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Smart money tips: Small lifestyle changes that will make a big difference.

There’s an old UK adage that says,’ look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves.’ Getting your finances back under control doesn’t have to be a painful business if you plan things properly. A few small lifestyle changes are all that are needed to see those spare pennies begin to accumulate at the end of the month.

Take a walk before dinner

What has taking a brisk walk before dinner got to do with saving money you may well ask. Remember, we’re talking saving money and small lifestyle changes. A brisk twenty minute stroll will get the blood circulating and the juices flowing. It will help clear the mind and allow you to plan the following day’s changes, before sitting down to a slightly less expensive evening meal.

Take a packed lunch to work

Do you always eat in the works canteen, or pop into the nearest deli for your favorite lunchtime snack? It takes five minutes before you go to bed, or when you get up in the morning, to put together a couple of sandwiches and a piece of fruit for your lunchtime munch. Over a working week the savings can be quite substantial.

Reduce your energy bills

Wherever we live, energy costs continue to spiral upwards year on year. There are however, a number of small changes we can make which, over twelve months, can considerably reduce our electricity bills. Changing those old incandescent lamps to energy saving lamps can save as much as $6-50. That means if you have a minimum ten lamps in your home you can save $65 per year. If you change to the more expensive light emitting diodes (LED) you can double that saving.

Take a closer look at your car insurance

When looking to reduce financial outlay, a closer look at your insurances is always a good idea, especially your car insurance policy. Shop around, companies like One Sure Insurance not only offer trade insurance policies for those who use vehicles for business, but also offer very cheap car insurance.

Reduce your shopping bill

The amount of unused food that ends up in garbage dumpsters across the US amounts to millions of dollars every year. It is the same across the majority of European countries. So much so that in some countries the governments are taking steps to reduce the amount of uneaten food which ends up in landfill, you can to.

Write out a grocery shopping list before you set off. Check you’re not buying foodstuffs you already have. Never go shopping on an empty stomach; you will end up making impulse purchases because you feel hungry. If you’re not sure whether you need it – you probably don’t. Use food leftovers to make soups or stews which will provide an extra meal. You’ll be surprised how much you can save over a month.

Start making a note of what you’ve managed to save and transfer the amount into a new savings account every month. Watching those small amounts grow will provide the inspiration to continue and expand your new money saving habits.