Saving money on groceries is one of the most effective ways to lower your recurring expenses, and it’s one that I love to talk about.
…But, for some, the reason you want to live frugally is so you can afford higher quality – more expensive – food, and so you need non-food ways to save money.
Of course, for others of us, we need non-food ways to save money because we’ve already crunched our grocery budget as tight as we can, and there’s still not enough money to go around. I totally get that. I was there for longer than I care to admit, and it’s tough.
Making sacrifices is never easy, but you can do it! In fact, I wholeheartedly believe that you can be happy regardless of your circumstances, and frankly, I learned so much from being dirt poor, that I wouldn’t change it even if I could.
There’s a lot to be said for learning to live apart from your financial wealth.
But back to the point; what are some other ways we can lower those recurring expenses?
Ways To Save Money When Groceries Are The Priority
Are you overpaying for cable or satellite? If you have either one of those things, get rid of it! On screen entertainment is far from a necessity, and when money is tight, it should be one of the first things to be cut. Even Netflix and Hulu. At eight buck a month, perhaps they don’t seem like a big deal, but adds up to $96 a year – that’s several weeks worth of groceries for one person – and together, they add up to almost $200 a year – wow!
What are some other unnecessary entertainment channels you’re paying for? Spotify? Kill your subscription and listen to your playlists fro free.
It seems that smart phones have gone from luxury to necessity, but are they really?
- Ditch the dryer. How much is all that hot air costing you? Line drying your clothes is free and easy! Some neighborhoods have ordinances against clotheslines, and let’s be honest: we don’t necessarily want to show our underwear to all our neighbors. In those cases, I’ve found that a wooden accordion rack works wonderfully! In fact, I currently dry 90% of my clothes on one.
- Close off rooms that don’t need to be heated or cooled. Why pay to heat (or cool) a room you’re not using? shut the doors and vents.
- Turn off the lights when you walk out of a room. It’s true that light bulbs only use a negligible amount of electricity, but little things add up, and every penny counts.
- Use heavy curtains on your window to cut down on heat (in the summer) or cold air (in the winter) getting through and raising your heat/AC bill.
Thrift shops are your best friend! Stop by Goodwill and pick up a calendar of their sales for the month. Many have a store-wide half-price day, or ninety-nine cent off of certain color tags day – take advantage of those! The hard part is committing to only buying those things that are on sale, but it’s worth being able to build an extremely cheap wardrobe!
Plan ahead. If you have small children, it’s fairly easy to predict what size they’ll need for the next season, which makes it easy to plan ahead and buy things while they’re on sale. You can do the same thing for yourself – Buy winter clothes in the spring and save a bundle of money!
- Keep an eye out for shoe sales, look for coupon codes, and never settle for full price.
- Keep an eye on prices via CamelCamelCamel
- Don’t forget about eBay!
Here’s the big thing: the best way to save money is simply to not spend it. When you’re tempted to buy those cute shoes at the mall, ask yourself, “do I really need another pair of shoes?”
Do I really need anything else? Most of the time, the answer is NO.
When you have clearly outlines your priorities, and in this case, prioritized your grocery budget, it gives you the power to say “no” to the unnecessary, so you can say “yes” to the things that are important.