Frugality is a virtue while being cheep is not. A good place to start embracing frugality is spending cash as opposed to living on credit. One advantage of using cash is you never spend more than what you have. This approach helps with savings if you put all your change in a piggy bank and deposit the monthly savings into a savings account.
Once you develop the discipline to spend according to the plan you can use your credit card for the monthly planned expenses and pay off the full balance at each billing cycle. This allows you take advantage of “Supplier Credit”, a form of free financing businesses take advantage of. Use of credit card for monthly expenses allows you to collect points that can be used towards vacations, etc. By applying this technique, my family took 2 cruise vacations on the points earned by paying for my PhD because we planned ahead! When my family had orthodontic work done, I asked my dentist if I could negotiate an interest free payment plan since insurance does not cover it. My dentist at the Dental Shoppe offered me a 6-month interest free plan without hesitation. Building relationships with businesses
we deal with always come in handy and negotiating goes a long way.
Another technique businesses use is “Relationships Management” and this can serve consumers and small businesses well. My family has saved real money over the last year purely due to our relationship with employees at ULTA , Wisted’s Super Market and other local small businesses because we made a conscious decision to help our local businesses as a way to helping our community deal with tuff economic times. A strategic partnership between consumers and small business is going to be vital for our economic progress and why not take a page from big businesses and make it work one community at a time?