Save your pennies and the planet in one

We all know there’s a lot of ‘stuff’ in the world. On average, Australian households spend 3.5 million dollars every three minutes. That’s enough to buy a small island.

So can any of it be avoided and put back into savings?

We know you don’t want to scrimp on things like health care and basic necessities, but what about the everyday items that are outside food, transport and bills? We’ve put together a list of items you can get from sites like Gumtree or eBay and local op shops to be a little more thrifty and a little less ‘let’s go to IKEA’.

Furniture

This is the obvious one, and not because vintage couches are trendy. We all like to live in a nice house that feels like home, with cosy chairs and nice robust dining tables. So whilst we can indulge in purchasing new electronics, perhaps consider looking on eBay for an upcycled cabinet to house the HD TV?

Anywhere from your local thrift store or op shop will have full sets of household furniture at a fraction of what you’d pay for it at Adairs, plus – it’s likely to stay in fashion longer, because it’s likely already done one full trend cycle!

Keep an eye out for second hand furniture sellers on Gumtree, often they make a side income off selling used furniture, so they’ve got a lot on hand – just stick to woods and metals to avoid any nasty bed-bug type critters.

An added bonus of avoiding IKEA on the weekend is that you’ll not only have a chair that isn’t in every house on the street – but you’ll also save on the Swedish meatballs.

Clothes and Accessories

It’s quite popular to scavenge the second-hand shops to find clothes these days, and we as a society are getting better at sending off a big bag to Vinnies rather than chucking it out. Capitalise on this just a little and you’ll find some high quality clothes and shoes at your local op-shop.

If you’re slightly more fashion conscious, jump on eBay and search your favorite brand – you’re likely to find someone who’s simply gotten sick of the exact item you’ve coveted for a while.

Shoes are a big one, too. Where do people send a brand new pair of sneakers they bought but never worn? You guessed it, the Brotherhood of St. Laurence, with a $98 saving to boot.

Entertainment

You can certainly spend a lot on household entertainment, between Netflix subscriptions and app purchases, so it’s good to find an area to cut corners where you can.

Get a bit thrifty and look to the gamers of Gumtree to buy your consoles, controllers, games and DVD’s – there’s probably a teenager out there who’s finished the exact game you’ve been eyeing and needs pocket money for the next one.

Another one to think about is books and toys for kids; growing at a mile a minute, kids love a new toy, but we’re sure Mum and Dad don’t like the cost, right? Save yourself a trip to Kmart and jump on a local Facebook group where parents trade and sell kids toys next time your kids are begging for new lego.

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