Can I Be More Frugal?

by Andy Hough on March 4, 2007

One thing about being poor and frugal is that most posts you see about frugal tips tell you things you are already doing or don’t apply to you. Hower you still come across a few new ideas now and then.

Worldwide Success had a post with 10 simple ideas to save thousands and The Simple Dollar had a post on 10 ways to save money this week. I decided to see how these would relate to my personal financial situation. I’ll list their idea and then my comments on it.
First is Worldwide Success‘s list. The title doesn’t really work for me. It is difficult to save thousand when you live on less than 10k a year.

  1. Eliminate Cable TV- I don’t have cable tv. I’m considering getting rid of my television and just watching show on the internet when I need a tv fix.
  2. Reduce Telephone Expenses- I already have a $7.08 a month phone plan. It would be difficult to get much cheaper.
  3. Carry High Deductible Car Insurance- I have liability only since my car is only worth about $1000. My insurance bill is about $140 every six months. I haven’t been able to find a better deal.
  4. Drink Water with Restaurant Meals- This is one I need to do. Of course, I can save more money by reducing or eliminating restaurant meals completely.
  5. Reduce Utility Costs- My electric bill was $11 last month and my gas bill was $40. I’m already pretty good at keeping my utility costs low.
  6. Shop Online Before Making an Impulse Purchase at the Store- I rarely make impulse purchases. I already do this if I’m going to make a significant purchase.
  7. Buy it on Sale- I do this and I don’t buy very much.
  8. The Latte Effect- I don’t think I have a Latte effect to eliminate.
  9. Cook Your Own Meals- This would be the closest thing I have to a Latte effect. I eat too many fast food meals. I’m trying to cut back both to save money and be healthier.
  10. Buy Used Cars and Drive Them as Long as You Can- I already do this. I have a 94 Toyota Corolla with over 200,000 miles. Over 60,000 of those miles are mine.

Now The Simple Dollar‘s list.

  1. Prepare and eat every meal you can eat at home- My comments for #9 above would be appropriate here as well.
  2. Drive the Speed Limit- I mostly do this. I get good gas mileage in my car.
  3. Buy Generics at the Grocery Store- I already do this. Usually the cheap brand is just as good as the name brand.
  4. Entertain Yourself with Things You Already Own- I already do this.
  5. Leftovers- I got to start cooking before I can do this one.
  6. Check out your Community Calendar- I don’t really do this one. I prefer to stay away from crowds.
  7. Skip the Incidentals- See #8 in first list.
  8. Adjust the Temperature by Two Degrees- I already do this. I keep my thermostat on 60 in the winter. I don’t want to go any colder than that.
  9. Turn on only the lights and devices you need- I already do this.
  10. Look constantly for less expensive ways to do things- I already do this.

I would say out of both lists the only thing that would be helpful to me is the suggestion to eat at home more often. I already know to do this I just haven’t been able to get into the habit yet.

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