- Do a clothes swap. You want to live cheap, but you also want to look good. These two don’t have to be mutually exclusive. Get your girlfriends together (if you are all around the same size this works beautifully) and tell them to bring their old clothes – nothing stained or ripped allowed. Open a bottle of wine and sift through each other’s toss outs. What is one woman’s junk is another woman’s treasure. You’ll be surprised at how many gems you can find.
- Check your local listings. See what is going on around town. Look through your local Observer, and there is bound to be cheap activities. Also, movie theatres usually run some kind of special during the week. There may be a $5 movie night or discounted matinee showings. Take advantage!
Save Money on Food
- Make Chili. Make a ton of it, and then freeze it. Do this with spaghetti sauce or any other food that can withstand the freezer for long periods of time. Preparing mass quantities of food can save you both time and money.
- Shop at the Famer’s Market late at night. The farmer’s market is a great way to get fresh produce. Go buy your goods closer to closing time. A lot of f the vendors will sell their products at a discount.
- Plan your groceries. Don’t shop without a list or when you are hungry. This leads to a lot of impulsive shopping which is never good when you try to live cheap. Make your list and think in terms of meals. Buy food and ingredients that you can use for other dishes.
- Buy in bulk. It’s no secret that bulk saves money. Get a Sam’s or Costco card. Also, buy things like toiletries in bulk, and divvy it up among your friends.
- Use coupons. Search your local listings, and cut out those coupons. You may hold up the line a bit when buying groceries, but it’s well worth it once those savings start adding up. Make it a habit, and you’ll be surprised at how much you can save using coupons.
Don’t Let Shopping Ruin Your Life
- Search for discounts. Wait for sales to happen. Buy your clothes out of season, and you’ll save a lot. Try to make it a goal to never pay full price for anything. Go to craigslist.com to find clothes, furniture, or anything that you need. This is what it means to live cheap. There are sales out there waiting to be discovered by you. Learn to enjoy the hunt.
- Do more online shopping. Online shopping is a great strategy when you want to live cheap. There are better deals, and though you may pay for shipping, there is usually a discount if you buy more than one item. Sites like Overstock.com offer great deals for refurbished electronics, affordable furniture, nice luggage, and any other retail item you can imagine. Besides the great deals, you also save on gas money.