How To Live A Frugal And Fulfilling Life | 16 Simple Money Saving Tips
Many confuse ‘frugal’ with ‘cheap’, the latter being the one you want to avoid. Cheap is about going to a store and purchasing the lowest priced object purely for the sake of saving money – even if the quality is rubbish.
Frugal, however, defines someone who has taken the time to assess what they truly need and only spend on that. Frugal is what you want to be.
By adopting these following steps, not only will you be saving money in areas you’re wasting money on, but you will also be able to live a far more fulfilling life. Why? Because you’ll have enough money saved up for people, things and places that truly bring joy to your life.
16 Simple Money Saving Tips
1. Start budgeting
Creating and sticking to a budget is fundamental to your financial success. Although budgeting isn’t necessarily fun, it is a critical piece of the puzzle. Within your budget, you can prioritize things that matter and ruthlessly cut out things that don’t.
Keep in mind that there’s nothing wrong with the occasional splurge! You’re not saving money for the sake of saving, you’re earning money to enjoy. Use your hard-earned money to spoil yourself from time to time.
2. Stretch your food budget
It’s shocking how much money one can waste on food purchases. While it is a necessity, a lot of people use that as an excuse to keep blowing money.
As a matter of fact, a 2015 study revealed that Nigerians spent more money on restaurants than they did on cooking. This number has since been rising exponentially.
Not only does impulse food purchases and ordering take out every evening decrease your bank balance, they also increase your waistline. What a deadly (literally) combo.
How do I save money on food?
So, here are a few ways you can save money when it comes to food. To begin with, you should plan your meals in advance.
- Take a look at your pantry, in your cupboards, and even in your freezer and find ingredients you can use.
- Then, write down a list of meals you’ll eat that week including those ingredients, seasonal veggies and fruits, and for the carnivores out there, cheap cuts of meat. This will give you a rough estimate on a budget for your grocery shop that you will stick to.
- With all that fresh food in your fridge, you’ll think twice before ordering out each night. (Bonus tip: go shopping on a full stomach so that you don’t run towards junk food and completely blow your budget) You can also start a little garden in your kitchen.
- You don’t need much space: your windowsill is a great starting place. You can grow herbs, potatoes, chilies, tomatoes, the list goes on! Many of these are low-maintenance so you don’t have to worry about being a pro-farmer to reap the benefits.
- Finally, if you purchase bottle water, I would encourage you to buy a water filter. This is both eco-friendly and budget-friendly. All this saved money can be invested or saved for bigger purchases.
3. Eliminate Monthly Subscriptions
Another important money saving tips is to stop monthly subscriptions. Do you really need a Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime and a Hulu subscription all at the same time? My mind says no, but my heart screams YES! Sorry heart, you’re not winning this time.
I actually think monthly subscriptions are a bit dangerous. I don’t know about you, but I never ever think about them again after the first purchase. Even though my bank statements show me the monthly deductions, I still wonder where all my money is magically disappearing.
Take time to review your monthly subscriptions and ask yourself these following questions: Just how often am I using these subscriptions? Why do I have so many different subscriptions that are basically duplicates of one another? Is this subscription actually a necessity?
Pick the most important ones and keep track of them. Once you start to notice that you’re not as interested in that subscription anymore, eliminate it immediately.
4. Buy Used Items
Thrift stores are your new best friend. You can actually get some amazing designer purchases from there for over half the price. The same goes for cars. As long as it gets you from point A to point B and it’s working, well that’s all you really need.
Cars depreciate significantly in the first year, but they’re great deals on used, and still good, cars. As a matter of fact, this philosophy applies to almost anything: electronics, jewelry, furniture, house plants.
But remember: this doesn’t mean you should compromise on quality. Don’t buy a coffee table with termites just because it’s cheap!
5. Shop around for the best insurance
Insurance can be a large expense. But not having proper insurance can significantly derail your financial goals. Consider shopping for home, auto, and health insurance that can protect you from a financial dent in the event you face losses.
Do not settle for the first option you are presented with. Changes in your age or circumstances could mean lower rates, or in some cases, new insurers may move into a market and bring with them more competitive premiums.
Using an insurance agent who works with multiple providers can be a convenient way to obtain and compare quotes from several companies. It is critical to choose the best plans for your life and your budget.
6. Purchase at the Right Time
A smart way to purchase is to be aware of changing prices. For example, fitness products are often cheaper in January; home prices generally peak in the summer; and the weeks leading up to Black Friday (in November) are the prime time to buy electronics.
If you’ve got something in mind you really want to purchase, add it to your wish-list and strike at the right time. You can also hold onto coupons which can further bring down the price of the products you buy.
Many companies and shops give out membership cards on which you collect ‘points’ with every purchase. Once you get a certain number of points, a number of purchases will either be discounted or free altogether.
7. Sell things you don’t need
Humans are emotional beings. We hold onto things we may not necessarily need but they hold sentimental value. While the idea behind it is sweet, you may be missing out on some extra money.
Turn clutter into cash by selling on Facebook Marketplace, eBay, and Poshmark. This is a relatively low-effort way to bring in more money. I count this as the one of the best money saving tips as it will help you reduce the amount of unused clothes.
8. Evaluate your method of transportation
As inflation kicks in and gas prices skyrocket, owning a car may seem like a liability to some. Many households have two (sometimes more) cars. Unless excruciatingly necessary, I encourage you to stick to just one car.
Not only is this helpful to the environment, but also saves you a lot of money. Speaking of the environment, walk or bike whenever you can.
Physical movement is a very important ingredient for living a fulfilling life. Move your body, save the environment, and watch your pockets grow.
9. Find free entertainment
In my humble opinion, this is one that can help you lead a more fulfilling life. Aside from those countless online streaming subscriptions, there are so many ways people drain their pockets on entertainment.
Instead of choosing booze-filled nights out, why not have a fun barbeque with your friends in your very own backyard? After all, you can’t put a price on those fun and enjoyable memories.
10. Travel in the Off-Season
Sticking to the theme of fulfillment, travelling is an amazing way to create memories with loved ones. The tip here is to travel off-season when all prices are low: airfares, hotels, and even tourist attraction tickets. But the best part of this, I think, is not having to deal with the crowds.
The Olumo Rock is an unforgettable experience but when you’re stuck in there with hundreds of others, in the heat of the summer, being pushed one way and another, it’s not fun at all. So my tip to you is, to travel off-season and keep it a secret!
11. Do it yourself
Doing things yourself is not only inexpensive, but it’s so fulfilling! We live in the golden age of technology: you can Google anything and learn so much at the drop of a hat.
Use this to your advantage. When you do desperately need someone to help you, you’ll have enough money saved to call for the best!
12. Rent, Don’t Own
The problem with most people who enjoy luxurious items is that they will always have some money to spare for their addiction. The best way to ensure you are being afrugal about it is by trying to rent these items instead of owning them. Most of the time these luxury items are one-off wears for special occasions.
You can rent designer clothes, jewelry, and handbags. You can even rent a car! Did you know that many influencers and reality TV stars rent almost everything they show off? Their houses, cars, and even their clothes.
13. Repurpose the fabulous clothes you already have
If you’re a shopaholic, you must be someone who has a sense of unique style. Why not let go of some items you hardly wear? Instead of going out to add to your collection which is already overwhelmed, consider shopping around your closet.
There’s probably a bunch of clothes and shoes lost in the back of your closet, begging to be worn again. The best way to maneuver around this is by organization. Knowing exactly what you have and letting go of stuff you are sure you won’t need.
You may find some of those hidden gems you never knew you had and give them the glory they once had! So before you go on your next shopping trip, take a gander in your closet and I’m 100% sure you’ll find amazing buys in there itself.
14. Plan your days
The same way planning your food shopping will help you save money, so will planning everything else. If you plan your days in advance, you won’t be tempted by impulsive shopping trips which will burn a hole in your pocket.
On the other hand, if you know there’s a birthday coming up, planning ahead and budgeting for the shopping trip will save you not only time but also money. Another thing you can do is spend a whole day just doing errands.
Plan beforehand what errands need to be done and map out a strategic route which will get all your errands done in that one day. Time is money after all, and you need to use your time wisely; holding off errands (as in, those which aren’t urgent) until your designated ‘errand day’ can save you time and money.
Top tip: take a packed lunch with you and a bottle of water from home so you can further save your money when you’re out and about
15. Make gifts instead of buying them
Even if you’re not the most artistic, handmade gifts, you hold so much value. It shows the other person just how much you care about them. If you take a look online, you can find a lot of inspiration for DIY gifts.
If you are one the artsy ones, you can use this as a way to further hone your skills. Your family gets to see just how much talent you have and how much you love them!
16. Sun-dry clothes
This is another way you can save mother earth (and your wallet!). There is no need to pay high electricity bills racked up by your dryer.
If you’re fortunate enough to live in a leaf yet dry, sunny environment, use it to your advantage. Just like a Nigerian woman in Italy who used the sun to fry eggs. This woman deserves an award, just joking. With this, we can say she applied a good money saving tips to her day-to-day activities.
Buy a clothes rack and hang up your clothes; they’ll be dried, free of cost, in no time.
Living a frugal and fulfilling life can be achieved if you follow the simple money saving tips above. You will be amazed on how your spending will be reduced to the lowest plus enjoying steady entertainment.
Well, thank you so much for reaching, and I hope you found this article both enjoyable and informative. As always if you haven’t, do subscribe to Waptutors below for more simple money saving tips. With that said, have a great day and see you in the next one.