Saving money can be really tough. Friends going out to a bar tonight? I’ll meet you there! New pair of shoes just came out that you feel like you need? Here’s 100 bucks! New restaurant just opened down the street? Table for two, please!
You know what I’m saying. Well, maybe we all should try to spend less and save more in 2020, okay?
Consider these tips from frugal AskReddit users if you’re looking to save some dough.
1. Get that budget in order.
“It took me a long time to figure out how to budget but I use mint.com which is a free website by the same company that makes Quickbooks. Basically you link it to your bank account and every time you use your debut card it categorizes the purchase. Really forces you to are where you waste money. The first month I had it I saw I was wasting almost $150 a month at a coffee shop near my work!!
Tricks that work for me: Don’t use cash unless absolutely necessary. Cash is harder to track. If you make tips at work, deposit them in the bank and use your debit card.
I keep my budget on mint.com linked to my phone. It texts me to let me know I’m getting close to my chosen limits for dinners out or stuff like that.
Put bills on auto pay- late payments are stupid wastes of money.
Put checking account alerts on your phone. Overdraft fees are wasted money.
Don’t buy groceries in such quantity that your throwing away food. Bulk price is only worth it if you bulk eat.
If you have a credit card leave it home if you are easily tempted. If you’re carrying a balance with interest you’re doing it wrong. I never ever carry a credit card balance- It is for emergency use only. If you have credit card debt, pay off the highest interest cards first.”
2. Choose your bank wisely.
“Get out of the big banks! You’re paying fees to hold your own money! Get a credit union. I guarantee there’s tons around you.
I don’t pay ATM fees ever. They don’t charge me to take out my own money. And with my credit union I can use any Walgreens, CVS, Wawa, Hess, or 7-11 atm for free.
I don’t pay fees for transferring from savings. I don’t pay a monthly or annual fee for having a low balance.
Accidentally overdrafting is $25 instead of $35. Loans and borrowing have much lower rates than the big banks.
I can link my account to another credit union account to transfer money, without being able to see their info/balance.
STOP PAYING FEES AT YOUR BANK!”
3. Well, there’s that…
“Weed is a waste of money when buying in small amounts. Buy big bags.”
4. All good ideas.
“Stay out of convenience stores.
Eat at home instead of going out or ordering delivery.
Buy in bulk when feasible. The smaller packages/containers are generally pricey per unit.”
5. Might as well stay home.
“Drink at home more often instead of going out to the bar.
The bar is definitely fun sometimes, but you and your friends could have just as much fun playing games and being anti-social at home.”
6. Keep repeating this.
“You don’t actually want that thing you think you want.”
7. Learn a new skill and save money.
“Learn to cook and don’t eat out at restaurants.
Some occasions are ok but otherwise you save a lot of money by eating in.
There are a lot of videos on youtube of doable recipes and after you get the hang of it you’ll only want to cook for yourself vs ordering or eating at restaurants.”
8. Make it at home.
“Brew your own coffee.
If you live in a city and drink a cup/day that’s about 2-3 bucks a day.
Over $700-900 a year.
Easy to cut that down to roughly $150 with a nice coffee machine and a dark roast.”
9. Get hydrated.
It costs less than soda, and it’s better for you.
It also helps to stop hunger!
10. Good food tips.
“Crock pot meals!
Even if you’re just one person, You set it in the morning and then you have a home-cooked meal once you come home and most likely leftovers for the next couple days! You can also get a small crock pot for 1-2 people for about $20 (at least in my area you can). Yes it can be boring but you get far more out than in the effort you put in. It also helps for unexpected guests.
Also, Labeling all food so that the expiration date on each is ridiculously obvious. You do this so you know when to go grocery shopping and you can get a little at a time versus buying a ton all at once. If it doesn’t have an actual expiration date, you can also try writing the date of purchase on it otherwise, try to find out online what the ‘expiration date’ would normally be.
Ex: Oranges usually last about 1-2 months in the Fridge/2-3 weeks on the counter.”
11. Never a good idea.
“Do not go shopping on an empty stomach. Personally, I don’t even drive anywhere until I’ve had a good meal.
This way, less chance if wasting money on sh^tty junk food or impulsively going to restaurants where you end up spending more than your budget allows.”
12. Do it yourself.
“This post may seem out of the ordinary and somewhat non frugal, but invest in tools, a car jack, and jack stands.
Learning to fix your car yourself is a great way to save money on labor.
When you buy car parts, I recommend using sites such as rockauto or autopartswarehouse since they sell parts much cheaper than stores such as O’reilly, AutoZone and Napa.”
13. A lifestyle change.
“Learn (or convince yourself, whatever) to be get by and be happy with less. There are tons of sh^t that people buy that are just simply not necessary.
Being frugal consistently is like eating healthy consistently. There’s no special trick. No fad.
Just committing to making smart decisions on an hour-to-hour, day-to-day basis while keeping your long term goals in mind.”
14. You don’t need that.
“Stop buying anything you don’t need … and really start evaluating what that word means.
Change your mindset to loathe materialism.
No matter your religion, you can’t take it with you, so why does it matter?”
“Don’t get a girlfriend, sh^t’s expensive.”
Some pretty amazing advice, right? Now you’re going to save ALL the money, right?
Let’s get some of your tips going in the comments! You’ve got some good ideas, yeah?