**This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Kijiji. All opinions are my own.
Forget the holidays, summer is the season where I spend the most money. There are vacations (although we took ours in May this year), weekend trips, weddings, meeting up with friends, and much more. In addition, this year we need to factor in the cost of daycare which is crazy expensive!
With so many upcoming expenses, managing our money is going to be trickier than ever. If you find yourself stressed about spending at this time of the year, don’t worry, I’ve got some tips to help you manage your expenses this summer.
Plan for your expenses
I always recommend at the beginning of the year for people to update their budgets. Well, now that we’re almost halfway through the year, it’s time to look at your budget and see if it still makes sense.
From a day-to-day perspective, I’m sure your numbers add up, but it’s those additional expenses that come up in the summer (and the holidays) that can really ruin your budget. Take a look at your summer plans and write down the events you already have booked and the ones you haven’t quite confirmed yet. With all of your plans laid out in front of you, start estimating how much you’ll be spending this summer and budget accordingly.
If you find that your estimated expenses are higher than what you have budgeted, then you might have to dial back some of your expectations or start passing on some events. My wife and I have had to turn down events in the past simply because we didn’t want to overspend. Don’t feel bad if you need to do the same, it’s okay!
Build your summer spend fund
You know, talking about budgeting is easy, but besides cutting back on some expenses, how exactly do you come up with some extra cash for the summer? That’s easy, by buying items second-hand! As far as I’m concerned, every dollar saved can go towards your other expenses (or savings).
According to Kijiji’s 2018 Second-Hand Economy Index, Canadians can save an average of $825 per year by buying second-hand vs. new. That’s a huge chunk of change!
I personally have been buying second-hand, joining the other 85 per cent of Canadians who participate in the second-hand economy for quite some time and just recently picked up a travel crib which saved me $90 off the retail price. It may not sound like a whole lot, but last year alone, I saved $525 in just a few months by buying second-hand which is a fair amount. In fact, saving money is the number one reason Canadians acquire second-hand items instead of new products.
That money saved can go a long way, especially in the summer when my expenses tend to go up. The small things you can do can make a huge difference when it comes to your finances.
The best things in life are free
Managing your expenses this summer could be easier than you realize if you look for free things to do. Take a look in your community, city, or nearby towns to see what events are going on that won’t cost you anything. There’s practically a festival going on every week in Toronto (where I live), so check out your local listings.
Now, I don’t actually expect you to spend zero money. There’s nothing wrong with buying lunch at a free event or treating yourself to an ice cream on a hot day. If you don’t have a fear of missing out, then there’s no reason you can’t enjoy the summer at a reasonable cost.
Entertaining more is also a great option since it’s almost free. Ever since we had a child, going out late is no longer an option. Instead, my wife and I plan on hosting more potluck lunches where we can enjoy the company of our friends and family. Many of my friends love doing potlucks since it’s an easy way to try different dishes without worrying about splitting a giant bill at the end of the meal.
Enjoying the summer doesn’t have to cost you a fortune. With these tips, managing your finances will be easy and you don’t even need to sacrifice any fun! Think about what your plans are for the summer and start working towards them.
If you’re looking for additional ways to save money, visit kijiji.ca to get tips on how using the second-hand economy can help you save!