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In a time when the U.S. is still navigating historically high unemployment, more families whose lives have not been terribly impacted are feeling the pain of people out of work and small businesses struggling to stay afloat.

If you have the means and you’re looking for ways to help, financial experts and entrepreneurs suggest these tips to help you stimulate a sagging economy. 

  • Buy Local – The book you buy for $20 online may cost $30 at the local bookstore, but your support in paying the higher price helps more than just the bookseller and her employees. Since small businesses tend to buy supplies from other local businesses, the extra dollars you paid for that book may have a more far-reaching effect.
  • Update Your Home – If you’ve been wanting to get your home painted, remodel your bathroom or change out the living room lighting, now is the time to do what you can afford. You can help appreciate the value of your home while doing your part to improve the economic landscape.
  • Order More Takeout – Even if you love cooking, declare a “Takeout Tuesday” night and support local restaurants by ordering in. It can bring a little spice into your life (literally!) while helping local restaurants survive.
  • Celebrate Now – Got a promotion? A birthday? A Zoom graduation coming up? Instead of putting off celebrations “until things are back to normal,” treat your family or friends to a celebratory gift they can enjoy now. Whether it’s a new outfit or a new car, every dollar you spend contributes to the economy.
  • Give What You Can Afford – Direct donations to food banks, emergency service organizations or your favorite charity will never be more useful or appreciated. Consider giving to a scholarship fund to help needy students get the educational grounding they need to start a lucrative career. 
  • Be an Influencer – Whether on Instagram or over the phone with friends and family, talk up the books, car or cookware you bought, or the great dinner you had delivered from a local eatery. Your recommendations may spur others to open their wallets, too.

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