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I know you’ve seen 100+ frugal living tips scattered over the internet.
But which tips are best? Which tips for frugal living do you absolutely need to start using and which aren’t worth your time?
As avid money savers, Nikayla and I (Evan) have tried them all (well, most of them, anyways) but have only continued using a select few—the ones that result in the most free money and take zero time to use.
Otherwise, a money saving tip just isn’t worth it.
So here it is: a list of the best frugal living tips and ideas we’ve found so far that you need to use:
Best Frugal Living Tips and Ideas For 2020
We’ve Categorized these Frugal Living Tips into 4 Main Categories:
Money Saving Apps
1. Turn Your Debit Card into a Cash-Rewards Card! ($1+ Sign Up Bonus)
You know how a credit card works—receive 2% cashback on every purchase. But if you’re a die-hard debit card user, cashback perks aren’t available to you… Until now.
Try the Dosh App! Connect your debit OR credit card to the app, use your card like normal, and the Dosh app will silently collect money automatically, just like a credit card! Here’s just a peek at the 1,000+ retailers you could be earning free month from:
After a few months, open the app to see how much free money you’ve accumulated. It’s always a treat to find enough cash for a free Iced Caramel Macchiato in your account for doing absolutely nothing.
What’s more, when you download Dosh with our link you’ll receive a $1 bonus just for linking your debit/credit card to the app!
You can learn more about the Dosh App in our comprehensive Dosh App Review post.
2. Free Money at the Grocery Store ($20 Sign Up Bonus)
The moment Nikayla and I return home from the grocery store, we snap a pic of our receipt, and free money gets deposited into our Ibotta account.
If you want to get paid to shop, you need the Ibotta app. And don’t worry, you won’t need to buy weird foods to earn money (that would defeat the purpose): just keep to your normal shopping habits, and Ibotta will give you money back for something in your grocery basket.
Download Ibotta here—you’ll get a bonus $20 just for trying it out—and start making easy money grocery shopping.
Check out all of our Ibotta tips and tricks in our full review post.
3. Automatic Money for Shopping Online ($10 Sign Up Bonus)
If you’ve been paying full price while shopping online, frankly, you’ve been doing it wrong.
Rakuten (formerly Ebates) wants to give you cash back on nearly all of your online order for virtually no effort on your part.
Here’s how to make earning money with Rakuten effortless: After you create a free Rakuten account, download the Ebates button. It will look something like this:
Then, as you’re checking out from Khol’s or one of their 400+ online partners, the Rakuten button pops up to show you free money that should be yours. Just click that Rakuten button and you’re done.
It’s some of the easiest money you can make, and it’s another great way to cash out with free gift cards to Starbucks, Amazon, Olive Garden, and more.
Don’t forget to get that button!
Related Post: Is Ebates Legit? An Honest Rakuten (Ebates) Review (plus hacks to make more money)
4. Sweatcoin App- Get Paid To Walk
Nikayla and I love walking through nice neighborhoods to look at expensive houses. It gives us a chance to talk and dream and enjoy each other’s company.
But more recently, it’s been a chance to make money.
The app SweatCoin pays you to walk outside. After sharing your location with the app, the steps you take outside will be tracked in exchange for money!
The more steps you take, the more money you earn. It’s just another incentive to get out and enjoy some fresh air every now and again.
Read more about Sweatcoin (and all the money you’re about to make) in our full Sweatcoin Review.
(4.5. Six Hacks to Save More Money)
Saving money is easy… once you know how to do it. If you’re living without the peace of mind of having lots of money in the bank, then you haven’t learned how to make saving money easy.
Our Free “Savings Account Accelerator” Workshop exercises 6 Money-Saving Hacks that not only teach you *how* to save money, but also how to save money faster than ever before. Don’t change your lifestyle to save money – use this free information to make saving money easy.
5. Sell Your Clothes Online With Depop
We have a one-in, one-out policy for our clothes: when I buy a new pair of jeans, an old pair needs to leave. It keeps our closets manageable, and more importantly, it gives us an chance to make easy money.
All of our gently worn clothes are sold on Depop—an online thrift store. Depop makes the process of selling clothes online incredibly simple. Just take a pic of that shirt you no longer wear and set a price.
When someone buys it, Depop creates a printable shipping label. Stick the shirt in a box, tape that shipping label to the box, and drop it off at your nearest post office.
We’ve made over $500 over the past couple years, and we plan to give ourselves an all-expenses-paid shopping spree here in the near future.
Also See: How To Live Minimally
Money Hacks for Frugal Living
6. Use Credit Cards
Everything you buy should be 2% off. Which doesn’t sound like much, but when you spend $30,000/year, that’s $600 in free money!
Credit card companies pay you to use their card, and if you use them wisely—i.e., not go into debt—you can make great money with them. With our credit cards we get 2% off general purchases, 5% off Amazon purchases, one free airline ticket every year, free checked baggage on our flights, and plenty of other awesome money-saving opportunities.
We easily save over $1,000/year because we swipe a credit card rather than a debit card. Credit cards have also raised both our FICO scores above 800! And no, we have never taken on a dime of credit card debt. There is no reason to fear credit cards.
Ditch your standard bank card, and find a quality credit card with generous rewards. (because why wouldn’t you want more free money?):
- Here are the Best Reward Credit Cards of 2020 (we use #7)
- Here are the Best Travel Credit Cards of 2020 (click “see details” under every card for all the travel perks)
Not sure what your credit score is?
7. Utilize Amazon Subscribe and Save For 15% Off Everything
Toilet paper, Kleenex, toothpaste, floss, mouthwash, paper towels, gum, protein powder, Keurig coffee pods, water filters, dog food, cat food… the list goes on and on.
We receive all these items for 15% off thanks to Amazon Subscribe and Save.
Tell Amazon that you want toothpaste sent to your house every 3 months, and you’re done—you never have to worry about buying toothpaste again, and you get 15% off. Picture it: a life without spontaneous TP runs to Walmart.
Get started with Amazon Subscribe and Save (it comes with your Prime Membership) and save yourself a little extra cash and leisure time.
Related Post: How To Live Frugally– 40+ Savings Tips That Work
8. Prepaid Cell Phone Plans
Prepaid cell phone plans like Mint Mobile are a gold mine of savings!—especially if you’ve got a whole family with cell phones to pay for.
Mint Mobile’s plans start as low as $15/month for:
- 4G LTE High-Speed Data
- Unlimited Talk & Text
- Nationwide Coverage
- Free SIM Card
Plus, you’ll get to keep your phone number!
The reviews on their site are phenomenal but here’s one that really stood out (as a former Verizon user myself):
“I purchased Mint service after having been a long time loyalist to Verizon (both postpaid and prepaid). The amount of money I save each month with Mint is astronomical.”– Savannah
9. Make Your Keurig Coffee For Cheap
There’s nothing more convenient than brewing coffee by the cup. There’s only one problem: those K-cups aren’t exactly cheap when compared to the cost of ground coffee.
So how do you take advantage of both the convenience of your Keurig machine and have access to the inexpensive cornucopia of coffee availalbe outside a K-cup? You’re about to find out.
Here’s what you need:
- Reusable K Pods: These K-pods last for ages! We’ve had ours close to a year, and they’re still like new. They’re also dishwasher safe. The only problem: they brew a weak cup of coffee. Because the perforations in the mesh are large, you can’t gind your coffee too finely or the grinds will slip through the grating and into your coffee. That’s why you also need item number 2.
- Reusuable K-pod Filters: Because filters are impermeable to even the finest ground coffee, you’re free to grind your coffee as small as possible (the key to a strong-brewed coffee). Stick these filters into the reusable K pods, fill the filter with any coffee of your choosing, and brew yourself a strong cup of coffee.
Now you’re free to enjoy a strong cup of coffee of any flavor on the cheap!
Frugal Living Lifestyle Changes
No money-saving tip will save you more money than a budget.
Organize your money and start spending it mindfully. It’s the only way to keep your income over your expenses every month and watch your savings grow faster than you ever thought possible.
11. Take Advantage of the Library
Libraries are a magic portal into infinite awesomeness. And that’s an understatement.
There’s nothing like a good book (or audiobook if you’re not too keen on reading) to turn your mind off to all the stresses plaguing your thoughts. If you haven’t tried reading, please give it a shot.
Imagine your favorite TV show made 10X better and 10X longer. Also, watching it is actually good for your brain. Try it, and I promise you’ll love it.
Go to goodreads.com, find a book (maybe a personal finance book?) with great reviews, checkout that book or audiobook from your local library, and discover your next free and probably most favorite hobby.
12. Drink Water
We are able to keep our grocery bill under $300/month because we drink water. Sodas, juices, bottled drinks—sure they taste good, but they cost too much money.
Drink tap water, or if your tap isn’t good, buy a water filter. Here’s the one we use. You’ll save at least $100/month.
13. Always Use A Shopping List
The most important factor in keeping our grocery bill under $300/month is using a shopping list.
Before heading to the grocery store, walk into your kitchen, open your ‘Reminder’ app on your iPhone, and create a grocery list. Once you’re at the grocery store, don’t deviate from your list.
Buy what you need—no more, no less.
14. Feed Your Pet Appropriately
Be honest with yourself: is your dog fat? If so, you’re losing money!
Stop free-feeding your pet, and put them on a healthy diet (their optimal diet can be found on their food-bag). I know you feed them extra food because you love them, but I promise they’ll be much happier and more energetic when they no longer have to carry that extra weight around.
Plus, you’ll save hundreds on dog food and thousand on future veterinary bills (it ain’t cheap to have a diabetic dog, my friend.)
15. Work Out At Home
Do yoga—It will keep you young forever. You’ll become extremely flexible and gain functional muscles that will let you do fun tricks for you to show off with.
Plus, it doesn’t cost much money. We like to use Glow.com There are thousands of lessons taught by the top instructors in the country.
Stop paying for that gym membership you don’t use, buy a yoga mat, and see what your body is capable of with yoga.
How to Make Frugal Living Fun
16. Play Card Games
A deck of cards is going to give you more hours of entertainment per dollar than pretty much any source of entertainment out there.
Every night, Nikayla and I like to play cards while dinner is in the oven. It’s another simple, frugal way to take our minds off today or what needs to be done tomorrow, so that we can enjoy the moment.
Grab a deck of cards and take a chance to connect with your spouse and kids. Our favorite games (listed in order from most favorite to least favorite):
- Egyption Rat Screw
- Gin Rummy
- Spoons (AKA Pig)
- Rummy 500
Alright! Those are the best frugal living tips and ideas for 2020! Do you have any frugal living tips and tricks you use daily? Let us know in the comments below!
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Related Frugal Living Tips Posts:
- How To Live Frugally On One Income: 40+ Simple Money Saving Tips
- How to Avoid Costly Bank Fees
- How To Stop Living Paycheck To Paycheck: Step-by-step
- Money Hacks: 11 Tips To Save Easy Money
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