Frugal Tips for Tough Times - add one if you have one

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Forum topic by mark24 posted 02-23-2009 02:22 PM 1664 views 0 times favorited 20 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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17 posts in 3419 days

02-23-2009 02:22 PM

Topic tags/keywords: tip

Here is a simple little tip I learned about that wont change your life, but every little bit helps….
For those of you that shave with disposable razors, you know how overpriced they can be.
They fall into the catagory of other overpriced things, like lighting fixtures, window treatments,
windshield wipers, etc. You can make a disposable razor last months or even a year by simply drying it thoroughly after
each use. Seems too easy right? Well it works. Whiskers dont dull blades….water does. It actually
corrodes the fine sharp edge if left wet. Dry it well after each use and it will last much longer.
My current razor is going on 6 months! More money to buy wood!

-- Formula for success: under promise and over deliver. Mark, WI

20 replies so far

View Craftsman on the lake's profile

Craftsman on the lake

2795 posts in 3466 days

#1 posted 02-23-2009 03:14 PM

$36 norelco when they go on sale. Rotary blades will take a layer of skin off just like a blade. Then when they get duller after about a year they still cut well for a long time after that. When the battery gets weak after about 2 years. Time for a new, bottom of the line norelco. Cost? about $1/month. More than blades but convenient and quick.

-- The smell of wood, coffee in the cup, the wife let's me do my thing, the lake is peaceful.

View cpt_hammer's profile


133 posts in 3841 days

#2 posted 02-23-2009 03:55 PM

Look at your home phone bill. If you are like my wife, you are constantly calling all over the country talking to family and friends. Our old phone provider was charging more than $60/month for unlimited use/anytime. I happen to have a decent ISP (Internet Service Provider) and was able to change to a VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol or Phone over internet) and was able to get my bill down to just a little over $10/month (not counting the $5.30/month in regulatory fees).

Savings: $50/month

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4024 posts in 4093 days

#3 posted 02-23-2009 04:51 PM

This seems like a good time\place to ask. My wife and I only use our cells for emergencies. Who has the best “pay as you go” plan that doesn’t have minutes that go away every month?

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

View DannyBoy's profile


521 posts in 3894 days

#4 posted 02-23-2009 05:13 PM


My wife and I just sat down and did our monthly budget meeting. We look at our checking accounts and categorize all the transactions (I do this occasionally throughout the month to make it easier) and see if we are living within our means. If you are over you can make adjustments to help compensate. If you are under consistently, they you can consider adjusting it lower and put the rest towards savings/debt payoff.

Savings: Variable

Also, if you are having a real problem staying in budget on anything (like Dining out for instance) then you can try the old fashioned “Envelope System” of budgeting. Basically, you set the amount you can spend on the one item. Every week/month you take out that amount of cash and put it in that envelope. Then, you can only spend on that category out of that envelope. If you underspend, then you have more to work with.

Savings: Variable

More tips:


-- He said wood...

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4189 days

#5 posted 02-24-2009 12:25 AM

a nice discussion. thanks.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View HokieMojo's profile


2104 posts in 3757 days

#6 posted 02-24-2009 12:34 AM

i love quicken. I’ll admit to falling behind on updating it recently, but just tracking monthly expenses can be eye opening. About 4 yrs ago I was spending as much to eat out (fast food, restaurants, etc) as I was on groceries. Times were better then, but I knew that I needed to cut back and did.

So many other things to. ATM cash withdrawls (who knows where that goes), entertainment expenses, monthly subscriptions (newspapers we didn’t read, magazines we didn’t read, cable channels we didn’t watch, home phone service we never used, etc.). Just knowing where $ goes was a huge wakeup call for me.

View 8iowa's profile


1580 posts in 3790 days

#7 posted 02-24-2009 12:49 AM


I used to shave with a straight razor, talk about a blade that lasts a long time. You can shave forever for just the cost of the soap.

-- "Heaven is North of the Bridge"

View hObOmOnk's profile


1381 posts in 4156 days

#8 posted 02-24-2009 12:57 AM


My wife and I have very low usage cell phones from


I pay about $100 per phone for a year of minimum service.
Year end leftover minutes usually rollover when buying a year of prepaid service.

-- 温故知新

View DrDirt's profile


4424 posts in 3771 days

#9 posted 02-24-2009 12:59 AM

Stay away from junk like ‘Harbor Freight’

Still only buy what you need but make that one time purchase actually count, so you -

  • Have something you rely on
  • Only bought what you needed (not a bunch of extra junk that was ONLY an extra buck)
  • Support more reputable tool makers

This is not a buy USA gig, I think Festool and Fein are really nice – though I cannot afford that level of expense.
But if we want the dollars we spend to really make a difference – don’t waste it on crap – then wonder why the big guys are outsourcing/laying off and “cheapening” their stuff…while the economy continues on its present path.

Make the dollars you spend count

-- “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” Mark Twain

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4017 days

#10 posted 02-24-2009 01:06 AM

Douglas – I use T-mobile. $100 for 1000 minutes and they last for a year. They will also roll over if you have any left.

$8.33 a month.

I rarely use mine so during the last month I trade my wife SIM cards and let her use them down to the last 100.

You can use GSM phone that is unlocked.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View clieb91's profile


3520 posts in 3964 days

#11 posted 02-24-2009 01:41 AM

God Topic.
We have been using the envelope sysem for the last 2 years or so and there have been a few times that we have gotten to the end of the cash and still bought something with bank card or rarely with credit cards. It is a good system for keeping control.

My wife has taken up a hobby of coupons. Even if you do it lightly it can help to stretch your grocery budget. If you do it moderatly or heavy it can really help. We stock up on stuff on sale or clearance and then plan meals around that.

As to shaving, I just grew a beard about 10 years ago and use an electric to trim it. Same one for about 5 years now. :)


-- Chris L. "Don't Dream it, Be it."- (Purveyors of Portable Fun and Fidgets)

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 4017 days

#12 posted 02-24-2009 02:10 AM

When I first got my credit card I would write in my check book every time I used it and deducted the amount I spent. That way I would always know how much money I had. Then at the end of the month I would pay off the credit card bill and the balance in my check book would never go down.

Now 33 years later I have yet to pay a single penny on credit card interest.

My golden rule: Never spend what you don’t have. (The only exceptions would be for a house or car)

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Mike's profile


391 posts in 3646 days

#13 posted 02-24-2009 02:27 AM

Check out Dave Ramsey. Live on a budget and cash. Pay cash for cars, the only loan is on a house.

My 1995 van was 300.00 New brake system after a year 800.00 paid cash. Just lost the tail pipe and muffler in October 300.00 cash again. Just bought the first battery for it in January 100.00 cash.

I check out flea markets and stuff on tools, once and a while you find a deal. Also the new Harwood and More store just had a Jet show, the Drill press is going for 299.00 may have to grab that.

I am not cheap just look for deals Just grabbed a Craftsman 2 plug Router Table switch for 3.00 at Sears today the box was broken but got it home and it worked fine.

The big problem today is people living beyond what they can afford. If I get laid off tommorow I have 6 months of expenses saved. It takes time to set it aside and avoid temptation. But it works.

Just keep 1000.00 in cash somewhere, for suprises like with my van. Use it replace it as fast as you can and emergencies become an inconvienence.

-- Measure once cut twice....oh wait....ooops.

View pitchnsplinters's profile


262 posts in 3467 days

#14 posted 02-24-2009 02:47 AM

I’ve gotten back with my wife, we were separated for 6 months. She’s promised me more loving so I’ve given up the escort service. I’m holding her to it.

-- Just 'cause a cat has kittens in the oven, it don't make 'em biscuits.

View MyOldGarage's profile


93 posts in 3456 days

#15 posted 02-25-2009 04:20 PM

I went through the Dave Ramsey course and I’m working on my debt snowball. (Unfortunately it built quicker than it’s going away!) Cash is an amazing thing . . . it makes things magically cheaper. When you do anything you have to remember it’s all negotiable . . . especially nowadays! I called about my telephone bill and was able to get a lower rate. This month I called again and was able to double my Internet speed for $5/month more—a great bargain considering the cable alternative. We don’t have any TV at all, so no satellite/cable expenses—and more time to be together in the workshop! (BONUS!!) I did the same thing on the cell phone and was able to get more minutes per month at a lower cost each time I’ve tried. Now I’m operating on a “old plan” on their network and pay about 1/2 of what I would if I was paying on the latest and greatest data/network package. My wife is amazed at times what I’ve asked for—and usually got! Sometimes you need to know when it’s the right time to bargain though . . . I was going to negotiate on my router that I was buying used, but the money was going for the gentleman’s hospice care, so I didn’t go there.

-- Bradley Miller, Blue Springs, MO -

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