Money Saving Tips

10 Things Frugal People Don’t Pay For

10 Things Frugal People Don't Pay For
Written by Irina Vasilescu

Aside from the things you really shouldn’t do – like getting free pirated movies and music – there are things you really shouldn’t pay for. And guess what? Unlike pirated media, they really are perfectly legal. Nobody’s going to come knocking on your door to find out why you didn’t pay because getting them free is absolutely normal.

Would you like to know more? We uncover all the things you can get for absolute nada entirely legally. We’d call it a ‘steal’ except you aren’t stealing anything! How cool is that?

10 Things Frugal People Don't Pay For.cdr

1. Bin Liners

Have you noticed how the plastic shopping bags seem to multiply in your cupboard? That’s unless you’re an organized, eco-conscious shopper who takes your own bags along. Even if this is you, what’s the bet friends and family have been collecting? Ask them for some of their surpluses and repurpose them as free bin liners.

2. Bottled Water

Water can either be an incredibly economical beverage or a total waste. Most of the cost of bottled water is tied up in transport and packaging. Don’t like the chemical taste of tap water? Plenty of great water filters will get rid of it for you. Or use water from your rainwater harvesting tank run through a filter.

3. Household Repairs

Ok. There are some things you really shouldn’t attempt on your own, but with YouTube videos to guide you, a lot of the handy tasks you’d usually hire help for can be achieved by yourself. Need a washer changed on a dripping tap? Want to know how to refinish wood furniture? All the info you need is online. Go for it!

4. High Insurance Premiums

Unless you’re at great risk, chances are, you’ll never claim on those low-excess, high-cost premiums. Your money is better spent on creating a savings account for emergencies. And if the emergencies don’t materialize, it’s there to spend on whatever you need most at the time. There is an element of the gamble in opting for this course, but you can assess the savings versus the risk yourself.

And while we’re talking high premiums, what about surplus insurance policies? If you’re inclined to say ‘yes’ to telesales people and banks, you may well find that you’re very over insured. Just how many life insurance policies do you actually need? And the ones you buy through your bank or telesales probably have high commissions that are deducted from every premium.

Don’t miss: How to Save Money on Life Insurance

5. Extended Warranties

The cheaper the extended warranty package, the less likely you will be to need to claim on it. That’s how warranties work. Paying for a product to fulfill its expected lifespan doesn’t really make sense. The makers are pretty sure it will make it there, or they wouldn’t be offering the warranty. Depending on the size of your purchase, how much you’ll be using the item, and your history with similar items, consider opting for a standard warranty that’s included in the acquisition price.

6. Late Fees

Here’s’ a cost that’s an absolute waste of money. Late payment fees just aren’t worth the bucks they’ll cost you. Pay on time. Ask your service providers to adjust payment dates if need be, but don’t subject yourself to wasteful penalties.

7. Interest

Every cent you owe comes back to you in the form of interest. If you can, zero your credit card before the end of the billing cycle and pay a little more off on your debts than you actually need to. We’ve already discussed how just a few dollars more every month can help you to flatten your debt fast, saving you interest compounded over your repayment period. Try one of the many online debt repayment calculators to see how much difference a few dollars can make.

8. Business Classes

Yes! We’re absolutely serious. You can build your business skills online for free! Here’s how: the US Small Business Administration Learning Center is offering a range of business courses at no cost! Build your business savvy without paying a cent, and become the next big name business owner! Don’t forget you hear it here first…

9. Magazines and Books

Seriously, what interests you? Chances are, you’ll find all the latest info in your interest area online for free. Want to see the latest fashions? Get some beauty tips? Catch up on celebrity gossip? Get the coolest recipes, sewing or knitting patterns and craft ideas?

Pinterest is a source of ideas as visually stimulating as a regular magazine – if not more so because you get so many options. As for celebrity gossip, it may not be what the internet is ‘for’ as such, but you’ll find more than your fair share of juicy stories.

As for free e-books, aside from sites like Project Gutenberg, BookBub, and more, your public library is probably offering hundreds of titles for free. You don’t even have to go to the library. These days, library websites allow you to get free eBooks too.

10. Text Messages

If you haven’t got WhatsApp yet, get with it! And if you don’t want yet another message platform to check, ask your friends to message you on Facebook or send you an email. Compared to the standard SMS rate, the data you’ll use is negligible. If you’ve got a good data package, you can call it ‘free’!

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Things Frugal People Don't Pay For

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About the author

Irina Vasilescu

Irina Vasilescu is our money-saving and DIY expert and also the editor-in-chief as she's always on the lookout for the latest online deals.


  • While I agree with many of the tips in this article, I do pay for bottled water because I love carbonated mineral water and it’s a real treat for me to have it, so I don’t worry about having to pay for it.

  • In 2016 the economy is slowing going down , people in society are finding ways to save money in the most convenient way possible for them , banks are offering interest back to their costumers on every cents that they spent , it might not be much but its a way for them to say that they have your back through this rough time that we live in. When it comes to saving there are ways to avoid spending that extra dollar for example, stay away from late fees, paying on time can really keep your money in your pocket for a cup of coffee or even a little shopping spree.

  • Well I can feel good about being frugal. I have a cupboard just for grocery bags. I reuse them for the bathroom trash can and for scooping the kitty litter. Or if I just need a bag. I also donate a lot of my bags to my mom for her market. She doesn’t buy bags in wholesale she just saves her grocery bags and most of her customers give theirs too her for free and a local store also saves her pop flats to help her out! Nothing wrong with that. I think I only ever had a late fee once, I mean honestly just pay stuff on time and then its not an issue. Love the tips here found some new ones for me to follow 🙂

  • Not buying bottles of water is one of the best tips on here. If you buy the cheapest case of water, which is usually around $4, you could easily spend upwards of $50 a month or more depending on how much water your family drinks. By myself, I went through at least 2 cases a week in college.

    Comparatively, a quality filter will run you $20-30 and will last close to 3 months. It is such a simple change that will literally save you hundreds of dollars a year.

  • I definitely use a few of these strategies myself, the insurance one is probably the most life altering if one is willing to commit to regularly put money aside in the event of an emergency. The library app has got to be the most fun, kind of dangerous when your book ends and you can get right into another work by the same author.

  • I certainly don’t pay for simple house repairs anymore. I realised just how much money I was wasting by asking other people to do them, and since I realised that I haven’t paid anyone since. I will simply search on the internet to see how things are done, and will make sure that I know how to do as much as possible. I think it is great, and I certainly enjoy learning to do things that I wasn’t able to do myself in the past.

  • These are so true! I rarely pay for bottled water, even on sale. Nowadays I try to use my refillable water bottle and the water filter that comes on my fridge, especially when I go out for a day trip where I know I’ll need more than just one bottle. I, too, have a cupboard full of trash bags from the grocery store and some shopping trips, which I use for the trash bin in my room. They really do come in handy! Plus, I don’t think I’ve payed for a new book in years. I’ve learned that if you can’t find it in the library, thrift stores or used book stores are your best bet. Are there any other items you would never pay for?

  • Sorry, can’t agree with the insurance tip if you are including health insurance. We pay a higher premium each month than we would for plans that require deductibles and copays. It’s a known and fixed expense that we budget for, unlike what we would have been out of pocket when I was recently hospitalized. It was a six day stay but the “treatment” consisted of starving me and pumping me with morphine, not exactly high tech medicine. The total charge to our insurers: $68,000. Not many of us have an emergency fund for a 20% copay plus a $2,000 deductible with those numbers. A hospital employee told me last week that she was in for four days, for back surgery. Total charge: $400,000.

    Anyone with the income to save up for today’s medical expenses probably isn’t interested in frugality.

  • I agree with these completely! I always want to stop people in the store when I see huge stacks of bottled water in their carts and say “there’s a better way!”, but I think I would probably get beat up. My four year old even has her own re-usable water bottle that we take everywhere instead of plastic bottles, she loves filling it from the water fountain wherever we are.
    Thank you for sharing how you save!

  • I don’t pay for any of these things. It amazes me how much Americans spend on bottled water. Plus, if you put it in a nice, pretty bottle, you can charge about $3 for it at any gas station and people will still buy it. I should have invested in a bottled water company a long time ago!

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