There are a million and one ways to save money and prevent excess spending. But the best way to save is to get into the habit of making small, frugal decisions day in and day out. These 15 actions will help you save money on any budget without causing you a ton of extra time.
1. Using the Library
There are so many free options to take advantage of at the library; some you don’t even have to leave home. Many libraries now have free digital programs for members to borrow books, audiobooks, and movies right on your mobile devices.
2. Cleaning and Decluttering
When decluttering and cleaning, you can take what you have found and don’t use anymore and donate it, sell it, or repurpose it. These are all great ways to turn cleaning into a frugal habit and make some extra cash while you’re at it.
3. Bake at Home
Many groceries sell baked goods, but they’re never quite as good as the homemade options. Try baking your favorite treats at home to save you money; plus, homemade items are almost always healthier than store-bought ones.
4. Reduce Food Waste
Look at your fruits and veggies at home and see if they are close to going bad. If so, clean them up, chop them, place them into bags, and put them into the freezer portioned out for baking, smoothies, or soups later!
5. Check in With Friends
Have a big project that needs to be done? Check with your friends to see if they can hook you up or know someone who can. Sometimes, you can get a good deal through connections.
6. Special Events
Have a look through your neighborhood and see if any businesses are holding any special events. Often, stores will celebrate anniversaries or grand openings and give away free products for customers to try.
7. Collect Rain
Suppose you live in a climate where you can try to collect some rain in a barrel to save for watering plants. Not only is it a frugal option, but it is also very eco-friendly!
8. Make a List
Make a list of all the items you need and keep it running for the month. Place one online order at the end of the month to reduce the chances of impulse buys.
9. Learn How To Can
Look at what is in season in your area and who has good deals on bulk orders. Load up at the store and can them to preserve them for eating throughout the year as produce is always more affordable in-season.
10. Make Returns
Take inventory of what you have on hand that you haven’t opened or used and return it to the store for a store credit or full refund—no sense in letting good money sit there and waste away.
11. Check the Sales
Are you doing your grocery shopping for the week? Download an app like Flipp, where you can browse the circulars for the stores in your area and decide what is worth purchasing and where.
12. Making Dinner
Meat is usually the most expensive ingredient. You want to get your protein intake but also want to save money. Look for cooking hacks like boiling beans in stock, pureeing them, and mixing them with cooked ground beef to stretch your meat further.
13. Clean Your Phone
Having a bunch of retail apps on your phone can make it difficult to save. Take a few minutes and purge the shopping apps from your mobile devices to make it less tempting to make unnecessary purchases.
14. Preventative Maintenance
Take note of what around the house needs to be maintained monthly or yearly. Schedule seasonal checkups and fix small problems as they arise to prevent having to make massive purchases or repairs in the future.
15. Take Time To Relax
You don’t always have to go out. Relax at home with a good book or catch up on your favorite show. Not only does this help you save money, but it also is good self-care.
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