Ok- so another definition of simple living- MUST include living with in your means and living frugally (at least for me anyway). Now- the big problem is HOW??? For being relatively young I don’t think my hubby and I have done bad. We have no debt now other than our mortgage. But–we haven’t done well in the savings dept…So that leads me to today. I decided to sit down and make a simple budget- I’ve done it many times, but the real trick to a budget is to FOLLOW it- that’s not something I’ve done. It is completely by the grace of God that we are where we are financially. Back when we first got married hubby gave me the job of paying the bills, etc. And because now I stay home, I still have it. So I’ve got my budget, I know how much I’ve spent so far this paycheck, and I WILL pay attention to it. I decided too that because we get paid twice a month that I should base my budget on that and on what bills are due around each payday. I’ve divided the amount of grocery/Wallyworld money that way too.
There are other tips that I think help a person live more frugally.
- Making a menu- then you only by what you need.
- Use coupons if you have them (the people who have the ability and time to do the mega couponing can really save $$, but I don’t have stores that coupon that way or the place to store all the stuff).
- Pay attention to where you shop- don’t go to the most expensive store just because it’s closest to you. Likely if you drive across town to other one you’ll more than make up for the cost of gas.
- Don’t get caught up on labels. Often store brands come from the exact same place, and sometimes they are better. There is one exception- Velveeta- there’s nothing else like the real thing (even though it’s not healthy at all, lol).
- Watch the sale adds. If you know you are about to run out of something and it’s on sale- get it. You can even try to plan your menu’s around what’s on sale.
- Look in your cabinets-what do you have that you need to use.
- Cook at home more, and if you want to let someone else do the cooking, try take out. You save tons on drinks and on the tip.
- Also, if you eat out at a sit down restaurant, order water you’ll save bundles if you have a family. Watch for kids eat free nights too!!
- Pay yourself first- (something I’m not good at). Put the money you want to go into savings directly in first thing. A lot of banks offer automatic transfers and it can do it for you.
There’s a lot more things you can do out there to save money, but the biggest thing is to pay attention and be responsible. Our income is a gift from God. If someone gave you a valuable treasure you wouldn’t just throw it around and be careless with it. We shouldn’t be that way with our money either. Hopefully I can remember my own tips and maybe they’ve helped you too.