I love a good egg. I do, I won’t deny it. Poached, scrambled, whipped into meringue, cracked onto someone unfriendly… I love them all. I identify with them. In fact, I love them so much that I have found myself indulging in them just a little too often – my bank account is displeased.
You ever sit down and work out how much you’ve splashed each month? My expenditure is at least 85% food, and if I’m being honest, of that percentage I’d say about 65% of it is brunch.
So it’s been important for me to get my head on straight when it comes to spending that money, prioritising my funds and ultimately, saving up a small portion each pay check. Here are a few lil’ tricks I’ve learned thus far.
Ditch the delivery apps
This is the big one. Food delivery apps. Oh man, they are the most blessed and most evil of all things simultaneously. At their core, purest form they’re wonderful. Conceptually beautiful – someone will bring me food while I sit at home being lazy? Perfect!
But in actuality, these bad bois make it far too easy to fall into a rut of ordering takeout every day – and it’s an absolute money sink. The fact that they’re already programmed with your payment details means you don’t even really notice that you’re paying for things until you look at your account a few days later.
Give yourself a hard (boiled) limit
Everyone will tell you to just budget more. And it’ll sound like the endless whine of a broken record repeating, “budgetbudgetbudgetbudget,” but the reason the word gets thrown around so often is that it does actually work. Who’d have thought, right? Sound money advice.
Set yourself a food-specific budget (or even brunch-specific if your habit has gotten that out of hand, me @ me) so that you can ensure that you don’t overspend over the course of the week.
Cook more, takeout less
This one seems pretty straightforward, but when it’s 11pm and you cannot be bothered to stand up and put pants on let alone stand at a stove, you aren’t gonna wanna cook.
Even if it’s as simple as making a buttload of meals in advance and just chucking ’em all in the freezer, it’ll save you time AND money. You’d be surprised how quickly those delivery fees actually add up – sure you could pay $5 for pasta, but you could also pay absolutely nothing for the pasta in your fridge.
Number crunch your brunch
Maths has never really been my strong suit (might have something to do with why I’m in this dilemma in the first place – suddenly it all makes sense) but what has often worked for me is to track my spending on the Commbank app and figure out where my money is actually going.
Commonwealth Bank Australia now has a Goal Tracker as part of its app, which means it’s a stack easier to keep an eye on where you’re at with your savings, and how you can save a bit more. The app already provides alerts when you spend money, so can get a lil’ nudge to top up your goals when you’re all cashed up.
Trust me that when it gives you that little alert to remind you that you’ve already spent over a hundred bucks on food this month, you’ll suddenly feel like cooking.Image: iStock / skynesher