25 Oct - 2023
The current cost of living crisis is unprecedented.
Despite the recent pandemic crisis being over, we now have another crisis on our hands. I’m talking about the cost of living crisis. And if you’re like me, and sick of hearing the word ‘unprecedented’, I’m sorry but I need to say it one more time…The current cost of living crisis is unprecedented.
We are currently living in a world where the price of literally everything is rising at unprecedented rates. Groceries are increasing at rates some adults have never experienced ever in their lives. High mortgage rates are meaning some households are having to find thousands of extra dollars every month. And fun things like overseas travel and eating out with friends are becoming more scarce.
Recent HelloFresh research revealed that nearly 90% Kiwis have been affected by the general cost of living over the last six months. On top of this, Kiwis estimate that their grocery spending has increased by over 30% over the same period.
This crisis might seem overwhelming and stressful, but whenever I feel out-of-control with my finances, I look at what I can control.
My cost of living hacks to get through include:
Create a money diary. It's like a food diary but for your spending. Write down everything you spend in a day, week, month and how it made you feel. This is a great way to see what you can cut back on, without feeling like you can’t enjoy the things you love. It also helps you stop spending money unnecessarily and will make you a more conscious spender.
Do an audit on your bills. Call your electricity, gas, phone and insurance…all your providers! Ask them if there is a better deal you can go on or if they have any special promotions on at the moment. There is no shame in asking, especially if it could save you some extra dollars.
Meal kit delivery services like HelloFresh are a no-brainer as the price for meals is fixed each week, making it much easier for Kiwis to manage their budget. A meal kit delivery service is a good idea for people who don’t have a lot of time to meal plan or go to the supermarket, but enjoy cooking and want to cut back on takeaway or dining out.
Buy only what you need. When it comes to the weekly shop, try to stick to what you need by only buying the required amounts or serving sizes. By doing this, it means that fewer odd ends and scraps are left over at the end of the week to be disposed of and wasted. Meal kit delivery services make this easy as they come with pre-portioned ingredients, meaning everything ends up in your plate not the bin.
Just like all other crises, this one will pass too.
And remember these are unprecedented times. They will not last forever. Try to not compare yourself to others either. Everyone is on their own financial journey and has their own financial incomings and outgoings.
Just like all other crises, this one will pass too. We are already starting to see light at the end of the tunnel with inflation coming down and mortgage rates not going up as much. In the meantime, try to use some of these clever savings hacks to navigate as best you can through these weird and not-so-wonderful times.