Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Live Rich for Less

We all deserve to be happy.  I strongly believe that we deserve to enjoy the fruits of our labor.  With the right strategies, wise decisions and conscious actions you can live rich for less.

Let me share with you some tips to save money without having to live in misery.

1/ Lower your utility bills - because electricity and water bills contribute a lot to our monthly expenses, let us see how we can bring this down.
  • Change your light bulbs to CFL (compact fluorescent lamp).  Check out your local hardware stores for bulbs that consume less energy - most of these use about 50 - 75% less energy than the regular light bulb.  Last longer too.
  • Change your really old appliances.  Newly manufactured appliances have certain energy saving features that your old stuff don't have.  If your well loved piece of equipment is about 10 years old or more,  maybe it's time you get a new one. 
  • Plan your laundry and ironing  days.  Schedule your laundry once or twice a week as needed, lesser frequency will save you both water and electricity.  You help yourself and the environment too.  Hang your clothes nicely to dry, if done correctly some will not need ironing.  Saves you time, energy and money.
  • Turn off light, appliances, gadgets when not in use - do this from the main socket, helps prevent fire or accident too.  Very basic but always forgotten.
2/ Lower your telephone bill - use your phone as needed.  When calling overseas, consider Yahoo messenger, Google talk or Sype.  Takes some time to install, but once there can save you thousands each year.

3/ Lower your dining expenses - my family loves to dine out.  Eating out strengthens our bond.  This is when  we share stories, laugh - create stronger relationships.  Dining need not be expensive...
  • Be adventurous, expensive does not always mean delicious.  Sometimes, the tastiest meals are in places least expected.
  • Choose vegetables and fish over meat.  Veggie and fish dishes are usually 20 % lesser than its meat counterpart.  And healthier too.
  • Watch out for discounts.  Nowadays, many credit cards and discount cards offer promotions or tie up with restaurants and cafes.  Don't be shy to ask or check out the deals, you will be surprised at freebies and savings you can get.
4/ Lower your vacation expenses.  This year I'm going to three new places - Italy, Paris and Switzerland.  In the last few years, I have been to Bangkok, Singapore, Beijing, Guangzou, Hongkong, Oman, Iran, and Istanbul.  Traveling is my gift to self.  By traveling, I learn and understand more about other people and their culture. In all of these trips, I spent the barest minimal.  It's just all about research and planning.  

Because most of my family now lives in Dubai and our parents come here to visit, instead of going back home, I use my annual ticket to visit other countries.   But even if my air fare is paid up by my company, as a rule I surf the net for the best deals in accommodation and tour package.  There are also travel agencies that can make tailor made packages according to your budget.  To avoid any inconvenience on your trip, read about the places you plan to visit and if possible make advance arrangements about your transportation and tickets.   

SOURCE: Wealth Strategies / Truly Rich Club

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