Hey, feeling like you need to take out a loan just to buy a loaf of bread? Inflation is hitting us under the belt, but don't you fret, my frugal friends! You don't have to sell your soul to make ends meet.
We've got 39 frugal living tips that will have you sticking it to inflation like a boss. Say goodbye to feeling broke and hello to more "power" in your pocket.
These tips aren't just about sacrificing everything you love, either. We're talking simple swaps and lifestyle changes that won't leave you crying into your ramen noodles.
So, if you're ready to show inflation who's boss and take control like a "Ninja Finance God", then buckle up and keep reading!
What Is Frugal Living?
Does Living Frugally Mean Being Cheap?
No, frugal doesn't necessarily mean cheap. While being cheap means spending as little money as possible, sometimes at the expense of quality or sustainability, frugal living means being mindful and intentional about spending money.
It's about finding ways to save money without sacrificing quality or necessities and being smart about where you allocate your funds.
39 Best Frugal Living Tips
The following are the top 39 tips for living a more frugal lifestyle, many of which may be immediately put into practice:
1. Create A Budget And Stick To It
Creating a budget is one of the most important steps to living a frugal lifestyle. While budgeting may seem dull, it is essential to managing your finances.
A budget enables you to track your income and expenses, identify areas where you can cut back, and plan for future expenses.
To Create A Budget:
Remember that it's alright to indulge in your favorites occasionally. The key is to save up for these purchases beforehand. If you desire a trip with your buddies or wish to buy designer clothing, begin setting aside funds for it.
2. Before Shopping, Create a Grocery List
One of the most significant expenses for many households is groceries. To save money on groceries, list the items you need before you go to the store. This will help you avoid impulse purchases and ensure you buy only what you need.
Stick to your list as closely as possible and avoid buying items that aren't on it. Another helpful frugal living tip is to buy store brands or generic items, often cheaper than name-brand products.
3. Instead Of Eating Out, Cook Your Own Meals
Eating out can be expensive, especially if you do it frequently. To save money on food, cook your own meals at home.
This allows you to control the ingredients and portion sizes, which can lead to healthier eating habits as well. Plan your meals and make a grocery shopping list to ensure you have all the necessary ingredients.
It can be tough to muster up the energy to prepare dinner after a tiring day at work. Sadly, we often turn to fast food options, which can adversely impact our finances.
However, cooking meals in large quantities can completely transform your dinner habits. You can purchase items on sale for the week and prepare them in bulk.
Later, during the week, defrost and reheat the pre-prepared meals. This change in routine would benefit both your budget and your physical health.
4. Use Coupons And Discounts When Shopping
Remember to use discount coupons; they're out there if you seek them. Coupons and discounts can help you save money on various purchases, from groceries to clothing to household items.
Look for coupons in newspapers, magazines, and online, and sign up for loyalty programs to receive discounts and special offers.
You can also use websites and apps that offer cash back or discounts on purchases from specific retailers.
5. Buy In Bulk To Save Money
Purchasing regularly utilized items in large quantities is a practical way to cut expenses. Look for deals on bulk items at your local grocery store or warehouse club, and stock up on essentials like toilet paper, paper towels, and canned goods.
Compare prices and check expiration dates to ensure you get a good deal.
6. Save Money By Installing A Programmable Thermostat
A programmable thermostat can help you save money on your heating and cooling bills by automatically adjusting the temperature when you're not home.
Set your thermostat to turn down the heat or air conditioning when you're at work or sleeping, and turn it back up when you're home. This simple step can save you hundreds of dollars a year.
7. Cancel Unnecessary Subscriptions And Memberships
Look at your monthly expenses and see if you can cancel any subscriptions or memberships. Do you need that gym membership if you only go once a month?
Do you use all the streaming services you're paying for? Reducing unnecessary subscriptions and memberships can free up money for other things.
8. Buy Used Instead Of New
Buying used items can save you a lot of money, especially on big-ticket items like furniture, appliances, and electronics.
Check out thrift stores, yard sales, and online marketplaces like Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace for deals on gently used items. Just be sure to inspect items carefully before you buy them to make sure they
9. Purchase at the Right Time
One of the best ways to save money is to purchase items at the right time. For example, buying seasonal products during the off-season can save you money.
Retailers tend to have discounts on products out of season, so buy them when prices are low.
Also, purchasing items during Black Friday or Cyber Monday can be a great way to save money on expensive items like electronics and appliances.
10. Buy High-Quality Products
Buying high-quality products may seem counterintuitive to frugal living, but it can help you save money in the long run. Well-made items tend to last longer and require fewer repairs or replacements.
For example, purchasing high-quality shoes may cost more upfront, but they can last for years, compared to cheaper, low-quality shoes that fall apart after just a few wears.
Remember, quality pays off in the long run.
11. Choose Low-Cost Experiences
You don't have to spend a lot of money to have fun. Instead, choose low-cost experiences like picnics, hiking, or park visits.
These experiences not only cost less, but they also provide more opportunities to connect with your friends and family.
12. Travel Only During the Off Seasons
Traveling during peak seasons can be expensive, so plan your trips during shoulder seasons. Shoulder seasons are the periods between peak and off-seasons when fewer people travel.
Traveling during off-seasons can also help you save money on flights and accommodations and avoid crowds, making your travel experience more enjoyable.
13. Get A Coffee Maker
If you're a coffee lover, you can save a lot of money by investing in a coffee maker. Instead of buying coffee daily from expensive coffee shops, you can brew your own coffee at home.
Coffee makers come in various types and sizes, and you can choose the one that suits your needs and budget.
Not only will you save money, but you'll also save time by not having to wait in line at coffee shops.
14. Install a Smart Meter
A smart meter is a gadget that monitors and records electrical usage in real-time. By installing a smart meter, you can monitor your electricity usage and identify areas where you can reduce your consumption.
You can also take advantage of off-peak times to use your electric appliances, which will help you save money on your electricity bills.
15. Put Your Electric Appliances To Use During Non-peak Hours.
Off-peak times are periods when electricity demand is low. By using your electric appliances during off-peak times.
For example, you can run your dishwasher or washing machine at night when the electricity demand is low. You can also adjust your thermostat to reduce heating and cooling costs during off-peak times.
17. Take A Shower Instead of A Bath
Taking a shower uses less water than taking a bath. You can save money on your water bills by taking showers instead of baths.
You can also install low-flow showerheads to reduce water consumption further. Additionally, taking shorter showers can help you save even more money and reduce your carbon footprint.
18. Ride A Bike When You Can
Cycling is a great way to save money and reduce your carbon footprint. Instead of driving your car for short trips, consider cycling instead.
You can also use public transportation or carpool to save money on gas and reduce your carbon footprint. Cycling is not only good for your health, but it's also good for the environment.
19. Plant Your Own Fruits and Vegetables
Growing some of your own food may reduce your spending on supermarket staples. You don't need a big garden or a lot of space to start a vegetable or herb garden.
You can even plant some vegetables in containers on your windowsill. Not only will you save money on produce, but you'll also have access to fresh and healthy ingredients for your meals.
20. Don't Buy Books; Instead, Use A Library
Instead of buying books whenever you want to read something new, consider using your local library.
Most libraries have an extensive collection of books, magazines, and even ebooks that you can borrow for free. This can save you a lot of money in the long run, especially if you're an avid reader.
21. Take Advantage of Free Events and Activities in Your Community
Many towns and cities offer free events and activities for residents. This could include concerts, festivals, museums, and more.
Look for community calendars or check with your local city council to see what's available in your area. This is a great way to have fun without spending so much money.
22. Use Online Resources Instead Of Paying For Classes
If you want to learn a new skill or take a class, consider using online resources instead of paying for classes or courses.
You can also find instructional YouTube videos and other resources online to help you learn new things for free.
23. Use a Budgeting App To Track Your Expenses
One of the best ways to save money is by keeping track of your expenses. There are many budgeting apps available that can help you do this easily.
By tracking your expenses, you can identify areas where you're overspending and find ways to cut back. This can help you save money and stay on track financially.
24. Make Presents Rather Than Purchasing Them
When it comes to giving gifts, handmade gifts are often more meaningful than store-bought ones. You can save money on gifts by making something yourself, such as a piece of jewelry or a knitted scarf.
Not only will you save money, but the recipient will appreciate the time and effort you put into making something special for them.
25. Find Some Kind Of Part-time Work
A part-time job is a great way to accelerate your savings and reach your financial goals faster. While many opportunities are available locally, remote jobs offer greater flexibility and convenience.
You can work from the comfort of your home, choose your own hours, and avoid the hassle of commuting.
Choosing something you enjoy and are passionate about is essential when looking for a part-time job. This will help you stay motivated and energized, especially if you already have a full-time job.
Many exciting and rewarding careers are available, such as freelance writing, tutoring, virtual assistance, social media management, etc.
Before committing to a part-time job, consider the time commitment and whether it is sustainable.
Remember, you don't want to burn yourself out or sacrifice your health and well-being for extra money. Negotiating your pay and ensuring you are fairly compensated for your time and skills is also important.
26. Pay Down Your Debt
Debt can be a significant burden on your finances and your overall well-being. Whether you have credit card debt, student loans, or other types of debt, it's important to make paying it off a top priority.
Not only will it improve your financial situation, but it will also reduce stress and anxiety in your life.
To pay down your debt, create a budget and cut back on unnecessary expenses. This will free up more money to put toward your debt payments.
Consider consolidating your debt or negotiating a lower interest rate to make payments more manageable. Making payments on time is also essential to avoid late fees and penalties.
Once you've paid off your debt, it's essential to continue living frugally within your means. This means avoiding unnecessary purchases and saving more money for emergencies and future goals.
You can achieve excellent financial stability by breaking free from debt and living within your means.
27. Downsize Your Living Space
Living in a larger home can be tempting, but the expenses that come with it can quickly add up. In addition to paying for more space, you must factor in higher utility bills, property taxes, and maintenance costs.
All these expenses can strain your finances and limit your ability to save money. If you're finding it hard to keep up with the costs of living in a larger home, downsizing to a smaller and more affordable living situation may be a better option.
This could involve moving into a smaller apartment or house or relocating to a less expensive area. Downsizing saves you money, lets you declutter your belongings, and simplifies your life.
When it comes to downsizing, finding a comfortable and functional space for you is crucial. Consider your lifestyle, budget, and priorities when making a decision.
28. Test Yourself With A No-Buy or Low-buy Challenge
Trying a low-buy or no-spend challenge can be a fun and effective way to save money and become more mindful of your spending habits.
A low-buy challenge involves limiting your purchases to only what is essential, while a no-spend money challenge means avoiding all non-essential purchases entirely.
Starting with a no-spend month can be an excellent way to dip your toes into the challenge. During the challenge, you'll focus on using what you have and finding creative ways to make the most out of your current possessions.
This can be an excellent opportunity to discover new hobbies or ways to entertain yourself without spending money.
Set guidelines for essential and non-essential spending to make the challenge more compelling. You can also keep track of your spending habits and identify areas where you can cut back.
After the challenge, you may have developed better spending habits and a greater appreciation for what you have.
29. Skip The Salon
While beauty treatments can make us feel great, they can also be expensive. Skipping the salon occasionally can help you save significant money in the long run.
For instance, getting your nails done twice a month at $25 each time will cost you $600 yearly. Even if you reduce it to once a month, that's still $300 a year.
You don't have to give up on salon treatments completely, but you can find ways to save money on them.
For example, you can learn to do some treatments at home by watching tutorials online. You can also look for discounts or coupons before booking an appointment.
Another option is to extend the time between appointments. For instance, instead of getting a haircut every six weeks, you can wait for eight weeks or more.
Similarly, you can learn to do your own pedicure or manicure or skip it altogether.
Reducing your salon visits or learning to do some treatments yourself can save you a few dollars each year without sacrificing your beauty routine.
30. Working Out At Home
Gym memberships can be costly. Fortunately, you can get fit and save money by working out at home.
There are many benefits to exercising at home, including the convenience and flexibility to work out whenever you want. You can also save on transportation costs since you won't need to drive to the gym.
Many resources are available for home workouts, such as YouTube workout videos, fitness apps, and virtual training programs. You can find a workout routine that suits your fitness level and preferences.
Additionally, working out at home allows you to use your own equipment, such as resistance bands, dumbbells, or exercise balls.
You can also use everyday items such as chairs, stairs, or water bottles for workout equipment.
Or if you have the budget try this excellent piece of kit!
By skipping the gym and working out at home, you can save hundreds of dollars each year and still achieve your fitness goals.
31. Make Your Own Cleaning Products
Cleaning products can be expensive and harmful to the environment. Instead of buying commercial cleaning products, you can make your own cleaning products using natural ingredients such as vinegar, baking soda, and lemon juice.
These ingredients are inexpensive, readily available, and safe for the environment. You can find many DIY cleaning product recipes online that are easy to make and effective in cleaning your home.
32. Use cloth Towels Instead Of Paper Towels
Paper towels are convenient but can be expensive and harmful to the environment. Instead, you can use reusable cloth towels that can be washed and used again.
Cloth towels are also more absorbent than paper towels and can be used to clean spills, wipe surfaces, and dry dishes. By using cloth towels, you can save money and reduce your waste.
33. Carpool To Save On Gas
Carpooling is a great way to save money on gas and reduce your carbon footprint. By sharing a ride with coworkers or friends, you can split the cost of gas and reduce the number of cars on the road.
Carpooling also reduces traffic congestion, saves time, and reduces the stress associated with driving. Consider organizing a carpool or joining an existing one to save money and be environmentally friendly.
34. Use Public Transportation
Public transportation is another great way to save money and reduce carbon footprint. Public transportation is often more affordable than driving a car and can be a reliable way to get around.
By using public transportation, you can reduce your carbon emissions and help reduce traffic congestion.
You can also take advantage of the time you spend on public transportation to read, work, or relax.
35. Use Energy-efficient Light Bulbs
Energy-efficient light bulbs use less electricity and last longer than traditional light bulbs. Using energy-efficient light bulbs can cut down some energy costs on your electricity bill and reduce your carbon footprint.
These bulbs are available in various shapes and sizes and can be used in all areas of your home. Additionally, energy-efficient light bulbs emit less heat, which can help reduce your cooling costs during the summer.
36. Put Off Upgrading Your Gadgets Unless It's Required
Technology is constantly evolving, and upgrading to the latest model of smartphones or computers is tempting. However, upgrading to the newest model is expensive and not always necessary.
Instead, try to maximize the lifespan of your devices by taking good care of them and only upgrading when necessary. Consider getting repairs instead of buying a new appliance, saving you money in the long run.
37. Purchase Reconditioned Devices Instead Of New Ones
If you need to buy a new electronic device, consider purchasing a refurbished one instead of a new one. One of the primary advantages of purchasing a refurbished machine is cost savings.
Refurbished products are often sold for much lower than brand-new ones, making them an excellent option for those looking to save money.
For example, if you need a new laptop, you could spend thousands of dollars on a brand-new device or purchase a refurbished laptop for a fraction of the cost.
Another benefit of buying refurbished devices is that it helps reduce waste. When you purchase a brand-new device, the production process requires the use of new materials and energy, which can have a negative impact on the environment.
By purchasing a refurbished device, you are helping to reduce waste by giving a second life to a product that might have otherwise been thrown away.
It's important to note that not all refurbished devices are created equal. Some refurbished products may have been repaired poorly or have underlying issues that were not fully resolved during the restoration.
38. Utilize Non-Disposable Containers And Bags
Disposable containers and bags are not only wasteful but can also be expensive over time. Instead, consider using reusable containers and bags for food and grocery needs.
Many options include glass or plastic containers, cloth or mesh produce bags and insulated lunch bags. Using reusable containers and bags can save money and reduce your environmental impact.
39. Sell Items You No Longer Need Or Use To Make Extra Cash
If you have things in your home that you no longer need or use, consider selling them. You can sell items online or in person and make extra cash.
Selling items not only help you declutter your home but also helps to reduce waste by giving things a new life with someone else.
Hey, it's time to ditch the spendthrift lifestyle and hop on the frugal train. Being frugal is not just about saving money, it's a way of life that makes you happier and the world greener.
Buying, buying, buying leads to empty pockets and a cluttered life. Focus on experiences that truly matter, like bonding with friends or pursuing a passion project.
Being frugal isn't boring. Get creative with your budget, find eco-friendly alternatives to everyday products, and feel like a boss making smart choices.
Join the frugal revolution, take control of your finances, reduce waste, and live a fulfilling life. Let's slay inflation together, one penny at a time.
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