Pinch, punch the first day of the month – and this one is a big one. It’s the second month of the year, it’s back to school and work, and it’s the beginning of Frugal February.
We do a version of Frugal February each year. Why Frugal February? It’s because it’s the time of the year when our budget needs to be the tightest.
For us, many of our big expenses naturally fall in late December and January. This includes pretty much all our insurances, car registration, strata and several other rates and land tax bills. These are all budgeted for, and we know they are coming. We used to get hit by electricity in December as well, but we now pay for that by fortnightly installments instead.
On top of this, my kids are back at school and there is a certain amount of expenses involved with that. They are at a public school two blocks away, and as we inherited some school uniforms this year, thankfully those expenses are light on as well. But the little bits all add up.
With this in mind, it’s a good time for us to tighten our belts – literally as well, as we have been overeating a bit over the festive season.
How to do Frugal February
What does Frugal February involve? It’s different for everyone, but here are some of my tips:
- Challenge the family to do a $50 a week budget for a while;
- Focus on making lunchbox meals from scratch;
- Avoid spending money on anything that is a want rather than a need; and
- Defer any major spending until March.
And while we have a few social things lined up, February is also a good time to take things slow. Most people are adjusting to being back at work and school after a break and so are not as inclined to be sociable anyway. And with lovely warm weather, February is also a great time to walk more, cycle more and enjoy the great outdoors.
Are you in for this month’s challenge? If so, be sure to comment on this post share on Instagram and tag @thejoyfulfrugalista and use #frugalfebruary so that we can celebrate your achievements!