5 Tips to Live More Frugally This Summer
As we near the end of June, you may be seeing a dip in your summer budget. It’s not uncommon to spend more money during these fun, sunny months. But if you want to keep it up, you’ll need to find other ways to make sacrifices this summer. Here are five ways you can start living more frugally starting today!
1. Pack your own food.
Paying for meals while out and about, especially if you’re at a featured attraction, is a very easy way to lose a lot of money fast. Instead of waiting to solve the solution of hunger until it’s lunch time, which is a common trap during summer, have a plan in action already. Pack a lunch each morning and keep it in a cooler. No matter where you are when lunchtime strikes, you won’t fall victim to fast food or high prices.
As a bonus, shopping for your food at farmer’s markets may also save you some money while giving you fresher produce.
2. Make your home more efficient.
The energy costs of keeping a home cool are a pain point for many homeowners. Even though you can’t control the temperature outside, you can have a bit more power inside. Switch to more energy efficient lightbulbs, keep blinds and doors closed in rooms where people aren’t, make sure windows are sealed to avoid air conditioning escaping, and use fans whenever possible to keep yourself cool and the air circulating.
3. Find free activities.
There are plenty of fun things to do that are inexpensive or even free. Check out your local library branch and community centers for free activities or events. In Kansas City, we’re especially lucky to have free cultural experiences like Deanna Rose Children's Farmstead, museums, fountains and plazas for passing time and getting those steps in!
4. Swap fees for fees.
If you’re spending more time at the pool than lounging in front of the television, consider canceling your streaming services for the summer and using that money for a pool pass instead. Look for other creative ways you can swap out your seasonal activities—just like your wardrobe.
5. Enjoy experiences.
Keep in mind that you don’t need to spend a lot of money to make memories. You can enjoy experiences outdoors, indoors, at home or on vacation—and time together can provide its own fun.
The principle of a frugal life is to not spend money you don’t have. If you don’t need it, second guess if you can really afford it. What’s left will be the things you need, a good savings plan, and true joy that comes from the time you spend and the special treats you deem worthy of your hard-earned dollars.
Kat’s Money Corner is posted in the Kansas City Star every week. Kat Hnatyshyn, when not blogging or caring for her little ones, is a manager with CommunityAmerica Credit Union. For more financial chatter, follow us on Twitter @CommunityAmerCU.