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15 Pricey Items Frugal People Can No Longer Avoid

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Frugal people often find themselves navigating shifting priorities and changing economic realities. While traditionally associated with thriftiness and cost-consciousness, frugality today requires a nuanced approach that balances financial prudence with adaptability and resourcefulness.

1. Smart Moves with Smartphones

Smart Moves with Smartphones
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Whether you need to apply for a job, manage your banking in a snap, or simply stay connected, smartphones have become essential tools for saving time and staying connected.

Time management apps (Todoist), Health and fitness apps (MyFitnessPal), and Financial management apps (YNAB, Mint). These apps can help transform your smartphone into a valuable asset.

2. Internet at Home: A Basic Need

elder with glasses working on laptop
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Wi-Fi used to be a perk, but now it’s essential. From online learning and remote work to healthcare access and staying connected, the internet fuels our lives. The internet allows for seamless communication across vast distances, fostering global connectivity and collaboration.

3. Health Insurance: Better Safe Than Sorry

Health Insurance
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It’s simple. Getting sick or hurt without insurance can break the bank. With rising healthcare costs, it’s a gamble no one can afford. It’s an investment, not a cost.Smart savers know it’s cheaper to have coverage than face a mountain of bills later. Be smart – secure coverage. Look for providers like Aetna, Cigna, or Blue Cross Blue Shield.

4. Going Green Saves Green

Man hand light bulb with calculator on des
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Eco-friendly living isn’t just for the birds (and bees). Swapping to LED bulbs, using reusable bags, and taking shorter showers save money on utilities. Public transport or carpooling cuts fuel costs. Small changes like these add up to big wins for your wallet and the environment.

5. Smart Thermostats

Temperature on modern Thermostats
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Smart thermostats like Nest Learning Thermostat or Ecobee Smart Thermostat put comfort at your fingertips. Control the temperature remotely using their respective apps (Nest app or Ecobee app) on your phone, no matter where you are. No more blasting the heat when you’re out.

6. Second-Hand Tech

Second-Hand Tech
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Dig for tech treasures! Eco-conscious choices go beyond reusable bags. Buying pre-owned laptops or phones reduces e-waste and saves you cash. Look for trusted sellers online or at stores like GameStop. Remember to check the device’s condition and negotiate a good price.

7. Eco-Friendly Cleaning Supplies

Group of green Cleaning Supplies
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Ditch the harsh chemicals! Eco-friendly cleaning is no longer a luxury, it’s a must-have. Go natural with white vinegar (disinfects!), baking soda (cleans & deodorizes), or castile soap (versatile cleaner). Lemons offer a refreshingly clean, while tea tree oil tackles tough jobs (dilute first!). Choose green for a healthy home and a happy planet.

8. Digital Financial Tools

Financial Planning
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Ditch the spreadsheet! Digital tools are your new money managers. Track income, expenses, and goals with budgeting apps like Mint. Keep an eye on investments with Personal Capital. Pay bills and shop securely with Apple Pay or Google Pay. These digital helpers simplify tasks, letting you focus on what matters – achieving your financial goals.

9. Quality Footwear

Quality Footwear
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Invest in quality footwear – it’s a long-term win. Look for reputable stores (Macy’s, Nordstrom), trusted online brands (Nike, Adidas), or even explore pre-owned options. Focus on features you need (waterproof?) and prioritize leather for durability. Your feet (and wallet) will thank you later!

10. Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Memberships

Community Supported Agriculture
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Ditch the supermarket routine! CSAs connect you directly with local farms. Pay upfront for a seasonal haul of fresh veggies, delivered regularly. This not only supports sustainable agriculture but also cuts grocery costs and ensures peak-season flavor – all while connecting you to your food’s source.

11. Organic Produce

Organic Markets fruits and vegetables
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Organic food isn’t just a fad anymore. While it may cost more upfront, the potential health benefits from reduced pesticide exposure are attractive. Look for the USDA Certified Organic label at supermarkets or explore options like farmers markets and CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture) for seasonal deals. 

Consider starting your garden for ultimate control over what you eat. A study by JAMA Internal Medicine in 2018 shows that consumption of organic foods reduces cancer risk.

12. Fitness Equipment

Fitness club
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Skip the gym! Invest in affordable equipment like dumbbells, kettlebells, or resistance bands for effective home workouts. These tools, available online through websites like Amazon or fitness retailers let you achieve your fitness goals without breaking the bank.

13. Water Filtration Systems

Great filter to purify your water
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Ditch bottled water! Invest in a reusable filter system like a Brita pitcher, Pur faucet attachment, or even a larger countertop model from brands like Aquasana or ZeroWater. Choose the system that fits your needs, from portable to family-sized, and enjoy clean, filtered water while helping the planet.

14. Digital Subscriptions

Subscriptions
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Digital subscriptions go beyond just buying things. For a monthly fee, access massive libraries of entertainment (Netflix, Hulu), music (Spotify, Apple Music), or educational resources (Masterclass, Skillshare). Manage finances with budgeting apps (YNAB, Mint). These subscriptions can be cost-effective in the long run, offering a wealth of content and features compared to individual purchases.

15. Home Security Systems

CCTV Security Camera
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Traditional security sufficed, but modern systems with remote access and motion sensors (like those offered by ADT Pulse or SimpliSafe) provide a smarter layer of protection. User-friendly apps allow control, while features like video monitoring (through apps like Ring or Nest) enhance security. These smart-systems bring peace of mind and may even lower insurance costs.

 

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