Frugality

14 Simple Life Hacks That Have Each Saved Me $100 (Or More) Since My Financial Turnaround

As many of you know, I’m constantly trying out little lifestyle changes and tweaks just to see if they’re something that actually saves money and if they’re something that integrates well into my life. I’ll usually try out these tactics for a while and then do my best to assess whether or not it’s actually …

Categories: Frugality

Give Your Entire Home a Makeover for Under $500

You pull into your driveway, glance at the yard, and a wave of disgust sweeps over you. The yard is a mess and you can’t stand to look at it another day. And that’s just the beginning. A tap of the garage clicker reveals a cluttered chasm of chaos, and quickly reminds you why you’re forced to …

A Frugal Guide to Amateur Astronomy

Several months ago, I had a wonderful evening with my six year old daughter where we spent more than an hour (up until bedtime) in the backyard under the night sky, looking up at the stars. We talked about how big the universe is. We talked about how most of the dots in the sky …

Categories: Family, Frugality

Saving Money in Your Startup — Part 3

If you’ve been following along with this series, you’ve already thought about where to locate your business, the cost of living in your city, where to set up your home office or workplace, how expensive coffee shops are, how to legally set up your business entity, the business model canvas and lean startup methodologies, DIY …

Our Family’s Eight Favorite Slow Cooker Recipes

Two to three nights a week, our family has a dinner that’s served directly out of a slow cooker. It’s something that either Sarah or I assembled in the morning before the daily rush began and it’s ready to eat when our family is gathered for dinner. This has a bunch of advantages. One, it …

Categories: Frugality, Meals

The Ultimate Guide to Getting Free Kid’s Clothes

In 2009, I had my first child, a girl I named Lydia Rose. She was beautiful and dainty just like a baby doll, and I loved dressing her up in cute little outfits and taking all kinds of pictures. Unfortunately, those first few years turned out to be expensive. Since I wasn’t all that frugal …

Saving Money in Your Startup — Part 2

So you’re thinking about starting a business. Congrats! Now what? Odds are good that if you’re starting a business, you’re a “solopreneur” — meaning it’s just you, and you’ve got some questions about what to do next. Whether it’s your first startup or you’ve been down this path before, identifying and accessing key resources — both …

Some Thoughts on Extreme Cheapskates

Extreme Cheapskates is a “reality” television series that airs on TLC that just entered its third season. Over the last two years, the show has launched a new season in October and, as with the previous two Octobers, I’ve been asked a few questions about my take on the show. First of all, I’m not …

Hacking Six Normal Life Routines to Save Time and Money

In my experience, many of the truly useful frugal tactics come about from little tweaks to one’s daily routine. If you can look at something that you do almost every day and find some little way to shave a minute off of it, you’ve saved more than six hours over the course of a year. …

Saving Money in Your Startup

We get it. You’re starting a new businesses and you’re strapped for cash. There are a million questions going through your head. We empathize with bootstrapping entrepreneurs and small-business owners everywhere, and today we explore meaningful ways (that add up) where your business can save money in the early phases. That said, every small-business owner …

Hobbies on the Path to Financial Independence

Let me start off by describing several hobbies I’ve enjoyed over the years. It’s not a secret that I’m an avid reader. Once upon a time, I had a large collection of books that I’d purchased in various places. Some of them were cheap as they were bought at secondhand stores or acquired via Paperbackswap. …

Fifteen Things I Skimp On

A couple of days ago, I posted a list of fifteen items I don’t skimp on. That list mostly consisted of extremely heavy use items and maintenance of my health and my most expensive purchases (homes and automobiles). So, what do I skimp on? In truth, I skimp on a lot of things… but they’re …

Categories: Frugality

Fifteen Items I Don’t Skimp On

Frugality is a major part of our financial independence strategy. Since we live on only one income and save the other one, we have to be quite careful with our spending. As I’ve mentioned many times, my perspective on frugality is to spend as little as possible on things that aren’t as important to us …

Categories: Frugality

Nine Strategies for Stretching Out a Tiny Food Budget

We’ve all faced it at some point in our life. Your next paycheck isn’t due to arrive for a week or so. You don’t have much in your checking account and there’s not too much in the cupboards, either. You need to put food on the table for the next week but you have only …

Triggering the Spark of Financial Independence and Frugality

Kayla writes in: I’ve never really understood how you could suddenly make the switch from way overspending to actually living on just one of your two incomes and saving half of your income. How does that even happen? As I thought about Kayla’s question, I started writing a list of things that I felt played …

Eight Strategies for Buying Clothes Without Destroying Your Budget

At our house, I’m the lucky one. I work from home so it doesn’t really matter too much what I wear most days, so I dress for comfort. Almost every day, you’ll find me in blue jeans and a t-shirt. I have some nicer clothes for social occasions and presentations, but those mostly just stay …

Using Paprika for Meal Planning and Grocery Shopping

Most of the time, I prefer to talk about free computer programs and smartphone apps that are useful for me financially, but today I’m going to make an exception and talk about a paid program – Paprika. (It costs $4.99 for smartphones and tablets and has a $19.99 desktop version for Mac (with a Windows …

Categories: Frugality, Meals, Technology

Seven Clever Food Strategies for Stretching a Small Budget

There are a lot of strategies out there for stretching a food budget, from couponing to meal planning. I’ve laid out our six-step plan for organizing cheap meals many times on The Simple Dollar, and it’s a routine we stick to almost every week. Still, that’s not the end of the road when it comes …

Categories: Frugality, Meals

20 Great Games to Play with Stuff You Already Have

Playing games at the kitchen table is a regular part of life at our house. I play games after school three or four days a week with my children, as well as a family game night most weeks. Sarah and I play games together one or two nights a week, and I have a regular …