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six tips to save 6,000 euros a year

Purchasing power is the first concern of the French. With record high inflation and rising energy and fuel prices, the budget is even further squeezed. France 2 proposed, on Wednesday January 16, a special program, “The great evening of purchasing power”, and presented six solutions to lower the bill.

Between food expenses, energy, transport, contracts of all kinds, clothing and furnishings, the show assured that you could save 6,000 euros per year by applying these tips. We take stock.

Food: -2500 euros by adding discounts and “cashback” reimbursements

Leslie is a racing virtuoso. With the help of a military organization, she managed to lower her food budget from 600… to 60 euros per month. In front of the cameras of France Télévisions, she reveals her precious advice to a family from Libourne (Gironde) often in the red at the end of the month. The golden rule, according to her, is to always make a shopping list that you will stick to, and to eat first. “Never go shopping on an empty stomach, otherwise you’ll want to buy anything, and it’s your stomach that will talk, not your wallet. The stores are very good at putting what makes you want at the top of the gondola, ”says the expert.

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Before leaving for the supermarket, Caroline, Benoît and their two daughters scan the store’s catalog on the Anti-crisis site to identify promotions in advance and note the reference of the products they need. They also download and print vouchers found on websites such as La belle adresse or Coupon Network. With these immediate discounts alone, the price of the cart has dropped by 13%. And it’s not over: once they get home, another time-consuming job awaits them.

Thanks to “cashback” applications such as Quoty or Shopmium, they can be reimbursed for part of their purchases, and even accumulate discounts and reimbursement. A box of tea cost them 20 cents instead of 2.79 euros. “We tell ourselves that 30 cents is not much, but if we add up, 30 cents, plus 1.50 euros, plus 3 euros… it climbs quickly, and not much quickly turns into a small sum “, rejoices Caroline.

Benoît, enthusiastic, tempers. “At the beginning, there will be a big waste of time, you will have to find your way around these sites and these apps, but once you have everything in mind, the path will be clear. The family can’t believe they have saved 65% on their shopping. According to the show’s estimates, it is possible to save 2,500 euros per year on an average food budget of 5,400 euros, or almost 50% less expenses. But you have to be prepared to spend a considerable amount of time there.

Some anti-waste brands sell products refused by supermarkets up to 25% cheaper. Photo Pixabay / Public Domain

Anti-waste: -1000 euros with an eco-friendly and economical lifestyle

France 2 also returned to several anti-waste initiatives that make it possible to eat less expensively without sacrificing quality. Some local producers, for example, offer “ugly” or simply non-compliant vegetable baskets at a much lower price. Leslie, for example, buys an 8-kilo crate of vegetables for 5 euros instead of 10 to 15 euros from a small cooperative near Bordeaux, via the Phénix application, a specialist in waste reduction.

Near Rennes (Ille-et-Vilaine), a supermarket in the “We anti-gaspi” network offers products that have been refused by large retailers, because of their imperfect appearance, their approaching expiry date, or problems (even minor ones) encountered during transport. Their price is at least 20% below the market price. There are huge sweet potatoes, goat’s cheese with a bad molding, slightly dented gherkins, irregular slices of grison meat… This does not, however, alter the taste of the products. Some are even identical to those found at other brands, but come from overstocks from producers and manufacturers, who have produced too much and therefore sell for less. In all, France 2 estimates the benefits of these anti-waste initiatives at 1,000 euros per year.

The show is presented by Julian Bugier. Photo France Televisions

Energy: -400 euros by changing supplier and controlling electricity consumption

At the start of the school year, the French had the unpleasant surprise of seeing the price of gas soar: + 54% on average. Already rising electricity could follow a similar slope. It is therefore necessary to pay attention to its energy expenditure.

Frédéric and Natasha are flabbergasted when they learn that their off-peak rate subscription is causing them to lose money. “It’s the wrong idea, but you’re not the only ones. Today, 50% of French people have this tariff option, and for 80% of them it is not profitable”, explains Rémi Rousset, founder of Lite, one of these new companies which give advice on household electricity consumption, just like Ecojoko or Hellowatt.

There are many options: change supplier for a more competitive competitor by comparing the price per kilowatt-hour, study its consumption using its Linky meter to identify problems, add boxes to radiators to program them and avoid consumption peaks, or unplug the devices that remain on standby.

Moreover, if, like Véronique, a retiree who lives in Brittany, you heat yourself with domestic fuel oil, it is also possible to pay less by buying in bulk, on behalf of your neighbours.

They are dozens and manage to obtain discounts ranging from 7 to 10%, despite the current price increase. According to France 2, buying in bulk and controlling your electricity bill can save 400 euros per year on an average budget of 1,600 euros per year.

The French spend an average of 1,600 euros on energy for their homes. Photo Pixabay / Public Domain

Fuel: -1000 euros by switching to super-ethanol and adopting economical driving

Sarah and Thomas live in Bayonne (Pyrénées-Atlantiques) and spend several hours in their vehicle every day. Like many French people, they are suffering from rising prices: in 2021, fuel has on average jumped by 21%. They spend an average of 600 euros each month, and that’s why they chose to switch to super-ethanol.

That day, E85, made up of 85% ethanol, alcohol from the fermentation of vegetable waste, and 15% unleaded gasoline, was at 0.74 euro per liter, against 1.84 euro for the SP 95, and 1.73 euros for diesel. The installation of the box cost them nearly 1,200 euros, the amount that the couple will save in one year.

“The box is amortized in one year, overconsumption of 15 to 20% included,” says Johan, mechanic specializing in the conversion of gasoline engines to bio ethanol. In addition, super-ethanol also produces 70% less CO2 emissions. But beware ! It is not on sale in all service stations, it is better to inquire before taking the plunge.

And to further reduce the bill, the youtubeur Anthony Perrier, king of good car tips, also taught them the art of economical driving, with 10% additional savings at stake.

Did you know ? The heating of the car does not consume, but the air conditioning does. You should also not leave the windows open when you are driving fast, nor the bike rack when it is not useless. Reducing your speed by 10 to 20% on the highway can also make a difference.

These tricks would save 1,000 euros on the average French bill, which is around 1,700 euros, France Télévisions promises us.

Companies are responsible for renegotiating your insurance contracts and telephone packages for you. Photo Pixabay / Public Domain

Insurance, packages: renegotiate everything to recover at least 600 euros

We have an average of ten subscriptions per household. Between the telephone, the internet, videos on demand, car or home insurance, mutual insurance, etc., automatic transfers follow one another without thinking about it and yet, it would be possible to drastically reduce the amount of the invoice. Indeed, for telephone plans in particular, competition is such between operators that they are ready to lower prices to keep you or win you over.

But for most of these contracts, it is possible to renegotiate everything, or to easily change provider to find cheaper with the same guarantees. Platforms like Ideel, Balio, Jechange or Cherpas are responsible for comparing offers and even renegotiating these contracts for you for free. By reducing by 10 to 15 euros each of the bills of a young Marseillaise who is struggling to make ends meet, the founder of Ideel, Edouard Alexandre, was able to save her 1,500 euros over one year.

Expert negotiators can also take care of your borrower insurance that you pay for your home loan. They take care of contacting your bank and taking out equivalent less expensive insurance, while avoiding the administrative exhaustion that these procedures cause. In all, renegotiating or playing the competition could save 600 euros per year in purchasing power on the more than 2,200 euros paid on average for these subscriptions, according to France Télévisions.

Highlighting a garment allows it to be sold for more on platforms such as Vinted. Photo Pixabay / Public Domain

The second hand to buy, but especially to resell: +500 euros

Increasing your purchasing power also means diversifying your sources of income. Sarah is a second-hand expert. This Strasbourgeoise buys cheaper and above all resells more expensive, at flea markets or online. For this, she repairs a piece of furniture bought for a handful of euros from Emmaüs or brings life back to a piece of clothing that was forgotten in a closet. By taking care of the presentation of branded jeans, for example, it multiplies its selling price by three or four.

A jumpsuit bought for 8 euros on the Vinted online sales platform, presented flat in a dark place, was sold for 24 euros when worn, with a beautiful light and a plain background. Keeping the box of your pair of shoes also allows you to resell them at a better price -20 to 30% more. Description and keywords are also very important.

“It’s better than the booklet A in terms of profitability,” she laughs. His way of life allows him to earn up to 6,000 euros per year. But for an average of about 2,000 euros per year of expenditure on clothing, shoes, household appliances and furniture, playing the second-hand market could allow a gain of 500 euros, according to the program. So, ready to save money?

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