Could you share your tips on living a frugal life?

posted 1 year ago in The Lounge
Post # 31
Member
1607 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2019

-eat vegetarian/vegan 99% of the time or fish (rarely)

-eat dinner at home and bring lunch 

-ride my bike to work when I can 

-do automated purchases for things like cat and dog food to save 5% off bill

-shop for ‘new’ clothes at Savers (thrift store) and TJMaxx clearance/Marhshalls clearance 

(you get 30% off at Savers if you drop off a good amount of stuff to donate)

-do our hair and nails at home

-cook in bulk 

Post # 32
Member
2033 posts
Buzzing bee

sharkey38 :  I like to get my nails done but I’ve gotten pretty good at doing them myself and it is so much cheaper. 

Post # 33
Member
1263 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2018

-We bring lunches everyday and home cook dinner

-plan meals around what food we have so nothing goes to waste

-choose affordable options (bananas and apples or whatever is in season over grapes, berries, cherries)

-We’ve been driving our paid off cars for years

-Spend minimally on beauty stuff (no manicures or high maint. hair)

-Go easy on the AC/heat

 

Post # 34
Member
2527 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

We aren’t perfect but we’re trying to be better as well. I pack my lunch almost always, try to cut down on eating out as much as possible. I will also be packing my sons lunch instead of paying for his school lunch (he starts school this year). I drive an older car that is paid off so no car payment. I have an older phone and don’t upgrade everytime a new version comes out. We try to limit the amount we go out to eat and do “extra” entertainment things. We keep our AC/heat at a reasonable temperature and try to save as much as we can on that as well. 

Post # 35
Member
4509 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

I am echoing a lot of PPs, but my strategies include:

  • Packing my lunch for work (leftovers or sandwiches)
  • Meal planning and making a grocery list so I only buy what we need and don’t throw out food
  • Shop at Aldi
  • Buy meat in bulk and freeze in smaller portions (particularly chicken breast)
  • Use the gym at my workplace or jog outside/do YouTube workouts at home
  • Set a budget each month and track spending
  • No cable (just free channels, Netflix, and Hulu)
  • Minimize spending overall, especially on non-necessities
  • Buy clothes at TJ Maxx or from clearance racks

Granted, I will splurge on my priorities (travel, for instance), but we can only do that because we are careful with our money overall.

Post # 36
Member
2572 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2017 - Courthouse

My husband and I are incredibly frugal and I feel like because of our spending habits, we’ve been able to reach our goals faster.

Here are some things that we do to save money. I understand some are not reasonable to everyone and people have different situations, but this works for us.

  • Cut your own hair or be like me and get your hair cut once a year or so lol
  • Don’t color your hair (of if you really want to do the box dye type or have a stylist friend help you buy supplies at Sally’s and show you a technique you can do yourself
  • Do your own nails (I have a LED light and gel polish so I can give myself a gel manicure whenever I want)
  • PACK YOUR LUNCH FOR WORK
  • Cook larger amounts of food than you will eat for lunches/snacks/etc.
  • Cook at home as much as possible (we only eat out on Sundays and possibly dinner on Fri or Sat night)
  • Make a meal plan and then a grocery list and stick to it. Be flexible but don’t order pizza if you have plenty of food in the fridge!
  • Freeze extra food and reuse for another time
  • Shop at Aldi to save even extra money
  • Only get Starbucks or drink coffee out for special occasions. Even fancier coffee from the grocery store is like 50 cents max
  • Stop buying clothes/shoes/purses that you don’t need OR start shopping at Goodwill or second hand before you buy from a normal store
  • Only use Netflix/Hulu/etc. and cancel cable
  • Make your own cleaning products (super easy and cheap and it’s more safe for pets/children)
  • Buy used cars and drive them into the ground (I have been driving the same car since 2012. It’s my first car, it has hail damage and isn’t the prettiest car but it has awesome gas mileage and I don’t have a payment so why would I get a new car?!)
  • Only buy what beauty products you need (I found myself hoarding makeup and hair products that weren’t cheap and were barely used. Even making yourself stick to one lotion, shampoo, eye shadow palette will help you save money and use what you already have!)
  • Instead of going to see movies and dining out, do a cheaper date like picnic in the park
  • Groom your own pet (I have a short hair dog so I understand this isn’t really possible for long haired dogs)
  • Buy used books! Save money and it’s cheap entertainment
  • Instead of making large furniture and décor purchases, redo the pieces you already have or refresh with paint, new fabric, etc

We recently bought a home and as soon as we started looking at homes I completely quit buying anything unnecessary. I was buying little things that were really adding up and when I stopped it made a huge difference. We also have stopped going out as much to save money and we enjoy staying at home because we love our house.

My biggest piece of advice is to stop spending money on the little things to save money for the big things 😊

 

Post # 37
Member
4910 posts
Honey bee

trackwise :  I’m always down to see how to save! Here are my tips!

-Always Google coupon codes when online shopping you never know

-Look for deals at Macy’s online. Put stuff I want on the wishlist until it becomes a better price. I do this with most stores but Macy’s has a TON of sales

-I buy underwear and cotton clothes from Pact Organic but they have a lot of sales too so I either wait until there’s a sale OR need a lot and buy in bulk to get their buy 3 rate (and get free shipping!)

I can only wear certain brands of shoes due to a latex allergy (it’s on the bottoms or adhesives used) so I scour the internet for deals while keeping a list of authorized sellers. I go on 6pm.com, zappos, Amazon and DSW and Nordstrom Rack. I can find the $120/$130 pairs for $100/$80 and save a TON. 

 

Post # 38
Member
4910 posts
Honey bee

Oh also i got an HSA account for medical expenses you save the tax on your income ilon things you would have spent anyway (that is if you do use doctors etc a lot)

  • This reply was modified 1 year, 2 months ago by  sweatergal007.
Post # 39
Member
484 posts
Helper bee

Best tip I ever got was to pay your credit card in full every month.  If you can’t pay something off in a month, don’t buy it until you’ve saved enough to do that.  Those interest payments add up and prevent you from ever getting ahead if you let it get out of control.

Post # 40
Member
762 posts
Busy bee

I don’t do much but some of the biggest recurring expenses I’ve cut out are my acrylic nails and my hair color. Doesn’t seem like a lot but it adds up quick. That’s always 30-60 bucks for nails + 20 for tip every three weeks. And the hair would be 200-300 + 80-100 dollar tip depending on how long it takes (sometimes more, one of my hair stylists stayed until 1 AM to get me the color I wanted so I tipped him 100%) 

These were all nice things to have but definitely unnecessary, just luxuries. I do my own hair now. Had one too many bad incidents with broken acrylics so I just paint my own nails too. I don’t look terrible and it’s extra money for us to save. FH didn’t mind the spending bc he actually enjoys pedicures too but I grew up pretty fucking cheap so after I realized what I was doing, I cut us off from the salon immediately. I do his toenails now too. 

Post # 41
Member
573 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

Monday through Friday we eat at home for all three meals with the rare excepton. 

I do my own nails. I invested in a gel machine and its already paid itself off and its wonderful to have! 

I utilize the library vs buying books. 

I try and grocery shop smartly by looking at the ads and comparing deals etc. 

We don’t have cable tv. 

Overall I guess we are lucky cause my husband and I don’t buy much “extra” stuff. Clothes, makeup, etc. He never ever buys anything fun for himself per say and as for myself I totally used to, but in the more recent years I just don’t care about having so much stuff in general so that cut out a lot of expense. 

Post # 43
Member
1556 posts
Bumble bee

We are not frugal and unfortunately neither of us are budgeters, but we’ve just started cutting back and it’s been surprisingly easy! Mostly we are just trying to be more conscious of our spending. 

A few things we’ve done that are saving us decent amounts of money:

– instead of a budget, we divide our incomes by % into a few different accounts. Eg, one for mortgage/bills/living expenses, one to pay down debt and one that’s disposable for treating ourselves. Once it’s gone, it’s gone.

– joining up all of our accounts has made us more accountable for our spending. We’re not policing each other by any means, but it definitely makes me put more thought into impulse purchases. 

– cutting mindless takeaway. We started making all of our lunches. We used to do takeaway for two dinners, but now we buy a Costco pizza instead for one of those nights. We liked doing weekly family brunch, but now we make pancakes together at home. It’s seriously cut $200+ a week, which is embarrassing. 

 

Post # 44
Member
22 posts
Newbee

For people in the US, it seems really easy to save while doing groceries and ‘couponing’. Just recently watched some sort of documentary where a duo bought over $1,500 worth of groceries for $.49!

The notion of coupons doesn’t really exist where i live.

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