When I was going through financial turmoil, money was constantly tight.
I was in between jobs, had a lot of credit card debt and the worst part is, I had zero savings.
Every month, I was barely able to make the ends meet. Often, I don’t even have enough for my basic needs.
I was struggling so bad that I had to find a way to stretch every dollar that I had. I was constantly looking for ways to cut my expenses and save money – just trying to do everything that I can to financially get ahead.
And that is when I realized that learning to live cheap and be more frugal is probably one of the best financial decisions that I’ve made.
Not only did it help me slowly get out of debt but it also helped me realize how I pay and spend money on so many unnecessary things and how my daily money habits were constantly sabotaging my finances.
Being frugal and learning to live cheap doesn’t necessarily mean that you are depriving yourself of fun, it just means that you are looking at your finances differently and you’re making smart financial decisions that will benefit you and your family in the long run.
If money is currently tight and you’re looking for ways to easily save money and live a more frugal lifestyle, here are 5 ways to live cheap and never be broke….
Be intentional with your spending….
This is the very first step that I took. For years, I had so many bad money habits that lead me to financial ruin.
And one of them was not paying attention to my money.
Yes, I was paying my bills every month but I was also living paycheck to paycheck.
And the worst part is, I had no savings — this was all because I was not mindful of how I was spending my money every day.
Being intentional with money means that you are aware and conscious of how you’re spending your money every day and with your savings.
You know what your financial situation is and you are aware of how much debt you have.
So, start by going through your spending for the previous months, check each expense, and see if there’s anything there that you are not happy with or don’t really need.
Check if there’s something that you can do to increase your savings.
Plan your meals…
This one is so easy but still often forgotten. As awful as it sounds, I can’t tell you how many times we end up throwing food out.
We used to love buying things in bulk thinking that we will always get around to using them before they go bad but we never actually do.
So, it just ends up being thrown out and we just end up wasting more money.
I found that planning our meals every week, along with keeping a list of everything that we have with the date it goes bad is the best way to prevent food from being thrown out and for saving us money.
Buy used (whenever it’s possible)
I have to tell you; I was never a big believer in doing this and I really don’t even know why. Silly, right?
But when we were stretching every dollar that we had, buying new products was just not possible.
I mean, it just costs so much money and I realized that buying used products is not always a bad thing.
It can save you so much money and you can already get what you need for half the price that you usually pay.
If you want your money to go further, buying used products will definitely help. Just be sure to make smart choices when your shopping for them.
Create a Budget…
I can’t tell you enough how creating a budget(and sticking with it) is a crucial part of helping you save money and get out of debt.
When money was tight, I thought that I didn’t need a budget. I mean, I was already barely making enough, what do I really need to create a budget for?
And man was I wrong. Regardless of how much (or how little) money you make, having a budget is necessary.
Having a budget does not only keep you from overspending and getting yourself in even more debt, but it also helps you become more aware of how you’re spending your money and keep you from spending money on this that you don’t really need.
So, start by writing down all your monthly expenses. Don’t leave anything out and be sure to budget for fun (we all know, we need this once in a while).
Downgrade or simplify your life…
Making big or even small changes in an attempt to simplify your life can have a great impact on your finances and in helping you achieve financial freedom.
Simplifying your life does not only make you happier and less stressed but it also helps you easily save money and form good money habits.
I found that simplifying my life helped me changed my spending priorities. I mean, not only was I paying for so many things that weren’t really necessary but I also had so many things that I don’t even need that were taking up so much space – things that I could’ve easily sold to make money.
In conclusion, living cheap and learning to be more frugal is certainly possible. It may not be easy but it is possible as long as you are willing to do whatever is necessary to reduce your expenses.
Remember, that living cheap doesn’t mean that you don’t get to live a good life. It simply means that you’re being smart with your money and you’re learning to be content with the things that you have.
There are so many more ways to be more frugal and save money, you just need to think outside the box.