When thinking about frugality, people tend to associate it with being poor, sacrificing, or being their mother during the 80s.
Being frugal usually doesn’t sound sexy enough for people to claim to be.
Trust me, frugality is not a bad word and living that type of lifestyle doesn’t mean you’re going to miss out on anything either.
I love being frugal because it helps me to have more money for the things I need (such as an emergency fund) or want (such as that cruise to the Caribbean).
Being frugal is not only a lifestyle, but it’s also a mindset. It is making a conscious effort not to spend frivolously on things we don’t need just to impress people we don’t even like.
It doesn’t involve eating soup out of a styrofoam cup and it starts by doing just simple things (which really go a long way).
To help you to envision a frugal lifestyle for yourself, here is my list of the 7 things frugal people don’t pay for or waste money on.
How many of us sign up for subscription-based services only to forget about them or lose interest?
Even though you may not use it anymore, the company continues to charge you month after month after month.
Even at $10 a month, a subscription box that you don’t even use or want can be more than you can afford.
To cut down on the services you (don’t) use each month, try a service such as Trim or Truebill. These will locate free trials and subscriptions you may have forgotten about and help you to cancel them.
Are you paying for a gym membership you do not use? If so, cancel it.
I once paid an entire year for a gym membership that I never stepped foot in. Talk about a waste of money!
Gyms understand that most people are not going to keep up with their fitness resolutions and will not make good use of their memberships.
Trust me, they don’t care and this is why they oversell their memberships.
They will still get their money because they know you will forget to cancel (or refuse to put up the effort to do so).
This is also why most gyms auto debit from your checking account and not a credit card and why they make canceling sometimes difficult to do.
You can save money if you buy your own equipment to use at home or go for a walk or jog (which is Free99).
Related: How to Build a Home Gym on a Budget
Whoever thought of the idea of bottling up water and selling it was a genius. We pay for water that we think is from the clearest and bluest spring.
The truth is, most of the water we get from our faucets are pretty clean and just as healthy.
Instead of paying for bottled water, why not fill up your own bottles with water from your home?
If you don’t believe your water is clean enough, check out this resource to find out how your city’s water quality ranks. If your local area bombs, then consider getting a filtration system.
Other options include purchasing a Brita water filter or boiling water like my grandma did (though I don’t know if that did any good).
No one says you can’t have a good time every once in awhile or that you have to cook at home every night.
What I am saying is that you don’t need to eat out so much.
Most of us Americans eat three meals a day. I know some people who eat most of their meals out.
Not only is eating out often bad for your waistline, it’s also bad for your pockets.
You can stop eating out by planning your meals out in advance, taking lunch to work, and keeping snacks with you at all times to stave off hunger.
In this day and age, it baffles me why anyone would continue to have a high cable bill.
According to Fortune, the average cost of cable is $103 a month. I still think that’s a low number because it does not include taxes and fees or internet (which are often bundled into cable packages).
Now, I’m not saying you have to totally cut the cable cord, but it doesn’t make any sense why you have to spend hundreds of dollars on it either.
Frugal people find other hobbies to focus on instead of watching television all day. And when they do want to watch their favorite shows or movies, they look for cheap alternatives.
If you’re looking for a way to watch tv without cable, check out my post on 21+ Ways to Watch TV for Free.
You work hard, so you definitely should take some time to have fun and enjoy yourself.
Of course, but who says you have to go broke doing it?
Frugal people don’t spend a lot of money to have fun. They find cheap alternatives to going out, such as eating before going to a matinee movie or planning a picnic instead of eating out at a restaurant.
There are many ways to have fun without going broke. Fun and Cheap Date Night Ideas is a great start if you can’t think of frugal ways to have fun.
Expensive Smart Phones
Some of ya’ll are geeks when it comes to the latest gadgets, which is cool… but way too expensive. In this day and age, it seems as if everyone one has a smartphone, so you may feel left out if you don’t.
Instead of paying for expensive phones, frugal people will either keep their phone for a little longer or buy them refurbished from places such as Gazelle.
In addition, frugal-minded folks will shop around for affordable cell phone plans or opt for a prepaid version.
Some alternatives to expensive cell phone plans are:
Are you frugal? What are some things you don’t pay for?