The definition of being frugal is being careful about spending money or using things when you do not need to. Living below your means by learning smart money management skills is a foolproof way to start saving up.
“It’s not about how much you earn, it’s about how much you keep.”
How To Save Money
- Stop buying soda, coffee, or other snacks and drinks when you’re out.Invest in a Hydro Flask and drink ice cold water instead. Less spending, more saving and healthier living; a win-win all around.
- Only run errands once or twice a week and always use the most efficient route.Not only will you be saving time spent on the road, but the gas savings alone will add up when you consider how much less driving you will be doing during the week because of it.
- Limit your clothes shopping to 2-4 times a year by waiting for the biggest (seasonal) sales. Also limit impulse buys. Buy Winter jackets and coats during the Summer and vice versa when everything is on clearance. You can catch a ton of savings just by waiting for the right sale to come along. I was able to scoop a $200 Bomber Jacket for $55 and 3 pairs of high quality jeans for $22 each last Summer; nice clothes at a far more affordable price!
- Never pay full price for anything. Aim for sale items first. Always do your research and shop around for prices before making an absolute final decision. This includes both your online and brick & mortar purchases.
- When going out, be honest with your friends about your budget or make sure to establish it beforehand. You may be invited out less by some, but your true friends will understand and more than likely encourage activities that don’t require spending much money, like hiking, free museum/zoo day, board game night, or even just an afternoon of good ol’ Netflix.
- Use an app, website, or program to monitor and budget your spending habits. Find a few helpful budgeting apps like “Mint.com” which monitors all of your accounts, debt, and assets all in one convenient location. Here is a video on Mint in more detail.
One of the key features in Mint is that you can set goals and it will help calculate how much to set aside each month to reach that amount. It’s also very easy to use.
Best Way To Save Money: The 52 Week Money Challenge
Additionally, one of the best and most successful money saving “programs” I discovered was called the “52 Week Money Challenge”:
What I like about this plan so much is that you can adjust it based on your total income. Whenever you feel like you’ve hit your maximum limit, reset back to $1.00 BUT stay consistent with your weekly deposits.
By utilizing this program, you will form the habit and develop the process of saving for your future with very minimal impact to your current situation, guaranteed.
A current snapshot of my account using this method. I try to make my weekly deposits every Tuesday:
Frugal Living and Budget Planning
But why would anyone not want to spend money even if they had the means to?
Well in my case, my total expenses every month average out to about $700. I pay $300 for my eBay store, $120 for my car insurance, $90 for my phone bill, about $200 for my virtual assistant, Ria, and that’s it; my passive income streams alone can cover these expenses.
By choosing to live frugal, I didn’t get the fancy cars or the fancy watches right away, but I did get to quit my job that I resented and allowed myself more time to focus on my career as an entrepreneur instead; and that means more than anything else to me in the world. Read more about how I was able to accomplish this in just 18 months here.
Make sure you only get what you need, not what you want. By doing so, you will be able to save for emergencies and make investments that will act as additional sources of income.
Some closing thoughts from my eBay Mastermind group on this subject:
“I once heard someone say if you don’t have the discipline to save money, then the seeds of greatness is not in you.”
– Jonathan L.
“If you don’t need that material thing you want to buy like you need air, don’t buy it. I also don’t believe in being “frugal” which is quite contradictory to what I just said. BUT, if I do NEED something as bad as air, I am not going to compromise on its quality.
Always save at least 1% of what you make and wealth comes from doing what you love and knowing you will be rewarded with more than just monetary recognition.”
– Joanne B.
Start setting up your own saving goals!
Do you have any tips on being frugal or saving money that you recommend? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts!