Let’s be honest, we all live in a world where prices are increasing, and wages are stagnating. One job does not pay the bills anymore! Saving money, here and there, is definitely one of the topics that more people need to be comfortable talking about. There is comfort in knowing that you are doing everything possible to make a little extra money for yourself or your family. It seems like almost everyone has something they do on top of their day job.
The trick to creating a budget-friendly lifestyle is to be overall cautious and spend with purpose. It won’t matter if you make an extra $100 a month but don’t save or invest it. Read below for a couple of tips on how to create your own frugal life.
Does Frugal Mean Cheap?
Frugality should not be confused with cheapness. A person that is cheap goes to the store, looks for the lowest-priced item, and doesn’t think about much else. Being frugal means you choose to spend less money on things that aren’t important to you. For example, an off-brand body wash or shampoo. We can even go a little further into it, a frugal person would rather spend less money on clothes and instead add that money to the vacation fund!
Frugal Living, What is That?
To many people, living frugally sounds like clipping coupons, shopping at thrift stores, and staying in instead of going out. But frugal living is a lot more than that.
Frugal living means being careful with your money, focusing on your financial goals, and doing everything to achieve those goals.
How Do I Create a Budget-Friendly Lifestyle and What are Some Frugal Living Tips?
It’s a general lifestyle that encourages people to give up certain things to have more for what they really want. In some instances, it could mean..spending more time to save money and sometimes spending money to buy yourself time. It’s all the way you look at it.
If you have never attempted to live this lifestyle, then it may seem difficult at first. Don’t be afraid to make some adjustments. You may find that giving up coffee every day is not too bad but spending money on your favorite products is a must.
Tip #1. Combine Debt
Write down your income, debt, bills, and loans, and credit card balances and consider options to refinance your high-interest accounts. If you obtain one loan that can cover the remainder of your debt, you can consolidate your payments to one place instead of three or four places. This financial move can potentially help you get more organized, and focused on the end goal and pay down your debt faster.
Tip #2. Meal Prep and Bulk
Instead of ordering lunch every day, eat what you have cooked at home. The savings of $10 to $20 a day really adds up quickly. Take stock of what you have on hand. Consider making a meal out of what’s in the pantry or fridge. Eliminating a trip to the grocery store each month is a whole lot of money in your pocket. Make a goal to finish all of the leftover ingredients lying around my kitchen. You might be surprised by your creativity in the kitchen and make delicious meals you’ve never tried to make.
Use meal prep containers to store your meals, take those meals out of the freezer, and heat them up in the oven or the microwave. You might even find that you actually enjoy cooking when you don’t have to do it every single day after a long busy day at work.
Tip #3. Coupons
If you need to buy a couple of items from the grocery store, you might be able to save a few dollars using coupons. Those savings can add up quickly! The Sunday newspaper tends to have the most coupons, composed of both manufacturer and national store coupons. There are store apps, social media, and apps that now combine coupons and compare them from store to store. A search on the App store if you have an iPhone or in the Google Play store if you have an Android device should yield several to choose from.
Simply try new frugal tips and strategies out with an open mind. You will likely need to try it out and see how it goes. Start small, with a goal in mind. If you like a strategy, then keep it and add another. If you hate a strategy, then let it go and try something else. It’s all a work in progress.
Frugal Living Is Worth It!
Yes! If you are tired of letting money get in the way of your happiness, then frugal living is worth it. For this lifestyle to work you must be willing to look at the positives first and give things up along the way. However, these sacrifices can add up to larger benefits down the line. When you’re patient, you give up the struggle. You relax and enjoy your life and experience the beauty of each and every moment.
Remember, you are choosing to be frugal in order to enjoy the things you prioritize. Keep in mind that there’s nothing wrong with occasionally splurging on the things you like. It’s okay to like nice and expensive things occasionally.