What we can learn from and apply to our finances, thanks to retro TV

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For some of us working from home, unaccustomed to the usual discipline that many freelancers and business owners adhere to on a day to day basis, it’s easy to slip into certain routines shall we say. That’s no excuse however, to sneak into making bad financial habits. It’s more important than ever to manage the pennies carefully.

For those who need background noise, would highly recommend picking some retro television found on the likes of Challenge. Why? I hear you ask. Not just a hark back to more comforting times and interesting haircuts, but full to the brim with valuable financial advice and cautionary tales. Here are some hand-picked tips to help you stay financially well, during this particularly uncertain time.

 Apply the wheeling and dealing mantra of Bargain Hunt

How could anyone forget the tan, pinstripe suit, and jazzy glasses? David Dickenson taught us a lot about both fashion and finding bargains that were ‘cheap as chips.’ Although the teams of red and blue didn’t always make a profit, rummaging for tat that appeared worth more (or less) than it was, combined with a haggling spirit, should absolutely be applied to our everyday spending. Did you know haggling can be used online as well as in real time? As you would on a market stall, always be prepared to walk away if you don’t get a price you’re after, in any situation.

Embrace the thrifty spirit of Changing Rooms

There’s no denying LLB (Lawrence Lewellyn Bowen for the millennials) was a visionary. True, MDF and duct tape maybe a little too shabby chic by today’s standards, but the spirit of creating something from next to nothing, is not be balked at. Support charity shops, buy from auction sites and get stuck in at a good old-fashioned jumble sale. You may be surprised at what you’ll get for buying second hand.

Channel your inner valuer a la The Price is Right

The lesson we can learn from Brucey (a Brucey Bonus if you will) is that our minds sometimes overestimate what something is worth, putting too much value on it. Hello, panic buying? What do you think that [insert product] is really worth, and more importantly, do you actually need it? Sure, no one ever needed a speed boat at the end of The Price is Right but that’s not the point. Just make sure you go away and think before you buy that…sauna/washing machine/12 pack of toilet roll.

Identify ‘The Weakest Link’ and be rid of unnecessary purchases

Stay with me on this one. No one is suggesting an Anne Robinson style cloak or brashness the next time you go into a bank. TWL applies to you checking where your financial habits are going wrong. Everyone has a vice, and just like The Weakest Link, they need to be gotten rid of, pronto. Is it the sales crying out to you, or is it buying lunch out every day? Whatever the weakest link, say ‘Goodbye.’

Be a budget hero, like the grooms of Don’t tell the Bride

Perhaps not entirely ‘retro’, but it’s intermittently on E4 and that makes for comforting viewing (IMHO). Some of the later series of DTTB should absolutely be fervently disregarded – no one, and I repeat no one, need to pay for a joint sky dive right now, or blow all their savings on a trip to Vegas. However, what can be taken from this is the strict budget guidelines that are enforced. The grooms maybe clueless most of the time, but at least most of them sat down and worked out their budget from the first day. Ultimately, the bride and bridesmaids usually end up in some hideous dress, BUT the groom honours the budget and that’s the most valuable message we take from DTTB. (Hopefully).

If you have to spend, spend well like (some) people on The Apprentice 

Again, not exactly retro but as it started in 2005, we’ll run with it. The mantra to be taken from The Apprentice is not one of screwing over ones colleagues but being savvy with the spends you do have. We all know Lord Sugar’s scrappiness helped get him where he is today. Like him or loathe him, the man knows how to make his money work hard for him. The thing to take away is if you have to spend, spend well. Use cashback sites like TopCashback so that with any essential purchases, you’re still getting something for nothing.

 

 

 

 

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