Start 2021 right by living your life frugally.
Frugal living will help you save money and be less wasteful in the process. By buying and needing fewer items, you can appreciate what you have and the people around you more.
While the new year is just starting, there are a lot of trends you may be considering.
Here are the top six frugal trends you should watch out for, and maybe try, in 2021. Let’s get started.
1. Meal Planning and Meal Prep
Everyone has to eat and cutting down on your food bill one of the best ways to save money and live a frugal lifestyle.
One way you can do this is through meal planning and meal preparation. Meal planning is simply whenever you make dishes in advance and eat them throughout the week. This cuts down on eating out or impulse buys.
Not to mention, meal planning is a great way to make your week less stressful. Since the food is cooked in advance, you still have a great home cooked meal, even on the night that you get in late.
To begin meal planning, do a survey of what you already have in your cupboard. This will give you a good idea of meals to start out with, so you don’t waste what you already have. By looking in your cupboard, you may only need to grocery shop every other week.
Once you know what you have, you can start to create meal planning ideas. Go to the grocery to get any ingredients that you don’t have on hand. Only get ingredients that you need for your meal planning—don’t get snacks or junk food that you don’t need.
While you are grocery shopping, you can use cash back apps like Ibotta. This will help you save more money while shopping.
Once you have all your ingredients, you can go ahead and make your meals. Most people like to meal prep on a Sunday when they don’t have many other responsibilities. Freeze your meals and heat them up throughout the week whenever you’re ready to eat them.
2. Drop the Plastic Wrap
This is going to be a huge trend this year. Once, plastic wrap was one of the best materials for keeping food fresh over several days. Although it is great for food storage, it is incredibly wasteful and terrible for the environment.
Instead of using plastic wraps, opt for reusable containers instead. Glass containers are some of the best because they can be popped into the microwave or refrigerator, all while keeping your food fresh and healthy days after the initial preparation.
If you really can’t get by on containers alone, look at beeswax wraps instead.
These wraps are like plastic wrap, but they are reusable. This means that you only have to buy them once instead of throwing them away and buying more. Look online to buy beeswax wrap or to make your own.
3. Use Coupons
Do you remember that show from a couple of years ago about extreme couponing? Regardless of whether or not you do, you should learn from this show by only shopping when you have coupons. Coupons will help save your money.
Many people don’t know how to go about getting coupons. All you need to do is download coupon apps or go to coupon sites online.
The Internet has a variety of coupons to look at, ensuring that you can find one for about any store you go to. Groupon, RetailMeNot, and coupons.com are some of our favorites.
4. Free Entertainment Only
Coming out of 2020, many people are going a bit stir crazy after being stuck in their house. As a result, they are willing to pay just about anything for fun entertainment and relaxation away from the house. Even though entertainment is great, you certainly don’t have to pay for it.
There are tons of free entertainment options today or check out more at mostlysimplelife.
- You can go to a church, Community Center, or library to check out free community events.
- Go for a hike, read, or have a picnic by yourself.
- Take a scenic drive.
- Join a remote book club.
- Learn a new language.
There are plenty of ways to get out of the house and entertain yourself for free.
Not to mention, many entertainment services are going remote. The New York Times even lists free entertainment ideas every week on their Sunday paper.
This shows that there are tons of free entertainment options, some of them local while others are remote.
5. Buy Used
Today, there are tons of thrift and retail stores that sell used products. Instead of buying new on everything, buy used. Buying used is a great way to be frugal and minimalist while still feeling cute and refreshed.
Being frugal isn’t about buying cheap items, though. Instead, it’s about buying quality items and minimizing your budget. Buying used does not mean you should buy low quality or worn out items. This is the opposite of frugal.
Instead, buy used pieces that are in great condition. Many people donate clothes, furniture, and other items that have only been used lightly, if at all. This tells you that you can easily find used products that are in great condition and not a waste of money.
Even if the used item is only a dollar, if it’s bad quality, it is a dollar wasted. Look for high-quality used items to save money all around.
6. Only Drink Water
The only drink we need to survive is water. Despite this fact, you would be surprised how much people pay for drinks other than water. This includes milk, juices, soda, coffee, and tea. It really is outrageous how much people will pay for drinks.
This year, make a commitment to drink water only. This includes at your house and when you go out.
For the coffee obsessed, it may be a struggle to switch to a water only drinking diet, but it will be worth it. You can expect to save hundreds, if not thousands if you and your family only drink water.
If you do need something other than water, make it a treat.
For example, only go to a coffee shop if you have met certain financial goals or gone through a particularly rough patch. This will allow you to enjoy the drink more, but it also means that you are primarily drinking water, saving money during the rest of your life.
Make a commitment to frugal living this year. Living frugally simply means that you make smart financial decisions so that you can enjoy what you have and don’t waste any money.
Though there are tons of ways to live frugally, we recommend meal planning, dropping plastic wrap, using coupons, opting for free entertainment only, buying used items and only drinking water.
These six ideas will help you save a whole lot of money, especially if you use them all together. Remember, it is OK to give yourself a break every now and then. As long as you are trying your best to be frugal, you are making a huge step in the right direction. Stay frugal and happy!