6 Secrets of the Frugal Shopper
Nearly half of all Americans live paycheck-to-paycheck, with little to no
money saved, so it’s no wonder they end up in debt the moment a new expense or
two surprises them. This adds a burden of stress that those who live frugally
and have money saved, do not experience.
Jeff Yeager, author of “The Cheapskate Next Door,” says nine out of ten
“cheapskates” said they think, worry, and stress about money significantly less
about their money with their frugal lifestyle. He also says it’s telling that
their divorce rate is less than half the national average.
Follow these tips and you won’t just get out of debt faster and improve your
bank account, you may also improve your marriage too:
1. Utilize Coupons
This may not be a secret as pros have caught media attention walking out of
stores with a grocery cart with $80 full of the essentials while laying down
only $12 of cash. But, this goes far beyond clipping coupons out of newspapers
and booklets for the grocery store.
There several major services like Groupon that offers 50 percent discounts on a
regular basis to restaurants or entertainment spots in your area. LivingSocial
has discounts to local social events and vacation spots.
Many retailers are on Twitter, Facebook, and other social networking websites.
If you subscribe to their news feeds or fan pages they’ll often notify you about
all the best sales, discounts, and special events ahead of time.
2. Eliminate Impulse Buying
Carefully consider each purchase outside your regular expenses. Write down the
item, and take a photo of what you want with your phone. Comparison-shop for the
item online, then once you know how much it will cost you to obtain, double
check your budget to determine the impact buying that item will have on your
finances. Only when you’re sure it’s a good decision should you make a purchase.
3. Increase Deductibles on Insurance
You’ll pay less money each month, and odds are you’ll save more in the long run
even if you make a claim. Don’t do this if you plan on spending the extra money,
because you should save it should the money be needed for a disaster at some
point. If that disaster doesn’t ever happen, you’ll earn interest on that money
saving you even more.
4. Use a Comparison Service to Save on Auto and Home Insurance
Property and casualty insurance is one of the most competitive industries in the
world, so you’re likely to have a better rate every year. There are over 15
A-rated companies that sell auto and home insurance nationwide. Make them fight for your business, and you can save a bundle. Don’t just go to
one insurance company’s website that compares you to four or five top companies.
You need to use a service that compares your rates to offers from all the
A-rated companies in the country.
5. Visit the Library
Sure, the décor is outdated, the crowd is lame, and it smells a little musty,
but the frugal overlook this and see a wealth of resources at zero cost to their
budget: free books, magazines, CD’s, movies, TV shows, computers, internet
access, and educational materials.
6. Maintain Rather Than Replace
Buying something shiny and new is as trendy as it is costly to your budget.
Exhaust all possibilities to repair, refurbish, clean, or even upgrade something
you already own rather than buy new. Buying new only becomes cheaper if the cost
of maintaining becomes excessive in the long run.