Monday, October 6, 2008

Basket of goods in our cost of living changes

How things have changed. The basket of goods that is used to measure our cost of living has altered with the times.

Things such as video cassettes, photographic films and writing paper are no longer used to measure the cost of living in NZ.

Statistics New Zealand has also removed solid fuel burners, old style cathode ray tube TVs from the basket of goods it uses to calculate cost of living. This review is based on a survey of 2,600 households and their spending habits.

According to the number crunchers at Statistics NZ, food accounts for $17.83 of every $100 dollar spent ($17.38 in 2006) and $22.75 goes to housing/household utilities ($20 in 2006).

Heat pumps and Navmans
The new basket of goods include items such as heat pumps (which my hubby won’t let me have!), in-car satellite navigation units (a Navman, or Tom Tom would be good!); free-to-air digital TV receivers (which we don’t have at home) and digital music downloads (which we do partake of).

Items from the services list which has made its way to the new basket include lawn moving (hubby is the lawn mover); house cleaning (I am the cleaner, an auction services (wonder if this is all the Trade Me costs).

Statistics are beyond my comprehension. But what I do know is the cost of living in Auckland has gone up tremendously – starting with parking! When I was working in the city, it used to cost $7 per day to park my car. The last time I went into the city, the average cost of a full-day carpark was $14 to $16 dollars. And some Wilson carpark magnate has set draconian rules such that if you choose to call yourself an “Early Bird” at a Wilson carpark, you must have your car in by 9.30am or thereabouts but can only leave after 3pm or 4pm, not before, to enjoy this offer. How stupid is that?

Real imagination
Managing a household budget takes real imagination. Kudos to the grocery shoppers out there who take the extra effort to brave Pak n Save or Lim’s Groceries – it is also a jungle out there but things are much cheaper.
Hubby complains I stock up too much. But why not? Things on sale are worth hoarding. Free range eggs were going for $3.99/dozen at Nosh 2 weeks ago, pity there are only 3 of us and Princess doesn’t eat eggs.

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