28 Practical Ways Frugal People Save Lots of Money

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Saving money doesn’t have to mean saying goodbye to life’s little indulgences. With a few smart tweaks, you can stash away cash for that dream vacation, rainy day fund, or splurge-worthy purchase without feeling like you’re on a constant budget patrol.

Think of it as a side hustle that pays off without the extra hours. Whether you’re looking to conquer debt or simply boost your bank account, these tips are guaranteed to put more money in your pocket, painlessly.

1. Shop Off-Season for Clothing

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Clothes are often much cheaper if you buy them during the off-season. Shop for your summer clothes for next year in the fall/winter, and get your cold weather attire during the spring/summer sales.

2. Buy Refurbished Electronics

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Refurbished electronics are used devices that have been repaired and cleaned until they are almost as good as new. They are significantly cheaper than new products, so look for refurbished electronics in stores or online whenever you need to purchase a gadget or appliance.

3. Use a Budgeting App

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There is a wide selection of budgeting apps that will help you stick to your savings goals. Apps like Mint, Goodbudget, Honeydue, and Fudget are all apps with free versions that will support you in keeping track of your finances.

4. Limit Convenience Store Visits

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Products are usually slightly more expensive at convenience stores because you are paying for the easy location and shopping experience. You may also find yourself doing a lot of impulse buying at convenience stores, and even small purchases add up over time. Plan ahead to shop at regular stores and limit those little drop-in spending trips.

5. Cut Down on Bottled Drinks

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Drinking water is one of the most practical ways to save money. Instead of buying bottled sports drinks, sodas, and sparkling beverages, stick to a refillable water bottle to grow your savings account.

6. Shop at Discount Stores

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Outlets and discount stores often have the exact items and brands you need at a far lower price than what you will find at the mall. Look at discount stores first before shopping at other retailers.

7. Eliminate Unused Streaming Services

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Are you really using all of the streaming services you pay for enough to justify the cost? Review your streaming subscriptions and start by eliminating the one that you use the least.

8. Reduce Beauty Salon Visits

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Do as many of your beauty treatments as you can by yourself. Manicures, dyeing your hair, waxing, and more can all be done at home.

9. Carpool for Daily Commutes

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You can save a lot of money on gas and car maintenance by changing your daily commute. Carpool with coworkers, your spouse, or friends to cut down on expenses.

10. Cut Down on Dry Cleaning

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See if you can get out that stubborn stain at home, hand wash your delicates, or set aside time to do laundry to cut down on dry cleaning costs.

11. Buy Store Brands for Medications

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Many pharmacies offer store brand alternatives to name-brand medications. Check the aisles or ask your pharmacist for the less expensive option.

12. Use a Slow Cooker

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Slow cookers are inexpensive compared to broilers and convection ovens, and they are energy efficient. They allow you to buy cheaper cuts of meat that you can cook over low heat for a longer time.

13. Reduce Credit Card Interest Rates

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You may be able to negotiate a lower interest rate with your credit company. Do some research and be prepared to present your case before calling the customer service number on the back of your card or going into your bank. You could also try moving your debt to a balance transfer card, which is designed to help you get out of debt at a lower or 0% interest rate.

14. Shop for Used Furniture

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Instead of purchasing a brand new sofa or table, try finding one at a consignment store or online marketplace.

15. Eliminate Unnecessary App Purchases

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Check your app purchases and subscriptions in your phone, and delete the apps you no longer use.

16. Barter or Trade Services

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If you need a repair that you don’t know how to do, barter with a more experienced friend or professional. Offer them a service they may need help with instead of spending money.

17. Repair Appliances

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You can often repair broken appliances instead of spending the money to replace the entire machine. Research how to do the repair yourself, or hiring a professional to do the repair will still likely be cheaper than buying a new product.

18. Use a No-fee Bank

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If you’re racking up expenses in bank fees, consider opening a new account with a no-fee bank and transferring your funds. You may also be able to switch your account type with your current bank.

19. Cancel Unused Online Memberships

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Check your bank statement for any online memberships you may have forgotten about. If you never or rarely use the service, cancel the subscription and put that money toward your savings account instead.

20. Limit Home Decor Purchases

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Home decor items are fun to shop for, but they usually aren’t necessary. Seasonal items, in particular, are an easy expense to reduce or eliminate. Simplify your holiday decorations by working with what you’ve got or making ornaments at home.

21. Buy In-Season Produce

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You will get the lowest prices on fresh fruits and vegetables when they are in season. Opt for frozen or canned alternatives when necessary.

22. Reduce Pet Expenses

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Pets are expensive, but there are many ways you can reduce pet costs without sacrificing your pet’s happiness or wellbeing. Try grooming your dog yourself at home, or exchange favors with a friend to watch your cat when you’re out of town instead of paying a sitter.

23. Eliminate Excess Phone Features

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Do you really need all those gigabytes of data or a hotspot built into your phone? Decide which of the paid services on your phone you actually need, and get rid of the ones that are unnecessarily draining your bank account.

24. Cut Back on Impulse Snacks

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Snacking out of boredom or impulse increases your food costs. Next time you grab a bag of chips at the gas station, consider whether you’re really hungry. Or wait until dinner to get that tasty roll out of the bread box. The longer you can spread out your food purchases, the less money you will spend.

25. Buy Pre-Owned Jewelry

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Clothes and electronics aren’t the only items you can buy secondhand. Plenty of people sell their gently used jewelry online or at thrift stores, ranging from costume pieces to high-end antiques.

26. Plan Car Trips Efficiently

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If you’re going on a road trip, you can save money by planning in advance. Compare hotel prices and book your stay before getting behind the wheel, or leave early enough that you can drive through the entire trip without stopping. Bring your own snacks or get them from the grocery store instead of paying for the convenience of gas stations or takeout meals.

27. Limit Car Washes

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Go longer stretches without washing your car, or drive that extra couple of miles to a car wash with lower prices.

28. DIY Car Maintenance

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You can learn how to do many simple repairs on your car yourself instead of paying a professional. Watch YouTube videos or ask someone you know to teach you how to change your oil or replace a flat tire.

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