Lifestyle over Budgetting

Hello Readers,

I do not believe in a paper exercise budgeting with spreadsheets, apps and plentiful monthly reviews. It’s like calorie counting diet for weight loss, which hardly work for most people (including myself). Real healthy people do not go on diet. They choose to live a lifestyle by understanding the basic fundamentals of healthy habits. Same can be applied to your financial health.

Fundamentally, we need to live within our means. We need to accept that we must limit our spending based on what we earn and save at least 25% every month. We should not allow banks, credit cards, loan dictate how much we can borrow. This unhealthy habit makes everyone run in an endless cycle of debt. Buy or Rent places which you can afford. Only buy goods and services within your affordability factor. Once in a bluemoon, we need to have a ‘cheat’ day where we go buy something nice for ourselves. However, we need to save up before we buy that special item, holiday, car or service which we always dream of. End of the day everyone needs a realistic goal in our lives to push ahead. 

Family Ten Saving Commandments

  • Always Save before We Spend.
  • Always sell things we no longer use and de-clutter the house.
  • Avoid monthly subscription services (i.e Netflix, Amazon Prime, TV, car loans).
  • Buy expensive luxury goods whichare durable and long lasting.
  • Always wait till the final sale before committing on the purchase.
  • Credit Card are for Air miles not Interest Rates.
  • Everyone have their own individual saving accounts.
  • Family agreement before committing on buying new stuff for home.
  • Frequently cook at home and host weekend dinner parties with friends.
  • Cashback! Cashback! Cashback!

Two Super Tips on How to Save Money Further!

Buy Luxury Goods.

  • Buy good quality luxury over cheaper brands (i.e Canada Goose Vs A&F) (i.e Armani Suit over 5x Zara Suits).
  • Most luxury brands are actually more durable. (i.e LV bags/wallets).
  • Appreciate in Value (i.e Channel Classic Flaps, Rolex Daytona).
  • Stand out from the crowd and be proud (Rimowa Travel Case).
  • Less hoarding in the house with good quality luxury goods.
  • Quality lasting beyond warranty period (i.e IPhone & Dyson Hovers).

Always save up and spend on good quality luxury goods once in a while as a reward over impulse shopping buying & hoarding. Sometimes we need to reward ourselves. Similar to eating good quality Michelin Restaurants over fast food franchise chain food.

Pay Everything with Monthly Credit Card.

  • Rule 1 - Always pay in full at end of month.
  • Rule 2 - Make sure Credit card has reward air miles to collect.
  • Rule 3 - Get a second Credit Card (Master/Visa) for travel purpose to reduce commission charges.
  • Rule 4 - Try to pay for everything with Credit card to max airmiles.
  • Rule 5 - Set threshold limit on the apps to alert when budget triggered for the month to avoid over spending.

Honestly the air miles accumulated for the year is sufficient for 2 short breaks a year to a different city for family of four all inclusive. It’s like free money. Various level AMEX provides travel insurance cover for free.

Save More 2 Travel More

I love travelling with my family. My 6 year old daughter have visited at least 17 different countries to date. Always believe the best education for my kids is to travel and experience the beautiful world. We have at least 4 foreign holidays a year and three of those are always in a new city or country.

All this is only possible via saving up and cutting down daily unnecessary expenses and advance planning. We save hard so we can carefully spent on good luxuries, food and key essentials.

Honestly, we do not keep a strict budget or expenditure spreadsheet. We make is a discipline habit to always seek for deals, discounts and removing non-essential monthly expenses. Similar to the philosophy of; Diets never work for weight loss however a good healthy lifestyle with regular exercise is the long term simple solution.

Family Traveling Guidelines

  • Self Cater in the evenings to reduce cost and kids get to bed early.
  • Always plans events and trips in advance.
  • We love AirBnB over expensive Hotels.
  • Only buy flights on sales or Airmiles.
  • Cashback on credit cards, event bookings, travel bookings, insurance.
  • Never wait last minute for foreign currency exchange.
  • Never spontaneous select restaurant on travel. Eat in highly recommended restaurants by bloggers and Tripadvisors.
  • Always travel light and minimal.
  • No impulse souvenir buying unless local novelty.

I have used all 4G networks in the UK and the one I highly recommend is Three Network. My 3 key recommended points are a) unlimited data b)Free data roaming in EU and US (>71 countries) c) simple honest easy bills. I do not need to carry a GPS unit as I have Google Maps on phone.

As a young family of four, we always go for accommodation where we can have a kitchen to cook at night as our kids go to bed early. With the rise of AirBnb we can afford better accommodations with friendly host with bigger and more affordable accommodations compared to hotels!

Family savings are always a team game. 

Join us here for regular updates and tips on how we all can save more money!