Frugal habits are good to adopt at any time to help you save money, but this is especially useful when you don’t have much money or you need to stretch the money you have farther than you are used to. Here are four habits to help you save money by being frugal.
Walk or bike instead of driving or taking a taxi
When the weather is nice and you have the time to do it, walk to your destination. Alternately you can also ride your bike. These modes of transportation are looked down on by many people but they offer a number of benefits apart from just saving you money. How often do you hear about road rage for people who are walking through a park to work or even on the sidewalk? How often do you hear about people walking who get into an accident that costs them thousands of dollars? And then there are the health benefits of walking – relieves stress, helps digestion, prevents osteoporosis, strengthens leg muscles, and improves your cardiovascular system.
Have one vegetarian dinner each week
People who enjoy eating meat often make fun of vegetarians. But there is one thing they enjoy over meat-eaters – cheaper meals. Have you priced vegetarian meals at a restaurant? Often they are cheaper than meals that have meat in them. How can they not be when you consider a meal with a steak versus one with all vegetables and a bit of cheese? Most people today eat too much of everything, protein included. Taking one night off from eating meat will help your body as well as your wallet. Plus who knows, you may just meet that special someone at that new vegetarian restaurant down the street!
Mend your own clothes
Were you in the boy scouts or girl guides growing up? If you were then you likely remember the sewing badges where you had to mend your own clothes. This skill is not only for young children, it is for everyone. Even the private who is just starting in the military often sews his own clothes because he can’t afford to have a seamstress do it. Kids away at college do the same thing for the same reasons. So why not when you are older as well? It’s very easy to get a needle and thread to patch up a hole in your jeans, or some yarn and a darning needle to weave a patch in your wool socks. If you can extend the life of your clothes, you can avoid buying new ones and save lots of money doing it. If you find you are good at it you might want to even take the next step and start making your own clothes. But that’s not for everyone.
Avoid buying dry-clean only clothes
Most people don’t think about dry-clean clothes. That’s because there are two categories – people who always dry-clean their clothes and people who never do it. Dry cleaning costs can add up fast when you pay $4 per shirt, and $7 per pair of pants per day for a five day work week. That comes out to $55 a week! Instead if you can buy clothes that you can wash at home, you will save that money. Sure you need to spend a little time washing, drying, and ironing your clothes but is that little bit of time worth $55 to you? Or more if there are two professionals in your household. So the simple choice of buying clothes you can wash, and then washing them, will save you lots.
These frugal habits you help you on your way to saving money with next to no effort or sacrifice. And once you are saving that money, it’s your choice what to do with it!