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Use your loaf! Slice your costs!


We seem to be inundated with advice on how we can make savings - swap our energy supplier, shop around for the best deal at the banks, cut down on waste, don't use the car for unnecessary journeys - the list is endless.

In The Times today we have the latest wheeze. Apparently you can save £1,300 per annum on lunches by making your own sandwiches. Did you know that 62% of Britons who buy their sandwiches are spending an average of £1,840 per annum based on 46 working weeks compared with a spend of £552 for those who make their own? Well of course you didn't know, like me you have more important things to think about.

But The Times and the researchers missed a trick because they omitted to tell the whole story because they based their workings on taxed income. Another way to look at it is how much you have to earn to pay for those sandwiches. At a tax rate of 20% you need to add a further £460 which means you have to earn £2,300. Just for your sandwiches!

Now if your employer offered you a pay rise of £2,300 would you dismiss it? You will possibly never have such an offer so you will just have to get up earlier and get slicing.

Years ago I was a slave to nicotine but, as they say, it was very easy to give it up because I had done it so many times! In the end I used the imaginary offer of a pay rise to persuade me of the foolishness of wasting so much money.

That was ages ago and I have long since lost track of the cost of a packet of 20 so I looked it up on the internet and I found that if I was still smoking 20 a day it would cost me £242 a month or a massive £2,904 a year! But that is out of income that is already taxed so to fund my craving I would now have to earn an extra £3,630.

What could I do with that? In four years I would have saved £11,614 of income that was already taxed so that means real wallet fodder! I would have to find an even bigger wallet!

So if I give up smoking and make my own sandwiches I can have a pay rise of £5930 a year.

But I don't smoke and I'm retired! Oh Blast!!

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