A Few Ideas About Living a Frugal Life

by Hank Coleman

I do not really consider myself a penny pincher, but then again maybe I am just in denial about it.  I had forgotten just how frugal or miserly some of my friends from college think I am until I spent a few days visiting my best friend and former college roommate. 

So, I feel like I have a done the readers here on Own The Dollar a little bit of a disservice because I do not really talk a lot about frugality on the blog.  A part of me finds the subject a little boring at times, and I do not always enjoy writing about it.  But, of course, it is a very important topic and can greatly help your personal finances by being frugal.  There are some great personal finance blogs who are specifically dedicated to frugality such as Get Rich Slowly and Free Money Finance.  I really both of these blogs and highly recommend them to fill in some of the gaps that I do not talk about here.

Some interesting frugal tips….

Do not upgrade to first class airfare.  I was on a flight this week and almost splurged the extra $49 for the upgrade, but I didn’t.  I suffered in the rear of the plane with only a splash of Coke.  I cannot stand it when airlines do not give you the whole can of soda.  Are times that tough?  Is the 25 cents of a squeezing two cups of Coke from one can really helping?

Turn Down Your Thermostat.  The rule of thumb is that you can save about 3% on your heating bill for every degree that you turn down your thermostat and keep it down.  So, if you turn your thermostat down three degrees on a $100 a month electric bill, you can save about $108 a year.  The same rules apply to your air conditioning too.

Plan Your Shopping Trip.  Money magazine and CNN said that shoppers can save an average of $50 to $100 a week on their groceries if they spend about 30 minutes once a week planning out their supermarket trip.

There is no doubt that we are living in some tough financial times lately, and being frugal with our money (spending less than you make) is the surefire way to help weather the bad times while we are all waiting on the good ones that are right around the corner.

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