Shannon Buggs, the personal finance columnist at the Houston Chronicle, is on a year-long crusade to "out-save the Joneses." In a recent column, she offered six tips for a more frugal lifestyle:

  1. Make your home energy efficient (We're working toward this, albeit slowly. We're in a rent house, so we're limited in what we can do)
  2. Don't buy gasoline with a debit card (We use our reward credit card, to get the cash rewards)
  3. Don't carry balances on gasoline credit card (We don't carry a balance)
  4. Plan daily commuting (The Wife is home nearly all day with Baby Boy, and is great about planning her errands. I take the bus to work, so my trip is planned by Metro)
  5. Bring your personal life back in-house (Most days I take my lunch to work and we cook dinner at home. I also take care of all our maintenance, so we don't hire lawn crews or handymen)
  6. Step away from cutting edge (We do have an HDTV, but only have an antenna - which still gives us our local channels in HD. I may break this rule next month, as I'm in the market for a new phone and I think the Wife is letting me get an iPhone 3G as my anniversary gift)
The wife and I are doing pretty well on these, but we're always looking for ways to improve. With Baby Boy taking most of our time and attention, it has been pretty easy (and necessary) to live frugally.


I must agree that every penny counts when you have one (or in my case two) little ones in the house. We are working on making our house more energy efficient. In fact we just purchased a new energy star dishwasher. It takes time but we just do a little bit when we can.

June 26, 2008 at 2:31 PM  

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