“50 Money saving tips to help you live frugally.”
Buying land isn’t cheap. Currently, we are not homeowners. Getting out of college in a ton of debt, we decided to travel. Now, we am paying down my debt in order to hopefully finance (and pay off ) a small home with as much land as we can afford.
Since we live in the United States, a country with a savings rate of about 2.4% (source), we are often not encouraged to save money, and live frugally. Advertisements to buy things you do not need are everywhere. Those ads encourage you to adhere to a lifestyle most people cannot afford. There are plenty of articles explaining that the average American in the United States cannot afford a $500 emergency. Not only do we not save, and tend to shop more, while wages have largely remained stagnant for workers for decades. We are told we are in a recovery, but wages have not recovered, especially if you African American. Most people fill in the gaps with extra jobs, or use of credit cards with terrible consequences for their work/life balance and credit.
To help free ourselves from this debt, you can attempt to spend less and live frugally. This way you aren’t trapped in the worse parts of the rat race. While it’s understandable that things happen, it’s important to try to create some sort of space by saving some money. We give 26 tips to help you live frugally to free yourself from overspending and debt.
26 Frugal Living Tips
- Reuse plastic grocery bags as trash bags in your own home or invest in reusable bags.
- Set your water heater to a lower setting (degrees) so that less electricity is used to heat your shower, dishwasher, etc
- Compost all of your food scraps. This can help you save a few bucks on fertilizing your garden, and your wallet on dumping everything Here’s a nice kitchen compost bin.
- Thrift shop before stopping by the department stores if you need new clothes.
- Grow your own fruits, vegetables, or herbs. If you’re new to this, you’ll want to check out a few great how-to books, like “Organic Gardening”
- Use reusable water bottles. These are BPA free and break proof.
- Use home remedies and DIY whenever possible. I use Castile soap to make things like cleansers and shampoos.
- Use less toothpaste or make your own. I use this charcoal toothpaste.
- Go on free dates– take a walk, go to the park, community events, etc
- Meal Prep your meals. I use containers, you can find some here.
- Preserve food. You can get started with help from the Ball home preservation book. .
- Make a grocery list and plan your trips before going to make sure that you don’t forget anything and avoid impulse buys.
- Go to the Library. Check out books you want to read, or DVDs you want to watch.
- Cut the cord. Save money on your cable bill. We have screens to stream movies on, but we do not have cable. satellite, or even Netflix.
- Keep your clothes longer by learning to sew, and not buying fast fashion items that are super trendy. Buy classic items that you can mix and match.
- Do your own hair. Consider wearing your natural hair, or locking your hair and doing it yourself to help save you money. You can also make your own hair products.
- Eat less meat. Despite popular belief, eating meat is more expensive than a vegetable meal. You can find cheap veggies or canned veggies for a meal. If you are in a food desert, when you do get food, buy in bulk and plan your meals.
- Go minimalist. Going minimalist helped up thinks more about the things we buy vs. the things we need. Plus, we saved money selling things we didn’t need.
- Cook more. It’s shocking how much people can spend in a simple work week dining out for lunch. Cook and bring your lunch more to save money.
- This is followed by learning to use leftovers, having grown up poor, it is amazing how well my mother did with repurposing left overs. It’s an artform.
- Dry your clothes on a rack. Use your dryer less and invest in a clothesline or drying rack. Your clothes tend to last longer.
- Keep a budget. I set up a simple budget using google sheets where I placed all my spending into categories and added every expense.
- Use cash- Using cash helps you see how much you are actually spending and cut down on potential bank fees.
- Walk more/ use car less- If you can hack it, try to use less gas.
- Unplug electronics when not in use.
- Recycle- take your old cans and glass bottles to recycle them for cash.
Save Money By Living Frugally
Growing up, this is what our family did on auto pilot to save money. Some people mistakenly think that as they grow, they have to spend more, but you can buck that trend by spending less and saving more. To help, make a vision board of your savings goal. Being able to look towards your goals, can help you stay on track.