This is my list on how I’m being Frugal, Thrifty and a Cheapskate. Adopt some of these ideas and you can save a lot of money.
For years I listen to all the talking heads on the TV and radio telling me I’ll need almost a million dollars to maintain my life style. For a long time I believed them until I turned 62 years old. The recession was going strong and I didn’t believe that finding a good job was a viable option. So both my wife Karen and I decided to make a go of it at 62. Yes we lost a little money for retiring early and now believe we made the right decision. Too many of our friends were dropping dead to young and we didn’t want to wait any longer. We agreed we would make it on our retirement money which included social security for both of us and a small pension from our employers.
This is what we learned about not spending money.
– We paid off the house
– We paid off all debt no credit card balances.
– We bought a used Dodge Durango for cash and fix it our self.
– We stopped buying things that we didn’t really need.
Now we are actually trying to get rid of stuff we have around the house. We both came to the conclusion that everything we have is something we have to worry about. All this stuff owns us and we couldn’t do anything until it was all gone. When your retired you don’t want to be burdened by stuff and that makes it easier to get rid of junk. We found that the more we got rid of the better everything got. The old adage “Less is Best” is exactly right. It took to long for us to figure that out. Last year we lived in our 18 foot Zoom Dutchman trailer in Pigeon Forge for 10 months. We learned fast about not bringing anything back home, there is no place to put it. This was a great learning experience.
So now each month we only have to worry about;
1. House taxes
2. Water utilities (capture and use rain water it’s free)
3. Electric utility (biggest thing here is; turn off everything your not using, The higher you set the air conditioner the cheaper it is)
4. Phone ( we only use our cell phones, no house phone)
5. TV provider ( we cut the cable TV off and signed up for SlingTV, big savings and it works fine)
6. Internet provider ( signed up with Spectrum for just the internet it cost less than $20 a month)
7. Car insurance (keep changing companies we saved money every time we changed companies, there is no loyalty discounts)
8. Food (We buy our food at Aldi, Save-a-lot and WalMart other stores cost more money)
All these items added up and cost us about $1400.00 a month.
I believe we could lower that bill more with just a little effort. I’m planning to install solar panels for the house. Currently we use one 100 Watt solar panel on our mini camper and it runs the refrigerator with no drop out! We used it from March 2017 until the end of June 2017 and never ran out of electricity!
We seldom purchase anything new instead we go to thrift stores and yard sales to find what we might need. But we don’t need to hunt for things so much now because we simple stopped buying junk we don’t really need.
Since we readjusted our way of living and thinking about money we are living now with more money and we don’t go without anything we need! Once you change the way you use money you can save money for a rainy day because you don’t need it today. Every time we are thinking about spending some money we ask can we live without it. You’ll be surprised how much you can live without. You didn’t need anything until you saw it and then couldn’t live without it. Here is were friends can help borrow a tool before buying it.
Watch some of the shows on TV that show people living off the land and managing to make the things they need and grow their own food. We all can learn from that way of thinking.
– Freeze 1/2 the loaf of bread before you need to through it out, store bread in refrigerator.
– Turn off the lights, and make sure you are using only LED lights, big savings.
– Put glues and batteries in your refrigerator they will last longer.
– Pills should be stored in you refrigerator.
– Reuse all the containers and plastic bags you get from the store.
– Start a small garden, don’t go big you will be sorry if it gets out of control.
– Cut the cable. We purchased a cheap internet service (30mbps for $15/month) and started using Sling TV it only cost $25 a month and you can watch it anywhere! We purchase a good TV antenna for our house to get local news and weather.
– Buy less processed food, can goods, soda etc… make your own drinks with less sugar.