So why do I hate spending money? Let me correct that I hate spending money that does not serve a purpose? Meaning wasting money is a No-No for me. Now don’t get me wrong, I’ve definitely wasted money especially if something is on SALE. I’m begging you, don’t let me go into that store, please! If you are my friend ask me first “Do you really need this?” After I’ve started to give more purpose to the reason why I wanted to save, saving money became easier. Ask yourself: “Why I do I want to save money?” Put it somewhere easily accessible to read the next time you want to splurge. If just stressing yourself to save is not enough, just living more frugally will do it for you.
By clicking to read this post there was probably one thought in mind: How to live cheap and save money! Living Frugal can be associated with living cheaply. What Frugality means is to be spending with intention, but we will talk more about it later in this article. You will notice your money will naturally have less spent. Lifestyle changes are key if you trying to accomplish a big challenge or goal. There are a lot of ways that I try to live frugally. I wanted to share most of my tips here for you guys!
Can you become Rich by living Frugal?
Becoming Rich ultimately is a mindset! What do you need to feel rich, to be financially fulfilled? You can win the lottery and become instantly rich, but still lose it just as fast. If being rich or financially fulfilled is a goal that you set out to accomplish living frugally is just the basics to help you stay on task. Limiting poor spending habits will help you reach that goal much faster. Frugal living can help you increase more savings from your income. More savings and less spending equal more money!
In another scenario: You make X amount of $$…and you want to live on half of your Income!
Can you possibly live on $14,000 a year when you make $30,000? Mostly anything that has to deal with numbers is possible! Its best described on a basis of a simple math equation: 1 + 1=2 The answer may be more involved and technical based on the individual, to put it straight forward you can live on less and save more. It’s really up to you? Drastic goals need to be met with drastic changes! Are you living a $14,000 lifestyle? Do you need to earn more money for a limited time so you can save to get rid of additional expenses? Do you need to live in a less costly state? Environment? Is changing your life to live on less doable right now?!
Many times goals need to be taken apart into actionable steps. One step at a time you can reach the goal of living on half of your income. Putting Action into place and being intentional is what is going to get you there faster. Faith and persistence are what is going to get you through the hard times! See yourself there and you will get there!
Living Frugally with Intentions
Some people think living frugal just means being cheap. The coupon lady in line that you’re waiting on forever or that person returning something because the price dropped and she refunds it to get the difference. To be honest with you I have been all of those people, but that just shows to me how I really value my hard-earned money. I don’t believe that being frugal is just being cheap, it means that you don’t allow your money to be wasted. I can spend less on one thing and alot more on something more valuable. Spending becomes easy buying in better quality and use. Things with better quality I’ve been known to splurge on it. My choices with money are simply explained spend on worth not just wants. Secondly, try not to overspend on something you can save money on.
You might be already living Frugal
Did you just start making your own lunch and coffee at home? Now that you’ve realized most of these small charges added up pretty quickly, it’s an easy change. What about grocery shopping? You could be just starting to browse through the flyer for sale specials. Well, I just have to say, you are on the right track! The intention is there, save save save, but still, we can do more. How can I save money when I am already frugal? Even if you already have Frugal habits its always good to go back in reexamine additional ways to save more.
Frugal living in the extreme my not seem as popular, neither with me! I’m not teaching you how to live on nothing? Or for you to repurpose your toilet paper rolls and to eat rice for a month, lol. I’m just implying that there is always something new we can learn to optimize our money for more growth! Just to think as fast as technology changes, there is always a new app to try or other development that was not there before but is now. As life changes it’s evident we need to change with it. Sometimes whether we like it or not.
Many ways to start living a Frugal Life
One of the many questions people ask is “what are the basics of frugality?” Something I can do today, this month, or even this year? If you’re in a place where you need to completely shift your life that evolves less waste and more savings, you are ready to begin. Read and implement each step take a moment and really stop and think of why this is helping you? How could making a habit of doing the below tips could change your life? Starting something difficult or even the least less fun can start off good then fail. If it’s hard, starting is mostly the hardest part! Create a purpose for each tip to strengthen the reasoning. Now, you can move past the boring, hard part and succeed. First, start with the list below.
Frugal Financial Tips
Many times I subscribe to something without knowing or if I’m aware I totally forget about it. Mostly, I’ve told myself, I’m going to never sign up for a subscription ever again, surprisingly I still do, lol. What’s dangerous about subscriptions is that we forget about it. The longest task, quite dreading for me is canceling a subscription. Going through the company’s cancellation policy, making phone calls and etc.
I’ve thought of strategies as lessons learned throughout many mistakes. First, always review the cancellation policy prior to subscribing. Sure the invitation is enticing but its always good to check out the exiting strategy. To maximize your frugality with this tip, go through your list of current subscriptions.
Unsubscribing Frugal Tip To Do:
Go through your list and highlight the only necessary ones. The must-have ones and without it, you can’t survive! Kind of dramatic huh? And since we all think they can be necessary sometimes. Pick one month for each subscription and pause it for 30 days. If you were able to make it through without it, then cancel it altogether. Trust me when you’re ready to go back they are open arms.
Estimated Savings: $100-300 a year
2. Budget and Review Consistently
In hopes that you already are budgeting, this is mainly for additional awareness and savings tips. A Frugal person already counts their money and loves keeping track. On the topic of Budget, Budget, Budget it can seem a little repetitive and not as exciting after a while. The month is almost over so you get out your budgeting worksheet. After you get your calculator, total up expenses, and listed bills. Everything is totaled, the next step would be to subtract the income versus expenses. Finally, you can schedule out your bill payments. This budgeting process goes round about every month over and over. What is going to help you save more money is to budget with intention. An intention can be a goal, either a number to save for, an amount to cut back, a goal to live on less!
Budgeting with intention gives you more inspiration to budget and review your statements more carefully. The goals also keep you budgeting consistently. When I first started budgeting and I became used to my routine at times I would think “Well, I can do this in my head” …”No need to actually write anything down or go through my bank statements” When someone gets paid salary this feeling can come easily. The thought that I get paid the same amount and my bills don’t change, why should my budget change?
The answer to that question is that everything changes, our goals, the bills, our income (for some people). If you are set on maximizing your income to save, you have to evaluate all of your spendings. Is this necessary, how can I benefit from continuing this habit, will it help me to make this transaction? At many times even our spending habits change. One of the ways our spending habits change can be according to the season, like holidays or lifestyle changes like a promotion or a child on the way. Why not ask this question? How do we budget to live frugally? Set a goal with intention and budget consistently for any changes.
Frugal Budgeting To Do tip
Create a Goal to accomplish for each quarter, write down your goal visible on every month’s budgeting sheet. Every time you do your budget, review your last month’s budget highlight in pink where you overspent or should eliminate for next month. Highlight in green (or any color of your choosing) where you saved more money. Work on the items that are highlighted in pink for the following month. The categories in green can be a way to challenge yourself to continue next month. Review your budget after every month to see how far you are to making your Quarterly Goal. If you want to pick it monthly, break the quarterly goal in three parts, make it more realistic.
Estimated Savings : $1,000-$1,500 a year
Budgeting is a Headache…so why not share the burden?
- What exactly is a “Budget?”
- Becoming the Boss of your Budget
- How to start a Cash Envelope System
- How to use the 50/30/20 rule in your budget
- How to use the Zero-based budgeting method
We are obsessed with budgeting and willing to look at your budget if you need help. I’ve posted tons of resources on different budgets you can try. As a subscriber, you will receive your first easy budgeting sheet. Then join us in our Facebook Group “ShekeepsthechangeinFinance” for Monthly Budgeting Sessions!
4. Going on a Spending Freeze
Limiting yourself from subscriptions is one thing. The other thing is pulling up your sleeves and asserting that “I’m not going to spend at all. Not spending period is a totally different test of will power. A spending freeze can be compared to going on a “fasting” of food. The sacrifice you are making is testing your will of faith, persistence, and self-love. Do something that doesn’t seem fun but will ultimately benefit you is adding self-value. You made the sacrifice therefore your limitations are just getting smaller. Alot of people try out no spending challenges for a month or a week and most times for the weekend.
You make them fun by adding an incentive, like a self-reward at the end. Want some more motivation? Try using printable charts you can color in so you can see you much closer you are to reaching your goal. Do you need accountability? An accountability partner like a friend, coach, or mentor will just do it. Challenges are one for its description, just really HARD! So know your weaknesses and contrast them with accountability. Wow, I manage to use that word at least three times!
No Spending Frugal to do tip
So you want to do a challenge for No Spending! A great tip is to pick the right time first. Don’t choose a week or a month that you have to do alot of additional spending. One, you set your self up to fail. Two you are adding unnecessary stress. Schedule the no spend challenge date strategically. The date should be placed on a calendar, probably more so on your phone. Set a reminder for this on the payday before you start.
Prep yourself beforehand. Buy all the groceries, fill up your gas tank, and pay the necessary bills due for that time. Limiting distractions that lead you to spend money is key. When you go to the store even for groceries, you can be spending unplanned money. Anytime I visit the gas station I don’t tend to leave without snacks. All I really needed was gas but I swear they introduce more munchies just to tempt me. Next schedule something that will take up all your focus and energy.
When I have a no-spend weekend or week I usually plan on doing a deep cleaning session. While I’m decluttering my home I focus on the task at hand that I can’t stop to think about anything else. Two benefits in one! I’m sure you can come up with a super cleaning list that will consume your whole weekend. If cleaning is not your thing, maybe you want to organize mail, paperwork, and files on your computer. When do we ever get to do this? What about reading a book? Doing a DIY with things you already have in your home? So many ideas!
Frugal Spending Freeze to do:
Start out with a smaller time frame and work your way up. For someone that has never done a spending freeze before, 30 days can seem like alot. Pick out a weekend, then a week, and so forth. Make sure to do all the above suggestions. Put a date in the calendar and create a reminder. Reminders are good at least a week in advance but I prefer payday. On payday is when my focus is shifted to my finances. Maximizing on the focus by setting a goal on payday and you are sure to have commitment.
Estimated Savings: $700-$1,000 a year (Two monthly No Spends/ or 6 Weekend No Spends)
5. Buying and Cooking in Bulk
Did you ever stop to think the many trips we take to the store can be unnecessary? There’s a secret to saving time and money while shopping. Most of my shopping evolves me picking up food. I’ve already run out of my phase of shopping for pleasure. If I want to buy something for myself, it’s generally super planned including the price. Grocery shopping is what gets me, mainly because I just love FOOD! On the scale of value, how my brain works…food is generally up there.
What can I do to rid me of this trap of overspending? After planning, for us frugal people this is a given, there is buying and cooking in bulk. I’m a huge fan of meal planning but after planing my day, month, bills, and everything else it can be much! Most of my meals tend to have the same ingredients, pasta, pasta sauce, garlic, butter and etc. And can you really have enough butter? lol. I’m currently picking recipes that I can cook in bulk, maybe get at least to days out of them, ie Lasagna. Whenever I do shop, I would grab a lot of the staple pieces I make in my meals. Fewer trips in the store and less cooking for me!
Buying in Bulk Frugal To Do tip:
Shopping at a wholesale store instead of your local grocer is best for buying bulk items. Sign up for a membership because there’ll be other club perks too, like lower gas prices, specials, and more. When you shop at these stores, don’t be afraid of the prices, just compare the cost of one unit versus the total amount. Why don’t we use an example: If you normally buy laundry detergent for $7 or $8 a bottle for 48 oz at regular price. At the wholesaler, it’s 2 for $18 dollars for 96 oz per bottle. It’s like getting an extra two bottles of laundry detergent for $2.00 more.
Always compare units and prices to other stores because sometimes it can be unrealistic. When deciding what to buy, always buy things you have to constantly purchase. Don’t make the mistake of buying alot of something because it’s a good deal If it’s not useful, it’s still a waste of your money, lol
Estimated Savings : $1,000-$2,400 a year
6. Get in the D.I.Y Spirit
When you’ve saved a ton of money its time to see what you can make yourself. I’ve became I really big fan of DIYing ever since COVID started. Staying at home for days on end helped. When the shelves started to become sparse it was time to do what we humans do! Innovate! It’s time to get in the same spirit again. Create your own products that you will use to help you save even more money. Try making and selling, well that’s another subject lol. Did the thought cross your mind too? I knew you were starting to get the frugal vibes!
Where can we find DIY inspiration? Pinterest and YouTube is the best place to go to. Pinterest has so many ideas and you can organize them as you pin them to your board. Every time I go on Pinterest I’m inspired. Many would say inspired to do great things. YouTube is full of creatives. watch a nice video to get a crash course on making something of your own.
D.I.Y. Frugal to do tip
Look around your home and get some DIY inspiration for fun. Check out what items you purchased before and research some DIY topics related. Do you want to make a few household items? Try searching for DIY cleaners, even laundry detergent is an option. Alot of creation comes with practice. Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t get it right the first time. Try again then you can teach someone else. I’ve drummed an idea below.
Estimated Savings:$500 – $1,000 a year
DIY your own All-Purpose Cleaner
- Empty spray bottle
- 1/2 cup of Baking Soda
- 1/2 Gallon of Water
- 1/2 cup of White Vinegar
Mix together and now you have something safe and effective to use.
7. Use Coupons and Discount codes before Shopping
If you plan on living a Frugal lifestyle, using coupons is important. We are not suggesting that you take it to the extreme. Extreme couponing is buying large quantities in bulk by using 100’s of coupons to get a price of next to nothing. The couponing technique as shown with the Extreme Couponing series on the TLC channel displays great measures couponers will take to get a great deal! If you are a beginner at Couponing, I’ve written other posts on this subject. You can reference the links below.
- How to Coupon like an expert as a beginner easily
- How to Organize your Coupons Easily within Minutes
What we want to emphasize is just to coupon for items that you actually will use. You don’t have to be obsessive about getting a bunch of stuff. Let the other consumers have a chance to purchase great deals too! Every month make a goal to use a few coupons on your purchases. The following month go in the store with intentions, make a list along with coupons to use. Make sure you are aware of the store’s couponing policy. Lastly, start to be aware of trends when the items you need to go on sale. Maximize by buying what you need until the next sale date. For example, If you go through 2 bottles of laundry detergent on a monthly basis and they have a sale every 3 months. Then you would buy 6 bottles until the next sale.
Couponing Frugal to do tip
When selecting a store to coupon always review their coupon policy first because it always changes. If there is a loyalty card you have to sign up for in the store, do this first. Some stores have to prices listed on their products, one regular and sale for cardholders. Sign up for a membership so you can get the sale prices. Then make a list of items to buy but more like a strategy. Write down the things that are on sale for items you will NEED not want. On the same list write down the original price and after coupons. Go to couponing websites to print coupons like “Coupons.com” Many stores have their own coupons you can load to the card on their website or app.
When shopping online, collect whatever coupon codes you add prior to buying. Use a coupon code plugin like “Honey”. Honey will show available coupons while you are on the site. You can also use cashback apps like Rakuten or Ibotta. Pick one store that you regularly go to and search for coupons before your shopping trip. Apply the steps above to maximize your saving efforts.
Estimated Savings: $1500-2200 a year
Additional Frugal Habits to Live By
- Always check your Fridge and Pantry before buying Groceries
- Swap out your light bulbs for energy-efficient ones
- Sells things you don’t need or no longer use
- Buy a car that you can afford, best possible to purchase instead of financing
- Walk or ride a bike as much as you can
- When renewing insurance coverage as shop around for better rates
- Automated your bank account, online bill pay, savings and investments
- Link your bank accounts with each other, makes transfers easier
- Shop at thrift stores
- Find Free entertainment or events to do locally
- Grow vegetables and herbs for cooking at home
- Pay down outstanding debt
Are you feeling more Frugal now? All the steps listed above is going to steer you in the right direction. Frugal living can be described as a money-conscious lifestyle, to me it’s just another way to save even more. Some of us have big goals and now we might not make enough money to meet them. Start with what you can do, make more, save more. Practice learning the value of everything, whether its time or money. Time and Money is something that can be lost quickly. When you want to take advantage of them both you might have to sacrifice one or the other. Balancing both can be a great skill combine with living frugally.
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