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5 Steps to a More Frugal 2014

By: Donna Chaffins | Date: March 14, 2014 | Categories: Financial, Frugal Tips, Money Talk

I’ve had this article in a draft since January and forgot about it. It’s still early in 2014 and still very relevant…

5 steps to a more frugal 2014Many people set New Year’s resolutions that deal with saving money or cutting costs. They want to live more frugally so they can pay off debt, start a college fund for their kids, take a vacation, buy a new car – the reasons are endless! Thankfully, there are easy ways that you can be more frugal this year so you have the money to spend on other areas of your life.

5 Steps to a More Frugal 2014

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Evaluate your Finances

It’s hard to know where you can cut costs and save money when you have no real idea of how much you are currently spending. Go through each bill to see where your money is going. Save receipts for a couple weeks to check your spending habits. These activities will allow you to know where you can reduce costs.

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Set a Monthly Budget

Once you have an idea of how you are spending your money, create a monthly budget. Put your necessary bills in first, then basic needs such as food and gas for the car. Tailor the other areas of your budget to your family’s specific needs. You may want to set a section for entertainment or clothing. Decide where your money will go beforehand makes it easier to live a frugal lifestyle.

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Cut Unnecessary Expenses

Looking over your finances and setting a budget should give you a very visual idea of how your money is being spent. You have likely seen expenses that aren’t very frugal, so it’s time to eliminate those if you want to have more money in the bank. Eating out or making coffee stops are just two examples of frivolous expense that could be reduced or completely cut out, depending on your needs.

Also, reduce the costs of your bills when you can. Cable companies usually offer several packages, so going down a level could save you money. The telephone company is the same – there are always additional services such as long distance that can be cut out to make the bill more affordable.

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Begin Couponing to Save Money

Couponing is probably one of the top recommendations for those looking to live more frugally. It’s an easy way to save money, especially when you combine the coupons with sales. Follow popular coupon blogs or compare each week’s ads with the coupons you have on-hand to make the most of your frugal journey.

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Find Cheap or Free Resources for your Needs

Many times, there are free resources available that will allow you to live more frugal. Stop your newspaper subscription and check the internet at work for news instead. Instead of taking a trip to the bookstore, check out books from your local library. Netflix and Redbox are much cheaper alternatives to a high-priced theater.

Living a frugal life in 2014 doesn’t have to be difficult. Small cuts here and there will allow you to save more money. Budgeting and planning before you spend are the best ways to manage your finances and allow you to be more frugal with your wallet.

Do you plan to be more frugal in 2014? If so, how?

29 Responses to 5 Steps to a More Frugal 2014

  1. We are just really, really trying to watch it. That means no more impulse buys and rarely going out to eat.

  2. we just paid off our credit card debt and are working on our budget

  3. Marcie W. says:

    I love saving some extra money by using coupons, and thankfully we don’t have any credit card debt.

  4. I use coupons for the things we need/want, but avoid using coupons for things I wouldn’t buy without a coupon.

  5. I started learning how to extreme coupon so that I could buy necessities and food. I am not the best at it but I have gotten some amazing deals. CVS and Target is one of my favorite places to shop with coupons.

  6. Colleen says:

    I need to really look at 2014 and try to save, we are in the middle of purchasing a home that is really going to hit my budget hard so I need to save in other ways.

  7. These are great tips. We definitely need to be better about setting a budget.

  8. We got rid of our credit card debt an I coupon but I need to get better with budgeting.

  9. We have been working on lowering our debt this year — thanks for these tips.

  10. Shell Feis says:

    These are great tips! We are going to start living more frugally- our son’s NICU bill was a scary number so we’re watching our spending now.

  11. Robyn says:

    I need to follow some of these tips! Really need to lol.

  12. These are all great ideas of ways to save money. Saving money per month is always a nice thing to do.

  13. Great tips, it is my goal to be more frugal this year!

  14. I need to do these so I can save.

  15. Robin Gagnon says:

    Credit cards are the biggest waste of money. For many people that item they grabbed on sale now, will end out costing them just as much if not more, if they carry a balance.

  16. The coffee and cable tip seems to be the most suggested for “cutting back” but I don’t really do either, so I’d love some more ideas…we don’t currently have a monthyl budget, we sort of pay for things as we go, so maybe that is something I should work on.

  17. We need to figure out how to save more. It’s just hard with my husband being unemployed and everything I earn going to bills.

  18. HilLesha says:

    I use coupons quite often, but I need to be more budget-friendly with my shopping, especially grocery shopping! I buy a lot of organic (and expensive) food.

  19. These are all great tips for anyone needing to look at where their money is going 🙂

  20. I would love to be more frugal. I coupon always but I really need to cut down on other spending.

  21. Raijean says:

    I’m so going to be trying some of these tips, I need them!

  22. Toni says:

    My problem is staying on budget. I start out each month with a great plan and then, well, I get lazy honestly. 🙁

  23. Liz Mays says:

    I’ve definitely gone the Netflix route now to avoid the high cost at the theater. I miss it, but I like saving money. 🙂

  24. I used to use coupons pretty frequently and could save more than I spent in any store I went to. I just don’t have the time these days.

  25. Gina H says:

    My husband told me the other day “we make too much money to be living paycheck to paycheck”. It was the wakeup call I need to get our finances and lives in order!

  26. Nahoj ib says:

    I don’t use coupons because most of the foods that we eat are non processed and homemade, and there are no coupons for these products. We do forage and gather a bit. I have found that some of my favorite plants to eat are actually weeds!

  27. Dana says:

    good tips-I try to buy tons of secondhand stuff to save money

  28. md kennedy says:

    You’ve inspired me – I have never budgeted or set financial resolutions but I know it is time as my monthly Visa bill has started to surprise me.

  29. Anna says:

    These are all really great tips. I need to work on these.