As it is valentines week it seemed a good time to share a way to use a money date to spend time together, support your local community and businesses and stay within budget with a local money date.
My husband and I started started doing this after we moved to Derbyshire and once we were both working from home and we love it!
Show each other you love you and you love local with a Love Us Money Date. There are 4 simple rules
Stay within Budget
We set aside Savings for our dates. When pay day comes pay yourself first. I personally use Starling Bank and have spaces set up for goals including one called “We Love Us”. We only use savings from this fund for our local dates.
Most digital banks have savings spaces you can name and set aside for specific goals which really helps. If your bank doesn’t then use whichever spending plan or app works best for you, but stay within budget and only use what you’ve already saved. This way you can enjoy spending guilt-free and don’t build up debt elsewhere.
Our local dates typically cost anywhere between £5 for a pint and game of pool to £20 for a coffee and mooch around the charity shops to £50 for lunch and a new houseplant.
Use an Independent Service
Service providers on all high streets are finding it harder to survive with lower foot fall and smaller ones are constantly competing against big chains.
So each date pick a different independent service to support or rotate through your favourites. We have a couple of favourite coffee shops, but also found out a local young couple bought a pub, our hairdressers is family run and the post office is struggling to stay viable. I’d rather channel my money into the hands of local families trying to create something positive for our community.
Buy from a Local
We aim to buy one thing we want or need however small and whether new, vintage, preloved or up cyclable. So find your local businesses, entrepreneurs and sellers to buy a product from. I’ve spent as little as £2 on a gorgeous skirt from the charity shop, beautifully crafted cards and gifts for people I love to a very over priced but delightful houseplant who despite my endeavours to keep him alive clearly hates me.
And if you’re giving your purchase as a gift, include the details of where you bought it to hep spread the word.
Ask your local businesses and service providers about their plans, dreams, goals and what would help them.
Asking these sorts of questions made us realise that we can help here too. For example one young family took over a cute café but have room to run workshops upstairs. Another sell local crafts so we introduced them to the local beekeeper who sells honey. Another young man took on one of the pubs so we mentioned the plant man round the corner – and I hope he has more luck keeping his Phildendron alive than I do!
Share the Love
In the scale of online giants and mass retailers these actions seem small and insignificant.
But we all gain from this. My husband and I enjoy the time together. Our local businesses and services benefit from sales and connections. More money is channelled into local services and fair amount of tax as well as local jobs.
So before hitting buy now or driving to Costa, what difference could that time or money make with a local money date?
If your looking for other ways to do good with your money check out the Ethical Money Blog Posts too
Spark more JOY with your Money
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