Most people who are from working families grow up money conscious. This often translates to “frugal” in their household, and that means limiting spending and saving money where possible, even in times you think it may be impossible.
Right now, we’re in the middle of a pandemic, which means that there is a necessity in being frugal. People are losing their jobs and are stuck on furlough with a lesser income than they’re used to, which means that being more frugal is a must. Trying to do that when you’re used to a little more freedom with your money is not easy, but that doesn’t mean that it’s too late to learn.
There are some out there who are naturally frugal, using saving money as a way to improve on their everyday life. Frugal people tend to spend less money in general, and they’re happy with their lives being led this way. They appreciate that a simpler lifestyle often means that there are rewards later on, and they know that to remain frugal, they must continually evaluate their spending and adjust it where necessary. If you are ready to get saving instead of spending, then it’s time to check our list of tips below. It’s your time to go and be frugal, and we’ve got the tips you need to make it happen.
- Start With Choosing Stability. If you want to be a frugal person, you need to choose stability. Just as if you were looking to lose weight, you choose to skip surfing the net for ten minutes and you do a workout instead. Frugal people make the effort to value their financial health over choosing to buy random stuff that catches their eyes in the supermarket. Financial wellbeing is the aim of the game and it’s very easy for a frugal person to make the right decision for their finances – they naturally do it! Money can go two ways: savings or losses, and if you’re not saving, you’re spending. You get to choose stability and that’s your first step towards a more frugal life.
- Compare, Compare, Compare. Do you pay sticker price for a car when you go to the car lot? Of course not, you negotiate the price and get it as low as possible. Comparison shopping is the way forward for everything from groceries to the utility bills you pay. You don’t have to pay the original price for anything if you can find it cheaper elsewhere. This will take research on your part and you can use online comparison websites to ensure that you are getting the best deal. If you know the best deals, you’ll always find the right ones when you are looking. When it comes to larger projects like home remodels and outdoor projects, you can get quotes from two or three companies to ensure that you get the best deal you can get. It can soften the blow on the bigger purchases when you do this!
- Eat In For Wallets Thin! Frugal people scour online websites and cookery books and they make a point of replicating their favorite meals to ensure that they get that restaurant quality food without having to leave the house. Frugal people are very selective about whether they dine out or not and they tend to save it for very special occasions. Frugal restaurant goers will always hit happy hours or they’ll go to the “all you can eat” options where possible. If you’re dying to eat out, get online and look for a great buy one get one free deal, too. Keep your wallet thin and eat in instead of eating out.
- Shop Second Hand. Facebook Marketplace and eBay are both huge sites for second hand goods, and those who are frugal with their cash are more than happy to shop online where possible. Those designer purchases look beautiful on the hanger, but your bank account will cry cash if you’re not careful! There is nothing that screams investment about designer fashion, so if you want to “invest” your money somewhere, find the right stock, share or bank account to allow your money to grow. You don’t have to spend too much money to invest and you can get started today without too much of an effort!
- Plan Every Penny. You can use websites like Plenti to build your money and manage it properly, but the one thing that frugal people do well is actually make use of the websites that they sign up to. They know all the right tips for money saving and they know how to make the best possible financial decisions that will be in line with keeping their cash budgeted. If you are someone who is new to budgeting in general, then it will take some time to get used to having less money. The good news is that tools like Plenti are going to help you with building for your retirement and your future.
- Make Special Items Special. When you start to live a more frugal life, you start to realize just how much money you spend on things that you don’t need for people who don’t really matter as much. It’s nice to go for an occasional splurge, but these can become too many too quickly if you’re not careful. Frugal people don’t spend big money like a habit. They wait for the special occasions and that makes the time to splurge all the more special. Special events are kept as they should be and when you start doing this, you’re going to notice how much money you don’t spend anymore!
- Saying No – It’s a New Way! Sometimes, saying no is a must and you have to think about staying strong when you do. Sure, you may get invited to meals out and drinks with friends, but you can say no and then switch it up. So, instead of going out, invite friends round to see you and have a potluck dinner. Get everyone to bring a dish, put pillows all over the floor and have the best kind of floor picnic ever. You can be strong and say no to spending, and you can have less pressure on you when you make an alternate plan with your friends. Being frugal doesn’t mean giving up your social life. It just means scaling it back a little!
- No More Cash Register Buys. You’re in the store and you’re queuing up to buy what you need to buy. You see something jump out at you from the cash register shelves, and bam – you’ve added $50+ to your shopping budget that you didn’t account for. Those impulse purchases can be budget killers if you’re not careful and a bonus to being strong against it is that you can get what you wanted later on with a great deal that you can afford. It’s a bonus to wait if you learn how to budget properly, you’re going to be able to afford them later. And by that time, you won’t want to have it anymore!
- Paying You First. A frugal person works on ensuring that their bills are ahead, savings are paid for and their mortgage or rent is paid. They then contribute to their investments before they allow themselves any spending money for fun. This “reverse budget” is a way to ensure that they get exactly what they need. Now, you need to make sure that you do the same thing and start spending money on yourself first, and then invest in your “fun” money. You’re going to be living in a way that supports you having security, even if it means one less shopping trip.
- Get Good On Less. As a frugal person, you’re going to get so good at living on much less money than you are used to. It will take time, like going on a diet when you’re usually eating 2,000 calories a day. Once you get started, it’ll hurt at first, but it will get easier over time. Being frugal is the key to being able to invest and if you want to be more frugal in your lifestyle, it’s important to live on less than you make. It may take time to get used to it, but once you are used to it, you are going to start feeling like you can breathe better. This will ensure that you are managing your money properly.
- Keeping Outgoings Low. As a frugal person, you are going to need to keep your eyes on the prize – keeping your wallet healthy. It’s easy to lose sight of your goals but you don’t have to. You can keep yourself on track and use charts and visual aids to keep you toward your goals. Will it feel like a pinch? Absolutely. Is it worth it? Yes, it is. You need to think about what you want from your new frugal lifestyle and keep that in mind – imagine finally saving for a house!