Do you want to reach financial freedom faster than you can ever imagined? Then saving is the easiest way to start.
I’ve put together this monster list of 300 Frugal living tips for you to save money every day even if you’re on a modest income.
These 300 frugal living tips will definitely help you to achieve the kind of frugal living you’ve always dreamed about.
Are you ready for the perfect balance between saving well on a daily basis and living a comfortable life?
Let’s start now.
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SAVE MONEY ON FOOD AND GROCERIES
1. Always compare prices online first.
2. If you find it hard to resist deals in supermarkets, shop for your groceries online. Why not give Amazon Fresh a go? Try it out for FREE. Learn more about Amazon Fresh here.
3. Always use up your leftover food in your fridge. Stick a prominent note on your fridge door as a reminder.
4. Avoid buying ready-made sauces and seasonings. Make them from scratch, especially if they’re easy.
5. Avoid buying soft drinks.
6. Buy generic brands as they’re cheaper.
7. Compare prices using unit prices.
8. Buy only produce which are in season, as they’re plentiful and therefore cheaper.
9. Use coupons to buy things you need.
10. Buy organic produce when they’re in season, especially spinach, carrots and apples.
11. Don’t buy organic produce when fruits have thick skins. For example oranges, melons and pumpkins.
12. Cook in bulk over the weekend. You save time and effort. Extra cooked food can be quickly reheated and enjoyed on weeknights.
13. Freeze portions of bulk cooked food – they can be used during weekdays.
14. Cut down on eating out whenever possible. Outside food costs about three times more than home cooked food.
15. Do your own baking as much as possible, especially cookies and cakes.
16. During Fall, check out places where you can harvest fruits like apples, pears and other produce. Check that it’s permitted.
17. Exchange your garden’s produce with neighbors instead of buying them from stores.
18. Follow menu plans that are simple, fast and easy. Use the $5 Meal Plan. It costs just $5 a month. Try it FREE for 14 days. You can cancel it at any time with no questions asked.
19. Be frugal – buy one less meal than what you usually budget for. This trains you to work with what you have left in the kitchen.
20. Have a second pantry. Stock up canned food on specials. Run to your own private pantry instead of the supermarket.
21. Save yourself a trip to the grocery store. You don’t have to step outside to do your grocery shopping if you prefer. Save travelling time, avoid the temptation to buy non-essentials, and save gas. With Amazon’s Prime Pantry 30-day free trial, you can choose everyday low-priced items in everyday sizes. Learn more about it here.
22. Have meatless meals certain days of the week. Meat is costly. Replace it with a cheaper alternative like veges and beans.
23. If not in season, buy frozen vegetables instead. They are still full of nutrients.
24. Never buy bottled water. Use reusable water bottles and feel them with tap water from home (make sure your tap water is potable and safe to drink).
25. Never waste any food. Save leftovers and freeze them for lunch.
26. Pack your snacks and drinks for your family during outings.
27. Reduce the number of times you eat out. You’ll easily save hundreds of dollars a year this way.
28. Stop eating out. You’ll save even more money!
29. If you must eat out, go for the mains on offer e.g. lunch specials. Skip the entrees and desserts.
30. Remember to read instructions on packaged foods like yogurt. For example, once opened, use within 3 days. Stick a note on your fridge door.
31. Stretch ground beef with beans to make chili beans.
32. Train your children not to waste food. Make it a habit for them to finish all the food on their plates.
33. Use supermarket loyalty cards to get discounts for the things you need to buy.
34. Visit farmers markets near closing time to get great discounted deals for produce. This is a favorite habit of mine 🙂
35. When eating out, avoid ordering drinks. Ask for water instead.
36. When having meals out, use discounts like lunch time specials, coupons or other special deals.
37. Pack handy snacks and drinks for outings.
38. Find multiple uses for the same item or try to use up all parts of an item. For example, after extracting lemon juice, you can shave the lemon peel and use it for baking.
39. Lemon halves can also be used to remove finger stains if you’ve handled beetroot or turmeric. Save the lemon halves to clean your glass shower doors. Squeezed lemon halves can be placed in fridges to absorb odors.
40. Use vegetable scraps, and other odds and ends to make stock.
41. Buy more non-perishables when they are on specials, to save more money.
42. Have a frugal shopping list and stick to it.
43. Buy smaller amounts if you don’t need too much of it. This avoids spoilage from keeping too long.
44. Never shop on an empty stomach. You’ll tend to buy more when feeling hungry.
45. Buy produce that will last much longer than others. E.g. pumpkins, squash, carrots, cabbage, potatoes and onions.
46. Check produce such as sweet potatoes, apples, and oranges to make sure that they are fresh and firm when you buy. Watch out for bruises, especially on bananas.
47. Store perishable produce correctly to reduce spoilage. For example, avoid storing potatoes and onions together or they’ll sprout much sooner.
48. Limit portion sizes to save money on groceries. You’ll avoid putting on weight too.
49. Grow your own herbs.
50. Keep regrowing your vegetables e.g. green onion, carrots and garlic.
51. Enjoy your free hot chocolate or cappuccino from your workplace hot drinks machine.
52. Craving for Starbucks, but don’t want to pay? Earn points with Swagbucks.
Use this link to get your free $5 sign up bonus. You redeem your points with FREE gift cards to use in your favorite stores including Starbucks.
53. Keep track of food expiry and use by dates. This way you don’t have to throw out expired food and waste money.
54. Check the food in your fridge or freezer regularly. There may be some leftovers hiding at the deeper end of your fridge or freezer. Use them before they spoil.
55. Store your dry foods properly. Keep grains and biscuits in airtight jars to keep them fresher.
56. Organize the food in your pantry. Put the new items in the back of the pantry and move the older items to the front.
57. Avoid storing raw or cooked foods in the freezer for too long.
58. Remember to use leftovers soon.
59. Grow food from kitchen scraps. Find out how you can regrow 19 foods from scraps.
60. Join a community garden. Depending on their rules, you can put in a couple of hours a week and get to bring home harvests from the garden.
61. Invest in a crockpot.
62. Invest in a freezer.
63. Make your own bread.
64. If you have bountiful harvests from your garden, freeze, bottle, pickle, make preserves out of them.
65. Any extra produce from your garden, exchange or ask from your neighbors, co-workers and friends.
66. Be on the lookout. It’s possible to harvest free peaches and apples from fruit trees even right in town. Just ask.
67. Buy the whole chicken. It’s much cheaper. With cheaper pricing, you get to buy better quality meats like organic and/or free range. Buying all the thighs or tenderloins cost more.
68. Multiple uses of the same produce. If it’s the whole chicken, save the frames and bones to boil into tasty soups.
69. Buy smaller quantities of fruits that ripen faster. Eg, bananas
70. Buy smaller quantities of leafy vegetables that don’t last. Eg, lettuce, spinach, watercress
71. Buy longer lasting produce when they’re on sale Eg squash, pumpkins.
72. Get cheaper cuts of meats. Use pressure cooker and/or crockpots to cook them.
73. Marinate your meats overnight with ginger, either minced or with ginger juice to tenderize the meats.
74. Buy staples like noodles, vegetables and nuts from Asian or Indian marts. They’re much cheaper.
75. Visit farmer markets near closing time. They’ll give you special prices.
76. Reuse tea bags. Keep them clean and place overnight in your fridge.
SAVE MONEY ON EATING OUT
77. Pre decide your order. Know the best value dishes first.
78. When dining out, order the mains only.
79. Ask for plain water. It’s healthy for you too.
80. Avoid desserts.
81. Avoid food deliveries.
82. Order takeaways instead.
83. Order a larger portion to share with another person. For eg, order the longest Subway sandwich and ask to have it cut into more portions to share among the same number of people.
84. Dine free on your birthday.
85. Go to restaurants that allow kids to eat free.
86. Lunch is cheaper than dinner.
87. Eat out at restaurants that accept student or senior discount cards.
88. Get discount food vouchers from restaurants featured in online sites.
89. Order lunch specials.
SAVE MONEY ON FINANCES
90. Monitor free credit report every year. Check for mistakes.
91. Negotiate with credit companies to lower sums.
92. Pay off your debts.
93. Pay yourself first. Arrange to have an amount put into a savings account first before you get to see it.
94. Reduce your deductible for insurance.
95. Set up a budget.
96. Shop for the best banks with low fees or high interest on saving accounts.
97. Sign up with Paribus here. Should there be a price drop after you’ve bought an item, it’ll get the refund on your behalf.
98. Switch to the lowest insurance.
99. Trim bank accounts you don’t need. It’s harder to keep track of them and their fees. Keep to the essentials.
100. Use only one credit card. Cut up the rest you don’t need.
101. Pay your credit card bill in full always.
102. Never treat your credit card as if it’s an unlimited source of money.
103. Use the cash envelope system if it suits you.
104. Rent out a spare room to reduce housing costs.
105. Take up some side hustles, for example the period before Christmas when stores are busy. They can lead to permanent positions.
106. Look around your home regularly for money that’s lying around – in drawers, pockets, bags, handbags or the couch.
107. Use ONLY cash to pay.
108. Review the cost of all types on insurances every year including health, life, car, house.
109. If health insurance has increased, ask if they’ll reduce the premium if you increase your excess and go for a health check.
110. If you’ve a landline, it’s time to cancel it.
111. Always try to repair or reuse items instead of throwing them away.
112. Avoid buying fabric softeners.
113. Avoid buying magazines. Borrow from the library. Make sure you take note of the due dates to avoid fines. Put your library items together in a box. Prevents you from mixing them up with your own books.
114. Buy clothes that you need out of season. For example, winter woollies when spring is approaching.
115. Buy second hand furniture items whenever possible from yard sales and thrift shops.
116. Buy in bulk especially items you need during sales.
117. Buy quality products that last longer.
118. Cancel your cable watch YouTube Netflix, Hulu or Roku instead.
119. Cancel your gym membership buy used equipment or join free fitness classes.
120. Cancel your landline phone service switch to mobile service only.
121. Set up an automatic deduction of your monthly payments to avoid late payment penalties.
122. If you prefer not to do this, set up reminders on your phone and pencil in your diary.
123. Set up a high interest savings account.
124. Use phone apps to make free international and local calls.
125. Pay fees on an annual basis to get discounts.
126. Avoid ATMs that charge fees.
127. Don’t spend the money you’ve saved. Put them into a savings account.
SAVE MONEY ON LIFESTYLE
128. Consider a capsule wardrobe. They reduce the need to buy new clothes and save you time thinking of what to wear.
129. Remove all clutter at home and sell them online or yard sales.
130. Cut family members’ hair at home.
131. Delay opening a new bottle or tube when the old one is almost finished. For eg, a new shampoo or tube of toothpaste. Everyone will go for the new bottle or tube as it’s easier to get the stuff out, leaving the older bottle unused and sitting on the bench for ages.
132. Do not drink alcohol.
133. Do not smoke.
134. Don’t buy unneeded things even if the sales are super good.
135. Don’t buy clothes that need dry cleaning.
136. Don’t buy video games. Consider playing games at the library. Our local library offers X box games for the public.
137. Have No Spend weekends.
138. If you want to style your hair, call up a local training college. They may be able to offer steep discounts as part of their training for their students.
139. If you’re buying things online, use Ebates. You will get a percentage of your money back. Caution: Only buy items you need.
140. Look after your things.
141. Look for free entertainment in your town like concerts yoga classes.
142. Maintain your house and vehicle to avoid costly repairs down the road.
143. Make your own greeting cards.
144. Never use paper towels. Use hand cloth towels instead.
145. No spend on new clothes for a year. Get creative. Mix and match the clothes you have.
146. Plant your own herbs.
147. Reduce the amount of dishwashing powder by a third. Experiment till you get the best balance.
148. Save used wrapping paper and reuse them.
149. Save your shopping plastic bags to reuse. Don’t buy trash bags.
150. Set aside time to exercise 5 times a week.
151. Stop buying new books. Borrow from your local library. Make sure you know when to return them to avoid fines.
152. Stop buying new clothes.
153. Take up free or cheaper hobbies. For example, golf is more expensive than reading. You can borrow books from your local library for free.
154. Think carefully about the cost of owning pets. They don’t just need time and attention, but food, accessories, insurance and related items like toys and equipment.
155. Try as far as possible to reuse, reduce and recycle your used items.
156. Use only general-purpose cleaner for cleaning surfaces.
157. Visit thrift stores.
158. Watch movies at home.
159. Use less than the manufacturer’s recommended amount of laundry powder. It works just as well.
160. Repair and reuse your things to minimize waste and save money.
161. Mend the frayed edges or loose stitches as soon as possible.
162. Use until the very last drop. For example, sauces that sit at the bottom of jars and bottles.
163. Reuse glass containers.
164. Make your skincare products last longer. Find out how here.
165. Use a smaller amount of skincare products.
166. Stretch your tube of toothpaste.
167. Make your shampoo or sauces last longer by diluting them.
168. Get more for the same price. New bottles of shampoo may state the same amount, but often the amounts are actually different.
169. Exchange ideas with friends and colleagues on where to get the best deals.
170. Wait for a good sale, if what you need is not too urgent.
171. If you notice a small defect in an item you are buying, it pays to ask for a discount.
172. Search competitive deals online.
173. Find out about your rights and what you can do if your purchase is faulty. You might be entitled to a replacement or have it repaired for free.
174. Make full use of your student ID or senior citizen discount card.
175. Use Mobile Services if they’re cheaper.
176. Always check your receipts. Make sure you’re paying the right price.
177. Use coupons regularly.
179. Small shops in out of town locations may be able to offer better deals.
180. Spend less than you earn.
181. Don’t produce new bottles of shampoo or toothpaste before the old ones have been used up.
182. Minimize throwing things away. Try to have another use for them.
183. Check your bank accounts at least once a month.
SAVE MONEY ON HEALTH COSTS
184. Go for yearly health and dental checks.
185. Brush your teeth properly.
186. Exercise regularly. Schedule in daily routines.
188. Have quiet time for yourself.
189. Eat healthy foods. Include fruits and vegetables into your daily diet.
190. Look away from your screen periodically to avoid eye strain.
191. Do stretching exercises.
192. Put aside 3 minutes a day to breathe deeply and slowly.
193. Minimize hunching when you’re at your computer.
194. Take nature walks.
SAVE MONEY ON POWER
195. Check with different power companies whether they have programs to reduce your monthly bills.
197. Line dry your clothes during the warmer seasons like summer. You can do this on warmer days during other seasons too.
198. Make sure you seal up the cracks in your house. You don’t want heated warm air escaping in winter time.
199. Change your lights to energy savers like LED or Compact Fluorescent (CFL) lights.
200. Unplug appliances that are seldom used. They still suck up electric power.
201. Use the dishwasher only once a day to save power and money.
202. Insulate your roof.
203. Draught proof the gaps by sticking insulation strips around the door frames.
204. Limit heating to only certain areas of the house during winter.
205. If buying a house, have most of your house facing the winter sun.
206. Wear several layers of warm clothing with internal thermals so that our aircon is set to a lower temperature in winter.
207. Use multiple layers of blankets in bed for winter.
208. Limit the heating time during colder seasons.
209. Shut the doors leading to other parts of the house to trap the warmth in our heated rooms.
210. Cut down on using your electric dryer. Use this neat trick #12 to reduce drying time.
211. Use the shortest cycle on your washing machine.
212. Wash only with full loads with your washing machine.
213. Never leave unneeded lights on.
214. Never leave appliances on standby. Switch off TVs, computers, phone chargers and other appliances.
215. Don’t leave your devices charging all the time.
216. Check for forgotten appliances in garages. Are they still running?
217. Choose energy efficient appliances.
218. Adjust your thermostat and save on your heating or cooling bill.
219. Use free or cheap off peak power.
220. Reduce your shower time.
221. Shower less often.
222. Run your washing machine and dishwasher during off peak hours.
223. After you’ve finished using the oven, you can warm up your food using its residual heat.
224. Do cold laundry washes.
225. Get all your ingredients ready before heating up your stove.
226. If you need hot water for cooking, boil the water in a kettle, instead of boiling water on your stove.
227. Use cooking lids to cover your food. This helps conserve heat, and speed up your cooking.
228. Cook multiple dishes in the oven if possible.
229. Build a solar oven to cook your food during summer to save power.
230. Use the remaining heat in the oven to heat up leftovers like vegetables or canned sardines.
231. Reheat small amounts of food ready, use a toaster oven instead of the oven.
232. Use the shortest cycle on the dishwasher.
233. Don’t use the heat dry mode.
234. Don’t leave the fridge door open for long periods. It needs to work harder to maintain its set temperature.
235. In Summer, draw your drapes to keep out the sun and to keep your rooms cool.
236. Open the windows on opposite sides of your house or apartment to allow cooler air from the outside to flow through. This helps cool your rooms during the hotter months.
237. Wear thin comfortable clothes and use the fan whenever possible during warmer days.
SAVE MONEY ON TRANSPORT
238. Avoid unnecessary car trips. Consolidate your errands to minimize driving around and wasting gas. Double check your list of errands so that you won’ miss out anything that’ll cause you to take another trip.
239. Plan your shopping trips to save time and gas. Instead of shopping twice a week, shop once a week.
240. Make it a habit to drive less.
242. Don’t waste $$$ on fuel-saving devices for your car.
243. Practice economy driving habits, such as NOT starting off like a jackrabbit and then braking furiously when the lights turn red.
244. Maintain your tires well for safety and savings.
245. On the motorway close all your windows to reduce air resistance. Traveling at a high speed wastes fuel because there is more air resistance.
246. Minimizing unnecessary weight in your car saves you money on fuel.
247. Do car preventive checks under the hood and avoid costly repairs.
248. Change your motor oil regularly. The motor is the most expensive part of your vehicle, while motor oil is quite cheap.
249. Use the lightest grade of motor oil to save money on gas. Look up your owner’s manual.
250. Make sure that you DON’T change your car’s motor oil too frequently.
251. Check your car air filter. It can cause your car’s fuel economy to suffer.
252. Bike, walk, take a train or try carpooling to work.
253. If possible, use one family car only. This cuts down expense of owning two cars to half.
254. Keep your car tires inflated to the correct to save gas and prolong tire life.
255. Try to do your own minor car repairs and maintenance that you can safely manage. For example, simple jobs like changing the windscreen wipers and handwashing.
256. Use Gas Guru to get the best gas prices near you.
257. Walk, bike or take public transport if you can.
258. Collect free auto battery water and save.
259. Put your dehumidifier water to good use. Details in 20 Frugal living tips part 1. Water that’s collected is demineralized water that can be used for your car battery. You can also use the water for your steam iron.
260. Not going for regular car-wash. Wash your own car as much as you can.
SAVE MONEY ON WATER
261. Consider showering on alternate days especially during colder seasons.
262. Don’t flush your toilet too often.
263. Only wash clothes that are soiled. Don’t keep washing them if they’re not dirty.
264. Turn off the tap when brushing your teeth, shaving, shampooing or washing your face.
265. Wait till you have a full load before using the washing machine.
266. Wash clothes using cold water.
267. Use the quickest wash.
268. Wash only clothes that smell – use the sniff test.
269. Reduce the number of times you use the washing machine.
270. Collect the waste water from your washing machine rinse cycle and use it to water your garden or flush your toilets.
SAVE MONEY DURING FESTIVE SEASONS
271. Keep wrapping paper, tape and scissors in a box to avoid buying them the last minute.
272. Adults can choose to opt out in gift giving.
273. Go on a treasure hunt before Christmas. Look for unexpected gems in the hidden corners of your home.
274. Collect real pine cones for part of the Christmas decorations.
275. Buy at post-Christmas sales like Boxing Day or Black Friday sales that offer huge savings.
276. Plan your list of gifts early.
277. Always be on the lookout for any sales during the year to get low prices.
278. Make your recipe collection ongoing, whether it’s for Christmas or Thanksgiving.
279. Make your own homemade gift hampers.
280. Reuse your Christmas wrapping paper.
281. Have a potluck Christmas meal.
282. Why not have a Secret Santa for adults?
283. Make free garden gifts.
SAVE MONEY ON CHILDREN’S NEEDS
284. Try to buy children’s clothes at thrift stores. They outgrow them fast.
285. Consider your child’s hobbies carefully too. Some are expensive like music as you have to fork out for the instrument and lessons.
286. If you’ve skills in say computing or sports, offer to teach your friends’ children in exchange. They in turn can teach your children free of charge.
287. Instead of buying new toys, consider exchanging toys with friends for a set period of time. Buy from thrift stores or join a toy library.
288. Take turns to exchange babysitting sessions with friends and relatives. Get grandparents to help out.
289. Exchange or loan toys with friends and relatives.
290. Visit art galleries.
291. Visit museums.
292. Go for picnics.
293. Have fun nature walks.
294. Take turns to organize arts and craft sessions with friends.
295. Organize a themed activity outdoors. For eg, ‘I Spy’ sessions.
296. Play by the beach, collect seashells and build sandcastles.
297. Take part on free workshops and events hosted by your local libraries.
298. Go for free storytelling sessions in libraries.
299. Enjoy free baby time sessions in libraries.
300. Ask your kids’ school for permission to swim in the school’s pools in summer.
BONUS SAVING TIPS
301. Check your house for water leaks.
302. Take showers not baths.
303. Take shorter showers to save money on water bills.
304. Turn off the shower when you’re soaping and shampooing. Doing this saves power too.
305. Installing a water saving 2.5 gpm showerhead means you can save $260 a year for a family of four according to MSN Money.
306. In winter, before you shower, drain the cold water into a bucket. Use this water to flush your toilet for light use.
307. Why not have a sponge bath during winter?
308. Don’t turn on your faucet at full blast every time.
309. Turn off the tap when brushing your teeth, shaving, shampooing or washing your face.
310. Place a filled plastic bottle in the toilet tank.
311. Be flexible when using toilet flush options.
312. Only wash clothes that are soiled. Don’t keep washing them if they’re not dirty.
313. Check with family members.
Before heading to the toilet, we’ll ask other family members if they need to go. We cut down on the number of flushes this way.
314. When you wash your vegetables, don’t run them under the tap. Collect a basin of water and soak them first.
315. Run the dishwasher only when it’s FULL. Each wash uses 25 gallons of water.
316. Washing dishes by hand?
Fill one sink with clean water and the other with soapy water.
317. Have only one sink?
Fill your sink with soapy water to wash your dishes. Remove them from the water. Drain the soapy water and refill with clean water for rinsing.
318. Water your lawn only when necessary.
319. Water your lawn for longer periods each time and not too often during summer.
320. Water you plants during cooler times of the day are much better as there’s less evaporation.
321. Water on still days when there’s hardly any wind.
322. Water relatively more during the hotter months and less during cooler months.
323. Position your sprinklers so that you water in areas that need it.
324. Mulch around your trees and plants as it reduces water loss.
325. Grow drought-resistant trees, shrubs and plants.
326. Never hose your driveways and sidewalks.
327. Don’t leave water running when you wash your car.
328. Discourage your kids from playing with your hose and sprinklers on hot days
329. Minimize using inflatable kids pools.
330. When you’re out of the house, tap into the free wi-fi offered by malls and cafes.
Phew! There you have it. With so many smart ideas to choose from, these 300 frugal living tips will certainly help you get started on your savings journey in no time. All the best!
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