When thinking about how minimalism saves money, I realized what a valuable concept it actually was.
Minimalism means having and spending the least amount you can and still feeling at peace. Being intentional with what you decide to spend your money on and how you spend that money will keep more in your pocket and allow you to invest in different areas of your life. It means having fewer things and being aware of consumerism to reach your financial goals.
In this blog post, we will discuss how minimalism saves money as a way of life.
What Is A Frugal Minimalist
The definition of minimalism is a style characterized by spareness and simplicity. Financial minimalism just means you spend money with intention, finding money-saving hacks but also not spending on stuff as much as the average consumer. Living our daily lives without buying things will save tons of money and reduce stress and anxiety.
Sell and Eliminate What You Don’t Use
When you’re first starting on a journey to minimalism, decluttering, and purging is a huge step when you have a lot of stuff. Getting rid of things you don’t need, don’t like, and don’t use is necessary to get to a point where you can breathe.
Sell those things. Start with a yard or garage sale; consider Craigslist or Facebook marketplace. If you have high-end collectibles, an antique dealer is a great way to unload those and earn some extra cash.
Or just donate it and use the donation as a tax write-off. That itself will save money.
This might be a difficult step if you’ve grown sentimentally attached to things you’ve had for a long time. Consider taking photos to hold onto the memories.
Be Intentional With Purchases
Don’t just buy it because you like it. Buy it because it suits a purpose. Consider whether or not it has a place in your space. Can you get by without it or is it replacing something that you don’t really love?
Put some thought into every purchase. If it doesn’t fit, save your money.
This will also help with your monthly budget and slow down those impulse buys.
Consider Experiences Instead Of Things
This applies not only to ourselves but also to gifts for others. Consider a family day trip or a lunch date instead of more things for the person.
I’ve been leaning into fresh flowers for people other than gifts. A bouquet of flowers for $20 is a much better gift than a thing ( socks, a bag, a water bottle, etc) and the look on my close friend’s face when I bring flowers for their birthday is pretty special.
Well, sure, but how does that save money? When you are grateful for what you have, you have no reason to spend money on things you don’t need.
There’s no reason to go shopping for another car when you are grateful for your Toyota Minivan with 178,000 miles on it that still serve you and your family well. Practice gratitude as a rule in your daily life.
When minimalism comes up, people think of stark rooms with white furniture. That’s Not necessarily accurate.
I’m pretty minimalist, and although I love a good bright white wall, I also love warm colors, cozy furniture, and photos on the walls. I like my living space free of clutter.
Consider minimalism within your expenses. Do you need all those streaming services or is 3 enough? If you have 3 streaming services, do you need cable?
Subscription services and boxes are easy to sign up for and many will just forget to unsubscribe even though they aren’t really interested in the products anymore.
Gym memberships that you just aren’t using can be canceled. Declutter your bank account. Call your services and ask for a lower monthly fee.
Invest In Reusable Containers
This one-time investment will cost a little upfront but will save you money repeatedly. Gone are the days when you would add ziplock bags or throw away plastic containers to your shopping cart.
There’s no need for those others with your mason jars and Pyrex collection. Mason jars are not much money; all my glass containers come from the outlet store.
I have more than enough. Using reusable glass containers is one of my favorite ways minimalism saves money. However, I might have to pare down my collection.
Understand Wants Vs Needs
This point hits deep with me. As an only child (and the only grandchild for ten years), I found many of my wants were met.
My parents did a good job making me work for what I wanted.
However, my first car was from my aunt, and I bought it for $300. My grandparents mostly bought me anything I wanted: dance lessons, ear piercing, albums, and trips.
As an adult, I have learned that the wants vs needs concept still holds; even if you have the money, that doesn’t mean you should just buy it.
Hold out on that impulse Amazon purchase. Keep them in the cart for a few days (or weeks) and revisit to see if you need them. Odds are, most of those things will be removed.
Get Rid Of Two Things Before One Comes In
To keep things at a minimum, vow to eliminate two items before one enters the home. This may not always work if you have stripped down to the epitome of minimalism, but most of us are not there yet.
Consider adopting this rule for all household items, clothes, and personal things.
This might make you think twice before you purchase anything and even give you a few items for the garage sale box.
Store Less Stuff
Ten percent of Americans rent storage facilities for stuff they aren’t using. Seriously. They spend an average of $225 a month to store stuff.
Basements and attics are full (my basement is no exception) of stuff. Things we might need later but never have. We might use items 2-3 times a year, taking up space. Get rid of the storage units and stop paying for rented spaces. Think of what that extra money could do for your financial future.
Borrow Instead Of Buy
Piggybacking off the last point about storing things you only use a few times a year, consider selling the giant mason jar with a spigot that you only use once a year for the July 4th party for lemonade and then borrowing it from your best friend.
Or the beach cart you haven’t used in three years because it isn’t great in the sand.
Instead, borrow. Borrow your daughter-in-law’s triple mini crockpot for the hot appetizers the next time you have a super bowl party, and sell the ones you have on the marketplace.
Borrow books from your local library.
Saving Time With Less To Clean
How many of us have that nagging thought in the back of our heads that we really need to clean out the garage every year?
And it takes an entire weekend enlisting the entire family to do it. Couldn’t you be spending your time doing something else? Time is money, right? One of the many ways minimalism saves money.
The same thing goes for shelves, closets, cupboards, and pantries. If the thought is constantly popping into your head about needing to clean them, it’s wearing on your happiness and energy while stealing your time – time you could be spending doing something else.
Invest In Quality
This is actually my favorite way to save money. I love to invest in high-quality things that will last long term.
I would rather invest in one good pair of shoes than 10 cheap pairs. I have a casual black shoe, a casual brown shoe, a fancy black shoe, a few summer sandals, three pairs of boots (winter, rain, and fashionable), and a pair of crocks I wear as house shoes.
The same goes for winter coats, jeans, and household stuff. Quality items instead of throwaway fashion. I would rather invest in a Vitamix than 40 Nutri bullets. It’ll be cheaper in the long run.
This minimalist way to save money is a big one; choosing a smaller home. The majority of us want to upgrade. More bedrooms, bigger living rooms, more bathrooms.
We live in an 1100 square foot house with three bedrooms and two bathrooms. It used to be smaller, with two bedrooms and one bath (but then we added on).
We have a family of four, and for 19 years, we were just fine. Nobody suffered from sharing a small space.
Consider staying where you are and getting rid of the things that don’t serve you rather than getting a bigger house to fill with more things. Learn to love the home you’re in.
Living in a small home is a lifestyle choice.
This also relates to cars and lifestyle in general. Downsize your life and your spending.
Use Cash To Minimize Spending
I love cash. I’m a firm believer in minimalist budgeting. I use cash and not credit cards, I set a budget for the things I spend money on.
The cash-only money management system is easy to save time and money by limiting the amount I spend in the areas I tend to overspend on, saving me a lot of money.
Groceries for example. I know I tend to overspend at the grocery store so by putting $400 a month in an envelope for groceries, I know that $400 a month is my limit. A cash-only management system is the way to go.
Taking Care Of The Investments You Have
Keeping up on car maintenance will save you from spending money on repairs. Washing with care the clothes that you have and mending things when they need to be mended will save money on replacing them.
The same goes for your carpets. Vacuuming them a few times a week and having them cleaned will cost money today but save money on replacements. This is another way minimalism saves money.
Make Sure Everything Has A Home
Even my junk drawer is organized. I take pride in knowing where things are. This way, I don’t have to go out and buy it again when we can’t find it.
My shelving units in the basement are numbered, and everything has a place. If it doesn’t have a home, it can’t stay.
Practicing Minimalism Frees Up Time
Less stuff, less cleaning, less organizing, and more time with friends and family.
This gives you time for other things that truly matter. Painting crafts, blogging, volunteering, and even a side hustle or a new small business. Could you use that time to make money if you want to?
More time is just one of the benefits of minimalism.
Minimalism Allows for Financial Focus
Without all of the distractions of stuff, whether mental, monetary, or physical, it allows for better mental focus. And part of that mental focus can be reserved for financial decisions. Getting out of debt, investing in retirement, and purchasing investment properties.
I’m a nerd. I love saving money. So, without the mental clutter of too many financial distractions, I can focus on what matters most, giving another example of ways minimalism saves money.
Learn the Word No
Learn how to be firm in your decisions to yourself and others.
This could mean saying no to upgrades or added purchases or saying no to others. Simply, adding boundaries to gift-giving could be a blessing.
In my extended family, we used to buy gifts for everyone. Then we cut back to picking names. Now that there are no little kids, we just gather for a good meal instead. And honestly, nobody needs anything anymore – we all have too much stuff.
Learning to say no to yourself is a lot harder than I imagined. 2020 helped me spend less money as I was home much more. Gone are the days of heading to Home Goods to browse around. New habits have been formed.
Stop Trying to Keep up With Everyone Else
YUP. The Joneses are broke. There is no need for a new car every two years. There’s no need for a flashy new anything to impress the people that don’t really even matter. Keep it simple and put the money where you value it the most.
Final thoughts on the ways minimalism saves money
The average American has too much stuff, both physical and mental stuff. One financial benefit of minimalism is having a larger savings account. This minimalist lifestyle will save you time and money. Simple living brings peace and adds value to your life. Having a minimalist mindset will transform the way you spend money. This is all a minimalism journey to have less material possessions, eliminate consumer debt, stop buying unnecessary stuff, and live our best life.