In the name of decluttering and minimalism, are you simply trying to practice extreme frugality?
Extreme frugality may not be for everyone, but there are some out there who swear by it.
Living frugally does not mean you will be stripped of joy, it simply is a different form of money management.
The idea of living below your means and yet have a fulfilled life is exciting as life will take you off the race to impress people with materialistic things you do not need.
So get on this train and learn 47 of the best extreme frugal living tips!
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47 Best Extreme Frugality Tips
- Utilize Coupons
- Meal Planning
- No More Eating-Out / Having Takeaways
- Plan Meals Around Sales
- Make Use Of Leftovers
- Portion Control
- Buy In Bulk
- Frozen Products
- Meat-Free Meals
- Make Full Use Of Your Fruits
- Go Raw
- Repair It Yourself
- Wash Your Car
- Energy Efficient Appliances
- Set A Curfew
- Cut The Cable
- Lower Your Internet Plan
- Make Your Cleaning Products
- Free Furniture
- Save Rainwater
- Pick Up Loose Change
- Keep And Save Your Change
- Budget Everything
- Track Your Expenditure
- Review Your Finances And Get Out Of Debt
- Don’t Splurge With Your Bonus
- Cash Only
- No Spend Challenge
- Thrift Your Wardrobe
- Shop Secondhand
- Garage Sales
- Inside Out
- Capsule Wardrobe
- Free Samples
- DIY Treatments
- Cut Your Hair
- Ditch The Manicures
- Shower Together
- Recycle Tea Bags
- Workout At Home
- Walk Or Bike
- Borrow From Friends And Family
- Hit The Parks
- Rearrange Furniture
- Sign Up For Free Online Courses
Some of the links on here are affiliate links and I may earn if you click on them, AT NO EXTRA cost to you. Hope you find the information here useful! Thanks.
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What Is Extreme Frugality?
Extreme frugality is when you take living frugality to the very end of the spectrum. Those who practice extreme frugality will churn up ways to save money in unconventional ways.
You might think to cut down your expenses by cooking your meals at home, however, with extreme frugality, you will probably rely on coupons and free meals distribution at the restaurants to avoid forking out a single cent for your meal.
Does this sound like your cup of tea?
With extreme frugality, your mind focuses on the habit of spending only on items that are absolutely necessary. Typically, those who have the best extreme frugality ideas sacrifice many components of their life and are content with this sacrifice.
With extreme frugal living, you will change your lifestyle by changing the way you view and save money.
47 Of All Best Extreme Frugal Living Tips
Food And Fitness
This is undoubtedly one of the best extreme frugality tips. Coupon usage is widely practiced across the globe.
You can find coupons for almost anything if you know where to look for them.
Here’s a list of 10 Best Places To Find Free Printable Grocery Coupons for you to start saving money on your next grocery hunt.
Another popular tip that you’ve probably seen floating around the internet only because it has proven to be beneficial from every possible aspect.
Cost-saving? Check. Time-saving? Check. Keeps you in shape? Check.
If you’ve set some healthy goals for yourself, meal planning will give you the ability to hit two birds with one stone. Meals prepared at home are most likely to be higher in nutritional value as compared to the meals served at restaurants.
Meal planning will allow you to have a variety of foods to eat at a fraction of the price.
3.No More Eating-Out / Having Takeaways
We all know the ridiculous pricing of eating out. A study done by Forbes has revealed that you spend five times more on a dish at a restaurant as opposed to cooking them at home.
If you’re on a healthy eating journey, the cost of food at a restaurant can be absurd. A study has shown that ‘unhealthy’ food costs about USD 1.50 cheaper than having healthy food.
This is nothing unusual when it comes to extreme frugal ideas, cut down on eating out and takeaways and you’ll see a reduction in your expenditure.
4.Plan Meals Around Sales
These tips may require extra effort and research on your part but hey, if you want to start your extreme frugality journey, you want to start practicing this tip.
Take some time at the beginning of each week or month and plan out your meals for the day.
Make an inventory of all the items you already have, make a list of all the stores that offer the best deals around you, and make a bee-line to land yourself some of the cheapest deals you can find.
There’s nothing more satisfying than good cheap meals.
5.Make Use Of Leftovers
Eat your leftovers if they’ve not gone bad.
You don’t want to be practicing these extreme frugality ideas by eating spoiled food and bringing harm to yourself. However, when you eat leftovers, they’re not only going to save you lots of money and time to cook meals every day but you will also be reducing food waste.
Besides, we all know that some foods taste better when they’ve been left in the fridge overnight.
The Institute of Food Technologists have stated that food tastes better when they’re refrigerated due to the chemical reaction that takes place among the ingredients, producing new flavor molecules that tingles your tastebuds.
Not only will this be beneficial to your waistline, but this extreme frugality hack will also save you some bucks.
Too large of a portion size will most likely lead to indigestion.
Keep your meals small and let your body adapt to them so that you can function at an optimal level. Measuring out portion sizes will allow you to eat lesser and save money in the long run.
Tip – Use a smaller plate. I laughed at my brother when he did this until I tried it myself and dropped a few KG! O_O
7.Buy In Bulk
This tip might seem like you’re going against extreme frugality but hear me out.
If you’re trying to implement this lifestyle for the long run, you should bulk buy ingredients, especially during the sale period to save you some money. Think about it, you will be saving gas from the less-frequent trips to the store, reduce food and packaging waste, and you only buy how much you need.
Here’s a list of the best places to buy groceries online.
According to Forbes, frozen food is cheaper by up to 50% if not more!
That’s a bang for your buck.
Frozen food retains almost all the nutritional values as freezing has been one of the methods of food preservation for years now. On top of being cheap and healthy, frozen food gives you the flexibility of your mealtime as all the ingredients you need are right there in the freezer, just heat them and you’re good to go!
So instead of buying fresh berries for my smoothies, I buy frozen ones. They taste the same, are much cheaper and give my smoothies a nice cool zing!
Aside from it being a cheaper alternative, having meat-free meals have been advocated by many across the globe.
Avoiding meat helps you reduce the harm that may come from highly processed meats.
By incorporating more seasonal fruits and vegetables in your diet, you will not only save money but you’ll be feeding your body with nutrients such as fibres and minerals.
10.Make Full Use Of Your Fruits
Do not throw away your fruits once you’re done with them. For example, when it comes to lemons, once you’re done squeezing up the juices, zest the skin and set it aside for some tangy, citrus goodness in your next meal.
Bananas are packed with essential nutrients such as Vitamin C, natural fibers, and potassium. Do not discard the peel! Check out these 23 ways of reusing banana peels.
A fully raw diet is similar to a vegan diet where you have mostly raw and unprocessed food in your everyday meals.
You will be saving up money not only in terms of ingredients, but the utilities that add up when you’re cooking a meal.
Kristina, a raw diet advocate has been a raw vegan for years now and has been listed as one of the Top 100 Most Influential People in Health and Fitness every year since 2015.
HouseHold Extreme Frugality Tips
12.Repair It Yourself
Be real, with yourself, do you honestly need to call the electrician to fix the broken bulb? Girl (or dude), just do it yourself.
Things like plumbing or small setbacks around your house that can be sorted without the help of a third person will save you some money and honestly, it will be an ego booster.
Fix what you can and let Youtube be your best friend.
13.Wash Your Car
Unless you’re someone who has to drive through mud and sand every day, you can skip sending your car over to the carwash center and just do it yourself.
Get some liquid car wash detergent, a couple of cloths, and you’re good to go.
If you’re one to spend time in your car for long commutes, sitting in a clean car will have a positive impact on your mental health as well.
You get to save money, have a sense of pride, and feel happier the next time you’re behind the wheel.
14.Energy Efficient Appliances
Another tip that requires a little bit of research but is well worth your time and money. Do a quick search on energy-saving electrical appliances that can help reduce your utility bills by a margin.
By energy efficient appliances, I’m talking about using appliances that will consume less water as well. A projection made by Statistica shows that the electricity tariff will increase by 2.8% from 2020 to 2021.
Switch to these appliances and reduce energy and water consumption that leads to a lower utility bill!
15. Set A Curfew
No, I’m not talking about a curfew for yourself, I’m talking about setting a curfew for all your electrical appliances at home to cut down those bills.
Yes, you heard right.
If you’re serious about getting into the extreme frugality lifestyle, set a few rules around the electrical appliances in your house.
- No switching on the light between 6 a.m. to 7.30 p.m.
- The fridge can’t be opened more than 4 times a day.
- Water can only be boiled twice a day.
These are just some examples, but apply any rule that you see fit to reduce the overall utility bills.
16.Cut The Cable
You’re already paying for your internet service provider, aren’t you? Watch your movies online!
Or even better, stop watching them all together. Pick up a book to read, go for a walk, or take a nap if you’re bored.
Only a handful of us are seated on the couch in front of the TV to watch the entertainment as many are accustomed to using the handphone and laptop to browse or watch a movie.
17. Lower Your Internet Plan
So you don’t want to watch a movie online and pay for Netflix subscriptions? Great, then search for the cheapest internet subscription plan in your area and get your hands on those.
If you can get creative in finding ways to entertain yourself, an expensive internet subscription plan isn’t going to be a priority for you.
Or better yet, try living without internet at home!
18.Make Your Cleaning Products
Being an extremely frugal person, you’re not going to waste much water cleaning your home often. So, on the days that you do, get yourself equipped with some basic ingredients such as vinegar, lime, and baking soda, and you’re all set!
If you want to reduce those ingredients to just one, here are 23 ways you can use vinegar as a cleaning agent. Time to get creative!
Another extreme money-saving hack is to hunt for free furniture. Say, the chair in your house is beyond repair and you’ve Youtube-ed every possible way of saving it.
Ask your neighbor, friends, and family if they have spare furniture to give away. You could also go to the local skip to search for furniture thrown away.
Most of us have some form of furniture or another that has been collecting dust in the storeroom and has not been touched for years.
You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how easy it is to find unused furniture.
It’s free, it’s abundant, and the shelflife is long. Take full advantage of it! What more can you ask for?
If you know the rainy seasons are about to dawn on you, be prepared with buckets and storage containers to catch those gifts from the sky and use it in any way you see fit.
Practice this extreme money saving tip for a reduced water bills which leads to a happier frugal you.
Extreme Money Saving Tips
21.Pick Up Loose Change
Hey, a penny is still a penny regardless of where you find them. Ignore the weird side-eyes you get when you’re bend down trying to pick the shiny dollar you see on the sidewalk.
22.Keep And Save Your Change
Go old school with these classic examples of extreme frugality. Stash away any change you receive into a jar or a tub for emergencies.
Do not be tempted to use this spare change to splurge but keep every single penny for when you need them.
Get down to the most meticulous details when it comes to budgeting while practicing extreme frugality.
Unavoidable office dinner to attend? Set yourself a budget of USD 8 and don’t spend a single cent more.
You’ve got a cousin’s birthday coming up? Set a budget of USD 5 for the gift and don’t spend more.
Going grocery shopping? Okay good, you don’t spend more than USD 20.
You get the idea, allocate the amount you’re willing to spend for different categories of expenditure in your life, and do your best to stick to the budget.
24.Track Your Expenditure
Extreme frugality would not be complete without this tip. Tracking your expenses will give you clarity on your finances. You will know exactly where your money is coming from and where it is going.
It can reveal any spending issues you may have and help you adhere to the frugal budget you’ve mapped out for yourself.
25.Review Your Finances And Get Out Of Debt
Nothing is going to weigh you down than the crippling debts you have around you. Sit down, get real about your finances, and work your way towards getting yourself out of debt.
26.Don’t Splurge Your Bonus
Receiving bonuses is an exciting time for all especially during the holiday season. Sales are in every store you walk by, each with its tantalizing invitation for you to go in and spend your money.
After all, it’s only once a year, right? What harm could it do?
You would be indirectly sabotaging yourself on your journey to extreme frugality by doing so.
Purchasing items for the sole purpose that they’re on sale when they’re not going to add value to your life is a waste of money and it’s time for you to stop doing so.
Stash away your bonuses and only use them when necessary.
It is no surprise that people tend to overspend with the tiny piece of plastic in their hands. Although having a credit card has proven to be beneficial in many ways, it’s also brought more harm than good to some.
When you stick to only using cash, you’ve respected the budget you’ve allocated for said expenditure. It would be easier for you to track where your money is spent and it will help you in adhering to your extreme frugality goal.
28.No Spend Challenge
This challenge was a trend for a while and quickly became one of the popular extreme frugality ideas.
A no-spend challenge is where you impose a shopping ban on yourself for a certain period, 30 days, 6 months, 1 year, that’s entirely up to you.
Many content creators have done so and documented their journey on Youtube. Some of the channels are:
Extreme Thrifty Living
29.Thrift Your Wardrobe
Don’t be tempted to go into every store to shop especially during the sale season. Walking through a thrift shop is like walking through a treasure box, filled with collectibles and vintage pieces.
I mean come one, wouldn’t you want a vintage Chanel bag for 10 bucks?
Even if you’re not into branded items, a thrift store is a great way to build an entire wardrobe for an obscenely cheap price.
Tip- Go to thrift shops in expensive areas to get high quality luxury items for cheap! My favourite Zara coat and Chanel books were from a thrift shop 🙂 All less than $50.
So you don’t have thrift stores around your neighborhood. There’s still a way to be extremely frugal.
Only shop secondhand
This applies to clothes, furniture, or any appliances that you may need. Get on social media groups on Facebook like US Secondhand Buying and Selling and Buying & Selling Anything (NYC) for a sea of secondhand goods that will keep you aligned to your saving goals.
Aside from thrift stores, garage sales are a great way for you to hunt for used items. With garage sales, not only will you find items that are cheap but there are high chances of you finding items that are still in pristine condition.
If they’re not dirty, then turn your clothes inside out. You’re saving water and electricity bills, it’s a win for you.
Having a capsule wardrobe means having a wardrobe that has a few essential yet versatile pieces that can be worn for any occasion.
Once you’ve laid down these staple pieces, not only will you save money from the shopping, you can avoid having decision fatigue from deciding what to wear!
Here’s a video explaining How To Build Your Perfect Capsule Wardrobe!
Hey, there’s no shame in receiving free samples, I love me some freebies. #ifitsfreeitsforme!
Collect any handouts you receive in the mall or when you’re walking down the street. Packs of gummies, instant coffee sachets, instant noodles, toilet paper, hand sanitizer, etc.
You get my drift.
Here’s a list of websites you can check out for more free samples (yay!) :
- PINCHme – Health and Beauty Samples
- Walmart Beauty Box – Beauty Samples
- Walmart Baby Box – Baby Item Samples
- SampleSource – Household Cleaning, Makeup Products, and Food Samples
- Smiley 360 – General Product Samples
- Daily Goodie Box – General Product Samples
SelfCare Frugality Hacks
Bring on all the natural remedies that can be done from things you already have at home.
Don’t be a doctor and try to fix an open wound, I’m not telling you to do that.
I’m talking about annoying hiccups like a headache, or a mild cold, or a swollen ankle, that can be taken care of at home.
36.Cut Your Hair
Grooming is expensive. Hair cuts, on average, costs around USD 40 – USD 66. That’s a lot of money spent in a year just for trimming off excess hair.
Get cozy with a pair of scissors and a mirror and get chopping yourself!
If you’ve got healthy luscious hair, sell them and make yourself some extra cash. This website tells you everything you need to know on How To Sell Your Hair For Cash.
37.Ditch The Manicures
Further examples to support my point above that grooming is expensive. The average basic manicure is priced at USD 22.75.
We’re not living to impress anybody, so save your cash and DIY your nails at home.
Get your minds out of the gutter as this tip is especially useful for mothers with babies. Even though mommy may not be getting her relaxing shower time, you’ll be able to save on your water bill!
Actually, get your mind back in the gutter! Showering together with your partner could be a nice romantic way to end the day 🙂
39.Recycle Tea Bags
Used tea bags can be included in your at-home, spa day. Using tea bags has been a famous home remedy for depuffing your eyes.
It has also said to soothe irritated skin and hydrate dry skin. So don’t throw away all those tea bags you’ve been using and take advantage of them!
40.Workout At Home
Gym memberships are overrated and ridiculously priced. There are millions of FREE Youtube workout videos for you to do where all you need is just some space at home.
Here are some Youtubers you can check out :
41.Walk Or Bike
You’re going to be fit as a fiddle and save money on transportation costs with this tip.
There’s no need to take the bus or train when you’re heading to a place that’s just five or ten minutes away from your home. Practice walking and get those extra steps in or get a secondhand bike and start biking to your destinations!
Entertainment Frugal Living Tips
42.Use The Library
Libraries tend to be the cornerstone of a good and healthy community.
Not only does it give you access to get lost in different realms of the world through books, but it is also FREE once you’ve obtained a library card.
I actually used my library card to help me pass important professional exams! I used all the course materials for FREE!
43.Borrow From Friends and Family (NOT Money)
In the mood to watch the entire Home Alone franchise, but you don’t have them and you don’t want to spend money renting the DVDs?
Hit up a family or friend and ask if you could borrow them. They’re most probably going to lend it to you as long as you return in the condition it is given to you.
Take this tip and apply it for other forms of entertainment like borrowing board games, etc.
44.Hit The Parks
When was the last time you took a walk around the park or laid down on the grass with a good book in your hand?
With this extreme frugal lifestyle, you can start doing so.
Go on outside and soak up the sunshine and you’ll be returning home in a joyous mood. Remember to lather up the sunscreen!
Another jackpot activity that will help you pass the time, make you feel good about yourself and not a dime has to be forked out.
Free feel good entertainment that helps people !
Not everyone has the budget to call on Kelly Wearstler (She’s an established interior designer in America) for a good-old makeover at home.
For an alternative fun weekend at home, try rearranging your furniture. It will give your home a new flair, makes it look fresh, and it won’t cost you a dollar.
47.Sign Up For Free Online Courses
The internet is a sea of information and plenty of them are FREE!
Can Frugality Make You Rich?
When you’re focused on spending only on what you need, and saving and investing as much as possible, then yes!
It is liberty and a privilege in deciding where your money goes, whether you’d like to spend or save them. When you make wise decisions with your budget and only spend on necessities, I don’t see why you can’t become rich.
Educate yourself with savings, budgeting, and investments and let your money grow and work for you!
How Can I Be Super Frugal?
Being a frugal extreme means you’re spending your money wisely.
You will need to get cozy, grab yourself a cup of coffee, and do a review on your spending habits. With frugal living, you only spend on essentials, the luxury handbag and the fancy new car should not be on your list.
There is no one definitive way to be super frugal, it varies from one individual to another. However, with extreme frugal living, you will get creative in finding ways to save money.
So if that is something you’re into, or if you’re thinking of downsizing your life, make a list of anything and everything essential to you, and find ways to remove any expenses that are not!
As a bonus, here are some extreme frugality youtube channels for you to check out :
Even though it is fun to spend because of YOLO (you only live once), it won’t be as fun when the credit card debts pile up on you and you’re drowning, wondering why you are living paycheck-to-paycheck.
Extreme frugal living can help you sort out your priorities in terms of money management so get going with any of these extreme frugality tips, take them with a grain of salt and be in control of your finances!