Budget Friendly House Decoration Options When You Have A Child

Having children can be an expensive task. Not only do you have to feed them, clothe them, buy them nappies when they’re young and other stuff when they’re older but they can also cost you a ton of money by deciding to wreck your things. I should know, Olivia headbutted me the other day and cracked my glasses – I’ve now got some strong black tape round them until I can get to the opticians!

They can also be very expensive when it comes to renting a property. We have it in our contract that after five years, certain things can’t be charged out of our deposit. The carpet where we live is horrible. It was horrible before we moved in and then they rented to a couple with a newborn and knew we planned to be here for a good few years – hence why our letting agent ensure our contract covered us for certain things. After all, we’ve weaned two babies in this house and have currently potty trained one with another potentially starting in a few months time. It got me to thinking though – if we owned this house, what decoration options would we go for that are budget friendly in both cost and lasting?

I wouldn’t bother with wallpaper when it comes to children – children like to draw on walls and even though you may tell them not to, its still going to happen. At least with just a painted wall, you can paint over it if needs be. I would choose hardwood flooring – it is generally more affordable than carpet when buying it for your house and is certainly more child friendly when it comes to mishaps and accidents!

I’d also opt for leather furnishings – we have a leather sofa as it is so much easier to clean. We made the mistake of having a fabric sofa when Jack was little and when it finally broke and went to the dump, it was stained and disgusting. Leather is easy to wipe clean and ages well.

Lastly – and it may sound silly – but limit the amount of breakable decor you have in the house as it will cost you to go out and replace. If you have to have breakable items on show in the house, keep them out of reach of your child to reduce the risk of accidents. I have some beautiful crockery that I collected with my Dad – as I have nowhere to store it here without it being on my children’s level, I’m keeping it at my Mum’s house until we move somewhere bigger because I don’t want them getting broken.

Do you have any tips for budget friendly decor ideas when you have children in the house? I’d love to know your thoughts.

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What is a no spend week?

If you’re still feeling the pinch after enjoying the festive season, now is a perfect time to consider doing a no spend week. Not only will this help you save some money, but it’ll help you to spot any bad financial habits you’ve gotten into.

A no spend week is a week where you don’t spend money on anything, other than your weekly shop, transport costs and other essentials. Although this might sound like a challenge, the financial experts over at icount, the prepaid MastercardⓇ providers, have put together their top tips for making it through no spend week. Read on to find out more!

Top tips for making it through a no spend week

These simple tips and tricks will help you to breeze through a week without spending any money.

Clear out your cupboards

A no spend week is the perfect opportunity to clear out your cupboards and discover what treasures you’ve forgotten about. There are likely to be lots of tempting treats hidden at the back of kitchen cupboards, which will help you with your food prep during your no spend week. Who knows what you’ll uncover!

Ditch the coffee

If you’re guilty of grabbing a coffee on your commute to work – stop! Not only will this cost quickly add up over the year, but plastic cups are bad for the environment too. If you can’t go without a little caffeine boost in a morning, try taking your own coffee in a reusable flask to save some money during your no spend week.

Make your own entertainment

A week without movie downloads, trips to the cinema or nights out can be tough, but there are easy ways to have just as much fun whilst still saving money. Invite friends over for a potluck dinner party, where everyone brings their signature dish, or opt for a night in instead of your usual date night. Make sure to also look at what free events are available in your local area during your no spend week.

Try homemade alternatives

No matter what product you need, there’s probably a homemade version that can be made. From skincare products, to washing powder or dishwasher rinse aid, you can make your own versions for a fraction of the cost, with ingredients you probably already have in your cupboards. Have a Google for recipes, or take to Pinterest for even more inspiration.

Make the most of freebies

There are plenty of freebies available to take advantage of if you know where to look. Scour local Facebook groups for free events or items, look on Gumtree for household items you may need, and make the most of competitions or giveaways from your favourite brands.


Making Money By Clearing Out Your Old Rubbish

January is one of those months where we have all the resolutions to do stuff and change up what we are doing. Some of us choose to get fit and lose weight, some choose to try a new hobby and some choose to declutter their houses ready for the year ahead.

But what do you do with your old rubbish when you no longer want it? Well, anything that can truly be deemed as rubbish can be put into your weekly or fortnightly waste collection, taken to the dump or recycled. But for those decent quality items that you simply no longer want? Why not make some money off of them? I am a big believer in selling the items you no longer want, as long as they are of decent quality. Why not make some money back after you forked out your hard earned cash for them originally?

There are plenty of places to sell your unwanted items to get some cash and assets nowadays but have you ever considered interactive online auctions? Not like your general auction websites, these auction companies manage the whole process from start to finish, often offering a few different processes for how to go about this. This means you can find the process that suits you the best.

These are great if you want to sell something but have no idea how to price it or know where to sell it. They know what sort of prices the items will go for and what type of people will buy them. They know exactly where to market the items and let people know what you have for sale. Why wouldn’t you take advantage of this?

I have a couple of items I have been hanging onto as I just don’t know what to do with them. I know they are worth a fair amount so I don’t just want to let them go for a certain price and then find out I could have got more, much more. Perhaps an online auction is worth my while – at least I know that I will be given a fair deal and the people buying them actually want them.

I love selling my old stuff – both parties benefit well as one person gets cash and the other gets the item they want. But I don’t like the whole process of listing everything, taking pictures, researching prices and where to market the items. It is tempting sometimes to just take them to the charity shop – even if I could do with the money! This would certainly make the selling process more streamlined if I could rely on someone else to do it for me.

Have you ever sold your old stuff at an online auction? How did you find it and did you get what you wanted from it? Do you find the other avenues of selling your old stuff tedious and boring? Maybe these interactive auctions are worth a try. What do you say, why don’t we give them a try and see how we get on?