Making treasures from trash. How upcycling and smart social spending helped me stash more cash

Louise Kavanagh is a 28-year-old apprentice youth worker who is cleverly making her money stretch in a few imaginative ways. In her spare time, Louise scours charity shops for projects to upcycle.

"I go around a few charity shops and pick up projects and I’ll completely transform them into furniture that I like"

She breathes new life into old furniture, making unique and beautiful original pieces she can then sell via her Instagram account. Any profit Louise makes goes straight into her savings. This, along with careful budgeting, means she rides out the month debt-free and in style, saving for a bright future.

Want to know how to save the pennies to make the pounds, like Louise?

Learning how to budget and spend within your means can help you avoid debt and save for those big purchases. Like Louise, you may be saving up towards a car or a deposit for a house, so remember: small changes can lead to big results!

Here’s how Louise’s savvy tricks help her rein in her spending and make a bit of extra money on the side:

  • Uses a money box to save extra cash, without dipping into it!
  • Writes down her monthly income and outgoings to budget and keep track of what she has left to spend.
  • Never borrows money she’s not sure she can pay back.
  • Takes out cash when she goes out, rather than losing track of what she is spending on her card.
  • Meal-preps like a pro! Doing a big shop only for the ingredients for planned meals, rather than buying food on impulse.
  • Saves money by meeting friends at a house for drinks and a catch-up before going out together.
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