Close Ad
Frugal Living
Join the discussion on the Frugal Living forum.
Chatabout.com a place to chat about what interests you!
Frugal living is practiced by those whose aim is to have more money and cut expenses. It’s a way of living smarter and better money management. 

Have you unlocked the world of possibilities with frugal living?
Andy Van Scoyoc
I love living frugally...it was how I was raised. I buy very few things, new. If anyone is interested in treats like tub tea, how to rebatch soap, or other ways to recycle, reuse and help our planet, let me know. I also have many uses for cork topped, glass bottles.
Pegeen McConnell
Yeah, I was raised that way, too. so when people talk about learning to live frugally, it seems weird...just comes natural to me.
Bob Jones
I like that picture of the piggy bank and the money. It seems like saving is a very delicate task.
Darlene Atkinson
My husband and I went into Walgreen's yesterday and bought a dozen eggs for 99 cents. I never thought of buying eggs at Walgreen's. I was actually looking for a greeting card for Easter and saw another lady in the store with a carton of eggs. I thought why would she buy eggs in a drug store because food tends to more expensive, but when she told me they were 99 cents I thought wow. I better pick some up.
Lindy H.
Wow that is great! Sometimes you can find them even cheaper than 99 cents if you shop at Aldi. I didn't know Walgreens had such cheap eggs though.
Lei M
Is that deal for all Walgreen store? I sometimes get disappointed because some coupon sites would publish prices of stuff and when I get to the store or check my local store, they have different prices or the offer is not available.
Kristi Anglen
Both Walgreens and CVS will run sales like that on occasion. I watch for eggs, soda, toilet paper-things like that. I don't get a daily or Sunday paper so I check the websites. You plug in your zip code and get the sale flyer for your local store.
Stephanie Brewer
My husband's grandmother keeps us supplied in eggs. She loves to have chickens but doesn't like to eat eggs. She often uses them to barter with.
Pegeen McConnell
Yeah, I will often buy eggs at Walgreens for that price when they are on sale. The problem is that I don't live really close to a Walgreens, so I have to be already going by to make it worth it.
Pegeen McConnell
Once in a while there will be a printable coupon for 55 cents of any eggs, It comes from the national egg association, whatever it's called. Those in combo with walgreens sales are awesome!
Sandi Harada
Wow, that is unreal! I don't think I have ever seen a dozen eggs for 99 cents. We go thru so many eggs that we just buy the tray from the farm.
Jennifer Juenke
Walgreens usually has eggs for $.99 plus a gallon of milk for two dollars. But you have get there pretty early, the deals like these are often gone quickly!
Pegeen McConnell
I also keep blank stickers on hand, and can sometimes use those to cover up old addresses on any envelope which is used but still in good condition. The stickers are cheaper than another envelope, so saves a few pennies.
Lindy H.
That is a great way to reuse old envelopes. I have never even thought of that. I will have to try that out to save some money.
Darlene Atkinson
I do that also with old envelopes as well as old boxes. It does same me money. I also buy envelopes at dollar tree because they are the cheapest.
Lindy H.
I buy envelopes at the dollar tree too darlene. Its the cheapest place around to get them and it saves like 2 bucks a box.
Lei M
And by doing that you do your part in saving trees! My husband usually throws away envelopes but I get them and use them for my coupons. I am new to couponing and I dont really have extra money for a binder. Used envelopes would do until someone gives me a coupon binder as a present. :-)
Pegeen McConnell
Lei, you could create a coupon binder out of the used envelopes if you really wanted to. Punch holes into them and insert them into a used photo album or 3 ring binder. Each envelope might wear out quickly, but you could easily replace them.
Lei M
Such a great idea Pegeen. yes I dont mind them wearing out quickly because they are used anyway and I am just recycling them. We get a lot of mails a week. A photoalbum is also great. I would have to look for a free photoalbum giveaway.
Donna mills-summers
How frugal on covering up addresses cheaper than buying a new envelope howsome idea i usually throw in recycle bin at the post office and nowadays helping
Pegeen McConnell
I try to save a little money by re-using envelopes. Sometimes envelopes come with junk mail, or with bills which I pay online so end up not using the envelope. If there's a window "hole" that doesn't work, I'll wrap whatever I'm really sending in a piece of scrap paper and just write the address on there right through the window.
C W
I like to reuse the envelopes to store coupons for when me or my husband go shopping. I did since get a $1 coupon organizer from the Target dollar section. I still save the envelopes until I can find a good use.
Lindy H.
I hardly ever reuse them because I really don't even think about it but that is a great way to save some money.
Dawn Henderson
One of the ways that I am frugal is to grow my own food. I thought that I would try it this year and not pay anything for it. So far I have gotten my seeds from Lista. I purchased my dirt and fertilizer from Amazon with my gift cards. My green beans and tomatoes are growing like crazy. My lettuce just started sprouting. I have five different herbs as well. I am having a blast being frugal.
Pegeen McConnell
Dawn, good for you!! One tip I can give you; if you want a continual stream of beans you should do a second planting about a month after you planted the first batch. Just a small planting will give greatly extend your harvest season. Have fun.
Dawn Henderson
Thanks so much for that suggestion. I will give that a try. What kind of beans do you feel are the best? I planted Bush beans.
C W
Congrats! That is a great way to be frugal, and you didn't even have to spend a dime! I want to start a small garden, but I don't know if I will have time. I have started to regrow my green onions so at least that's something.
Jennifer Juenke
That is so awesome! I am just starting to grow my veggies indoors and then I will transfer them outside when it becomes warm enough! LOVE FREE!
Pegeen McConnell
Dawn, you can do the same with the lettuce, too. What else do you have growing? Carrots are really easy to grow, and if the soil is deep enough you should get a fairly easy crop.
Mary McKee
Dawn I will warn you that gardening is addictive. I started as a child and have 3 gardens. I produce enough for my own household to eat fresh, can and freeze the excess and even sell some locally. It is great exercise and the fresh food is great for you.
Dawn Henderson
I am also growing tomatoes, cilantro, basil, parsley, dill, and chives. The lettuce and green beans are my only other crops.
Pegeen McConnell
I would suggest some cucumbers, too, as they are fairly easy to grow and are a nice, summery addition to your meals. Plus you can use your dill and make pickles if you get a bumper crop!
Lindy H.
My husband and i are also starting a garden this year. I know it will save us a ton on our grocery bill.
Kristi Anglen
If you are short on space you can get the "spacemaster" or bush variety of cucumber plants too. I did that this year since the zucchini tend to sprawl all over I figured I'd save some space with a different variety of cukes. I love bush green beans and usually use the Blue Lake variety.
Kristi Anglen
Do a search for growing food from scraps and you will get great information on growing new celery from a celery root, spring onions, basil and a bunch of other vegetables. If you want organic you only pay the organic price once and then grow your own.
Lei M
I just started an herb garden in our patio. I am new to gardening so we will see if I have a green thumb. I am thinking that if they grow, I would have a supply of herbs. Next project would be a tomato.
Dawn Henderson
I will do a search for growing food from scraps. I would really like to try green onions. I had never thought of celery. I will try both of those too. I just have to be careful with space and all.
Donna mills-summers
So many great frugal living tips here and i may try some gardening this year and i will need help on it from all of you lets see tomatoes how, when and all.
Pegeen McConnell
A great way to save money when you go out to eat is to skip purchasing a beverage. As for water with lemon slices, then add a little sugar to it....ta da, lemonade!
Lei M
My husband and I rarely drink soda. We just order water in restaurants. We don't drink coffee or tea either so they are not in our grocery list. Fresh fruits are always the best. I was cutting lemon earlier when I thought i'd keep the seeds and see if I can grow them. It would be nice to have fresh lemonade.
C W
We don't buy beverages anymore when we are out. We order water, which is usually gross tap, or we just wait until we're in the car to drink our own water.
Pegeen McConnell
Yeah, I usually hate the water at restaurants as it's city tap water and filled with chlorine. Sometimes I'lll ask if they have any filtered water, but if not, the lemon helps.
Darlene Atkinson
I know most of the places where I eat one has to buy a beverage in order to use the coupon. I know that Denny's and IHOP do this. Last night my husband and I ate at a casino where you could get a meat loaf dinner for $3.95 cents, but you had to buy a beverage.
Pegeen McConnell
Oh, that's a real bummer. The restaurants know that's where they make their money, is on the extras like beverages and they are wising up to we frugal customers.
Lindy H.
Yeah that is so true! Some places charge you like 2 or three dollars just for a drink. At some fast food places you can also share a drink to cut down costs.
Sarah Moore
salvation army here used to be really good. i dont know if they have changed owners or what but they redid the whole store and now its horrible. havent found anything in there the last few times i went, guess i will stick to goodwill
Erika Sencenich
I am not impressed with the salvation army here at all. It was dingy and I could find nothing but junk.
C W
I am not impressed with Goodwill. Their prices are ridiculously high on most things - especially furniture. Chain thrift stores are too expensive.
Laurie Tam
I know that some of you may laugh but this story is true. My hon and I sometimes frequent the Goodwill stores. Some time this month, we finally found a couch for guess what........... at $1.49. It was a green tag sale for that price and my hon came upon it. The original price is about $80. He saved way more than 90% on it. The Goodwill around where I am are affordable and it's so worth it to purchase some of their stuff. I know it's a hassle but you'll be surprised to find something that you may want and/or need.
Pat Veretto
I think it depends on the local management as to how good or well organized a thrift store is. I prefer Goodwill here, but it's on the other side of town, so I go to the ARC instead and sometimes to the Salvation Army.
Darlene Atkinson
The Salvation Army here in Las Vegas is expensive, but I do find a lot of great deals in Good Will and Dessret Industries. I also look at garage sales as well and enjoy finding bargains. Right now I am looking for cheap jeans so I can make purses out of them.
Pegeen McConnell
Oh, goodness, Laurie, I sure don't laugh at that...except to laugh with you! My husband and I have been know to make a date out of hitting the local Goodwill and Salvation Army stores. How romantic, huh?
Stephanie Brewer
Our local Salvation Army is dingy and in a very scary neighborhood. I prefer the local Goodwill as it is always clean and in a nice shopping center.
Laurie Tam
Pegeen, lol I know. When my hon told me how much he paid for the couch, I was floored. It was so good that we went on a green tag day because we really needed a couch and he found one. Out of all days, he did it.

And hey. Checking out Goodwill and Salvation Army is a great way to save even more money unless you went berserk on buying even more stuff than necessary. Ha ha
Lindy H.
I hate that place around here. It is super dirty and I can't find anything. I would much rather go to GoodWill.
Kristi Anglen
I get the best buys at the local Thrift stores as opposed to Goodwill. We have a lot of them run by churches and other organizations. I shop there for cheap t'shirts for just wearing around the house.
Priscilla King
Yes, it varies from city to city. In the D.C. area the Village Thrift and AmVets stores used to have the biggest and best selections, and the Salvation Army store was shabby. In Kingsport, Tennessee, the Goodwill is understocked and overpriced but the Salvation Army store is excellent. Much depends on which people donate what, when...
Pegeen McConnell
A great way to be frugal is to have a time every so often when you try to create your meals from only items you have on hand. Great way to weed out the pantry and freezer and make room for more good deals.
Lindy H.
That is a great tip! It is also a great way to save a ton of money because then you aren't running out to the store to get a bunch of items which eats into your grocery budget.
Pegeen McConnell
Yeah, I've been doing this for the past week. The problem now is....I have nothing left in the house, or so it feels. I need to make a grocery trip now to stock up a little more.
MacKenzie Drake
On top of which, you soon find out if that case of cajun creamed spinach you bought on sale was such a good idea or not. Novelty is not always welcome around my place.
Flora Rahman
So true! Especially with leftover vegetables. You can chop them up, fry them in olive oil, salt, and chili pepper, and eat it as a snack!
Laurie Tam
Another idea with veggies is to have them as a stir fry meal or soup. It would add more flavor if you cook it with meat and/or broth or flavored cubes such as chicken or beef. That would stretch your money even more too.
Mary McKee
Every so often I challenge myself to not buy groceries for a couple weeks and force myself to have nothing but pantry meals. This helps to force me to go through and eat some of the oldest food in the pantry and freezer.
Lindy H.
I know what you mean about not having much in the house. I want to start compiling a stock pile of food with coupons.
Cathy W
I see a lot of people are against using credit cards when you are trying to live a frugal life. I actually run everything I can through my credit card, but I am responsible enough to pay it off EVERY month. Running what I can through it allows me to earn cash back and helps me budget by easily tracking my spending.
Pat Veretto
It's very easy to run up a balance, then not be able to pay it off, even if you intend to. If something unexpected comes up, it can upset the apple cart quickly.
Brittany Saliva
I also put it on my credit card to get the cash back bonus. I just pay it off every month. I budget my money and that helps make sure that you don't over spend.
Pegeen McConnell
I do the same thing...put everything I spend on to the credit card in order to get the bonus, then pay it off totally every month. We never put more on it than we'd be spending if we paid any other way.
Pegeen McConnell
The other thing that is key to using a credit card t his way is to be SURE that you have enough in the savings account to cover the whole thing without question.
Bridget Jones
One thing that helps me on my credit card payoff. I actually budget using the envelope system and when I purchase gas with my credit card, I immediately take the money out of my gas envelope and put it in my checkbook. Once a week the cash in my checking account is deposited into my banking account.
Lindy H.
As long as you pay it off every month then I see nothing wrong with using a credit card especially if you get rewards.
Erika Sencenich
The problem is not everyone pays them off every month. I can't do the envelope system when the bank is not close by. What we have done is got blue bird accounts and a set amount goes on it a month for each of us (my husband and I each have one) and its like our allowance. I tend to use mine as my Christmas account more then anything else and my husband generally will buy his lunch if he eats out at work and then saves for golf season.
Kimberly Crenshaw
2 Prescriptions, 1 Candy Bar, 3 Bags of Whoppers Robin Eggs, and 20 (yes 20!) Bottles of Nail Polish = $12.43 Gotta love frugal living and Rite Aid!
Pat Veretto
Good going! Rite Aid's coupon thingy really works for some people. I don't shop there often enough to make it work for me, though.
Brittany Saliva
How do you do that with rite aid. I just went the other day for the first time. I guess i need to figure this out!
MacKenzie Drake
Honestly, unless the nail polish is in colors I can use for either crafts or cosplay, it would not save me any money. I have thin nails and work a lot with my hands, so my nails tend to be short and the paints get chipped or worn off quickly.
Flora Rahman
That is just wonderful! 20 bottles of nail polish?! I need to do that! It doesn't hurt to have 20 bottles of nail polish!
Erika Sencenich
Holy cow my daughter would be in heaven with that many bottles of nail polish at one time. But we don't have a rite aid
Flora Rahman
So true. With summer coming up in a couple of months and sandals time, a variety of nail polish colors would be much appreciated!
Lindy H.
Wow, that is an awesome deal! I love when I can get a ton of stuff for cheap. It saves us a ton of money throughout the year.
ASHLEY Elizalde
This is true, as the time flies by, our society just keeps getting more materialistic by the day/ minute. we need to break these bad habits and live life with things that make us happy
Beth Trent
I am learning to live without all of the luxuries that I thought were necessities. I think this will be a positive experience for me. I already feel as if I have a deeper appreciation for, well everything. Keeping it just a little more simple brings a more peaceful life.
Lindy H.
One thing you can do to live frugally and save money with a baby is to use cloth diapers like I do. You can save over a thousand dollars plus you reduce landfill waste. So its a win win. :)
George Johnson
And you don't have to go to the store for fresh diapers, you just have to do a load of laundry!
Lindy H.
Exactly George! The only time we use disposables is one at night so our trips to the store for diapers is very rare.
Melissa Butler
That is exactly what we do. We buy one box of disposables and it lasts us a month or more because we only use them at night and occasionally when we are out. We also do cloth wipes. In addition to breast feeding and making my own baby food my kids really were not very expensive for the first year or two ;)
George Johnson
Yeah, they aren't wearing out clothes and just eating what mom eats, so it is just a lot of laundry. We spent on heat since we let things get cold if it is just us but it would be mean for a baby.
Lindy H.
Melissa, I also breast feed and will be looking into making my own baby food. I have the time to do these things and they save money so why not!
Lindy H.
George we also turned up our heat once we brought our little one home. We didn't want him to be too cold.
Mary McKee
I think I am probably older than most of you but I raised 4 children on cloth diapers.I think that with cloth diapers that babies tended to get less diaper rash and skin irritations. In the summer it was cooler and cloth diapers breathed so much better than the disposables. It is a little work doing laundry more often.
Lindy H.
Mary, I agree with you. Some of the disposables were breaking my little guy out. Once we started using cloth he hasn't had a rash since!
Mike Stock
i live frugally by not wasting anything. if i have something that i do not need and i know somewhere down the line someone else will i will save it until then. i do not let any food go to waste either. if i do not want to eat it i at least give it to my dog.
Pat Veretto
I do the same, but I don't own a dog. I try to eat everything instead of wasting it. The freezer really helps when I get tired of something.
Pegeen McConnell
I tend to be a saver as well, meaning I hate to throw things away that may come in handy. I have learned, however, that just keeping things around isn't always the best way, but can lead to way too much clutter.
MacKenzie Drake
I try to keep a flow of sharing going with family and friends. The other day I scored 5 lbs of blue cheese for less than $7, so I took a pound or two over to my sister, who shared bags of salad mix a friend had given her. I do the same with friends, trading stuff and services back and forth and generally keeping us all afloat.
Lindy H.
Yeah you can save a lot of money by eating your left overs and not just throwing them away like some people do.
Kristi Anglen
I even use the leftover chicken bones to make chicken broth. Of course I work from home so have time to do that. Also use things like cabbage cores, onion skins, celery roots, etc. to make homemade vegetable broth. You just don't want to use nightshades like potatoes. I save the veggie or bone scraps up in a baggie in the freezer and when I have enough make homemade broth for soup or stews.
Jordan Johnson
I like saving money by only shopping for clothes on discount no matter what.Alot of times just know the right place and time and you have quality clothes for cheap.
Lindy H.
I like shopping for clothes at thrift shops. I always get my jeans at Good Will because they have nice ones and they are cheap.
Pat Veretto
I shop for clothes mostly at thrift stores, too. Goodwill is good here, and so is the Salvation Army. I think the last time I bought new clothes was when my son got married about 7 years ago!
Lindy H.
Our Salvation Army here isn't that great. It's kind of dirty and its not laid out very well. I tend to avoid that thrift shop.
Flora Rahman
With clothing, I am extremely frugal. I shop for clothes twice a year at the mall and that's it. I usually spend around $50 for at least 10 to 15 pieces of clothing with the usage of coupons!
MacKenzie Drake
I also sew my own clothes from fabrics and clothes I find at the thrifts. I get a lot of useful things and some really awesome things for a tenth of what I would pay in a store or on Etsy.
Mary McKee
Not just sewing your own clothes but making things for your home such as dishtowels, curtains and sheets. Those are all straight stitches and require very little sewing skills for the beginner.
Lindy H.
Mary, when we get a sewing machine I am going to make some cloth wipes to use with my son. That way we save money and don't have to buy them.
Brooke M
The other night I was making dinner and I forgot garlic bread, so this is going to sound crazy and odd but I tore hot dog buns in half and buttered it, then I put a tiny bit of garlic powder and parsley and baked it for a few seconds. It actually tasted pretty good!
Melissa Butler
That is exactly what I do. I prefer to use french bread but we usually use whatever we have on hand
Brooke M
I couldn't believe how good it tasted. My family loved it, maybe I will make it again soon. It's easy and cheap.
Sandi Harada
I have done that before because I didn't have french bread. Can even make cheese bread with hot dog buns. I like it because you don't have to cut it after.
Brooke M
I might try it with cheese next time, sounds good. A good and easy way to make a side dish.
Erika Sencenich
We do that all the time here we like it and it works out well for us. we've done them garlic or garlic and cheese
Jayne Cook
I've done that too Brooke M. Especially when taking care of my granddaughter, I have to improvise on things to feed her! lol
Brooke M
I also found out that if you sprinkle shredded cheese on left over macaroni and cheese, it makes it taste better.
Pat Veretto
That's not crazy at all! I do that with plain bread at times and sometimes I will use parmesan cheese along with olive oil.
Pegeen McConnell
Yeah, I have done that too, in the past. They are also good when grilled in a little butter in a frying pan and sprinkle the garlic powder on the top. Hmmm.
Faye Rucker
We do that all the time Taste the same to me also its cheaper than buying the frozen bread I love garlic toast with lots of foods and I dont care hat you use to make it
Lindy H.
That sounds delicious! Way to be very resourceful with the items that you have on hand, that can save you tons!
Ray Wu
I like saving money by using CVS. Oftentimes, you can stack coupons and save a lot of money that way. Then they give you extra rewards bucks back. Then repeat the cycle over again!
Plus, I get $1 off a transaction using this app along with a free $25 to start from American express: link Best store yet!
Lindy H.
I have heard that you can save a lot with drug stores but I rarely shop at them. i really should since you can get some great deals.
Pat Veretto
Having an emergency fund can really help you live frugally. Instead of having to put emergency repairs and so on, on a credit card or having to withdraw from major savings, use your emergency fund.
Brooke M
That is so true, it's hard for some people to have an emergency fund though when they are already struggling. When I get straightened out I want to have an emergency fund!
Sandi Harada
Yes that is very true. There is never anything to put away. But hopefully one day soon our emergency fund will start. One day at a time!
George Johnson
Yes, an emergency fund will let you sleep well when your job isn't steady or you need to go to the emergency room or just when life happens.
Lindy H.
That is true. Putting things on credit cards is terrible if you aren't able to pay it off every month since they kill you with interest charges.
Pat Veretto
Don't wait until you get straightened out, because if you don't have an emergency fund, you run the risk of things getting worse instead of better. Start with five dollars if that's all you have, but start.
Faye Rucker
We save out loose change in a jar and I save $1 dollar bills you will be surprised at how fast that can add up I am working at paying off all credit card debt and have closed all of our accounts It's too easy to buy and too hard to pay backIf we don't have cash to buy something then we just don't get it
Kimberly Crenshaw
Time to go shopping today. I'm feeling rather lazy, but I know I'll be energetic when I see my savings on the bottom of the receipts.
Pat Veretto
I hate to shop when I'm not in the mood for it. I usually spend too much then. I have to be in a controlled mood, I guess!
Kimberly Crenshaw
Honestly, I get worn out just from all the planning prior to the shopping, LOL! I still need to plan my meals, check the sales, go over my budget, check the fridge and pantry, and finally make the list. See, now I'm tired just from writing down what I need to do. LOL
Erika Sencenich
Kimberly its been known to take me two days lol..I'll do everything and get everything ready and then I'm like I don't want to drive the 30 minutes to go now I'm worn out hahaha
Darlene Atkinson
I go grocery shopping every Saturday and I always make sure that my list is made no later than Thursday. I also have a white erase board which everyone knows that they need to write down things we need or it does not get bought. I remember when I was first married my husband did not use the board and when it came to shopping we bought what was on the list and nothing more. Two days later he said, "Oh, honey we need milk" and I said "wee, honey it was not on the list and therefore I did not know we needed milk, so now we go without until next week". I hate going grocery shopping more than once a week.
Lindy H.
It is always nice to see how much you can save if you put effort and time to plan your shopping trip.
Kimberly Crenshaw
Well, it was all worth the effort. I confess thought, after all the time I spent planning, hubby did the actual shopping. We have everything and saved a lot. Now, I just need to focus on cooking everything so that nothing will go bad.
Lindy H.
That's awesome. I love when my husband goes shopping for me. Although now that I stay home with our son I do it more while he is at work.
Kimberly Crenshaw
It is kinda funny actually. We talk on the phone through the entire shopping trip, even with several stores. He wears his ear plugs and I tell him exactly where to go, what and how much to buy, which coupons to use, etc. It is sorta fun.
Flora Rahman
Okay, seriously, you are inspirational! I am on a budget when I'm shopping with a shopping list ready and coupons at hand, but I can't be as prepared as you are. Way to go!
Jason L
Half the reason I use this site is so I can live frugally. The extra finances really help when it comes to toys and stuff.
Lindy H.
Yeah this site is great for making extra cash so you can buy what you need. I am saving up mine for vacation money.
Priscilla King
Yes! (I want to start buying all my e-friends' books!) Paying e-publishers come and go, but while I have a couple I want to post, post, post!
You may also like