No more meat, the heating can no longer pay or never go on holiday again. For as many as 70 percent of people who feel poor, this is the daily practice, according to research by Nibud.
More and more families in the Netherlands today live in poverty. Especially children, single-parent families, single people and people on social assistance have a hard time. Families with a low income have an average of € 15 per person per day (including fixed costs) and that is barely small.
Life becomes more expensive
Life becomes more expensive. Not only the food, but also the childcare and all other fixed costs. Yet the incomes do not rise so fast and life becomes heavier and heavier for many. Unemployment is still rising and more and more people are losing their jobs. More and more families have to bite or have to leave "luxury" to the left. Expensive holidays, designer clothes, outings and other luxuries are no longer there for many.
What do government agencies do?
Nevertheless, there are many families who are not aware of all types of emergency services and (municipal) income provisions. They are there. For example, households with a low income (up to a maximum of 110% social assistance level) can appeal to the following municipal income provisions:
- Discount scheme or cancellation of parental contribution basic school. The school is legally obliged to include a cancellation and discount scheme in the parental contribution agreement for parents who can not pay the parental contribution;
- 'Education allowance and school costs allowance' (Wtos) allow households with children in secondary education or secondary vocational education to be eligible for a (partial) reimbursement of tuition fees and school costs;
- remission of municipal levies, such as the waste levy and water board levies;
- long-term allowance for people who have a minimum income for at least five years and who have no prospect of income improvement through paid employment. You apply for the long-term supplement to your municipality;
- individual special assistance, for example: reimbursements for telephone costs, social, social or cultural activities, replacement of durable consumer goods, early and early childhood education and school costs; computer expenses and housing costs fund. You can also apply for this at your municipality.
Unfortunately, not everyone benefits from the above tips and fees, because they (just) do not fall into this category. Nevertheless, many families in the Netherlands have a financial burden and the months are too long and the income is too low to make ends meet. There are also useful "tips and tricks" for these families to save.
So I have made inquiries on social media. For example, I asked families what they are doing to save. Real house, garden and kitchen tips that not only for the poor among us but tips that are useful for everyone. I have listed the 5 best tips below.
Tip 1 to deal with poverty
Make a clear overview of your income and expense pattern in a housekeeping book or notebook. That way you know what you have to spend and you can keep it more easily. Determine for yourself how much you have to spend on groceries and put that cash in your wallet. This prevents you from pinning all loose amounts and losing the overview. Spending more than you actually have happens less quickly.
Also do your shopping weekly instead of daily. This way you avoid taking something too much every day, which you really do not really need.
Tip 2 to deal with poverty
Dive into your subscriptions and insurances, gas, water and light and compare with other providers. Subscriptions to expensive magazines can be replaced by a membership at the library. There can be a huge difference in providers of gas, water and light. Be well informed, ask around you how much someone else has paid and perhaps you can save a few bucks per month.
And save on the consumption of your energy. Think of the use of energy saving bulbs (you can hardly ignore them), remember that in a room where much light is switched on and off (toilet / bathroom) the weather is not more economical to use a low-energy light bulb there. Put your equipment at night instead of standby, do a few extra candles in the winter and have you checked if your house is well insulated? They are mostly small things, but all small bits help, however cliché it may sound.
Tip 3 to deal with poverty
In the past, people were already bartering, so why not now? There are many exchange sites nowadays. A sort of marketplace where money is not paid, but with goods. On many of these sites second-hand products are offered where a different product is asked for. Also take a look at this site. Here you will find links to various exchange sites for different product groups.
Tip 4 to deal with poverty
Bargain hunting. Keep an eye on the leaflets and buy the more expensive products (detergent, softener, diapers, toilet paper) if they are on sale. The weekly shopping can also be planned in advance by means of leaflets. Make it a route, because at one supermarket it is cheaper and at the other it is cheaper.
But also think about purchasing gifts. With Sinterklaas for example you know that you will need a lot of gifts, but you know this in February and March. If you then come across the most fun, cheap offers, why would you wait any longer? Beat in, hide it in your closet and a child can do the laundry.
And what do you think of all children's parties that your child goes off in a year? Save that trade.
Tip 5 to deal with poverty
Dare to ask for help. To your neighbors, your family or perhaps to that nice lady from a few streets away. Do not be ashamed when asking for help. There are a lot of people around us who are in the same situation and who may have a slightly different view of the situation as yourself, so you may encounter new ideas or solutions. You will be amazed at how many people you want and can help.
More saving tips
In addition to these five tips, you naturally have many more options to save.
So of course you still have the thrift stores where you can go for good, but cheap second-hand products. You can save on family outings. You can buy fresh vegetables instead of packaged and pre-cut vegetables.
Another example in the category "home, garden, and kitchen tricks" is not, for example, expensive cleaning products in house, but instead you just do a few drops of detergent in a water-filled plant spray and you make the whole thing with it clean. You can also throw out the dishwasher and wash it off with your family. Cheaper and cozier. And then you can also wash all laundry at 30 ° C, because yes, even at 30 ° C everything is fine.
So I can continue to enumerate the smaller savings tips, but stay with yourself, be creative, but most importantly ... dare to ask for help.
You are not alone.