When people hear the word frugal, they often automatically think it means never spending money or enjoying life. However, there’s more to being frugal than simply never spending money. It’s more of a lifestyle choice that has you examine how best to spend your money and how to maximize what you have. There are plenty of frugal living tips to help you make the most of your finances— here are some of the more common ways you can live frugally.
Often, people use an item and then throw it away when they’re done with it. However, repurposing some of your household items not only can save you money you’d otherwise spend on the repurposed item, but it also reduces the waste we put into our landfills. One example of repurposing an item is a plastic baby wipe container. If you have a little one running around the house, you likely go through baby wipes on a regular basis. When you’re done with a set of wipes, instead of throwing the container away, repurpose it as a place to store items such as money, makeup, or small toys.
You can’t always repurpose everything. If you need to purchase a household item such as an appliance, consider getting it used. You can often find good quality used appliances as drastically reduced prices than if you were to purchase new. Buying used items is a great way to save money and live frugally.
Repair, Don’t Replace
If you have a pair of slacks, electronics, or another household item that’s broken or in need of repair, don’t toss it out and buy new. Instead, evaluate your item to see if it can be fixed. Repairing items instead of tossing them can save you money over time, and you also gain a new skill by learning how to fix it.
Avoid Food Waste
The average American household wastes around 33 pounds of food a month— that’s not only wasteful, but it’s a waste of your money. Before you toss out your food, see if you can repurpose it. Use food as compost, toss it in soup, or freeze it to use for later. Try to scale back on how much you buy so you have less that goes to waste.
Avoid Late Fees
Late fees are a waste of money that can easily be avoided if you keep a budget. You should know exactly when bills are due each month and set up a payment schedule to avoid being late. If you have a hard time remembering to pay your bills, you may want to consider automating them, so all you have to do is set it and forget it.
Find Free Entertainment
Having fun doesn’t always have to be expensive if you know where to look. Check your local paper, listen to the radio, and ask around to see what free activities are offered in your area. Often, museums and zoos will have free admission days, or parks may host open air movie events. These are a great way to still have fun without the hefty price tag.
Have the Right Insurance
You should check on your insurance at least once a year to be sure your coverage still meets your needs and to see if there are any new discounts you can take advantage of. Set a reminder to check in with your local insurance agency every so often, and you could end up saving money through readjustments, bundling, or discounts.
Cut the Cord
A huge money-saving tip that a lot of frugal people use is to get rid of that expensive monthly cable bill. Usually, people don’t miss cable once it’s gone, especially with the rise of streaming services, which are often much cheaper than a standard cable package.
Living frugally doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy life. Using these simple tips, you could see huge potential savings and more money in your pocket to put towards more important things, such as emergency savings or your retirement.