Being frugal isn’t my natural state but I’ve learned a lot of easy ways to be more frugal in life thanks to the debt free community (#debtfreecommunity) on YouTube and Instagram! I’ve learned so much and continue to stock up tips to implement in my life to make us spend less money and live a better feel with a strong financial future!
Here are the 25 frugal living tips I’ve learned that have helped save us money!
1. Plan meals around what you have.
You can save money at the grocery store by first checking your pantry and fridge to see what you already have on hand. This way you won’t be buying duplicates or items that don’t work with what you already have in stock. Shopping your pantry before you shop the grocery store will help you save a ton of money on food spending and reduce food waste.
2. Learn to DIY things for free on YouTube.
You can learn how to fix almost anything thanks to YouTube and the content creators that share how-to videos. If you need to have something repaired, check to see if you can learn how to DIY the repair on YouTube. You’ll save a lot of money by using this technique and you will learn some new skills as well.
3. Evaluate expenses based on hours worked.
When you are considering a large purchase, it helps to put it into perspective by dividing the price by your hourly wage. You’ll find out how many hours you have to work to pay for that item. We often don’t think about how long we must work to pay for the items we purchase and this exercise can stop you from buying a number of items.
4. Consider consuming more frugal friendly content.
If you are constantly watching hauls and commercials and shows that encourage spending then you will likely want to spend more. I found this true in my own life and had to limit the amount of YouTube haul videos I watched because I found myself wanting to buy items I didn’t really need. Swap out more frugal friendly content and skip ads so you will be more likely to stick with your frugal living goals.
5. Use appliances singularly at off peak hours.
When you are trying to cut back on your utility bill you can do a number of things to reduce it like only using major appliances one at a time. You can also use these appliances – like the washing machine, dryer, dishwasher – during off peak hours when the rates for electricity are cheaper. You can check with your utilities provider to find out when you would get reduced rates.
6. Buy a smaller home.
Buying a smaller home can be a conscious decision to stay frugal. Our first home was a smaller home and we chose it because we knew we didn’t (and probably never will) need a 4,000+ sq ft house. Buying a smaller home saves you money in many ways from less furniture spending to fill it up to cheaper electricity bills keeping it cool.
7. Declutter your house so you don’t lose things.
Often living in cluttered spaces or letting items build up over time makes it hard to remember what you actually even own. Keeping things decluttered and minimal will allow you to find the things you need instead of accidentally buying duplicates because you can’t find what you need.
8. Sign up for birthday freebies and discounts.
Everyone loves getting free stuff on their birthday, right? Even if you don’t get birthday gifts anymore you can still get free things thanks to many companies that offer birthday freebies. Even more offer birthday discounts so sign up for the mailing lists of the companies and products you love the most to get thes when your birthday rolls around each year.
9. Inflate your tires properly.
Keeping your tired properly inflated will save you a lot of money on gas because it improves your car’s gas usage. You’ll get the best possible miles per gallon out of your car with properly inflated tires, so make sure they stay inflated and immediately air them up when the light comes on.
10. Learn to sew and care for your clothing.
Basic clothing care doesn’t take a lot of skill so learn how to do basic clothing care like sewing on buttons. This will help extend the life of your clothing and allow you to get more use out of each piece.
11. Close off rooms you don’t use regularly.
If you’ve bought a house much bigger than you need you can close off rooms you don’t use. We did this when we first bought our home and it save us a ton of money that first year! All you do is leave rooms empty and unfurnished and then shut the doors and vents! You don’t have to heat or cool the space you aren’t using regularly.
12. Buy reusable food storage containers.
Instead of using disposable food container products or even plastic tupperware that eventually gets thrown away, buy durable reusable food storage containers. We purchased a set of glass food containers a while back and have been using them successfully since then. We haven’t had to buy new containers which has saved money!
13. Order light ice or no ice in drinks.
If you eat out and order drinks, ask for light ice or no ice at all. You’ll get more of the actual drink you want and it will still be cold enough to enjoy.
14. Use cashback apps on top of sales and coupons.
The great thing about cashback apps is that you can stack them on top of store sales and regular coupons for addiitonal savings. You can use as many money savings apps on one purchase as possible to make the products you buy as cheap as possible.
15. Use reusable dryer balls instead of dryer sheets.
Instead of disposable dryer sheets you can buy dryer balls that are reusable. Both make your clothes fluffy soft but the dryer balls can be used over and over again.
16. Save delivery packaging for future shipping.
When you receive packages from places like Amazon, save the packaging! You can use the boxes or the padded envelopes for future shipments. This will save you from buying packing supplies at the post office. You could also use it as boxes to wrap for birthday gifts or Christmas presents!
17. Stock up on household items on sale.
You know you’ll eventually need to use things like furnace filters or laundry detergent. Anything in your household that you need to use over and over again is a great candidate for buying in bulk when it goes on sale. When something is on sale at a great price you can stock up and save yourself a lot of money for the future.
18. Stretch laundry detergent with baking soda.
This one was completely new to me entirely, but you can combine baking soda with your laundry detergent to stretch your detergent a bit further! It also makes your whites whiter and your brights brighter so you’ll save money and have nicer looking clothes!
19. Buy used clothes on Ebay to update your wardrobe.
I’ve bought used clothes often before but I loves this tip for switching out your whole wardrobe by buying a “lot” on Ebay in a certain size! I’m actually planning to sell my own winter wardrobe this way. It’s a cheaper way to shake things up and get lots of new clothes in a frugal way.
20. Use grocery story bags for dog poop.
You can buy special bags with fragrances to pick up dog poop… or you can just reuse plastic grocery bags you get from the grocery store (or skip both of these all together if you really love the earth).
21. Dress for the weather to save on heat/air.
If it’s cold outside, wear layers and keep the heat down. If it’s hot outside, wear less clothing and keep your temperature higher. No matter the weather, dress for it and keep your house slightly off the “normal” temperature to save money on your utility bill.
22. Eat less meat overall.
Eating less meat each week can be very good for your body, your budget, and the earth. It’s a win, win, win. Buying less meat will lower your grocery bill so even a couple vegetarian plant-based meals each week will help you reduce your spending.
23. Cut your own hair or go to a cosmetology school.
Cutting your own hair can save a ton of money if you need it regularly. If you aren’t sure of your skills you can go to a cosmetology school where students will do the work and charge much less than a normal salon. I’ve done it and the savings is substantial over a high end salon.
24. Shop based on unit price.
Shop for everything based on the unit price instead of the item price. Often the smaller item with the lower price is a better deal than the large bulk buy based on the unit price.
25. Use YouTube for workouts.
You can use YouTube for almost anything, including getting fit! You can do a ton of workouts of any type. I love doing yoga videos from YouTube. My therapist actually recommended Yoga by Adrienne and I’ve loved doing her videos for free at home!
Bonus: Have frugal friends around you!
You tend to become like the people closest to you so surround yourself with budget conscious friends who want to support your frugality! Even if you aren’t planning to be frugal forever, it can truly help to put more frugal people in your life for a period of paying off debt for instance.