Did you know that about three quarters of people in the United States have trouble managing their money? Whether you have gotten yourself into debt or simply find that you spend more than you earn, choosing to live frugally can save you a lot of headaches and stress. Along with helping save you money, living a frugal lifestyle also has a positive impact on the environment, your community, and your happiness in life.
If you're ready to change your spending habits, check out our top 10 best frugal living tips to save money and balance your budget.
Top 10 Best Frugal Living Tips To Live Lean And Prosper
1. Take Advantage Of Coupons And Discount Codes
Before you head to the grocery store, check your Sunday paper and go online to look for coupons for food and other supplies you need. Often, your grocery store will have its own savings program that lets you clip coupons online. Otherwise, you can find online coupon websites that allow you to print offers for everyday items. Don't forget to look online for coupon codes that you can use for online retailers as well. You can also easily find offers and discount codes for local restaurants, service providers, and more.
2. Shop Around For The Best Deals On Everything
The best frugal tips and tricks focus on making sure you don't pay any more than necessary for what you need. This means you'll want to browse the sales ads before you head to the store and take advantage of any special offers on everyday necessities. For those large purchases like electronics and appliances, use the internet to your advantage. You can often enter a product name into Google and see the prices for many retailers in one place. Also, keep in mind sales days like Black Friday and Cyber Monday when you can save big.
3. Don't Always Buy Things New, Go For Used And Factory Refurbished Instead
Rather than heading to the store to buy an item you need, consider alternatives like buying used or even borrowing. For example, rather than buying a brand new car, consider looking for a reliable used car and help avoid taking on a car loan and to lower your insurance. You can also find used items like clothes, furniture, toys, and electronics through thrift shops, garage sales, second hand stores, and auctions. Don't forget places like your local public library where you can borrow books and DVDs and save money. You may also find that friends and family can lend you everyday items that they don't need to help you save even more money.
4. Get Creative To Reduce Your Living Expenses
When you need help paying bills, that indicates you should look into cutting your living expenses as much as possible. Good places to start include your transportation and utility costs. For example, you might consider giving up your car to travel cheaply by bus or train, or you could simply bike or walk more often to cut down on gas costs. Using less water and adjusting your thermostat can also go a long way toward cutting your electric and water bills. If you struggle to afford housing, consider downsizing or even renting out one or more rooms. You can also look into income-based housing options.
5. Grow Your Own Food
If you want to cut down on food costs and get some enjoyment in the garden, growing your own food can be a good way to practice frugal living. You get the benefit of choosing the specific foods your family will enjoy and can avoid using some of the harmful chemicals you might worry about. You'll just need to prepare to put in the effort and time to plant, care for, and harvest your crops.
6. Earn A Side Income
One of the other frugal living ideas to consider is to boost your earnings with a side gig. Whether you want to work from home or in your community, you have many options to make money and can get creative. For example, you might consider turning your crafting or gardening hobby into a business where you sell your products to others. You can also look into options like getting paid to deliver groceries, drive people around, or work part-time at a local store.
7. Get Cheaper Health Care
Whenever you need to see a doctor or fill a prescription, check your insurance plan and shop around to get the best deal. For example, sometimes you can book an online doctor's appointment for minor issues and avoid paying a hefty urgent care fee. Even if you do need to see a doctor locally, you should consider a second opinion if you get told you need an expensive procedure. You can also use top tools and services to find the cheapest prescriptions and even locate pharmacies that fill certain prescriptions for free.
8. Buy In Bulk
While you might find it less convenient to haul larger quantities home, you can potentially save a lot if you buy items like food, medicine, and other non-perishables in bulk. You'll also rest assured you're making a more environmentally friendly choice. First, you'll often pay less per unit or ounce on products bought in bulk, even if you buy name-brand products. Second, you save in terms of not needing to make as many trips to the store to buy the same items.
9. Try To Do Small Repairs Yourself
Although with helping you gain handy life skills, learning to do small fixes yourself saves you money and can bring some convenience. For example, you can take a course on car repair and learn to do common maintenance tasks without paying for labor at a car shop. You can also watch videos online to learn skills such as trimming your family's hair, doing minor home repairs, and making your own cleaning products. When deciding to try something yourself, do keep in mind your safety and confidence. Trying to fix an electrical issue in your house can put you in danger and cause more expensive problems down the road, for example. So, know when to call a professional and when you can safety DIY.
10. Work Out At Home With Frugal Fitness
Gyms and personal trainers can be quite costly. You can save a lot of money each month and still get the same health and fitness results by working out at home. You can also find plenty of free resources on exercise and nutrition online to help save on healthy workouts and food. Frugal Fitness TV helps you get in shape at home or while traveling on any thrifty budget.
Use The Best Frugal Living Tips To Save More Money Now
With the best frugal living tips in mind, go ahead and start saving money! You can use that extra cash to frugally pay down any debts or even save toward a family vacation you'll always remember. Do know that you have many other ways to apply frugal living principles too. For example, you can call creditors, doctors' offices, and utility companies to ask for reduced payments or extended payment plans.
Do you want even more top ideas for making money and living frugally? Then check out our many other posts about living frugally right here on the Frugal Finance Blog. Live lean and prosper while living your best life on a budget!