As purse strings tighten, Brits are taking a leaf out of Tom and Barbara's book and turning to 'The Good Life' to see them through these tougher times. Indeed, latest research from Mintel finds as many as one in four (25%) adults are 'Good Lifers' embracing this thriftier way of living. For starters, 16% of Brits say they are trying to be more self-sufficient in various ways, for example by growing their own vegetables with some perhaps even making their own clothes. Meanwhile, 12% of us are shopping more frequently for bargains at charity shops and other second-hand outlets.
But when it comes to this kind of penny-pinching, it is not just the oldies who are jumping on the bandwagon (25% of 55 -64 year olds are 'Good Lifers') , with 17% of 25 - 34 year olds also keen to get thrifty.
"A potential return to seventies-style economic conditions is prompting some Brits to resort to the values of this era and to simply making-do," comments James McCoy, Head of Research Services at Mintel. "For older generations this shift may not be quite so difficult as they have had practice during previous recessions or even during wartime rationing. But this kind of lifestyle will still be new to many younger adults who will no doubt need time to adjust to combining a self-sufficient lifestyle with the demands of modern life."
This trend also sits well with the recent shift towards environmental and ethical sentiments which have gained momentum of late. People who are living a more self-sufficient and frugal lifestyle will be making the very most of all that they buy, which will reduce waste and prove more environmentally friendly.
Home is once again where the heart is
But beyond 'The Good Life', Brits are showing money-saving initiatives in other, more conventional ways. Indeed, one in three (32%) Brits are today dining at home more rather than eating out, with 22% taking a packed lunch from home, rather than buying a sandwich. What is more, one in five (20%) entertain friends at home more often now, when before they might have gone to a restaurant together. And just over quarter (26%) choose to watch DVDs at home more often as a substitute for going to the cinema or theatre.
"Brits are clearly making a virtue out of economic realities by enjoying home entertainment rather than going out, and preparing food at home rather than buying from restaurants and fast food outlets. But there is also the emotional benefits of these cut backs as they will encourage people to spend more time together at home and undoubtedly re-establish the home as central to the family and social life," explains James McCoy.