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In uncertain times many families have been changing the way they manage their finances and lifestyles. The shift to simple living has become more and more popular. Often times it takes a serious crisis to get people to re-evaluate their situation and then change. This is certainty happening right now with the instability in financial markets across the globe.

Simple living doesn’t entail a boring or lower standard of living. It’s more about being aware of finances and living in a more conservative but informed way. In many instances it’s a review of a family or personal budget, cutting out the wastage and strengthening savings or paying down debt.

The degree in what simple living means will vary dramatically from family to family. For some it can be a reduction in eating out, cancelling paid TV, camping instead of overseas holidays, etc. Regardless of the differences in circumstances and how they are perceived, a shift from a spontaneous or casual financial lifestyle to a more educated and informed one should be welcomed.

Below is a small list of simple ideas to help save money and create good financial habits.

DIY Projects – This can range from home renovations and landscaping to vehicle maintenance. If you have the time and a bit of knowledge, taking on projects yourself will not only save money, but also provide a sense of accomplishment.

Buy in Bulk – Purchasing in bulk is a great way to save money and reduce the amounts of times you have to go to the store. The savings from buying in bulk can be very significant.

Shop Online – The amount of deals online is tremendous and easy to find. Take the time to research and compare prices, you’ll definitely find bargains.

Consolidate Debt – Reduce the amount of interest you pay each month by combining all your debt into one. Debt consolidation can allow you to reduce your monthly repayments and save in interest in the long term. You’d obviously have to consolidate your debt to a lower interest rate than what you’re currently on.

Utilise Sales – Try to only purchase items when they are on sale. Take advantage of the savings during end of financial year sales, Christmas sales, etc…

Spring Cleaning – You don’t necessarily need to wait till spring to clean out your house and get rid of unwanted or unused items. Go through all the unwanted items in your house and sell these things on Ebay, local classifieds or in a garage sale. Not only will you clear up space at your residence, you’ll also receive some good cash.

Budgeting – Create a budget to of current spending habits and then make adjustments as need be. A good budget will clearly show where wastage is occurring.

These days there are numerous online resources and tools to help families with making informed financial decisions. It is easy to search online and find the information you need to assist in simple living.

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