Some people confuse being frugal with being a cheapskate. Even though these concepts share some similarities, being cheap is not a good alternative to live your life. You’ll likely waste your time only to save a couple of bucks, and not be able to enjoy the experiences having money can provide. On the other hand, you should not waste your money on impulse purchases. Being frugal means making wise financial decisions rather than splurging money carelessly. Here are some tips on how to be frugal without being cheap:
Buy Used Products
Most frugal people prefer buying used than buying new. You can get a better deal on items like books, regular or designer clothes, and accessories. The same rule applies to cars since they depreciate a great deal once they leave the dealership. If you’re searching for a vehicle, it is often better to buy used with low mileage.
Rent Instead of Buying
The majority of people believe that owning a house or apartment for you to live in is an investment, but that’s not always the case since you will have to pay lots of expenses like repairs, homeowner insurance, mortgage, and many other things. A frugal person continuously evaluates the pros and cons before making such big financial decisions. You should also rent a great variety of things such as maternity clothes or luxury accessories and wear for events you’ll only go once or for a short time.
Maximize Your Credit Card Rewards
If you want to live a frugal life, you should maximize all the resources you can to earn or save money. A very beneficial thing to have for that is a credit card, if used responsibly. You can receive cash back rewards for the purchases you make, airplane tickets, trade points for products at an online rewards shop, make charity donations, among many other things.
Stop Spending To Impress Other People
One of the biggest financial traps you can fall into is buying expensive things to impress other people. Instead, you should accept that you will likely never please everyone, and value the people who don’t care about what you have but who you are.
Consolidate Your Debt
Frugal people try to spend the least money they can on interest rates. So if you want to be more financially wise, you should consider consolidating and paying all your debt. Several credit card options come with 0% APR promotions on balance transfers for up to 14 months, in which you won’t need to pay interest charges. It might be a good option to apply for these cards to get your finances in order.
Cut Unnecessary Expenses
It is crucial to have a budget, and always a good idea to lower bills and cut unnecessary expenses. Have you ever heard about a service called Trim? They negotiate your monthly bills for you and find you better deals. Trim also monitors all your subscriptions and sends alerts for you to decide whether you want to keep or cancel them. Trim is free but they also have a premium option.