Frugal Living
Join the discussion on the Frugal Living forum. 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?

Frugal living has its place. Money is hard to come by but it goes so easily. With the price of food and everything else going higher it is a good idea to pinch pennies.

I would say my mom...or just my family is on frugal living.
we have a fixed income, so things are pretty tight, and we really have to budget things out.

I'm on a disability, its low fixed income and you are not frugal by your own choice. It is very difficult trying to look after yourself self & stay on top of day to day living. "If its not on sale I don't buy it.

Especially in this economy, Richard. Costs have gone up so much! I am thankful that I live near some really good thrift stores.

I keep learning everyday how to be frugal, every time that prices goes up, you have to think how to make it work better with as little money as i have. I have no choice for now until I have more money to work with.

I know what you mean, Francine. It feels like the prices of everything goes up a lot faster than income does. It's getting to the point that buying food is hard.

I can do it whenever I have to and try to live frugally but every once and awhile you need to break out and enjoy yourself-with eating out or a movie!

I agree with you completely. I feel like we all need to have the opportunity from time to time to break loose and just have a good time.

I read on this site one of the ways to save money quickly is to put one dollar away today,then 2 dollars tomorrow then 3 then next then 4 the next and so and so on.By the end of the month you had over 1300 dollars.

That would work only if you had 1300 dollars coming in after you paid all your necessary bills. But yes it sure would be a way to save quickly. You'd have enough for a car if you repeated this every month for a year.

It would be really nice if that was something that I would be able to do but considering that my monthly income is less than that I know that it wouldn't be possible for me.

I love reusing items for other purposes. There is so much that you can do if you just put your mind to it. Nothing is impossible as long as you have an idea

Chantiele, do you have any suggestions for reusing items that you could share with us? Maybe you have some we've never tried before.

I was very irresponsible with money when I first got out on my own at 18 . Now I'm 30 and have about $5000 in credit card debt. I got married in December and we really want to buy a house before next winter. My goal is to put $500 a month towards paying off credit card debt. I have an average job making $14 an hour. I'm going to take as much as I can from my paychecks and all of my online earnings to reach my $500 debt payment goal each month. Hopefully by winter we will be in a much better place financially. I wish I could go back in time and be as frugal as I am now. I guess we learn as we grow.

5k credit card debt isn't too bad. I would suggest before buying a house to consider how much of a down payment you will need, if you can find a place you can afford on just one of your salaries, and if it would be cheaper to rent (house maintenance, pmi insurance, interest rates, etc.) It's suggested that you save at least 1% of your home's value yearly for maintenance.

I really do believe that we all make more than our fair share of mistakes when we are young. It stinks that you have debt that you need to deal with but at least you are being responsible about dealing with that debt.

I am trying to live frugal, but it is hard to where I live. Things here in Las Vegas are more expensive than where I used to live, but my husband's doctors are here so we are stuck. I am looking for sites where I can make extra money, but now some of them keep on changing which is making it harder for me to make cash out. I am hoping that I can start my own online business.

I have a ton of student loans to pay off so I've been trying to be frugal. Last month was a disaster though. I spent more than double of my budget. I hope I can make up for it in the upcoming months.

Well I did it again ! I spent my gas money on Papa Johns, I have extra money put back for gas. I'm officially going to budget 35.00 for Papa Johns from now on. I've tried breaking the habit and watching every penny, but, there are nights when he gets the best of me. I'm tired of feeling guilty, it's just going to be one of those things I do for myself. I feel justified in doing this, I go without a lot of things other people have. I know that's stinking thinking trying to justify spending that much on a pizza but, lets face it frozen just doesn't taste as good. O.k. I'm ready you can tell me how bad I am.

It's okay to treat yourself once in awhile, but honestly the "I go without a lot of things other people have" isn't a good motto to live by. I do too. I don't have an iphone or a new car or designer clothes. Those things don't matter to me.

Sometimes I just feel sorry for myself and I shouldn't. We aren't really hurting that bad. I put up around 200.00 a month one way or another. But, to do that I make due with what I have. I know I'm doing the grown up thing by making sure we have an emergency fund and a car replacement fund. Sometimes though I want a new pair of pants, or get tennis shoes my sister didn't give me. Just having a pity party right now. There are days that it's hard not to throw caution to the wind and go to the mall.

Have you tried making a list of the little things that are important to you? Papa John's would be on that list, I'm sure. But what else? If you make a budget that includes those things, then two things happen: (1) you won't feel deprived; and (2) you won't feel guilty while you are enjoying them.

It also makes being frugal much easier. You may find that you are spending money on things that don't make you happy and are not important to you. These are areas where you can cut costs and you won't even miss it. Cable was one of those for me. I probably watch TV perhaps 5 hours a week; but 90% of those shows were on the basic, free (if you have an antenna) channels. So I cut it out and didn't even miss it. Now, the internet is on my 'very important' list. LOL

I understand, Cathy. Once you're feeling better you just need to learn to change your mindset. It's AWESOME that you are putting together an emergency fund and car replacement fund. There are many people who can't afford that.

Try setting some goals. Have a baby emergency fund of 1k. Then have a fully funded emergency fund of 3-6 months of your expenses. Create a budget and give yourself a certain amount to spend a month.

We turned off cable a long time ago. We do have Netflix but, now with comcast starting extra charges we can't use it either. The electric company has raised it's prices so no t.v. we hang out clothes in the house. Since it's winter we are down to only using four rooms, we are smashed together. There's only two of us, but, my hubby is a slob. and we have four cats. I get five rolls of quarters every pay check. I've done it for over a year and have the thousand dollar emergency fund. I just need spring to come and bring me some sunshine.

Cathy. You can only do what you can do. It sounds like you are already down to the bare bones. Just don't forget to give yourself some pleasure - it doesn't have to cost much. Life is not just about sacrifices.

It's hard to explain, but I like to be frugal. It gives me a sense of accomplishment when I can get something or do something for a minimum of money, or get something that I need for free. It's like a game that I can win. :)

I know exactly how you feel because I am the same way. Being able to save money give me a huge sense of accomplishment. It's one of the reasons why I'm so motivated to save money.

I love being frugal. I love seeing my savings increase every month. It seems like the more money I make, the more frugal I want to be. It gives me the opportunity to save more. Besides, being frugal is like a game - and it gets pretty exciting.

I hate to admit that I don't watch what I spend! It's so sad and now I'm living the consequences lol I just hope one day I would be able to buy stuff without looking at the price tag

This year we're only eating out one day a month, so we need to make it count when we do. This includes picking up pizza on the way home, or grabbing a $3.95 latte on the way to work.

wow, if I only ate out once a month I'd be eating dinner many nights at 9:00. I commend you, but there are nights I get stuck at work until 8:00 and simply can't cook afterwars.

I cook meals ahead of time, one big meal and separate it into plastic containers. My hubby takes a good meal to work with him. I make chili on weekends and put it in the freezer, just put in the microwave. I still have nights where I come home and there's nothing. I eat cereal for dinner.

I had a job where I was stuck at work many nights. During September and October, I work 2 jobs (One Ruby Falls Haunted Cavern) and my diet takes a SERIOUS nose dive because it's just "Grab what you can". Luckily, I'm doing alot of movement so that makes up for the high caloric intake.

I do the same thing Cathy. I have a lot of freezer meals that are in single serving packets. So if something happens and there's no time to cook (or if I'm too lazy) there's always a healthy-ish meal in the freezer to eat. Just like a TV dinner only cheaper and healthier.

Jamie, I consider going out to eat once a month to be a lot! We only go out to eat on vacation. The main reason being that we prefer eating at home. I"m also very frugal (by choice, mostly) and just cannot spend that kind of money for one meal.

so this is how i, rebates, shopping with cashback sites and searching for online retailer codes. I also love DIY projects

so this is how i save on bar b Que sauce i put bar b Que sauce in the slow cooker and use it for two meals. the first day i will do ribs and the second day chicken

Proudly, we didn't overblow our Christmas budget this year. We save a little every month for the extravaganza, and we budget an amount for each person. Hooray us!

Yay! I got SO lucky this year with sales and unexpected deals that I only spent $100 on gifts- for my son, 3 brothers, sister and parents. They were all GREAT gifts too! I couldn't believe it when i added it all up!

I did pretty good with Christmas this year, too. I had stacked up more Amazon gift certificates that I thought would happen, and came across some sales, so that helped.

I've never actually had a problem with frugal living. I prefer the taste of homemade food, so I usually make stuff myself. I also love DIY projects so if I can make it, I will!

I do mostly home cooking,and I do find it cheaper. We try not eating processed foods. I check the clearance area in my grocery store. sometimes I can get a lot of different things. If I get tomatoes I make sauce,fruits I make jams or freeze them for pies or cakes. I also love DIY projects.

I have been super frustrated lately. My fiance and I moved and he now has a much better paying job but now he is spending so much more money. I really don't know how to get him to quite the spending.

I wish I could get my husband to watch what he spends he works at Walmart it is to easy for him just to pick something up for a snack. I make him dinners he takes in containers, other people are jealous of the amount of food he brings but, still he won't stop. It drives me crazy.

OMG!! We must be married to twins or something LOL. My husband too works at walmart and it's the 4-1am shift. It's too early to eat before he leaves and he NEVER brings his lunch- even when i pack it. I finally gave up. If he wants to do it that way, it comes out of his "allowance". He'll learn when he has no money for his video games !

We are twins, I opened my hubby's bank statement and found out he was paying 150. to a video game site. And buying toys for his men on the game. I put my foot down, told him it's the game or me. He stopped playing it. Now, his jeeps in the shop and guess what. He doesn't have the money to get it out. I pinch pennies and do without. But, it's me that is always bailing him out of trouble. My hubby is a support manager 11 - 8.

My hubby was like that too. He still has trouble not spending money but since we share an account it's very easy for me to nag him. He always gets ragged on, because when he gets paid he hands his check right to me, but if he didn't we'd never have any money !

He refuses to let me have control over his money. We did put each other's name on our own account. In case one of us dies. I don't want him to have access to my money. It's his first marriage my third. Everything is in my name including the house. The only thing he owns is his jeep and a big screen t.v. and cheap computer. I often wonder what would happen to him if something happens to me.

I have the same problem with my husband. He pays no attention to what he spends. Whenever I send him to the store for something he always comes back with other stuff. I think if he took charge of paying the bills for awhile, maybe he will pay more attention.

My husband was the same way until we ended up getting hurt and is now on disability. Since he only gets disability is more careful with money and now he asks me whenever he wants to buy something. I use my online money from the sites I use to buy the things I want (usually sewing and quilting classes) and sometimes I buy my husband a treat.
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