One of the most popular topics I get questions about is frugal living and money saving. I’ve rounded up on Top 5 Money Saving Tips I live by daily. These seemingly small and simple changes about the way you spend money and what you really need versus what you want can save you hundreds on a monthly scale!
1.) Plan meals and weekly activities around sale items:
Planning can take a matter of minutes to do yet we all tend to skip this step and overspend. When it comes to groceries, always try to meal plan around the biggest store savings when possible. Whether it’s purchasing a large cut of meat to eat off for several days or a vegetable you can prepare multiple ways through out the week, plan according around those deals! The second part of this tip is often forgotten but can save you even more money! Besides weekly groceries, what else do you have going on that week? Need to bring a dish or gift to a function? Use the same tool for grocery meal planning for any potlucks! Also, start hunting for coupons and/or sale and clearance items for gifts! Don’t forget to do the same for gift bags and cards if needed! All those little things can really add up!
2.) Stick to your budget, even when “stocking up”:
Stocking up on something when you find a rare, killer deal can save you loads of money later on. However, don’t let stocking up blow your weekly budget! I’ve used this example before in my Our Frugal Game Plan post but, if you end up spending an additional, unplanned $20 on chicken that is on sale, you need to make up that $20 ASAP! I usually recommend cutting it from that same trip but if you really have the will-power and will follow through, be sure to at least make up for it the following week. The next two tips can help with this.
3.) Ask yourself, “Do I really need this in the next 7 days?”:
I always try to do this even with my go-to items I buy every week. Coffee creamer, for example. Obvi, I have a coffee addiction But I have to ask myself, will it be the end of the world if I run out and have to use milk and Splenda for a day or two until my next trip? Sometimes I feel like yes, that would literally be the end of the world. But honestly, is it worth some extra money in my pocket towards a debt payment or a family vacation? Abso-freakin-lutely! This may not seem like much but on a larger scale, trust me, consistently asking yourself this question on multiple items can really make your savings add up quickly!
4.) Re-evaluate your shopping cart before checking out:
This is kind of Part 2 to the previous tip. Usually by the end of my grocery trip with 2 toddlers, I am ready to make a B-line for the check out and get the heck out of there! BUT, I still always try to follow through with this step and it really helps! Re-evaluate everything you have put in your shopping cart. What can you take out or don’t need, or can wait? Maybe you picked something up for recipe but then they didn’t have another corresponding ingredient so you no longer need that first item right now. Put it back! Again, this is something that can make a big difference in the big picture.
5.) Don’t buy something just because it’s on sale:
I used to be guilty of this pretty often. Buying something just because it’s on sale whether you really need it or not. You aren’t actually saving on money if you’re buying something that is unnecessary or will be wasted. Be realistic on what you will actually use and again, also question rather it is really a necessity or not!
For more money saving tips and more on my frugal living philosophy, check out the following: