Many people choose to be frugal for different reasons. Maybe they were raised to live a frugal life, so it’s second nature to them. Perhaps they are consciously frugal and are saving to pay cash for a house, or they have a child about to head off to college. Maybe they simply don’t see any other reason to be anything but frugal.
Whatever their reason, frugal people have these things in common, they all know that every penny counts and they know where all their pennies are going. So, how frugal are you? Ready to find out?
How frugal are you?
Read the list below and see how many frugal things you are already doing or what new ways you can add to your already frugal lifestyle.
Cut bills where possible. Not all bills can be negotiated, but for the ones that can, negotiate. Call your cable provider and have them lower your bill or better yet, switch to Netflix. Cut your landline altogether. Call and see what plans are out there for your cell phone and see if you can get a better deal. Is there anything you can do with your car insurance to lower that bill?
Meal plan and eat at home. Though grabbing something fast while you’re out running errands, frugal people eat before they leave the house. They also plan their meals, grocery shop from their meal plan, then eat at home. Giving into temptation isn’t something they frequently do when it comes to their money.
Look for deals and use coupons. More often than not the stores you shop in have coupons and discount codes waiting to be used. Get in the habit of only buying items you have coupons for and that are on sale.
Frugal people make mistakes, too! When mistakes are made, they use it as a lesson learned. Maybe they went over budget in a particular area for the month, instead of thinking the world is coming to an end they simply fix their mistake and become more aware. If going over budget becomes a habit, they reevaluate their budget.
Eat leftovers. Ever grow tired of cooking? Frugal people often times make enough food to get two meals out of one. Eating leftovers will save you time and money.
Don’t mind buying things used. It becomes easy to purchase used items when you realize how much markup gets added to brand new things. When you look at the amount of money you have saved the fact that the item is used is no longer important.
Remember the saying, “see a penny, pick it up; all day long you’ll have good luck.” Frugal people do. Remember, every penny counts. Even just saving a couple extra dollars a month out of what you saved from lowering your phone bill adds up.
They shop out of need, not as a hobby. There isn’t a long term reward in shopping just for spending money, however, there is a long term reward when it comes to saving money. Finding a hobby that is inexpensive or free is easy if you are opened to the possibilities.
Don’t buy a gym membership, exercise at home instead. Being active outdoors is free. Running only costs a pair of running shoes and if you have access to a pool, swimming could be a great form of exercise.
Trade services with friends. Maybe you can trade babysitting services so you can go grocery shopping alone or go out with your husband for the evening. Trading services is free and rewarding at the same time. You are helping others while saving money.
Keep track of all your bills. Other than seeing if there are any bills you can reduce, find out if you can get a discount for putting your bills on an autopay program. Frugal people look for every possible way to save money and autopay is definitely an easy way to go about saving.
Take your lunch to work. You will be surprised at the amount of money you save by bringing lunch from home. If your reasoning for eating out every day has to do with getting away from the office, then go eat at a local park. Having a change of scenery is free.
Create a grocery list and only buy what’s on your list. Becoming more intentional with your money is easier to do when you only buy what’s on your list. Buying only what’s on your list is challenging at first, but after a couple times of still forgetting items, you will find yourself becoming more intentional with your list making.
Frugal people are great DIYers. They would much rather spend their time than their hard earned cash on paying someone else to do something that they are perfectly capable of doing.
Know that time is money. Paying for a service instead of doing it yourself is sometimes more cost effective. People are skilled in different areas. You may think you need a whole new faucet since the one you currently have is leaking when all you really need is to replace a small rubber piece. Replacing that faucet would be a lot more expensive and take a lot more time than simply having someone come out and replace a small rubber piece.
Buy in bulk when the unit price is cheaper. Checking the unit price is always a good idea. The smallest sized container isn’t really where you always get the most bang for your buck. Some items are much cheaper to buy in bulk. A good example would be paper products.
Frugal people repair things. Doing a little research on repairing vs. replacing may save you a lot of money. Again, replace the rubber piece, not the whole faucet, it’s much cheaper.
Frugal people are always looking for more ways they can be even more frugal. They are always listening and trying new things, challenging themselves to save even more.
Find ways to entertain at home instead of going out every weekend. Renting a movie and watching it at home instead of taking the whole family to the movies will save you a lot of money. Finding ways to have fun at home is a great way to be frugal.
Aren’t married to brands. After comparing ingredients, often the store brand has the same ingredients as a major brand. Frugal people are willing to give the store brand a try.
Fast food places aren’t something they frequent. Frugal people keep snacks in their car with them to help not give into the temptation. Make it a habit of bringing healthy snacks and drinks from home.
Don’t buy stuff to impress people. Dave Ramsey has a saying, “We buy things we don’t need with money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like.” If this is something you are guilty of, think of all the money you will save when you stop.
Turn unwanted/unused items into cash. Decluttering is a goldmine when you turn your unwanted items into cash. And nowadays being about to sell online is a lot easier than holding a yard sale.
Plan for the future and set obtainable goals. Frugal people are always working toward specific goals. They know where they plan on being in five years. Create a 5-year plan, then break that plan down into doable steps.
Being frugal is a lifestyle, a conscious choice to live below your means. Once you have become accustomed to living frugally, it’s almost impossible to spending money without thinking about it first.
How many things on this list are you already doing? Are there any on this list you are going to start implementing right away? Are you a frugal person just starting to watch all your pennies or are you in it for the long haul? Even if you aren’t doing everything on this list, you are headed in the right direction of frugality.