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Apr 3, 2011

11 Ways To Immediately Start Being Frugal

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Changing your lifestyle to becoming frugal can be confusing at first. Many people are confused as to where to even begin. You can begin at trying these 11 quick tips for becoming and being frugal.

1. Cut Wasted Electricity

 - Take a stroll through your home and begin unplugging everything that is not currently in use that does not need to be currently plugged in. Unplug printers, TV's, TV boxes, lamps, stereos, etc. The use of a surge strip could save time in unplugging things when not in use.

- Turn off lights when not in use and settle for a small lamp for lighting rather than a large fixture. Try lighting candles for relaxation. No electricity is used on candles! 


2. Change Travel/Commuting Method

 - When traveling or commuting, try to carpool as often as possible. It helps to stand greatly on the rising cost of gasoline.

- If available, trying using public transportation as often as possible. It is far cheaper than using your own automobile to get around town.

3. Cut-Out Fast Food and Other Non-Essentials

- Get in the habit of making things at home. Stop going to fast food joints. Yes they are convenient, but in the long run they don't save money and are more expensive. It is also very unhealthy, which can cause costly health problems in the future.

- If you go to work or your child goes to school, start packing lunches rather than buying lunches at work/school. Buying away from home can add up.
Make your own drinks. Coffee shops exorbitantly inflate their prices of coffees, teas, and other drinkables. 

4. Ditch your cable/satellite provider

- Cable and Satellite is unnecessarily expensive these days. We pay for hours of programming and channels that we will never watch, wasting a lot of money. Ditch them for cheaper alternatives such as Netflix and the Internet. Do you really need television anyway? You can have so much more free time when you cut watching television from your time. If you still want news, there are valid sources of news on the web such as NPR.org, Aljazeera English, etc. 

5. Don't buy new things

- When possible buy used items. Whether it be from eBay or Craigslist, or from a flea market or your good friend. Think of buying perfectly good used items before buying expensively priced new items.

6. Vacation close to home or more simply

 - Vacations are very rewarding but very expensive. Try staying closer to home when vacationing to lower the costs.

 - Try vacationing more simply. Instead of spending a fortune to visit a tropical island, why not stay close and visit a natural park, a local beach or lake, a waterpark, or even try camping in the woods.

7. Purchase generic and store brand items  

- Whether it be food at the supermarket or clothing, try and buy more generic products. They are most often the same quality as brand name items. Be extra frugal in not buying expensive brand name clothing. It is simply priced due to the name.

8. Maintain Your Car

- If you own a car and must use it, keep it up to par. Make sure tires are properly inflated and rotated. Make sure your air filter is clean and that your oil doesn't need to be changed. Maintain your vehicle's optimum working environment to save money on gas as well as repairs.

9. Rid of the Credit Card

- More often than not, people are very irresponsible with their use of a credit card. Debt can easily be racked up quickly without even realizing it. The best course of action is to get rid of any credit cards if you have any, as well as abstaining from signing up with any if you don't. Spend what you have, not what you think you might have.

10.  Shop for the week after you eat

- Supermarkets are designed to keep you inside and buy more. Additionally, they strategically place items in places that will spark your interest. Only buy what you intended to buy.
Shop on a full stomach. Shopping while hungry will only make you buy foods that you want at the moment, not what you need.

11.  Have a picnic rather than going to a restaurant

- During the warm weather season, go outside to a park or other outdoor recreational area and have a picnic rather than eating a restaurant. Not only will it save you money, but it's also a great idea for friends or for a date with the one you love!

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