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"This Saves Me $125 To $150 A Month": 57 Money-Saving Tips That Real People Swear By

Rounding up money-saving tips is one of my favorite things. I get so excited when I find room in my budget to save for the future or spend money on something that matters to me, so I love sharing ways to spend less and save more.

So, here are some of my favorite money-saving tips I've come across lately:

1."Facebook Buy Nothing groups are a lifesaver! I’ve been able to get a table and chairs for my dining room, a large dresser, snowboard boots for my daughter, lots of home decor, and several houseplants, all for free."

A man sits at a wooden table in a modern kitchen, smiling as he works on a laptop. Another person is blurred in the background near the kitchen area

2."Just asking myself, Do I reallllly NEED that item? Most of the time, I don’t, so nowadays, rather than racing out to pick it up, I stay home and think about how I’ve saved money, gasoline, air quality, and a little bit of my planet by not going and getting it. To say nothing of reducing my own anxiety levels!"



"My big questions are, Do I have space for it? Do I have time to enjoy it? If an object is coming into this house, it needs a 'spot,' and that spot can't just be a pile.

"The exceptions are things I use for research (I occasionally teach and lecture on historic clothing) and needful hobby items."


3."I buy food through the Flashfood app. It's like a manager's special rack in app form. The food is expiring soon or is discontinued but still good. I usually buy whatever meat they have and freeze it until I use it. It's saved me quite a bit."


4."I keep three or four frozen meals from Trader Joe’s in my freezer for when the urge for takeout hits."

Person peering into an open freezer in their kitchen
Henrik Weis / Getty Images

5."I adopted this policy not long ago. I have to calculate how many meals I can create from a meat cut or seafood when deciding whether to buy it. I don't buy it when there's only enough for one meal, no matter how much I crave it. Very tough at the start, but it's gotten easier since."


6."I buy all wrapping paper, gift bags, and other gift-wrapping items from the dollar store or HomeGoods. So much more affordable."


7."Unplugging things not in use is a huge one! It's estimated that 10%–15% of the average American's electric bill is stuff that’s plugged in but not in use, aka vampire energy."

Woman unplugging an appliance from a wall outlet


Cristinairanzo / Getty Images

8."On payday, I put away for savings in an instant- or easy-access savings account. I spent a bit of time working out how much of my paycheck goes on regular bills and expenses and then set up a standing order to put most of the rest into an instant-access savings account the day after payday."

"I find I spend less on impulse buys because there's less in my account, but if I have a big or unexpected expense, I can easily move money back out of savings to cover it using online banking.

"Before I started doing that, I'd find myself spending my whole pay every month and relying on a credit card even for big costs I knew were coming up (e.g., car insurance)."


9."I sat down and made a budget. I realized I had been lying to myself for decades. I am now getting back on track, and it’s painful and joyous all at once."


10."If you see something you like but don't know the cost of it — in your head, assign a price you'd be happy to pay for. When you find out the price, see how much you still want it if it varies greatly from the price in your head."

Person checking price tag a shirt at a clothing store
/ Getty Images/iStockphoto

11."My husband and I decided not to buy any food (other than fresh foods, like vegetables and fruits) until we emptied most of our freezer. We're still working on it. We put together some unusual meals but are saving money each week. And we've begun the process of removing meat and poultry from our diet, which will save more money as time goes along."

"When my insurance policies, cellphone contracts, etc., are set to renew, I always shop around. Most companies offer discounts to new customers, not to existing ones."


12."I keep a small cooler in my car. I know I’m going to get hungry when I’m out running errands or shopping. So I stock the cooler before I leave home with things I want to snack on while I’m out driving around. I make sure some of it is fun stuff so I don’t feel the urge to stop for treats. This saves me from stopping at fast-food places and really keeps my splurges down."


13."Increasing the time between recurring expenses like haircuts adds up to savings over time. I have long hair, which makes it more doable, but for example, six haircuts a year vs. four saves a lot while not actually denying you the pleasure of said haircut."

Woman getting a haircut, hairdresser in action with scissors and comb
Koumaru / Getty Images

14."Community events, for sure. My city library offers fun adult craft nights for free once a month. It's fun to meet new people and just relax. So far, I've taken a canvas painting class, a clay project class, and also a free sound bath/yoga class. Also, if you have a city library card, there's an app called Cloud Library to rent audiobooks and ebooks for FREE."


"I haven’t heard of Cloud Library, but I use Libby, and it’s great! I highly recommend taking advantage of getting a library card."


"Kanopy and Hoopla come with many libraries, as well. Movies and more e/audiobooks. Also, city passes to cool places."


15."A tip I always tell people is to think about how much time that money took to earn. Say, if you're paid $15 an hour, and that video game costs five hours to earn, after taxes, then you worked five hours for that video game. It's a good way to teach someone to be frugal early, especially if they hate their job."


16."Rounding up. When tracking my spending, not only was it easier to tally, making me more likely to do it, but by rounding numbers up, it was also better because I tended to underestimate things and overspend."

Woman checking grocery receipt, with fresh produce on counter

17."Buy in-season fruit and veg. It sounds like a no-brainer, but it also forces you out of your rut and makes you get creative. And if you are really craving strawberries in January (I know the feeling; the struggle is real), just get frozen ones. The fresh ones are usually gross. Oh, and watch your store ads for meat sales. Get some freezer bags, split it up, and freeze it. Or make a big batch of whatever and eat off of it for a few days."


18."Paying yourself back. For example, I just bought a new pair of expensive shoes. The deal I had with myself is that I can buy these, but I have to save that amount of money on my next credit card statement. I use this for a lot of things. Quite honestly, it is probably too much, haha, but it only saves me money."


19."Use curbside pickup as much as possible. If you don’t go into the store, then you won’t buy unnecessary stuff. It also saves a lot of time and hassle."

Person receiving a paper bag while sitting in a car, smiling at the camera
Sdi Productions / Getty Images

20."To save money and waste less food, figure out a few cheap meals you can eat daily, weekly, or several times a month — beans and rice, oatmeal, grilled cheese and tomato soup, whatever. There are a few things this can help with. You save money on groceries and waste less food because you’ll use up all the ingredients, bonus points if it’s mostly shelf stable ingredients. It can save time and decision fatigue because you don’t have to decide what to eat; your brain knows you have red beans and rice on Mondays, and you finish any leftovers on Wednesdays, etc. You have oatmeal for breakfast every day, and always add whatever fruit you need to use up."

"My personal favorite is beans and rice. There are so many versions from around the world to try, and you can always add whatever meat or vegetables you need to use, even in small quantities. It’s also easy to turn any leftovers into soup."


21."Buy the sample size first before you commit to the full product. This has saved my ass on shampoos I didn't like, makeup, sunscreens, and even food. Buy the small portion size first, then, if you like it, buy the bulk saving size."


22."I shop around for my insurance every January, since it's the beginning of a new year. I also do my health checkups and major car maintenance. One year, I actually saved $200 on my insurance by switching to another company."

Person signing paperwork for a car

23."When shopping for clothes or accessories online, I rarely buy immediately or pay full price ever. I’ll usually save the item and wait at least a month to see if I still want it. If I do, then I will buy in a sale. OR my other little hack: I look at the brand's tagged photos on Instagram. Quite often, you will find a tagged pic of an influencer with a discount code!"


24."I've instituted a system where I buy things on Wednesdays. For absolute emergencies (usually related to my 18-month-old), I will make an exception. But groceries, gas, Costco, and even Amazon are all done on a Wednesday. If I think I need or want something, I wait until the next Wednesday, and by that point, I usually don't need or want it anymore."


25."Pick a store and get really good at using their rewards system. I just don't have the time or energy to be going to a bunch of different places. We go to Safeway and Costco — Trader Joe's maybe once a month for wine and snacks. I have had the Safeway app for years, and at this point, it gives me deals on stuff I buy. I know it is far from the 'cheapest,' but it's a clean store with a layout I am very familiar with. With the app deals, I feel like I get within striking distance of some of the cheaper places."

A woman grocery shopping
D3sign / Getty Images

26."Watch who and what you follow on social. I unfollowed a lot of influencers who were overconsuming. I love following the ones who teach you to shop your closet."


27."Really enjoying/using/repurposing what you have is a satisfying alternative both to recreational shopping and to buying stuff in general. I've been focusing more on that this past year as I go through a frugality and decluttering process, and it's honestly great."


"Repairing as well — I had a backpack that had several pockets that split along the zipper seams. Actually sitting down and fixing those with some fabric and a sewing machine (though hand would work too) was particularly satisfying, so I didn't need to go out and get an alternative."


28."Check the markdown racks at your grocery. I find cheap cereal, bread, and veggies that I can prep and freeze. Go early in the morning, and meat going out of date that day is often marked down. Take it home, portion it out, and freeze it."

A shopping basket filled with food items with markdown price stickers
Solstock / Getty Images

29."I have learned to repair almost any home appliance. YouTube is a lifesaver and has literally saved me thousands of dollars. Furnace, AC, dishwasher, oven, washer, dryer, and sump pump — I have fixed them all."


30."If you're thinking about buying a new appliance (like an air fryer or a slow cooker), check the local thrift stores and garage/yard sales first. You can sometimes pick up an expensive appliance for just a few dollars. 'Used' often means they tried it once and didn't use it after that. I've gotten a brand-new air fryer still in the original box for $5."


"Facebook Marketplace is a nice spot for slightly used appliances."


31."Never buy treats at full price. Obviously, the most frugal thing to do is not to eat out at all, but if you want to incorporate the occasional treat into your lifestyle — date night, etc. — just don't do it at full price. Use local discount coupon books, go to the Ben & Jerry's Free Cone Day, get the birthday club freebies on your birthday, and use fast-food app discounts. Our local burger place has a two-for-one special that comes up every six weeks or so. We don't always use it, but now that we know it exists, paying full price seems so obnoxious that we never do!"

A couple having a date night at home
Dimensions / Getty Images

32."All of these are good ideas, but the best (and I mean absolute best) advice for being frugal is having or finding a partner who has the same financial goals. You simply cannot and will not be able to save and be frugal if your partner does not have the same mindset. My wife and I look at our budget radically. Do we need every item? Do we really need a second car? Keep this in mind when you’re dating."


33."This year, I stopped getting coffee and drinks outside. This saves me about $125 to $150 per month. I’m unexpectedly not even missing it, and I’m planning to throw this money into my retirement account."


34."Switching to an old-school razor blade razor instead of the plastic ones. Shaves fantastically, lasts forever, and razor blades are incredibly cheap."

Razor with a wooden handle on a textured surface
Olena Ruban / Getty Images

35."Menstrual cup and menstrual underwear. I never even feel that I'm on my period anymore."


36."Cutting the tops off tube containers like face wash, lotion, etc., and scooping out the rest of what is left has been a big money saver! You’ll be amazed at how much is still left once it stops squeezing out. To keep the product from drying out, slide the cut piece down onto the area where you made the cut."


37."I got some more containers and now make as much food as possible. Doubling the amount of food rarely involves twice the work. Then I freeze what I know I can't eat. Frozen soup or chili lasts months; I can have a whole buffet in my freezer and not eat the same thing all the time."

A freezer filled with various stacked food storage containers and an ice cube tray
Imran Kadir Photography / Getty Images

38."Try cascading leftovers, or meals where the leftovers 'lead' or cascade into another. Baked potato one night turns into potato soup the next. Chili can be repurposed into spaghetti sauce or put on top of chips for nachos. I personally roast a chicken with veggies. The carcass turns into chicken noodle soup. I get a couple meals and lunches for four for a price under $30 total."


39."After you've gotten the discount signing up for a shopping website's mailing list, unsubscribe from the emails."


40."I do a fiscal fast once a month. I'll fuel up my vehicle, get at least 10 days worth of groceries, and the goal is to spend absolutely ZERO dollars for those 10 days. So, for about 1/3 of the year, I don't spend a penny. Works for me!"

A woman shopping for groceries
Oscar Wong / Getty Images

41."Sell anything you don’t use on eBay. Make some extra money and declutter your space. For example, I bought a TV and didn’t use the stand legs because I mounted it on the wall. Sold the stand legs on eBay for $30! Also, someone is using it, and it doesn’t have to go into a landfill. Win-win!"


42."Get estimates and shop around for car insurance, internet provider, cellphone carrier, credit card rates, etc. It is work and time, but I have saved serious money. Taking the time to make that phone call saves way more money than scrimping on little things (though I do that, as well). I just wish companies valued longtime customers."


43."Find a friend that is also frugal. For me personally, my social life is the hardest thing to save money on, because many of my friends spend money quite easily. Always being the only one who insists on having a cheap night makes me feel like a total pain in the ass. One of my buddies is also trying to save up money, and so far, it has been really nice to have a partner in crime. We made a list of frugal activities, and often do something cheap/free whenever we hang out. And when we're with a larger group, it's still easier to be cheap together than alone."

friends sharing a bowl of popcorn on the couch at home
Peopleimages / Getty Images/iStockphoto

44."Delete any food ordering apps off your phone! I had DoorDash and Grubhub and didn’t realize just how much I was spending on delivery. For any given meal, by the time you do delivery fees, upcharges, and tip, you can easily be spending $20 (or more) on just the app! Since I deleted the apps and either drive to pick up or make food at home, I’ve saved literally hundreds a month."


45."I keep a dry erase list of what we have in the fridge and freezer so I don’t have to go looking and I can get a better idea of what to cook this way. Cuts down on food waste."


46."Double check your health insurance benefits (US specific). I know a lot of people who get health insurance through their work that have some type of 'healthy incentive' program. This is a program where they will give you money toward something they deem as healthy, match the amount of money you make in purchases they deem as healthy, give you some type of discount in some type of healthy product, or something like that. Your insurance probably won't go out of their way to tell you if you have one of these programs. If you have insurance that does this, take advantage. Get money off your produce. Get free pre-prepared healthy meals. Get a free gym membership."

people using treadmills at the gym
Me 3645 Studio / Getty Images

47."I only buy out-of-season clothes. I have a $700 coat that I bought brand new for $100, and it will last me for life with proper maintenance. Helps, too, that I'm a man. We don't really do fashion trends, lol."


48."Buy your cellphone outright and then use a prepaid month-to-month plan."


49."When something you use regularly is on sale, stock up. My family likes to make Starbucks espresso at home, and a small bag is now $10. When it’s on sale for its pre-COVID price, I buy two or more extra and start to build up a stock pile. Eventually, you will have a lot of the staple foods you use so your weekly grocery bill will be just fresh foods."

A grocery basket piled high with items
Shannon Fagan / Getty Images

50."Stack savings when you can, as well. The big jug of laundry detergent we use is regularly $9.48 at Walmart, and more expensive anywhere else. One other grocery store here recently had it on sale for $6.99, plus a $1 digital coupon in their app, bringing it to $5.99 per jug. In Ibotta, I had an offer for $3 back on each with a limit of five, so naturally, I bought five of them at essentially $2.99 per jug. At the rate we use it, we likely won't have to buy laundry detergent for a decade or more."


51."I learned that I can use half, or even a quarter as much shampoo, toothpaste, body wash, hand soap, as I used to. It’s a very little thing, but I really do think it adds up, especially because when I go to CVS or Walgreens to get shampoo, I always end up getting a bunch of other crap I don’t need."


52."If your vehicle has the ability to show your MPG [miles per gallon], pay attention to it. Driving faster burns more fuel. Leave a little earlier and drive a normal speed instead of rushing around."

car dashboard showing 77 miles per gallon

53."The Ibotta app and the Rakuten app combined over the last three years have netted me over $1,500. Sometimes it seems so insignificant to get change amounts back on purchases, but they add up, and I use them consistently."


54."I rent DVDs and stream shows through the library instead of having a streaming service subscription. Each month, I go through Rotten Tomatoes and make a list of things I want to see, then request them from my library. It meets my needs, and saves me roughly $30 a month."


55."I pay with everything using cash back credit cards and pay my statement in full every month."

woman paying the bill in a restaurant with her credit card
Javier Zayas Photography / Getty Images

56."I started getting cash out each month instead of using my debit card. It was SO easy for me to just swipe my card and not really pay attention to what I was spending. With physical cash in my wallet, I keep much better track of my spending and don’t go over budget. I also don’t spend coins. All my change goes into a jar, and I turn it in every few months. Easy way to save up an extra $40–$50 each month that I barely notice, and it becomes my vacation fund."


57.And finally, "For me, it was quitting smoking. You never realize how much you're spending on it until you're not."


Is there anything else you would add? Share your favorite money-saving tips and tricks in the comments!