31 Frugal Living Hacks That Will Save You Thousands

August 5, 2017

Written by Nicole

I always refer to myself as frugal by nature. But, over the years I have fallen off the wagon a time or two. Like the time I had a $500 car payment.

Hmm..but we aren’t here to talk about that today.

Today, I am here to share some of my favorite tips for living a frugal lifestyle. Because I am (mostly) frugal by nature, I sometimes forget that other people don’t always live (or think) the same way and I neglect to share the knowledge that has helped me stay on budget and get out of debt.  Some balk at the idea of pinching pennies, but pennies added together turn into dollars. And who doesn’t need a few more dollars in their pockets?

Can I get an Amen?

If you need a few extra coins in your pocket check out these frugal living hacks and try a few (or all of them) for yourself. I guarantee that you will see savings right away.

31 Frugal Living Hacks that will save you thousands:

1. Pack your lunch for work…most days I pack my breakfast too. It helps to prep the night before- so you are not only saving money but saving time.

2. Buy generic. I do some casual couponing but I save much more money by being willing to try some generic items. Some things I don’t compromise on..I don’t do generic cereal or Poptarts. I have to draw the line somewhere😮

3. Increase your insurance deductibles (home owner’s insurance, car insurance). Higher deductibles means lower premiums. This is a great move, assuming that you have comfortable savings to pay the higher deductible if you actually need to file a claim.

4. Invest in a deep freezer and stock up on sales when possible.

5. Avoid purchasing ‘dry cleaning  only’ clothes. Also keep in mind that many ‘dry clean only’ clothing can be washed in your washing machine on the gentle cycle.

6. Go on a stay-cation in your own town or in a nearby city. We don’t always have to go to an exotic (expensive)  island to enjoy travel. (Although that does sound nice…the island part, not the expensive part).

7. Get rid of cable…ok so I just got rid of mine last month but it’s definitely worth it. There are so many options available these days. We have an Amazon fire stick and Sling TV.

8. Start meal planning. Begin with a week at a time so that you don’t get overwhelmed.

9. Shop your pantry. If you are like me I’m sure you have a ton of food in your pantry but still continue to grocery shop regularly- passing by perfectly good items in your cabinets and pantry each week. Challenge yourself to use up  your pantry stash every few months, buying only what you absolutely need form the grocery store and then replenish as needed. This will also help ensure that you use up items before they expire.

10. DIY your beauty services– I do my own manicures, pedicures, hair, eyebrows. There is no excuse these days…YT videos, pinterest…there are limitless ideas and possibilities. Every now and then I go to the spa, and I enjoy it more because I consider it a rare treat.

11. Unsubscribe from store emails. Who needs new temptations every time you look in your in-box?

12. Multi-purpose your items. This is one of my favorite frugal tips! Use products like Dr. Bronner’s Castille soap for dish washing liquid, shampoo, face wash, hand soap, surface cleaner, shave gel…the list goes on and on. The packaging even tells you how to dilute for different uses.

13. Use re-usable, washable wipes for spills in your kitchen instead of paper towels.

14. Shop off season for your clothing and for kids clothing. I have paid $5 for winter coats and boots just after the winter season ends because stores are looking to clear their shelves to make room for new season inventory. If buying for the kids, remember to buy one size up to account for growth spurts!

15.  Shop your closet for a couple of months. Commit to not buying anything new while creating ‘new’ outfits out of your existing wardrobe.

16. Sell or swap unused household and clothing items.

17. Take advantage of free activities in your area. Be on the look out for free events at the local library, free plays at community theaters, or free concerts at local parks.

18. Switch to cash. Studies show that we tend to spend less when we use good, old-fashioned greenbacks.

19. Save your loose change in a jar. Count it up at the end of the year and use it on a ‘splurge’ purchase or start an IRA with it.

20. Do a month long no spend challenge.

21. Not ready for a full-blown no spend challenge? Start with a no spend day or week

22. Look up kids eat free offers at area restaurants.

23. Use refillable water bottles in order to cut back or eliminate bottled water purchases.

24. Minimize impulse purchases by instituting a waiting period before buying. Add the item to a wish list and re-visit it in 72 hours.

25. Cancel your gym membership and work out at home.

26. Renting a car? Skip the extra insurance. Your regular policy probably covers you. Be sure to check first before opting out!

27. Avoid prepackaged convenience foods at the grocery store. Instead of pre-packaged salad, grab a head of lettuce, a cucumber, and a tomato. It will taste better and will not spoil as fast.

28. Unplug unused appliances when you leave the house.

29. Drink more water.

30. Renegotiate your cell phone plan and avoid the temptation to upgrade just because you can.

31. Batch cook when you have time and freeze the rest for easy, quick meals on busy days.

 

Now, it’s your turn! What’s your favorite frugal living hack?

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10 Comments

  1. Rosie

    I love all of these 31 Frugal Living Hacks. We are currently doing a lot on the list that you mention. We have been saving our loose change since January and can’t wait to see how much we save come the last of the year. How has the Amazon Fire Stick and Sling TV been working for ya’ll. We are in the process of cutting the cable card. If you have time could you please do a video on the Amazon Fire Stick and Sling TV. Loving your blog, and thanks for all that you do keeping us on track & Being Frugal(SMILE)

    Reply
  2. Nicole Hatcher

    Thanks Rosie! We are really enjoying the Amazon Fire Stick and Sling TV so far. It is customizable so that you can select the channels that you watch the most. Glad that you are enjoying the blog! Thanks for your support!

    Reply
  3. Kelli

    Love the ideas! Found you on YouTube and love your approach to finances! (I’d also say your gentle spirit shines through on your videos – but I didn’t know if that sounded creepy or not – ha!! 🙂 ) Thanks!

    Reply
    • Nicole Hatcher

      Aww thank you Kelli! lol Not at all creepy at all! I completely appreciate your kind words!

      Reply
  4. Kristina

    I found you on YT today and instead of lounging with the TV on, I have been preparing myself to kill it this year with my budget. I’ve watched several of your videos and just signed up for your newsletter. Awesome content!!!
    P.S. I keep telling myself I don’t know how to do my hair and my daugher’s hair, but this post is really making me rethink that.

    Reply
    • Nicole

      Hi Kristina! That is awesome! Yes to budgeting and yes to learning how to DIY. I watched a ton of videos on YT to learn how to get comfortable doing my own hair. I save a ton of money (and time)!

      Reply
  5. Donkayia Carter

    Hey Nicole!!! I’m so proud to see another Baltimorean doing well and giving back. I knew you were from my hometown as soon as I heard you speak. I love your list. I also buy Mio water flavors instead of different juices and drinks for the house. This is my way of tricking the children into drinking more water. The flavors are so good and you forget that it’s water. This also saves about and avg of $20 -$30 / day at restaurants when we go on vacation. We order 4 waters. I keep 2-3 flavors in my purse and I customize flavors for everyone to drink. Try them out.

    Reply
    • Nicole

      Hi Donkayia! #bmorestrong!! The accent gives me away lol. I will definitely check out the water flavors. My kids like the Vitamin water and the ICE flavored waters too.

      Reply
  6. Kenisha Smith

    Thank you for your helpful tips!!! I’m a single mom of 3 teenagers and I tried the meal plan and I only spent $115 for the month to feed all of us!!! Thank you so much for all of your advice!!!!!!

    Reply
    • Nicole

      Thanks so much Kenisha!! I’m glad to help!

      Reply

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