For those of us who aspire to the frugal life, we often investigate every expenditure we make, and then think about how we can minimize this expenditure. This, in a nutshell, is what the frugal life is. For those who have only just begun trying to save money, you may have gotten so used to certain expenses that you don’t even realize how much money you are wasting. Here are a few common items that the vast majority of people spend way too much money on, and a few ways to completely cut out these items or approach these items in a different way such that you aren’t wasting too much money.
- Food/drink purchases during work
- Magazine/newspaper subscriptions
- Gas and transportation
Cable these days is something of a dinosaur, and unless you are unemployed and have tons of free time on your hands, it’s likely that you aren’t making full use of your service of hundreds of channels. Some alternatives to cable are using the Internet to stream your favorite shows and movies for free, or signing up for Netflix, which showcases the best that cable has to offer. If you are a sports addict, then going to your local pub or a friend’s house to watch certain sports is another option.
You’d be surprised by the close relationship between stress and spending money. It wasn’t until I carefully examined my expenditures for the month that I realized I spent more during work hours than at any other time, including weekends. These small items that I’d buy like lunch, snacks, multiple coffees all began to add up such that they represented an expense that far exceeded even bigger monthly expenses like utilities. The best way to cut back on these items is to bring your own. Making coffee at home then bringing it to the office in a thermos or making your own lunch before going can stand to save you hundreds of dollars over a few months.
With the proliferation of millions of magazines, newspapers, and other sources of information like blogs on the Internet, there is really no reason to waste hundreds of dollars a year on paper subscriptions. Of course, there may be one magazine that you read cover-to-cover whose content is not available online for free, and if you truly feel that the expense is worth it, then keep that one subscription. If you are subscribed to multiple publications just out of force of habit, then consider cancelling them and finding their free online versions.
We all know that gas prices are outrageous, but still we buy gas on a consistent basis since we consider it a necessary expense. Of course, in some ways it is a necessary expense, but you’d be surprised by how many other options you have when it comes to cutting back on transportation and gas. An easy way to do just that is to organize a carpool with friends to work or your children’s school. Using public transportation, if available, is another good option, even if it takes a little longer.
Saving money on daily expenses isn’t rocket science. All it takes is carefully examining your spending habits and realizing which ones you can live without, and which ones you can cut back on substantially. Good luck!
This is a guest post by Nadia Jones who blogs at accredited online colleges about education, college, student, teacher, money saving, movie related topics. You can reach her at nadia.jones5 @ gmail.com.