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Living through the Great Depression instilled in our elders a need to live frugally and make less into a lot more. While we may live in more prosperous times these days, old-fashioned money saving tips from our grandparent’s and parent’s era can help us live more simply and save money in the process.

So, whether you’re just trying to save money on everyday living expenses or you’re looking to add more money to your savings account, there are sure to be some tips to help you here.

Make and grow your own food

While we’re surrounded by convenience items these days, it can work out a lot cheaper to make simpler food from basic ingredients, rather than buying packaged or convenience foods. Adding a vegetable patch to your back garden or even a small herb garden on a window sill or balcony can also help you save a lot of money on your weekly grocery shop. Take it a step further and swap your produce with other gardening friends to increase your fresh food variety. You could also have a go at making your own cleaning products.

Buy second hand

It can seem like items like clothing are cheaper than ever before, but cheap new clothing is just not designed to last. Charity and thrift stores offer a way to buy clothing and other household goods cheaper, while also supporting a good cause. Local Facebook Buy, Swap and Sell groups are also a good way to source a particular item you’re looking for at a fraction of the price. These groups are also a great way to get rid of your old unwanted household goods as well.

Waste not, want not

Instead of throwing out items, is there a way they can be reused around the house? Look at ways you can repurpose, upcycle or recycle plastic containers, plastic bags and cardboard packaging to save yourself from buying these items at the shop. You could also look to use worn out clothes as dust rags, while glass jars can be repurposed as storage or vases for cut flowers.

Repair damaged items

While appliances, clothing and furniture are available to buy cheaply, there can be a greater cost to the environment when we discard and replace our items so readily. Instead of instantly chucking out items that have broken, have a look at the cost of repairing the item. With items like clothes, repair hems, zips and small tears yourself and not only will you prolong the lifespan of your favourite items, but you’ll save yourself money.

Use cash

We may be moving to an almost cash-free society, but there is something to be said for withdrawing only the cash you have budgeted for the week and stick to that. Swiping your card for all your purchases means you can lose track of what you’ve actually spent and may mean you could be charged extra bank fees.

Many of our elders survived without the use of credit cards, which meant you had to save up for something you really wanted. This can help you prioritise your spending and avoid impulse spending.

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Belinda Peters
Belinda brings more than 17 years experience in journalism to her role as Seasons Digital Content Writer. As our blog editor, Belinda will take the confusion out of aged care with entertaining and informative stories from across the aged care industry and our Seasons communities.