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Do you feel like no matter how hard you try, your monthly finances are never quite in check?
You’re not alone.
Many of us struggle with budgeting and saving money each month, so it can be extremely disheartening to see our bank account steadily deplete.
But don’t despair!
There’s a way to pinch pennies and make your funds stretch much further than before: by making small yet meaningful changes throughout the week.
In this article, we’ll explore different penny-pinching secrets, from smart shopping hacks to energy-saving strategies, that can help you get more bang for your buck without sacrificing too much lifestyle or comfort.
So, if you want to learn how 12 small choices can lead to major savings, keep reading!
1. Take Your Lunch To Work
There’s no need to buy your lunch every day.
Bringing in leftovers from home or prepping meals for the week ahead will save you plenty of money and time.
Plus, it’s more nutritious and satisfying than takeout.
2. Pay Cash for Small Purchases
Using cash for small purchases such as coffee, snacks, and meals out can help you to stay within your budget.
It’s also a great way of tracking how much money you’re spending each month.
Moreover, studies have shown that when people use cash instead of credit cards, they tend to spend less since it’s harder to part with physical money.
3. Foregoing the Dryer
Although modern appliances are more energy-efficient than previous generations, the classic clothes dryer is still very energy-hungry.
So to save on ever-increasing energy costs, a small handful of people admit to air-drying their clothes after pulling them out of the washing machine. It’s a smart way to save a few dollars.
4. Recycling Water
Recycling water is an increasingly common way to be frugal, and one person has mastered the art of it! “All water goes to our plants,” one woman reveals.
“When we refresh our cats’ water, we pour old water into our front porch garden, and the same with my nightstand water pitcher. Water cost savings are minimal, but I feel better not wasting water.” This woman isn’t wrong; efficiently utilizing water is a great skill to have!
5. Taking Toilet Paper From Public Restrooms
There’s a thin line between being delightfully frugal and straight-up being a thief, but one person straddles the bar effortlessly.
“I don’t do this anymore, but I used to steal toilet paper from public restrooms,” one man admits. Sure you don’t, pal.
6. Sharing Passwords
It’s 2023, and only recently have streaming companies started cracking down on password sharing.
All savvy people know that account sharing is possible for many services, from television to movies to music — and everything in between. Who hasn’t used their parents’ cable television password at least 500 times?
7. Refusing To Turn on Air Conditioning
If you can bear the heat, there is plenty of money to be saved by refusing to turn on your air conditioning until you can’t take it anymore.
One particularly frugal woman confesses she uses her cat as her barometer: When Fluffy gets agitated, she knows it’s time to turn on the air conditioning! To some, that’s borderline cruel to the poor kitty, but hey, no judgments here.
8. Showering At the Gym
Instead of showering at home, many people explain it’s far more convenient and efficient to shower at the gym.
It makes sense; many people go to the gym and shower daily, so why not kill two birds with one stone and shower after a workout?
9. Cooking With an Instant Pot
Sometimes, the best way to be frugal is to combine it with healthy eating habits. “The thing that has saved me the most money in the past five years has been the instant pot, hands down,” professes one woman.
“Mostly because dried beans in an instant pot are so darn delicious, easy, and cheap. But making your own broth, soup, and cheap meat in the instant pot was just a game-changer for me.”
10. Home Haircutting
As far as recurring costs are concerned, haircuts are one of the most expensive.
The burden of regularly-scheduled haircuts multiple times a year is eased by learning how to cut your own hair. Countless people admit they picked up this skill during the pandemic; some even cut their pet’s hair!
11. Dumpster Diving
Hey, no judgment here; one man reveals he hasn’t bought a light bulb for over a decade! “My hobby is recycling scrap metal and dumpster diving,” he says.
“I have not had to buy light bulbs in over ten years because I find them still attached to the lamps and ceiling fans I pick up for scrap.”
12. Being Financially Responsible
Many people confess they don’t incorporate small bits of frugality into their lives. To them, it’s all about the big picture.
From never getting a traffic ticket to never paying interest on loans to not incurring any credit card debt, many people take financial responsibility to the extreme — and their wallets thank them.
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This thread inspired this article.
I have over 15 years experience in the financial services industry and 20 years investing in the stock market. I have both my undergrad and graduate degrees in Finance, and am FINRA Series 65 licensed and have a Certificate in Financial Planning.
Visit my About Me page to learn more about me and why I am your trusted personal finance expert.