25 More Frugal Ideas and Tips

In October 2012, I wrote a post about 25 Frugal Ideas and Tips. I thought that might be all I could offer you, but alas, I have more ideas and tips!

26. Don't run out and replace items as they break or wear out. Try to fix them or see if you can live without them. My clothes dryer will not start right now and I haven't replaced or fixed it yet. I have been just fine living without it.

27. You don't need a landline and a cell phone. Choose one or the other. I got rid of our landline the beginning of October because we simply did not use it. I need a cell phone for work so I kept that.

28. Turn down the thermostat in the winter and turn it up in the summer. Or learn to live without air conditioning. We actually went without it most of the summer and did fine.

29. Learn to tell yourself and your family, "No, that is not in the budget". You will be glad you did.

30. Assess your car and home insurance every year. You might be able to get it cheaper somewhere else or find coverages you do not need to pay for. Also check into the good student discounts, multi-policy discounts, and multiple vehicle discounts.

31. Declutter and find things to sell. I sell a lot of books, magazines, CDs, DVDs, and miscellaneous things. I find we don't need that stuff if we don't listen to it, watch it, or are done reading it.

32. Learn to make one meal stretch into 2-4 meals. Roast a chicken for supper, immediately throw the bones into the slow cooker with water for stock, and use the stock for soup and cooking rice. Use the leftover chicken for soup, casserole, or tacos.

33. Give up paper napkins for cloth napkins. We also use cheap wash cloths as napkins.

34. Eat meatless 2-3 meals a week. You will save a lot of money from not buying meat as often.

35. Stock on meat when it is on sale. I rarely buy meat from the store except for chicken. I will stock on good deals if they are $1.99 or less a pound. I don't even like to buy at that price, but the meat prices are increasing weekly. I can usually find whole chicken, chicken thighs and legs, and bone-in chicken breasts for $.99 and under.

36. Say no to fundraisers. We don't say no to every one that the kids bring home, but I struggle to pay for food at the inflated prices just for the purpose of raising money. I have a few guidelines such as I will support service-based fundraisers instead of selling-based fundraisers.

37. Buy good basic clothes instead of trendy clothes. I find many basic and multipurpose clothes at the thrift stores and I wear jeans every day. I keep my clothes simple and appropriate for home, school functions, work, chores, and gardening. This way, my clothes can be worn for a lot longer.

38. Pop your own popcorn for road trips and ball games. You save a lot of money and with a few bottles of water, you don't need to buy any food. Besides that, you can get the salt and butter to your liking!

39. Host a date night for yourself and invite a few other couples. Cook a nice dinner, provide a few drinks, watch the latest movie out for rental, and/or play a few games. Everyone saves money and has a great time!

40. Similarly, host a girls night in and do the same thing. Easier to hear each other than being at a bar or a club and cheaper than buying $4.00 drinks!

41. Cut out a guilty pleasure/addiction such as having a drink every day, smoking, buying a candy bar after work, buying a soda when grocery shopping, or grabbing that coffee on the way to work/school. That money adds up quickly and could be put to better use!

42. Use plastic on your windows in the winter to cut down the drafts and save money on your utility bills. Use draft stoppers on the bottom of doors. Shut off rooms that are not being used.

Paige running cross country - very cheap sport to be apart of!

43. Look for free sports, events, and groups for your kids to be involved in. My kids are in 4-H and love it. Our community has a community wide pumpkin carving that is free for everyone as long as your bring a pumpkin. Several communities have free concerts in the park events as well as town celebrations.

44. When having family celebrations, my family does more a potluck than one person cooking all the food. People are assigned to bring bread, salad, dessert, side dish, etc. Really keeps the costs down for the hosting home.

45. Use your electric skillet, pressure cooker, and slow cooker rather than turning on your stove/oven to save money. These appliances use less energy than a stove does.

46. When you use your oven in the winter, leave the oven opened a crack after you shut it off. The heat will help heat the kitchen up a little more.

Reused old glasses and jars

47. Reuse, reuse, reuse. Almost everything can be reused. Reuse gift bags, wrapping paper, plastic wrap, bows, aluminum foil, plastic baggies, grocery bags, yogurt containers, anything brown paper, newspaper, shoeboxes, etc. The list is endless and the possibilities are even more so.

48. Save your seeds from the garden and start your own plants. This can save you big money considering good nursery plants cost $2.50 - $5.00 for each plant. A good south facing window will help you greatly also. (Sadly, I lack one of those.)

49. In Iowa, we can take marked cans and bottles back to the redemption center and receive our deposit back. We get $.05 back on each can and bottle. If your state does this, it is certainly worth it to keep your cans and bottles as well as pick up any cans and bottles laying around. Otherwise, I know in Minnesota you can save your aluminum cans and get paid per pound. Again, still worth it to make a little extra money.

50. Share what you have generously with others. What you give away will come back to you twofold.

Thanks for reading,
Erica

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