When the outbreak of new coronavirus is slowing down the city, Hongkongers are staying at home longer and longer. The sudden days off happens to be a perfect time to make your home organised. Neat and tidy space can not only give you a peace of mind for yourself and your family, but also a huge potential of bringing a long run of saving money, if you stop wasting money on stuff like missing chargers and penalties of overdue payment.
Create a “drop box” of receipts
Stop tossing and misplacing receipts from grocery stores and clothing purchases. Dedicate a box, says in your kitchen and wardrobe to keep receipts of groceries and clothings. In case you need to return something, say the blueberry went mouldy after one night, you will never miss a receipt for a refund.
On a weekly basis, separate out the receipts that are expired for return and refund. Some receipts may be needed for your employer’s reimbursements for personal money spent on business expenses.
Purge your pantry and refrigerator
Do you know your family could save HK$12,000 a year by having breakfast and dinner at home more often? That is the average household spends annually on eating out and ordering in. Then, the first step to cook more at home is an organised pantry and refrigerator.
A fact is that people will not eat and cook the food which is not seen readily. First, throw out the old cans and bottles that have been sitting there forever, it saves you the time and effort of hunting your favourites. Next, group the food that will spoil first at eye level. Then, group alike food so you can quickly pick your available ingredients when you are cooking a meal. Finally, keep your leftovers in leftovers and snacks in clear food containers so everyone can spot them.
Set reminders on online calendar
Say goodbye to overdue charges and unused subscriptions. You can set up unlimited alerts for events on electronic calendars, such as Apple iCloud, Microsoft Outlook, and Google. They are far better than using a paper calendar for one reason: collaboration with other members of our family.
You can do this simple trick: make sure you can your family member are using the same platform, create a shareable calendar, say “Utility Bills”, for upcoming deadlines. Next, add payment events from “Electricity” to “Trial Netflix Subscription” on their payment due date and set several alerts before. Finally, turn off the alerts or remove the event once the task is settled. Since your family members are managing the same calendar in real time, the chance of missing any due date lessens.
Keep shops’ benefits handy
Gift cards and cash vouchers are similar to cash, if you would not toss a hundred dollar note in a bin, so you should keep these like cash in a handy spot for your next shopping at their designated stores.
Start keeping them in a fixed place in your wallet. Attach sharp-colored Post-it flags with the deadline of redemption written on, and arrange them orderly.
For e-vouchers and gift codes, you can create an account at the earliest moment. Do not hesitate to look around settings there. It may allow you to credit your account balance by redeeming your virtual money or set notifications of expiring vouchers.
Put carton boxes away
The carton boxes from your latest online shopping are good for shipment but not for organising your collection of memorables and seasonal accessories.
You better look away from these paper boxes for long-run storage. They are weak to the elements especially moisture during humid spring and summer of Hong Kong, resulting in a mouldy container and perished materials inside. Moreover, stacked carton boxes are extremely difficult for finding things inside. Then these are the added cost of buying replacement items for things you already own but it is deteriorated or just fail to retrieve.
Invest in some transparent storage boxes. These plastic containers, available in a range of colors and volume, help you keep everything in its place and in plain sight, plus the extra layer of protection. You will be rewarded for tidy storage space with extra hours and money.