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Month: September 2016

Money Saving Christmas Tips- Ideas to help you save this Christmas

Money Saving Christmas Tips- Ideas to help you save this Christmas

 

If you’re looking for money saving Christmas tips, you’re in the right place. Whether you’re already thinking about Christmas, or avoiding all mention until December, these Christmas tips will help you save money over the festive period.

The first money saving Christmas tip is to get some money saved, if you haven’t already. In our house, we don’t start preparing for Christmas until November, except for the part where we save up the money.  In our first joint budget, around 7 years ago, we came up with a budget of £500 for Christmas and have saved £50 a month, every month, ever since.

We call this our ‘Cost of Christmas budget’. It covers not just gifts, but also additional cost of food, fuel for the car, a real tree, decorations ,cards, and wrap. This gives us an extravagant Christmas but one that we’re happy to pay for. When you work out what your budget should be, make sure you add in all the extras, and not just the cost of presents, as the extra can soon add up.

As we’re constantly prepared from a savings point of view (because we’ve set aside the money throughout the year), from a planning point of view, we don’t have to ruin the magic by starting to buy presents in August.

Key things to remember:

  • A budget is not a target. You should treat it as a maximum but aim to spend less.
  • Christmas is a single day. In spite of it being the most expensive day of most people’s year, it’s probably only one of a handful of your best days in the year, and those other best days were probably much cheaper (weddings excluded!). That’s if Christmas even makes your list of best days for the year.

If you don’t already have a budget, now is the time to work out how much you can afford to spend, and start putting money aside to pay for it.

My money saving Christmas tips over the next few weeks will help you find savings and suggest things to make Christmas feel special without costing you money. You can find links to all these pages here:

How much do you budget for the cost of Christmas and how do you pay for it?

Use your travel budget to buy gifts on your travels

Use your travel budget to buy gifts on your travels

This is a good tip to help you save money on gifts for Christmas or birthdays AND get something that’s extra special.

If you’re going on holiday between now and Christmas, and the place you’ve visiting is known for something in particular, use your holiday budget to pick up a gift for someone you know who will appreciate it.

How does that save money? Well, it’s usually quite easy to make little alterations to save money on holiday so that you can pick up a gift or two. Those little alterations mean you’ll have picked up a gift that was within your holiday budget, and not your budget for gifts. You will also probably find more authentic and better quality gifts that are cheaper than mass produced versions exported to the UK. It’s a win-win.

Here are just a few examples:

Portugal

Kopke port and Ginja Licor

If you want to ruin a port lover’s taste for port, bring them a bottle home! They keep the good stuff to themselves, which makes it very difficult and expensive to buy in the UK. This will certainly be a well appreciated gift… partly for how well it suits the recipient, and partly because it means a lot that their gift was on your mind when you were on holiday. If you would have bought port for them for Christmas anyway, you’ll find your money goes further. So you can save yourself some money, or go for a much nicer bottle for the price of a bottle you would have bought at home!

Another speciality is a cherry liqueur called Ginja, this makes for a delicious cherry coke cocktail and a lovely gift!

Belgium

With so many differenct chocolates and beer, you’ll have a hard time staying within your luggage allowance. Whilst these gifts may suit any number of people who you’d normally buy gifts for, try and pick out the one or two people that would particularly appreciate luxurious chocolates or craft beers. If you’re opting for a couple of beers, you can normally get a glass designed specifically for the beer you’re buying too.

 Italy

12 year aged balsamic vinegar

An obvious choice might be wine (and not a bad choice at all), but if you want to go for something a bit different (or smaller, depending on your luggage allowance), how about a bottle of balsamic vinegar aged for 8 years? Most foodies are gonna be pretty impressed with that on Christmas day.

The longer balsamic vinegar ages for, the sweeter it becomes. 8 year aged balsamic vinegar is perfect with bread and oils, or savoury dishes. For someone with a sweet tooth, opt for 12 or 15 year aged balsamic, which is perfect drizzled over vanilla ice crea and strawberries… If you can bear to part with it yourself!

Cuba

If you’re sunning yourself in cuba, be sure to pick up a bottle of rum! Choosing something like 7 year old Havana Club rum will set you back around $11, or if you wait until you get home, it will cost more like £20!

 

 

The thing to remember is to buy a gift for the person who will love it. It can be tempting to buy something that an area is famous for. Beautiful though placemats hand crocheted by a grandmother in Greece might be, its unlikely your brother will thank you for them!

This isn’t just about choosing a perfect, thoughtful gift, it’s also about helping you to save money. Don’t forget to deduct any costs you spend on gifts using your holiday budget from the Christmas budget, and use that money to pay off debt, add to your emergency fund or top up your investments.

What do you recommend to buy as a gift and from which countries? Do you have other ways of protecting your Christmas budget by making alterations elsewhere?

Thoughtful gifts that cost less

Thoughtful gifts that cost less

You can reduce the cost of Christmas by buying thoughtful gifts that cost less. Those glossy catalogues, glittering Christmas displays, and tempting 3 for 2 deals seem to be promising the same, but do they really offer thoughtful gifts and do they help you save money? Check out these 3 ways that I buy thoughtful gifts that cost less.

1. Don’t opt for luxury for the sake of it; know who you’re buying for

It’s tempting to splash out at Christmas, but it could be just wasted money if your recipient doesn’t appreciate it.

Here’s an example. My mum loves bars of soap. That’s right, bars of soap.  For years, I bought  various beautiful hand made soaps with expensive ingredients and delicate scents. As someone who gets more excited about the gifts I give than receive, I always felt disappointed in my mum’s gift and thought it was because I was choosing something so dull.

That was until I stopped and really thought about it. She loves to lather her hands in soap and warm water, but she felt guilty luxuriating with expensive handmade soap. So one year, I bought a random selection of bars of soap. I included things like imperial leather, dove, simple, and various other normal soaps, and presented them as a ‘soap selection box’ using a shoe box. When she opened it, she was beaming, gently getting them all out and popping them back in again. She genuinely loved the gift, and I realised that I’d been choosing fancy, luxurious gifts that looked good, but weren’t exactly what my mum wanted.

It was the moment I realised I need to stop looking at those glossy Christmas catalogues for ideas and first think what the person would truly love. This could be a great way of buying thoughtful gifts that cost less.

2. Don’t feel you have to spend the same on everyone

Do you know the story of the monkey mother who split a banana in two and gave it to each of her two monkey children? One monkey complained that his sibling had got the bigger piece, so the mother took a bite. Then, the other monkey complained that the first monkey now had a bigger piece, so the mother took a bite of that side too. This kept going, until she had eaten the whole banana.

It’s easy for that to happen at Christmas, where a present for a child, parent or sibling cost more than for another, so you buy something to make up the difference. Then someone has two presents, so you buy another small present, so you give the same in value and volume to both/ all.

We have an average ‘per person’ budget for Christmas, but we don’t have to spend the same on everyone. Not anymore at least. I realised I would buy something that cost a few pounds more for my mum, so I’d get my dad something else. That would take him over what I’d bought my mum, so then I’d buy something else.

I’ve experienced this myself from my own incredibly generous friends and relatives, and it often means you have presents that you don’t really need or use.

It’s better to get a single thoughtful gift that the recipient will appreciate, than lots of bits and bobs that they have to find somewhere to store. And it’s another way of choosing thoughtful gifts that cost less.

3. Beware 3 for 2 offers

3 for 2 offers sound like a good way of buying gifts for less, but is it really?

Christmas gift sets tend to only be available at 1 time of year: Christmas! What does that tell you? To me, it suggests one of two things:

  1. There is no demand for them year round because people neither want nor need them, or they offer poor value.
  2. People receive so many of these 3 for 2 sets that they last the whole year, when they receive a whole load more.

Since we’re on 3 for 2 offers, I’ll throw in a 3rd option for free. Perhaps they all contain something that people don’t use that much of and will get wasted. Like a “handy” shower rack or yet another body lotion.

So rather than head into the gift section and before you get dazzled by beautiful, glossy Christmas brochures, think about who you’re buying for, and what they’d really like. If it’s a selection of items from a food, cosmetics of toiletries range, what specifically do they use? What would would they love as a gift? If you come to the conclusion that the person you’re buying a gift for genuinely does use the same amount of body lotion as shower gel (because every toiletries set seems to come with both), and a set is cheaper than individual items, then maybe a gift set in a 3 for 2 deal is perfect.

I’ve got a feeling that you’ll find more thoughtful gifts that cost less by avoiding 3 for 2 deals. This has certainly been the case for me!

10 cheap fruits to help you eat well for less

10 cheap fruits to help you eat well for less

If you’re trying to eat well on a budget, it’s easy to put the ‘budget’ before the ‘eating well’. Check out this list of 10 cheap fruits to help you eat well for less.

It’s more difficult to find cheap fruit than it is to find cheap vegetables, but it’s also supposed to be better to eat more vegetables than fruit anyway.

It’s even more difficult to work out which fruits are cheap, because lots of fruits don’t have a price per weight, only per item. I’ve tried to pick the ones that do have a price per weight or where I could take an educated guess about the likely weight and relative value. Just like with the last post on vegetables, I thought up a load of fruits, added them to a shopping list on mysupermarket and had a look for which fruits you could get more of for your money! The prices were sometimes per 100 grams, sometimes per kilogram, and sometimes per fruit. Where possible, I’ve included the price in kilograms to make it easier to compare.

It then made me think, how would you know what the cost of the portion size would be? Well, according to Change4Life, a fruit portion size equates to approximately 80g. A portion of dried fruit is 30g, and 150ml of fruit juice also equates to one of your 5 a day.

So, here’s my list of 10 cheap fruits. Every single one comes in at £1.50 per kilogram or less!

These were based on prices at Asda, September 2016. Prices may be even cheaper in Aldi or Lidl, but in case you don’t have one near you, hopefully you’ll still at least be able to get some bargain veg!

1. Cucumber

42p per whole cucumber. Technically, cucumber is a fruit, so this made the list, and is a very reasonable 42p for a whole cucumber. A well as including in salads, you can eat cucumber sticks as a healthy snack between meals!

2. Bananas

68p per kilo. Apparently, Bananas these are the biggest seller for the US supermarket Walmart! They’re such a convenient fruit, packed with potassium and easy to eat on the go.

3. Orange juice from concentrate

69p per litre. Fruit juice (150ml per day) can be counted as one of your 5 a day, so this is an inexpensive and tasty way to easily add another fruit to your total.

4. Kiwi

69p for a pack of 6/ 11.5p per per fruit. With small fruit like kiwi, a portion size would be 2 kiwis, so the cost per portion is 23p. That seems like a reasonable price for a fruit that makes your day that little more exotic!

5. Peaches

80p per kilo. This price is based on a tin of peaches, which is always useful to have in your cupboard as it has a long shelf life and means your less likely to have fruit going off and having to be thrown away.

6. Passata

Another cheat, but tomatoes are technically a fruit and only 80p per kilo. Tinned tomatoes and passata are more or less the same price, and are 80% of the way to a nice easy pasta sauce.

7. Pears

A bag of conference pears comes in at the super low price of 83p per kilo. Maybe its because they’re in season, but these cost way less than apples right now, which feature in many trolleys every week.

8. Plums

Pick up a punnet of juicy plums. If you opt for a larger punnet, it will only cost you £1.13 per kilo (or £1.25 per kilo for the smaller punnet).

9. Sultanas

£1.38 per kilo. These are  over the £1 mark, but these are actually a bargain. Unlike fresh fruit, which 1 serving size is around 80g, with dried fruit, a serving size is 30g! You could eat these as a snack between meals, or kick of your day with a handful sprinkled in your cereal, or with yoghurt and granola- yummy!

10. Apples

£1.36 per kilo. Though technically cheaper than sultanas, as a fresh fruit the portion size is bigger, so they don’t offer quite as good value. As they say, an apply a day keeps the doctor away…

So there’s my list of 10 cheap fruits. And I’m going to throw an 11th in there; grapes. We’ve skyrocketed up to £3 per kilo and there are lots of fruits in between. But grapes really go head to head with blueberries, so before you shell out for these at £11.54 per kilo, you might be better going for the grapes that have almost the same health benefits.

So there’s my list of 10. It was much tougher to find cheap fruits than cheap vegetables, so if you’re really looking to save more money, opt for more vegetables.

Whoever you are and whatever you situation, if you’re trying to repay debt, live on a low income, save for your future or just want more cash to spend on swanky cars, this is a great list of 10 cheap fruits to help you eat healthily without spending a fortune.

Do you have any cheap fruit that you’d add to the list or tips to get more fruit into your diet?

10 cheap vegetables to help you eat well for less

10 cheap vegetables to help you eat well for less

If you’re trying to eat well on a budget, it’s easy to put the ‘budget’ before the ‘eating well’. When I tried searching for cheap vegetables, I couldn’t really find a list.

There’s so much information out there, but it’s almost too much. So, I thought up a load of vegetables, added them to a shopping list on mysupermarket and had a look for which vegetables you could get more of for your money. The prices were sometimes per 100 grams and sometimes per kilogram, so I’ve worked all these out in kilograms to make it easier to compare.

It then made me think, how would you know what the cost of the portion size would be? Well, according to Change4Life, a vegetable portion size equates to approximately 80g.

So, here’s my list of 10 cheap vegetables. Every single one comes in at £1 per kilogram or less. At this time of year, at least!

These were based on prices at Asda, September 2016. Prices may be even cheaper in Aldi or Lidl (or in any other supermarket), but in case you don’t have one near you, hopefully you’ll still at least be able to get some bargain veg!

(By the way, the nutritional facts all came from healthaliciousness.com.)

1. Carrots

Starting with the cheapest vegetable, carrots surely feature in every shopping trolley, and from 45p per kg, it’s hardly surprising.

Tempted to go for tinned carrots? Whilst they’re only 67p per kilo, why not just scrub a whole carrot, chop off the ends, and throw it in the pan whole? Since you have to cut up the other food on your plate, it doesn’t make your dinner much less convenient.

They’re not just cheap, they’re also a fantastic source of vitamin A and beta keratin… the second best source of these vitamins after sweet potatoes (don’t worry- they made it to the list too!)

2. Baked beans

Beans (lentils, and pulses) count as one of your five a day, with the obvious choice being baked beans! They’re perfect for a convenient snack, so there’s no need to opt for nutrient devoid lunch time snacks, and only 56p per kilo.

3. Onions

This is an easy way to add to your 5 a day; you could add them to your salad, or hide them in all manner of evening meals. It might be tempting to go for pre-chopped onions, but they’re nearly 3 times the price of a bag of onions, which comes in at just 59p per kilo.

4. Butternut squash

This didn’t even occur to me as being a cheap vegetable- we have parsnips and turnips more often as I always think of those as being cheaper. Perhaps it’s because they’re in season, but they’re currently 75p per kilo. (You also have the option of paying £2.10 per kilo for someone to chop it for you.)

5. Peas

A bag of frozen peas comes in at 76p per kilo. They’re basically a convenience food, I mean who doesn’t have time to zap them in the microwave or pop them on the hob for a few minutes? A cheap and easy way to add more green to your plate.

6. Red cabbage/ White cabbage

For fresh red and white cabbages, you’ll currently pay around 80p per kilo. It cooks super quick, isn’t much hassle to roughly, but finely, chop, and you can chuck it into stir fry or even make homemade coleslaw, if you don’t fancy it boiled or steamed!

7. Sweet potato

I’m extremely excited that sweet potato made It to the list. After looking up swede and parsnip, both of which are way above £1 per kilo, I almost didn’t check sweet potatoes. You can get these for as little as 80p per kilo, and even if you go for the smaller bag, its still below a pound at 95p.

Obviously they’re delicious, but they the best source of vitamin A and, when you cook them in the oven, the best source of beta keratin too. What’s not to love? (Did I mention, they’re delicious?)

8. Broccoli

This is a vegetable I used to despise as a child. I can’t say I enjoy broccoli now, but I enjoy looking after my health and it’s a good, simple veg to throw in with a variety of dishes. What’s more, I’m advocating you go for pre-prepared bag, costing 90p per kilo  for the basics range. I think this is a bargain for a pre-chopped veg that is cooked in minutes. Not just that, it’s the 5th best source of vitamin C and the 8th best source of vitamin K.

9. Sweetcorn

Sweetcorn is convenience food number 3; a bag of frozen sweetcorn equates to 99p per kilo. If you’ve always got a bag of sweetcorn and bag of frozen peas, you’re a few minutes away from having 2 cheap vegetables on your plate for very little hassle!

10. Brussel sprouts

Number 10, and I’m pleased to have found frozen sprouts for £1 per kilo. Fresh sprouts are easier to not overcook, but they’re currently 3 times the price, so if you’re shopping on a budget, this is a brilliant addition. If you only have these at Christmas, then you need to introduce them to your shopping trolley year round, as many of the green leafy vegetables have a hefty price tag. You may already have noticed, but this is another convenience option!

 

So there’s my list of 10 cheap vegetables. And I’m going to throw an 11th in there; frozen Cauliflower. Its above the £1 target, but not by much. You can get a bag of frozen cauli equating to £1.10 per kilo.

So if you’ve walked past the veg aisle, but picked up a packet of rich tea biscuits and a 6 pack of walkers because unhealthy stuff is cheaper, those biscuits cost £1.25 per kilo and the crisps £9.67!

Whoever you are and whatever your situation, if you’re trying to repay debt, live on a low income, save for your future or just want more cash to spend on swanky cars(!), this is a great list of 10 cheap vegetables to help you eat healthily without spending a fortune.

 

Do you have any cheap vegetables that you’d add to the list or tips to get more vegetables into your diet?

How to live on one income

How to live on one income

Have you made the bold decision to live on one income, been unexpectedly thrust into life on one income or do you simply want to know you could live on less if you had to?

The prospect of living on one income may seem daunting, even if its a decision you’re making and in control of. It can also be empowering too, giving yourself more freedom and flexibility to get what you want from life.

The first step is to understand your situation…

If you were in a position where you had to live on one income, due to health or job loss, it may be more acceptable for you to cut certain luxuries completely, such as Christmas gifts or eating out. It feels much easier to explain to people why you don’t have the money, if you’re in this situation, and easier to make the decision not to spend in these areas.

If you’re deciding you want to live on one income, you’ll probably want to still splash out a little at Christmas or occasionally eat out or travel, even if this is much less than you currently do.

Whilst it may sound more difficult to live on one income out of choice, in reality its likely to be easier. That’s because you’ll have time to adapt and redesign your finances around the life you want to lead. You’ll be able to cancel existing contracts, switch to better deals without being unduly penalised by fees, and get more practice at spending less. You’ll also have more time to build up a savings cushion.

Based on your situation, have a go at an initial annual budget. This should include:

– monthly bills, including debt repayments and monthly costs such as food shopping, mobile phone contracts, etc.

– annual costs, including insurance, car related costs, dental and other health costs, gifts, and anything else you spend on annually.

– Ad hoc costs. For example, you may decide it’s important to budget for a holiday every 2 years or replace the car in 5 years.

– Emergency savings. Try to have a small amount of wriggle room to put some cash to one side each month for rainy day savings. Even if you already have an emergency fund, this will need to be replenished as it is used, and this will be slower than if you had 2 incomes available.

 

Take a look at the single income you’ll be living off against your total annual expenses. It’s likely that the income will be less than your expenses.

The next step is to reduce costs as far as possible. You might already have trimmed some costs down from your current budget, by tweaking your grocery budget or spending less money on travel or entertainment, so if you have, that’s a great way to have started.

Remember, the more time to plan the move to one income, the more you’ll be able to control the transition. If it looks impossible, don’t be disheartened. Small changes can add up, and the longer you plan and manage your finances, the more savings you’ll find.

Other savings to find:

Debt, in whatever form, will put strain on your income and make it difficult (maybe even impossible) to live on one income. If you can avoid taking any more out, do so. If you can repay debt to eliminate it, this will reduce you monthly outgoings. Similarly, reducing the mortgage will allow you to either reduce your monthly payments or pay it off sooner, thereby completely freeing up the amount of the monthly payment. It makes sense to focus on paying off the most expensive debts. Eradicating or reducing debt payments means more is available for other necessary expenses when living on one income.

Note: If you’ve suddenly found yourself in a position of only earning one income, maintaining payments to the highest cost of debt isn’t necessarily the right thing to do. In this case, you need to pay priority debts first, including your mortgage or rent, to ensure you don’t find yourself homeless.

Insurance costs more if paid monthly (at least, the vast majority of the time it does). If you don’t already pay interest premiums annually, one of the best things you can do is to break this cycle by saving up a year’s worth of premiums alongside current payments so that you can break free from monthly insurance payments. After that, by putting the monthly amount into a savings account, you’ll not only benefit from the interest earned (hey, it might not be much but better than paying interest out!) and as long as you’ve not made a claim, you’ll normally be able to find a cheaper premium, meaning you get a budget surplus- woo hoo!

Cancel unnecessary contracts, as long as the cancellation fees don’t outweigh the cost of the keeping the contract until it expires naturally, and cut out or reduce unnecessary expenses- expensive mobile phone contracts, tv subscriptions, eating out, magazine or gym subscriptions… you get the picture.

Reduce your food costs– This is the main category you may feel like you have control over. However, its easy to see the grocery budget in this way and more difficult to live with, especially if your new budget will be drastically below what you currently spend. Start monitoring what you spend, how much food you waste, and what you’re spending your money on so that you can begin reducing your monthly spend (and put any money you save into a rainy day account, investment, or somewhere else where it won’t get swallowed up).

Go from 2 cars to 1. If moving from 2 incomes to 1 seemed daunting, this may seem like an even bigger challenge. Of course, if you’re only temporarily on one income whilst seeking work, this might not be the best option, as owning your own car will give you more options. However, calculate what your car costs you on average per month, and you may be surprised. For example, I own a little 05 plate Fiesta, which costs an average of £81 per month. This takes account of insurance, tax, MOT, service, plus a buffer of £300 per year just in case anything goes wrong. On top of that, there is of course fuel. Getting rid of this would save nearly £1,000 (excl fuel), so even if I had to pay bus fares or even occasional taxi fares, it would still save a considerable amount.

 

Now, try living on the new budget! There may be some elements of your one income budget you can’t do whilst you’re both working; selling a second car, for example. But there should be lots of things you will be able to try out.

It may seem more difficult when you are working full time, but the more you try out living on one income, the easier it is when you make the transition, one- because you’ve done it already, and two- because you’ve been able to stash away a bit more cash too!

Unless you have a strong earner and low living costs already, these steps probably won’t get you all the way to living on one income. However, they’re good steps to start with and continually revisit.

You’ll make spending choices you make, day in, day out, and it is these that, over time, will lead to your success. In the words of Robert Louis Stevenson “Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant”.

What seeds have you planted to help you live on one income or are you already reaping the harvest?

The Marie Kondo method: does it work?

The Marie Kondo method: does it work?

Do you feel like you’re surrounded by clutter or constantly tidying, only to find you’re soon in the same mess you were in before? It’s a common complaint. In fact, Steve Howard, Head of Sustainability at Ikea recently announced that Western consumers have hit their peak for home furnishings. Coming from a company that is trying to selling furniture to us, that’s quite a statement! Our houses are often so full of stuff, that there’s nowhere to put it all. Move to a bigger house, and your stuff expands to fill it.

There could be a variety of reasons, perhaps you’re guilty of splurging at the shops or perhaps your frugal mind-set has you thinking “this will come in useful”, so you hold on to more than you need, cluttering your house and sapping your energy.

If you’re looking to consume less and experience more, ridding yourself of the unnecessary stuff you have gathered over the years is a good place to start.

For August, I set myself a challenge to rid the house of 31 things over 31 days. Rather than think I knew best, I decided to get some books out of the library. Or rather a book, since they were rather light on the topic of getting rid of stuff from your house. Before it arrived in, I was already ahead of the 1 item per day average, but Marie Kondo’s the life changing magic of tidying has catapulted my efforts.

The success of the book is down to its simplicity. In essence, it teaches you how to look at your possessions differently so that you can make the right decision about whether to keep them or not.

For example, 2 or 3 times a year, I weed out items of my wardrobe to take to a charity shop or fabric recycling. I was not expecting to see significant results when assessing which clothes to keep, as I felt I kept on top of it. I was shocked when I got all my tops out onto the bed to find I had 60 (excluding jumpers and cardigans!), and even more shocked to find myself getting rid of 27 of them!

You can read about the book and how to go about applying the KonMarie method on forums on Money Saving Expert as well as watching youtube videos, but I can honestly say that it is only by reading the book that I was really able to let so much stuff go.

I’m still working through the categories, but life seems already simpler and easier to keep on top of, having gotten rid of over 100 things in a single month AND  2 bin bags full of rubbish.

Although I’d borrowed the book with the intention of saving money, and have already extended the due date, I’ve now ordered it so that I can continue following the principles step by step.

In the long term, I expect to own less stuff that needs to be stored and maintained, buy less stuff that needs to be stored and maintained, and have more money and time to enjoy life, whether its hurtling down a zip wire, pampering myself in a spa, or simply not panicking at the prospect of an impromptu get together with friends because of the state of my lounge!

Buying a book teaching you how to declutter may seem counterintuitive, but in life as with money, you have to speculate to accumulate!

Have you tried the Life Changing Magic of tidying and how has it changed your life?