The last year has been a relief to strained financial plans, but people shouldn't consider themselves out of the woods just yet. Unemployment levels are holding steady despite job growth, the global economy is starting to show serious fissures and the national deficit is rising every day, signs that a localized climate of recovery could be temporary.
There are ways of safeguarding financial fitness for the future, of course, so long as people remain reasonable and practice money management techniques. There are some simple strategies to keep this pattern going until times turn around fully. Of course, saving money is always a good idea, regardless of economic climate, so feel free to continue using these once the market stabilizes to encourage more safety.
•Be objective. Decide before you buy if the item in question is a want or a need. Go shopping with a list and don't browse in sections where you don't have to, thereby avoiding the temptation to splurge. Especially with the back-to-school shopping season upon us, the Huffington Post recommended reusing supplies from the previous school year rather than buying all new materials.
•Be frugal. If you need to buy something, get it on sale or buy the store brand version. Most grocery stores have the same quality product but don't charge you extra for the logo and branding, thereby saving you a good amount of money over the competition. CBS News wrote that generics are usually between 20 and 30 percent cheaper than the store brand products, but also pointed out that consumers should watch the bigger brands as well to see if they are cheaper when on sale.
•Be savvy. Use online banking or mobile banking to avoid the drive to the physical branch, use public transit or carpool when possible, pack lunches, mend clothes rather than buying new pieces or just make due with what you have. Tulsa World said that you should take the time to find where an item is sold the cheapest and always purchase it there.
The economy is turning around slowly, but it's always wise to practice money-saving techniques in order to build a better financial portfolio. Even when times are good, there's no reason to spend more on the same products and services if you could get them much cheaper.