Frugal Habits to Get out of Debt
Frugal Living

33 Frugal Habits to Get out of Debt

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Are you looking for tips to save some money each month?

There are a lot of ways to save money, the trick is finding the ways that will work for you.

I have been able to pay off over $100k in debt and also save a significant amount of money. Part of the ways I have been able to do this is by being very frugal with my money.

Frugal Living

Getting out of debt is hard work! It is not an accident if someone gets out of debt; most likely they had to focus very hard for a few years in order to get out of debt.

If you are in the process of getting out of debt, these tips can help you to stretch your money further. If you are not in debt, these tips are still great because now you can focus on saving and investing aggressively.

Honestly there is nothing wrong with indulging, as long as it is pre-planned and only once in awhile.

If you are looking for ways to manage your money better, then make sure you read to the end because I have tips especially for that!

FREE DOWNLOAD: DEBT SNOWBALL AND DEBT REPAYMENT WORKSHEETS

Frugal habits, get out of debt

33 Frugal Ways to Save Money

GROCERIES

1.Eat before you shop

    • Make sure you are not going to the grocery store hungry! When I go grocery shopping while I am hungry I always bring home more food than I actually intended to. Usually the extra purchases aren’t very healthy either (for example, ice cream!)

2. Make a list

    • I have a Microsoft excel document that I use in order to know what to buy each week. It is separated into categories such as: produce, meat, dairy, pantry items, etc. Once I started using this excel sheet my extra spending went way down.

3.Buy Online

4.Buy generic

    • I typically will only buy the generic brand for all of my food. I really don’t notice much of a difference in taste, but I do notice a difference in my final bill.

Do you know where your money is going? Take 30 minutes each week to write down what you bought the week before! It is worth the effort and you WILL change your habits.

SUBSCRIPTIONS

5.Cancel your Gym pass if you rarely go

    • If you do not use your gym membership I highly suggest you either start to use it 3-4 days a week or to cancel it. If you’re not ready to get serious about getting into shape then just accept it and cancel the membership. Once you are ready to fully commit then go ahead and sign back up again. Otherwise it is just a drain on your money and on your emotions.

6.Cut the cable

    • I am not going to lie, once in a while I miss cable. But it is really just once in awhile. Currently I use Netflix and also watch YouTube videos. I like watching YouTube videos because I always learn something new. How often do you learn something new on cable? It is very rare; usually it is just a way to check out of reality and waste the day away. There are so many streaming services these days that there really is no justification to still have cable. It is way too expensive. We use a Google Chromecast and stream Netflix onto the TV.
Money

ENTERTAINMENT

7.Stop going to the movies very often

    • We only go to the movies for big premieres (for example the Marvel movies) and even then we try to go matinee. We only buy one treat at the movie theater. Typically we will watch movies at home (Netflix, Red-box) and I will make us snacks like nachos, popcorn, etc. It tastes so good, and even better knowing how much money we are saving.

8.Find free or low cost activities

    • I have an entire article on free activities that you can do for a no-spend weekend. We do a lot of free activities and rarely spend money on the weekend (family of three) and we still have a lot of fun.

FREE DOWNLOAD: DEBT SNOWBALL AND DEBT REPAYMENT WORKSHEETS

VACATION

9.Visit family out of town versus luxury vacation

    • If you have family a few hours drive away you might want to plan a weekend getaway where you visit your family. We do this every few months and it saves us a lot of money because we don’t pay for the cost of a hotel, and half of the time our family will prepare homemade meals for us. 
    • We get the enjoyment of exploring a new city and spending time with family that we rarely get to see. You can do a lot of these little trips and then maybe one big trip every couple of years.
    • Also bring your coupons for meals because they usually work out of state. I brought our coupons when we went from California to Arizona and they saved us a ton of money when we did eat out on vacation.

10.Go camping

    • Camping is not too expensive if you already have the equipment. If you don’t have the equipment, do what we do, which is borrow it from friends and family. This has helped us to save money and also storage space. We love getting outdoors and you can refresh your mind & spirit while still maintaining your budget.
Money is a tool

SHOPPING

11.Use coupons!

    • Plan your purchases ahead of time and use coupons whenever you can. This does not mean to buy anytime you have a coupon, that would be wasting money. I have a lot of email subscriptions and I end up deleting 90% of them but about 10% of the time the coupon is applicable to a purchase I needed to make at that time.

12.Shop at Dollar Tree & 99 Cent Store

    • I have to watch myself at the Dollar Tree, so I only go into it once a month or so. I do shop at the 99 cent store each week for groceries and some household items. You can find a lot of good deals in these stores as long as you don’t go crazy!

13.Buy items during certain times of the year

    • I like to wait for holidays to make large purchases because this is when you will find the best sales. Also, buy seasonal items at the end of the season because they will be marked down, and just store them to use next year.

14.Use the library

    • This is a great way to read a book ahead of time to determine if it’s worth purchasing. I love to buy books and this helps me to filter out books I’m interested in purchasing.

15.Buy quality clothes

    • I think that it is worth it to buy clothes that are a little more expensive (use coupons please!) because they will usually fit better and last for years (versus a few months). Buy timeless items that you know you will get a lot of use out of.

16.Shop second hand on Facebook Marketplace, thrift stores, Craigslist

    • I bought a lot of our bigger furniture off of Facebook marketplace, and I think I got great deals and quality products. One couple was moving, which is why they were selling their couch and accompanying chair. They ended up giving us their entertainment center (from Pier 1) for free in the deal. 
    • Another couple were selling their table because it was too high up and they were worried about the baby falling. We scored beautiful pieces at an insanely discounted price. I enjoy decorating and making my home feel luxurious and comfortable. Even though I’m frugal I have taste!

17.Get a Costco Membership

    • I try to buy Costco gas whenever I can because it saves money. They also have great deals on groceries if you can find items for sale that week. In addition, they have great quality products at great prices, so you can usually feel comfortable that what you are buying will last a long time. 
    • I also got their tires and they give me free tire rotation (my dealership was going to charge me $30!) Pro Tip: split the cost of a membership with a friend or family member.

18.Learn how to DIY repairs

    • Turn to YouTube if you have an item in need of repair, instead of immediately going out to replace it. I need to learn more about tailoring and repairing clothing personally.

EATING OUT

19.Cut down on eating out at fast food and restaurants

    • This is probably the number one way to save money each month. It is just insane to me how much fast food and restaurants charge for a meal. 
    • I’m kinda bad company when I do end up going out to eat because I end up just being disappointed with the amount of money I just spent and always compare the cost to what I could have paid for if I just made it at home. I also don’t like to eat fried foods and I noticed that most fast food places and restaurants fry their food in order to provide faster service. 
    • There is an exception to this; because of the fact that we eat at home 99% of the time, we do go to very nice restaurants once every few months and we really enjoy our meal because it is much more extravagant than what I could make at home.

20.Bring your lunch from home

    • Make your lunch every morning, or better yet, meal prep on Sunday so that you will have your lunch ready for the week. This will save you hundreds of dollars per month. Meal prep containers are not even that expensive and can last a long time! 

21.Invest in cooking equipment

    • I enjoy learning about cooking because I know how much money it saves me and my family. We are a family of three so if we were to eat out we would spend a lot of money each month. I don’t want to sacrifice flavor, however, so over time I have invested in cooking appliances and utensils that allow me to get pretty good results with my cooking. Get a crockpot or an instapot if you don’t have one already.

22.Make your coffee at home

    • We enjoy making iced coffee everyday but don’t want to pay premium prices. I have an entire article on my coffee recipe with a list of items needed. Check it out because it will really help you to save money if you are an avid coffee drinker.

HABITS

23.Stop smoking

    • If you are currently a smoker do you know how much you are paying each month for cigarettes? I would really encourage you to think about quitting; not only to save money but for your health benefits too.

24.Cut down on drinking alcohol

    • If you tend to buy wine or alcohol at bars and restaurants, try inviting friends over and drinking a glass of wine at home. Not only is it a lot cheaper, but it will also keep you from drinking and driving!

MONTHLY BILLS

25.Use monthly contracted cell phone plans

    • I have used Cricket and I am currently with MetroPCS. The rates are much cheaper and the service is the same as the big cell phone companies. I have unlimited calls, texts and data. My boyfriend is now on my plan so MetroPCS gave us a discount.

26.Lower your utility bill

    • Minimize your electricity use during peak hours. Google what the peak hours are for your utility company. Mine are from 4 pm-9 pm.
    • Unplug electronics that are not in use.
    • Avoid using your AC or heater as much as possible.
    • Turn off everything that is not being used (lights in a room no one is in)

27.Learn how to do your own haircuts, manicures, pedicures

    • YouTube is a great way to learn personal care services. I now give my son and my boyfriend their haircuts and I also do my own manicures and pedicures. The great benefit to doing it yourself is that you get it to look exactly how you want it to (and save a ton of money). Invest in a pair of clippers and hair cutting scissors
Money

MANAGE YOUR MONEY BETTER

28.Create a budget

    • I have a great BUDGETING article that goes into detail on how to create a budget. Creating a budget is important because you learn exactly how much money you make and also how much money you are spending.

29.Live below your means

    • It’s really important to live below your means. The extra money can be poured into your debt payoff strategy or into savings/investment accounts. You will always have a sense of security in case an emergency arises.

30.Track your spending weekly & monthly

    • Start writing down and recording everything you are spending each week and also each month. This will help you get an idea of how much you are actually spending and where you can cut back easily.

31.Automate your savings account

    • Have you heard of the phrase, pay yourself first? If you automate your savings each month it becomes out of sight, out of mind, and you stand a higher chance of building up your savings account.

32.Have your bills set up on auto

    • I have all of my bills set on automatic payments and this helps me to avoid late fees and also being reported to a creditor in the event that I forget to pay something.

33.Pay off your debt quickly and aggressively

    • If you are currently in debt, create a plan to pay it off as soon as possible. Having debt keeps you in debt because of all the additional interest you are being charged each month.
Frugal Habits to Get out of Debt

CONCLUSION

These are some tips to help you live more frugally. Living frugally and below your means is important because it allows you to pay off your debt aggressively.

If you are debt free then you can build up your emergency savings account, build up your retirement account, save money for your children’s college, and also pay off your house!

From their the sky’s the limit and you can do what your heart truly desires in life.

FREE DOWNLOAD: DEBT SNOWBALL AND DEBT REPAYMENT WORKSHEETS

With these worksheets you will:

  • Track your debt payoff month by month
  • Stay focused on paying down your debt
  • Have a structured debt payoff plan
Debt Snowball Worksheet
Debt Repayment Worksheet

Thank you for reading!

If this post was helpful, please share it with others on Pinterest & Facebook!

For more Finance Tips, please follow me on Pinterest

xoxo, Kylie

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10 Comments

  1. These are some really good tips to help in saving monies.

    1. Kylie says:

      Anthea,

      Thank you for your feedback 🙂

      Kylie

  2. Some good ideas on how to get out of debt and budget your finances. Individuals don’t track their finances often enough.

    1. Kylie says:

      Christa,

      Thank you! It is time consuming but it is worth it 🙂

      Kylie

  3. Elodie says:

    I’m lucky enough that I’ve never been in debt and because I’m not sure I trust myself, I’ve never gotten a credit card but I think I might need to if I want to boost my credit score so i’ll keep all these in mind if I’m ever in that situation!

    1. Kylie says:

      Hi Elodie,

      That is wonderful that you haven’t been in debt! If you want to get a credit card to build your credit score then you can try to get a prepaid credit card where you can’t get out of control with the spending 🙂

      Kylie

  4. Eunice says:

    Loved the read! Many practical ways to save money.

    1. Kylie says:

      Eunice,

      So glad you enjoyed it!

      Thank you,

      Kylie

  5. It’s not boring when you write about it.. out of every blog on this, yours stands out.

    1. Kylie says:

      Thank you!

      Kylie

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