NDSU Extension Service - Ramsey County


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More Frugal Tips

More Frugal Tips


                A column in the recent past featured some tips and tricks for saving money and garnered quite few comments and requests for more of the same.  More of the same follows!

                -  Create a “wait and see” list.  If you spot something you want to purchase, write down the info about the item, or snap a photo on your smartphone and let it gel for a few days. If it truly is something you need and a good buy, then purchase it. But if you are like more Americans, after a few days the impulse buying need will have disappeared.

                  Set up payment alerts on your calendar. Whether your calendar is one that hangs on your frig and you write the family schedule on or it is an app on your phone, most of us have a calendar that reminds of all types of commitments.  Add when your bills are due to your calendar and never again be charged a late fee.

                . Try the “minus one” game.  Every time you are in line to purchase a cart full of items – whether groceries, clothing, household items, toys, etc. review the contents of your cart and see if there is one item – no matter how inexpensive – that you can live without. Another great way to break the cycle of impulse buying!

                . Prioritize your spending. Look at your spending. Really think about what you are buying and why you are buying it. Do your purchases match what is important in your life? Focus your efforts and spending on what is most important to you.

                . Audit yourself.  Most of us associate audits with the IRS but auditing yourself can again assist you focus on what is important in your life and spend accordingly.

                .  Always, always compare prices. Consumers compare prices on large ticket items such as homes and cars but often skip comparisons on small ticket items.  You may feel that comparing prices when it comes to smaller items may not be worth doing if the savings are minimal.   After all, “time is money” so why spend time comparing prices?  It is often the smaller ticket items, again impulse spending, that can over the long haul derail a budget so find the cheapest cup of coffee in your neighborhood and enjoy.


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