick stew or soup and some decent bread for under £1. Likewise, pasta and rice are also cheap staples. If you’re really struggling, then you could ask a close friend or family member to check their cupboards for anything that you don’t want. You may be surprised at what turns up!

Making Money

Making money will take a little time and work, but can be done in a relatively short timeframe. Thanks to free listing sites such as Gumtree and eBay (which is free depending on what you’re selling), you could be de-cluttering and making some cash in the process. Remember that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, and even things you think may not be worth much could keep you fed for a few days!

If you know anyone who needs a helping hand around the home or in their garden, you could offer your services for a bit of extra change to see you through the month. Cleaning cars, walking dogs, mowing lawns and light cleaning do not require training or huge skill, but some people will be willing to pay for this to be done. Pop an advert up in your local shop or post office as a first step.

Coral Pearce-Mariner is a creative writing graduate currently working for Loans4Tenants. To read more of her work visit https://www.loans4tenants.com/Blog

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