These 25+ Frugal Living Tips will help you on your journey to becoming financially free! Being frugal doesn’t necessarily have to mean sacrificing everything – it allows you to pick and choose what’s important.
Frugal living is one of the most freeing ways to live and you deserve it. Like most things worth doing, it will require some sacrifice in certain areas, but if done right you won’t notice this at all – living well on less does not have to be a bad thing!
Trust me though, once you begin a lifestyle that helps you save money and spend intentionally, it can be hard to stop – AND it can help you escape the rat race!
Everyone should try frugal living at some point (learn how to live cheap or how to live below your means) and learn the benefits for themselves. In fact, a few simple choices can help you save thousands of dollars every single year.
Sounds pretty great, right? Try it out for yourself and control your money, instead of the other way around. Try one of these free money hacks too to get started!
This no spend challenge or one of these money saving challenges or money saving charts are another great way to get started!
Living frugally does not have to be complicated. In fact, I compiled a list of over 25 frugal living tips to help you see some of the benefits.
If you’re concerned, read whether living stingy is worth it – and the difference between being frugal vs. cheap.
What is Frugal Living?
Frugal living is nothing complicated – just making the intentional choice to spend your money wisely. It doesn’t have to be difficult, but making small decisions that can help you make some big savings.
And living frugally does not necessarily mean living cheap. Cheap means buying low priced items that do not last or are low quality. Living frugally is an intentional way of living where you spend money only on this things that are truly important to you.
Because money can’t buy happiness.
There is such a freedom in knowing that you are making an effort to have a life centered around frugal living and finally having control over your money! No more financial stress over emergencies, holidays, or any other big purchases.
Related: How to Stop Buying Stuff
The Benefits of Frugal Living
Two words – Financial freedom. Having the financial freedom to live your life to the fullest is the single most important thing in your life.
It enables you to pursue your dreams and passions, and work only on things that bring you joy, not that wear you down.
And cutting unnecessary expenses is one of the first steps you can take to help you reach that freedom. Implement these tips to help build up that emergency fund, eliminate debt, and start investing.
Having a money tracking app like Mint or Quicken can help you keep track of your saving.
25+ Frugal Living Tips
Stop letting money run your life and start implementing some of the frugal living tips right away. Consider what is most important in your life and educe (or eliminate) the rest.
Set a Budget and Track It
When it comes to frugal living, setting a budget and tracking it is essential. Using the cash envelope system of budgeting is one of the best ways to make this happen!
When you walk into the grocery store and you know that you can only spend $100 for the week, you will do more to intentionally spread that money as far as possible. You might grab the store brand of cashews for $2 less or decide that your family really doesn’t need to eat filet mignon this week.
Some of these dirt cheap meals will help you stay within your grocery budget while still eating healthy!
Try Some Free Hobbies
Free hobbies will quickly become your best friend when you make the decision to live as frugally as possible. When you stop to think about it, there are actually some awesome things to do that won’t cost you a cent.
- Swim at the lake or in the ocean
- Take a long walk or jog
- Ride your bike
- Find shapes in the clouds
- Watch a free yoga video
Remember how fun these things were as a kid? Try them again- you won’t regret it!
Get Out of Debt
The most important thing that you can do for yourself and your family when it comes to frugal living is to get out of debt. It takes time, but is totally possible.
Sit down, make a plan, and commit to pulling yourself out of debt. This is a huge part of Dave Ramsey’s 7 baby steps and I highly recommend you implement the rest as well!
You can also learn how to live mortgage free!
Let Amazon Be Your Pharmacy
I was shocked when I discovered this little trick – Amazon has a pharmacy and they will deliver it to your door. How awesome is that? No more waiting in that long line that every pharmacy always has- wahoo!
Something that is even better is that their prices are great. People who are attempting a more frugal lifestyle live for deals like this!
Avoid Late Fees
When it comes to frugal living – you want to avoid late fees like the plague. I cannot tell you how much money I have wasted in the past just because I was too lazy to turn something back in on time.
One time, for example, I rented a carpet steamer from my local grocery store. It was due back within 24 hours, but after all that work of steaming my carpets I was just too tired to return it before it was due.
Since it was late, I accrued late fees and owed more than 50% of what the rental was. It was not great.
Now that I am living frugally, I know better. Always avoid those late fees so you basically are not throwing away money.
Also try and avoid fees related to services like Coinstar with these Coinstar hacks!
Search for Cheap Meals
One of the most popular ways to try out frugal living is to find cheap meals for you and your family. You can actually find some awesome meals that won’t break the bank.
Rice and beans, for example, is a dish that is served all around the world and will provide a hearty meal for pennies on the dollar.
A popular meal in my home is boxed macaroni and cheese and chicken legs. Since this meat is darker and fatter, people won’t buy it as much so it is a lot cheaper than everything else in the poultry aisle.
You can also buy healthy groceries on a budget.
Buy Used Home Decor
Here’s a fact- you need a couch in your home. It’s just one of those things.
Here’s another fact- you don’t need to spend thousands of dollars on a couch.
Go onto Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist and look for whatever it is that your home needs and buy it for a fraction of the price. Sure, it might need a new coat of paint, but you can do that (especially when you will save hundreds of dollars on it)!
You can actually find a ton of ways to get furniture for free and get free appliances too!
You can do tis with clothes as well. I buy a majority of clothes from secondhand stores.
Ditch the Fancy Drinks – Drink Water
When you are out at a restaurant and focusing on frugal living – do not order a drink!
Water is free and will be provided to you at no cost. Plus, your body literally needs it to keep going, so why not skip the Diet Coke and sip on some good old-fashioned H2O instead?
Make Coffee at Home
This one, I will admit, was a difficult concept go wrap my brain around when I began my journey of frugal living. Ditching my local coffee house for something I can make at home was a tough adjustment, but so worth it!
Instead of going to Starbucks each day and spending 5-7 dollars on a drink, I would make the same thing at home for less than a dollar. Plus, you can save a lot of time since you won’t be waiting in line each and every morning.
Adjust your Thermostat
Do you remember when you were a kid and your parents would freak out if someone turned up the thermostat? Well, now it’s your turn.
Keeping the heat too high in the winter and too low in the summer can end up costing a lot of money. Try to keep your thermostat around 65 in the winter and 75 in the summer if you want to save money on your energy bill.
Try using a Clothesline instead of the Dryer
Did you know that the dryer can suck up a ton of energy and increase your monthly bill by hundreds of dollars? Who knew?
When the weather allows, try using a clothesline and let the beautiful sunshine help you reduce the energy bill. When it’s raining, you can try an indoor dryer rack like this one on Amazon.
Try Baking Your Own Bread
While the concept of baking your own bread may seem overwhelming for some, it is not nearly as difficult as it may seem. In fact, with a few cheap ingredients you can bake some delicious bread.
Bonus points – kneading the bread is one of my favorite ways to release frustration.
Haggle over Monthly Bills
That’s right – call whoever you owe your monthly bills to and see if you can get a cheaper rate. This is one of the simplest ways to help you save money each month!
The best advice I have is to be honest and kind. Explain that you are on a budget because of XYZ and you are hoping that there might be a way to lower the bill.
You will be surprised how much companies are willing to do to help you out! I actually do this in my day job quite often as we are always short on cash – it does work!
You may also want to look into these ways to get free internet if you want to reduce that expense.
Make your Own Cleaning Products
Making your own cleaning products is one of the best ways to save money. In fact, most things can be cleaned with some water and white vinegar! Not only is it chemical free but it kills most germs.
We use vinegar to clean our floors, coffee maker, get dog urine smell out of carpets, and even as a natural weed killer!
Oh yeah, a gallon of vinegar is about a dollar.
Cheap Date Night Can Be Romantic too
Despite contrary belief, you don’t have to break the bank to have a romantic evening. In fact, there are countless cheap date night ideas that can help you stay within budget!
There are also cheap ideas for a girl’s weekend!
Use Cash when Possible
It may sound cheesy, but cash is king. When you can, use it as a tool to help you stay within a specific budget.
Whether you are going grocery shopping, buying your kids new shoes, or picking up a new vacuum at the mall, cash is worth it. Buying with cash will give you the power to only spend what you originally had planned on.
Using cash is the whole premise behind the cash envelope system.
Embrace your Kitchen, Stop Eating Out
Maybe you’re a master chef and this one is easy – or maybe not. Either way, cooking your own food is cheaper in almost any case. In fact, maybe all you need is a great cookbook to get inspiration flowing.
A great example is taking your family of 4 out for burgers. By the end of it, you have spent around $40 on an unhealthy meal.
Or you can go to the store and grab the supplies yourself for around $15 and get cooking. For those looking to try out frugal living, you just saved $25- yay!
Plan ahead for Snacks so You Don’t Need to Stop on the Road
Are there times you need to stop at the gas station for a quick snack? Sure. Just don’t make a habit of it when you are trying to live a frugal lifestyle.
Pack a few PB&Js for the road and spend your money elsewhere, if possible.
Use the Library for Resources
For anyone looking to save money, the library should be one of your first places to look into. They offer so much more than books it’s frankly amazing.
Not only can you print things for free, they have countless online resources. From museum tickets to language lessons to classes to teach you the latest technology – all for free!
Double Check Your Bills Before Paying
Believe it or not, sometimes the billing people make mistakes too. If your water bill seems unseemly high or maybe the internet bill looks off, give them a call and just double check. Oftentimes I have found that you can knock a few dollars off the bill.
Use Less of What you Already Have
Make what you already have stretch farther by intentionally using less. Maybe instead of 3 squirts of dish soap, try only 2. This will stretch the life of the current bottle farther and save you money in the long run.
Invest in Your Health
Health is wealth!
The healthier you are, the less you need to invest in medical bills in the long run. So brush your teeth, go on the jog, and eat your greens. It’s all part of frugal living.
Plus, being healthy just feels good. Taking the time to stretch, do cardio and lift some weight can do wonders for your body and your mind (even helps reduce anxiety!).
You can even build your own home gym, and learn how to get paid to lose weight!
Don’t Buy Things on Impulse
If you want anything, give yourself some time to think it through and decide if you truly need it. Buying on impulse often means that you are buying full price and not intentionally spending.
Wait a few weeks, see if you really need it and wait for it to go on sale (because it will!). I have done this so often – I put something in my cart and wander around for a while. When I go back to it, I have usually decided I don’t need it!
Grow Your Own Veggies
When you grow your own veggies, you save money. Seeds and dirt are pennies on the dollar compared to buying fresh vegetables each week.
Added bonus: food from your own garden has more flavor and nutrient value.
Stop with Cable
Cable is so expensive – stop using it! You can get the same shows through apps like Netflix and Hulu and save a lot of money. So, call your local cable provider and end that relationship ASAP.
There are even ways you can get Netflix for free!
Have a DIP Spa Day
Everyone needs a little pampering from time to time, I totally get it. But going to one of those day spas is so expensive.
But you can create your own DIY spa day for waaaaaay less money! Get relaxed and pampered right from the comfort (and value) of your own home.
You can also use couponing to save money!
Frugal living is so worth it and can be done with a few minor changes. Try out these frugal living tips and potentially save thousands of dollars each year!
Tell me – what did I miss? Comment below and let me know your favorite tips for frugal living!
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