When it comes to establishing and maintaining a budget, let’s be honest: we could all use some pointers. Frugality is an overlooked aspect of living for most, and if you don’t know about it, you are missing out! Here, we will discuss 102 super simple frugal tips that will help transform your lifestyle and budget for the better.
1. Create a Budget
The cornerstone of any frugal lifestyle is a well-crafted budget. Knowing where your money goes allows you to make informed decisions, ensuring every dollar has a purpose.
2. Cook at Home
By preparing meals at home, you gain the power to control your diet. This is a much healthier option for cutting out those processed foods and for creating a budget around the ingredients you will use each week.
3. Buy Generic Brands
Generic doesn’t mean lower quality. Often, store brands offer the same product at a fraction of the cost. Give them a try and watch your savings add up.
4. Cancel Unused Subscriptions
Are you really getting value from all those subscriptions? Cut back on your monthly expenses by canceling services you don’t use or need.
5. Use Public Transportation
If you live in an area where public transportation is available, why not opt to utilize it? Even if you alternate between driving yourself and hitching a ride from time to time, you can save yourself some money.
6. Reduce Energy Consumption
When the weather permits, leave your windows open for natural air circulation and temperature control. This can save you money and fill your home with natural fresh air.
7. Sell Unused Items
Declutter your space while making some extra cash. Platforms like eBay and Facebook Marketplace make it easy to sell items you no longer need.
8. Buy In Bulk
For non-perishable items, buying in bulk can save you money in the long run. Just be sure it’s something you use regularly to avoid waste.
9. Use Coupons
Keep an eye out for discounts and coupons. They might seem small individually, but they add up over time, especially on regular purchases.
10. Shop at Thrift Stores
Why not give in to the thrill of the hunt and discover treasures at thrift stores? Clothing, furniture, and household items can often be found in great condition at a fraction of the cost.
11. Cut Cable TV
Cutting the cord on cable can save you a significant chunk of change. Evaluate your viewing habits and choose cost-effective streaming options that cater to your entertainment needs.
12. Make a Shopping List
A shopping list keeps you focused and prevents impulse buys. Stick to your list, and you’ll not only save money but also reduce the likelihood of purchasing items you don’t actually need.
13. Pack Your Lunch
Eating out for lunch every day can rack up a hefty tab. By packing your lunch at home, you not only save money but also have better control over the nutritional value of your meals.
14. DIY Cleaning Products
Try substituting simple household ingredients like vinegar and baking soda to create effective cleaning solutions. It’s not only budget-friendly but also a healthier and eco-friendly alternative to commercial products.
Sharing rides with coworkers or friends not only cuts down on fuel costs but also reduces your carbon footprint. Carpooling is a win-win for your wallet and the environment.
16. Buy Secondhand Furniture
Furnishing your home doesn’t have to break the bank. Explore thrift stores, online marketplaces, and garage sales for pre-loved furniture that can add character to your space without the hefty price tag.
17. Turn off Lights
Being mindful of turning off lights when you leave a room can bring about noticeable savings on your electricity bill.
18. Repair, Don’t Replace
Before tossing out a broken item, try repairing it first. Whether it’s a ripped piece of clothing or a malfunctioning appliance, repairing instead of replacing is often the more economical choice.
19. Use a Programmable Thermostat
Investing in a programmable thermostat allows you to regulate your home’s temperature efficiently. Lowering the heat or AC when you’re not at home can result in substantial energy savings.
20. Plant a Garden
Growing your own fruits, vegetables, and herbs can be both rewarding and cost-effective. It not only reduces your grocery bill but also provides you with fresh, homegrown produce.
21. Limit Eating Out
While dining out is a delightful experience, it can quickly deplete your budget. Limiting restaurant visits and opting for home-cooked meals not only saves money but also gives you more control over your eating habits.
22. Set Financial Goals
Define clear financial objectives for yourself. Whether it’s saving for a vacation, an emergency fund, or paying off debt, having concrete goals provides direction and motivation for your frugal journey.
23. Shop for Sales
Patience pays off when you keep an eye out for sales and discounts. Timing your purchases with sales events can result in substantial savings on everything from clothing to electronics.
24. Cut Out Soda and Junk Food
Cutting out expensive and unhealthy snacks like soda and junk food not only saves money at the grocery store but can also lead to long-term healthcare savings.
25. Limit Impulse Buys
Before making a purchase, especially a non-essential one, take a moment to consider if it aligns with your budget and financial goals.
26. Use a Library
Books, movies, and even music can be borrowed for free from your local library. This not only saves money but also encourages a culture of sharing and community.
27. Unplug Electronics
Even when turned off, electronic devices consume energy if they’re plugged in. Unplug chargers and other devices when not in use to save on your electricity bill.
28. Buy In-Season Produce
Fresh fruits and vegetables in season are not only tastier but also more affordable. Plan your meals around what’s in season to take advantage of lower prices.
29. Use Public Wi-Fi
Save on data costs by using public Wi-Fi when available. Just be sure to use secure networks and exercise caution when accessing sensitive information.
30. Use Hand-Me-Downs
Hand-me-downs aren’t just for kids. Accepting or sharing gently used clothing and items within your social circle can save everyone money while reducing waste.
31. Bundle Insurance
Consolidating your insurance policies with one provider often comes with discounts. Bundle your home, auto, or other insurance policies to save money while maintaining coverage.
32. Buy Used Books
Explore the options at secondhand bookstores or online platforms to build your library without burning a hole in your pocket. Used books often cost much less than new ones.
33. Limit ATM Fees
Frequent ATM usage from non-affiliated banks can accumulate hefty fees. Plan your withdrawals strategically to minimize these charges and keep more money in your pocket.
Besides being environmentally friendly, recycling can also be financially rewarding. Many places offer cash incentives for recycling certain items, turning your trash into treasure.
35. Shop with a List
A well-thought-out shopping list is your armor against impulse purchases. Stick to what you need, and you’ll avoid unnecessary spending.
36. Use Cloth Diapers
For parents, opting for cloth diapers instead of disposables not only reduces environmental impact but also leads to significant savings in the long run.
37. Bike or Walk
Save on transportation costs and stay healthy by incorporating biking or walking into your daily routine. These super simple frugal tips are not only cost-effective but also eco-friendly.
38. DIY Home Repairs
Before calling in the professionals, consider tackling minor home repairs yourself. There are countless online tutorials and resources that can guide you through basic repairs, saving you money on labor costs.
39. Shop for Free Events
Entertainment doesn’t have to come with a hefty price tag. Keep an eye out for free community events, concerts, and festivals happening in your area.
40. Meal Prep
Preparing meals in advance not only saves time but also money. By buying ingredients in bulk and cooking in batches, you’ll reduce the temptation to eat out and minimize food waste.
41. Avoid Bottled Water
Invest in a reusable water bottle and opt for tap water. Not only is it cost-effective, but it also reduces plastic waste and promotes environmental sustainability.
42. Line Dry Laundry
Instead of using your dryer every cycle, why not try line-drying your laundry? It not only saves on energy costs but also extends the lifespan of your clothes.
43. Cut Down on Meat
Reducing meat consumption, even if just a few times a week, can significantly lower your grocery bill. Explore plant-based protein sources for a healthier and more budget-friendly diet.
44. Use a Slow Cooker
You would be surprised at how much you can cook in a slow cooker. Cheaper cuts of meat can turn into delicious, tender meals with minimal effort, reducing the need for expensive, pre-packaged options.
45. Buy No-Brand Clothing
Ditching the brand name can lead to substantial savings without sacrificing style. Many non-brand name or generic clothing items are of comparable quality to their more expensive counterparts.
46. Compare Prices
Take the time to compare prices from different retailers before you go shopping. Online tools and apps make this process quick and easy, ensuring you get the best deal.
47. Handmade Gifts
Gifts made with love often have more sentimental value than store-bought ones. Embrace your creative side and save money by giving handmade gifts for special occasions.
48. Turn Off the Tap
Simple water conservation can translate into lower utility bills. Be mindful of turning off the tap while brushing your teeth or washing dishes to save both water and money.
49. Use Free Apps
There’s an app for almost everything, and many useful ones are free. From budgeting to productivity tools, explore free apps before considering paid alternatives.
50. Eliminate Debt
While not an immediate solution, eliminating high-interest debt should be a long-term financial goal. Interest payments can drain your budget, so focus on paying down debts to free up more money for savings and investments.
51. Buy in Cash
Using cash for your purchases can help you stick to your budget. It provides a tangible way to track your spending and can deter impulse buys that are easier with digital transactions.
52. Negotiate Bills
Don’t hesitate to negotiate your bills, whether it’s for utilities, internet, or insurance. Providers often have promotions or discounts available, and a simple phone call can lead to significant savings.
53. Use Public Parks
Take advantage of the great outdoors by spending leisure time in public parks. They provide a cost-free alternative to expensive entertainment options and promote a healthy lifestyle.
54. Repair Shoes
When your shoes start looking like they are on their last leg, look up shoe repair in your area before tossing them in the trash. Cobblers can often fix worn-out soles or damaged heels, extending the life of your footwear.
55. Buy Generic Meds
Generic medications are equally effective as their brand-name counterparts but come at a fraction of the cost. Ask your healthcare provider if there’s a generic option available for your prescription.
56. Skip Luxury Brands
Luxury brands are just expensive for the name. There are plenty more affordable alternatives of the same quality available. Of our 102 super simple frugal tips, this is definitely one of the easiest to adjust to.
57. Drive Economically
Practicing fuel-efficient driving habits, such as maintaining a steady speed and avoiding unnecessary idling, can significantly cut down on your gas expenses.
58. Use Reusable Bags
Invest in reusable bags for your shopping needs. Not only does this reduce environmental impact, but many stores also offer discounts for bringing your own bags.
59. Cut Your Own Hair
Consider learning to cut your own hair or exchanging haircuts with a friend or family member. YouTube can teach you anything you can think of these days, don’t overlook the opportunity!
60. Shop Online Sales
Take advantage of online sales and promotions to score discounts on a wide range of products. Many retailers offer exclusive online deals, allowing you to shop strategically and save money.
61. Learn to Mend
Extend the life of your clothes by learning basic sewing skills. From stitching up small tears to replacing buttons, mending your garments can save you the headache of buying frequent replacements.
62. Avoid Disposable Utensils
Unless you are having a large gathering, try to avoid buying disposable utensils. It may seem convenient, but simply washing your fork or spoon each time instead can help you save money and the environment.
63. Barter or Trade
Explore the possibilities of bartering or trading skills and goods with others. This age-old practice can be a creative and cost-effective way to meet your needs without spending money.
64. Limit Beauty Products
Scale back on beauty product purchases by focusing on essential items. Multi-purpose products and natural alternatives can often replace a multitude of specialized products.
65. Cancel Unused Gym Memberships
If you find yourself rarely using that gym membership, it might be time to cancel. There are plenty of low-cost or free alternatives for staying active, from outdoor activities to home workouts.
66. Use Free Events
Entertainment doesn’t always have to come with a price tag. Look out for free events in your community, from concerts to art exhibitions, for budget-friendly leisure options.
67. DIY Home Decor
Tap into your creative side by making home décor yourself. This not only makes for a fun project but also decorates your house with one-of-a-kind creations made by yours truly.
68. Limit Credit Card Use
While credit cards offer convenience, excessive use can lead to unnecessary debt. Limit your credit card usage to essential purchases and focus on paying off balances promptly to avoid interest charges.
69. Repurpose Items
Before discarding items, consider how they might be repurposed. From old furniture to clothing, finding new uses for items can save you money and contribute to a more sustainable lifestyle.
70. Borrow, Don’t Buy
Instead of buying something for a one-time project, ask around to see if friends or family members have what you need. Tools, equipment, or occasional-use items can often be borrowed instead of buying something you may rarely need.
71. Use LED Bulbs
Make the switch to LED bulbs for your lighting needs. Although they might have a higher upfront cost, LED bulbs last longer and consume less energy, resulting in long-term savings on your electricity bill.
72. Make Your Own Coffee
Brewing your own coffee at home can save you a substantial amount compared to buying it at coffee shops. If you’re a frequent Starbucks shopper, this option from our super simple frugal tips list can save you from the excessive line and the expensive tab!
73. Skip Pre-Packaged Foods
Opting for fresh, whole ingredients instead of pre-packaged foods not only promotes a healthier lifestyle but also cuts down on your grocery expenses.
74. Reduce Thermostat
During colder months, lowering your thermostat by just a few degrees can lead to significant savings on heating costs. Consider bundling up in warm layers or using extra blankets to stay cozy.
75. Use E-Books
Switching to e-books not only saves you money but also saves space and contributes to a more sustainable, clutter-free living environment.
76. Combine Errands
Plan your errands strategically to minimize trips and save on fuel costs. Combining multiple tasks into one outing is not only efficient but also environmentally friendly.
77. DIY Holiday Decorations
Get creative with do-it-yourself decorations for holidays. Homemade decorations are not only cost-effective but also imbued with personal meaning.
78. Eat Leftovers
Make a habit of repurposing leftovers into new meals. This not only reduces food waste but also saves you money on grocery bills.
79. Buy Secondhand Toys
Children’s toys can be expensive, and kids often outgrow them quickly. Opt for secondhand toys from thrift stores, garage sales, or online platforms to save money while still providing entertainment.
80. Start Investing
With as little as $1, you can start investing in yourself. There are plenty of mobile apps available to start making your money make money for you!
81. Build Your Credit
Having good credit can give you much lower interest rates and with lower interest rates, you will have lower monthly payments.
82. Start Taking Free Online Courses
Instead of paying for expensive online courses or getting into student debt, try seeking out free courses online. Most things you want to learn can be found on YouTube free of charge!
83. Ditch the Paper Towels
Though it may be super convenient to use a paper towel for every little spill, opting for a reusable microfiber cloth can save you money. This alternative is not only cost-effective but eco-friendly as well.
84. Refinance Your Vehicle Loan
By increasing the term of your vehicle loan, you ultimately lower your interest rate and your monthly payment. This option may not be for everyone, as it is a lengthy process and there are some requirements that need to be met before the refinance can be accepted.
85. Buy Used Vehicles
New vehicles depreciate substantially the moment they leave the dealership’s lot. There are plenty of high-quality used vehicles available on the market that could save you $1000s.
86. Support Small Retailer Stores
Many small retail stores offer surplus products or products that are nearing their expiration date. You can take advantage of these deals while simultaneously supporting a local business owner.
87. Don’t Overspend on Your Vacation
Taking a vacation is always a hard-earned reward, but that doesn’t mean you have to spend everything that you saved on one trip! There is a plethora of relaxing and serine vacation options that won’t break the bank. Do your research and find the best vacation spot for your budget.
88. Use Newspaper as Wrapping Paper
People spend absurd amounts of money on wrapping paper that is discarded after one use. Why not try using old newspapers to wrap your gifts? This unique approach to gift-wrapping not only saves you money but makes your presents stand out from the crowd.
89. Always Dispute Your Medical Bills
In the fast-paced world of medical billing, it’s easy for hospitals to bill you for the wrong amount. Be sure to review your bills diligently before you pay! You can always request an itemized version which may help the hospital catch their mistakes themselves.
90. Use Less Laundry Detergent
By using half of the recommended amount of laundry detergent, you can make your containers last twice as long. Don’t worry, your clothes will still be just as clean!
91. Use Your Dishwasher
Using the dishwasher uses less water than washing each dish by hand. Unless you are washing a single utensil or dish, save water by washing your dishes in bulk.
92. Keep Air in Your Tires
By routinely refilling your tires with air, you lower your fuel consumption, reduce drag, and expand the life of your tires noticeably. Always keep a tire gauge handy and keep tabs on your tire pressure.
93. Answer Receipt Surveys
Most receipts you get these days include a link to a quick survey. Start taking the time to fill these surveys out as they may offer you future savings from that retailer.
94. Try Using a Foil Ball
Rather than using fabric softener, try rolling aluminum foil into a ball (about 3 inches in diameter) and tossing that in with your next dryer load. This reusable foil ball softens your clothes and cuts the costs of fabric softeners from your budget.
95. Plan an Expense-Free Weekend
The weekend often offers a break from work and responsibilities. Give yourself a break from spending money too! Go for a walk in a local park or picnic with homecooked finger foods and snacks. You don’t have to spend money to have a nice weekend.
96. Use Reusable Bags
Invest in reusable bags for your shopping needs. Not only does this reduce environmental impact, but many stores also offer discounts for bringing your own bags, adding an extra layer of savings.
97. Use a Calculator While Grocery Shopping
It’s easy to lose track of how much you’ve got in your shopping cart. Try bringing a calculator and adding things up as you go to help stick to your grocery budget.
98. Freeze Your Leftovers
Sometimes having the same meal over and over gets old. That doesn’t mean you should throw out your leftovers. Instead, stick them in the freezer and have them later.
99. Wash Your Clothes in Cold Water
Using hot water in any way bumps up your energy bill. Try washing your clothes in cold water for a more energy-efficient laundry cycle.
100. Wear Clothes Again
If you’re not sweating excessively or playing in the dirt, most clothing can be worn multiple times before needing a wash. This saves big time on your energy and water bill.
101. Buy in Bulk
Most warehouse stores offer huge deals on products you buy individually at regular retail stores. Do some research before you buy that $12 bottle of conditioner. You would be surprised at the savings you are missing out on.
102. Drink More Water
As addictive as flavored beverages can be, it makes sense that you might rack up a nasty tab on them. Not only are they bad for your health, but they are also expensive and unnecessary.
There are plenty of ways to live with less without sacrificing your preferred lifestyle. It may just take some small substitutions to your everyday routine to start saving money. By exploring this list of super simple frugal tips, you’re already a step closer. Get started today; every effort makes a difference!