If you’ve been itching to save money or pay down your debt more aggressively, the answer may be simple: practice extreme frugality for one year.
Extreme frugality is the practice of evaluating each of your expenses and looking for the best ways possible to further cut those expenses. Only with this technique you’d be going to the “extreme”.
By implementing extreme frugality in your life for just one year you’d be able to save a substantial amount of money.
I do want to note that it’s probably not practical for you to constantly use extreme measures in your savings. However, if you can commit to a more frugal life for just one year you can make a huge impact on your personal finances.
Here are some tips for practicing extreme frugality for one year.
Determine Wants vs. Needs
The most important tactic in practicing extreme frugality is determining your wants verses needs.
For example, you may want a new pair of jeans but do you really need them? You may want a certain brand of household cleaner, but would baking soda and vinegar do the trick?
When assessing your true wants verses needs you’re going to run into all sorts of tough questions. You’ll have to take the time to really think if an item is an actual need or simply something that you want.
Do It Yourself
Another important component of practicing extreme frugality is being able to do things yourself. You’ll need to brush up on your handy man skills, cooking skills, and take on a general DIY attitude.
When you’re able to be more self-sufficient you can save a ton of money.
It’s also important to realize that there might be some projects that pop up that are beyond your capabilities. When this happens you’ll need to either hire a professional or ask for help. If not, you may end up costing yourself more money in the long run.
Look for Ways to Cut Costs
The whole point of practicing extreme frugality is to save money. This means you’ll need to stay on the lookout for ways to cut costs.
Since extreme frugality is meant to be used as a short term tool there are several things you can do to cut your costs:
- Look for cheaper housing
- Use your car less
- Use coupons
- Cook your own meals
- Perform basic repairs yourself
Just be creative and look for ways in which you can further cut your budget.
The hardest thing about practicing extreme frugality for a year is remaining motivated. It’s very likely that you’ll get burnt out in a short period of time.
To help you stay motivated you should look for support, read frugality books and blogs, and remember that these sacrifices you are making are short term and are for the greater good of your financial situation.
What tips do you have for practicing extreme frugality for a year?