Frugality is often a learned skill and seldom a natural habit. It is, however, one of the best practices you can pick up. Who doesn’t like saving big on their purchases?
Instituting a certain level of thriftiness in your regular shopping can make a big difference in your bottom line, and it’s never too late to start. If you need a good starting point or some new ideas, here are some excellent tips.
Avoid malls and trendy stores while looking for the best deals on clothing. You’ll always pay retail, or close to it when you shop at places like that.
When you’re a thrifty clothing shopper, you don’t have to compromise style or even your preferred name brands. Luckily, discount stores are abundant like Kohls, Ross, or Marshalls in which you can score great deals. Often, these stores will have great sales and coupons available as well!
Be sure not to skip over consignment stores in your search for a great deal. You can usually find gently or never worn name brand clothing at these establishments for deep discounts. You can even bring in your clothing for store credit or cash. Win-win!
The key to frugality in grocery shopping is not buying anything that’s not essential. Before heading to the store, take inventory on items you already have. Skipping this step could mean wasting money making purchases on things you already had.
Once you’ve assessed your stock, plan out the meals you are going to be making through the next shopping trip – don’t forget snacks! Then begin making your shopping list. Be sure to include all ingredients needed to prepare your meals. Also, double check for any household items, such as paper towels and toothpaste, that may be needed.
If you’re able, purchasing a membership to a wholesale store, like Costco or Sam’s Club, can be beneficial by allowing you to save money on the items you regularly use by buying them in bulk. Often, these types of stores offer sales and promotions on their memberships. If you keep an eye out, you may be able to snag one for cheap!
Appliances and furniture can be big-ticket purchases, making it especially important to get a great deal.
For appliances, don't go into the buying process with the idea of getting the latest and greatest model. Usually, the basic models will cover all of your needs. Consider checking out scratch-and-dent stores. These stores have things like refrigerators and stoves that are new and function correctly, but they might have been scuffed or dinged during transport. If you prefer to shop at a big box retailer for your appliances, don’t hesitate to negotiate with the salesperson. In skipping this, you may skip out on a significant discount! These stores will also often have open box items on sale or floor models available that can save you a nice sum of money.
When it comes to furniture shopping, watching and waiting for the right sale can be essential. Often, furniture stores will deeply discount their inventory on big holidays such as Labor Day. These retailers tend to run circular ads each week advertising their latest sales. While some of these sales can be gimmicky, you can find gems if you’re looking. As with appliance shopping, don’t be scared to negotiate with the sales staff for a lower price. Inquiring into discounted floor models or scratch-and-dent inventory can also prove fruitful.
With both appliance and furniture shopping, look into buying from an individual who’s selling it used. You’ll need to be careful doing this as there is no guarantee as to the items working condition, but this route can sometimes save you hundreds of dollars.