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It is amazingly simple to reduce living expenses dramatically without negatively affecting quality of life. In fact you can take this as an opportunity of changing your life, and achieving increased health and happiness!

1. Avoid eating in restaurants – instead learn to enjoy the process of cooking beautiful food at home!

2. Get rid of any non-essential cars, and trade your gas guzzler for a smaller, fuel efficient vehicle.

3. Get rid of the cell phone, or use it only for SMS texting.

4. Use VOIP services such as Skype for all telephone calls.

5. Use a bike if possible for local commuting

6. Reduce Heating Costs

7. Discover the joys of free entertainment (soccer in the park, walks on the beach etc.)

8. Take a nice big bottle of water when you go out, this will save having to buy drinks when you are thirsty.

9. Borrow books and toys from local book and toy libraries.

10. Buy "pre-loved" clothes, homewares etc. from markets, charity shops, ebay etc.


How to reduce energy heating costs?
Heating costs are a large percentage of household living expenses, and can often be easily reduced.

The Energy Department said the cost of heating your home this winter will be a lot higher, especially for the tens of millions of households that use fuel oil or natural gas.
Households that use oil can expect to spend an average of $2,388 -- or $449 more than last year -- for the October-April heating season. Users of natural gas will probably spend on average just over $1,000 -- or $155 more than last year.
The winter outlook released Tuesday by the department's statistical agency predicts the price of heating oil -- widely used in the Northeast -- will average 60 cents per gallon more than last winterThe cost of electricity and propane is expected to be 10 percent to 11 percent higher.

Monitor Your Thermostat: Consider setting your thermostat to 68-72 degrees while you're home during the day, and then lowering it to 60-65 degrees at night. Also, try to remember to lower the temperature in your home when you're away, too. Lowering the temperature on a regular basis can save you a significant amount on your monthly energy bill.

Maintain Your Furnace: Changing your filter monthly allows the heating system to operate more smoothly. Also, check your system for duct leaks. Leaks can be incredibly expensive, as they could leak hundreds of dollars worthy of heat into your attic or crawl space.

Insulate: If you're paying for heat, make sure it stays where it's supposed to be. One way to ensure that is to make sure your ducts are properly insulated. Also, make sure you have plenty of insulation in your ceiling.

Check Your Windows: A large percentage of the heat in your home can be lost through the windows and doors. One way to minimize the leaking is to seal the windows. Windows can be sealed inexpensively by using plastic window film. Also, seal the window edges and cracks with caulk.


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