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All the details on how I made a full-time income blogging in November

Make a full-time income blogging!

Thinking of Starting a Blog? Over the years, I’ve received many requests from folks for help on how to start a blog and how to make money blogging. That’s why I put together this comprehensive guide on How to Make Money Blogging with updated information and links.

It includes step-by-step help on how to set up your blog, get started, and make money from blogging. Go here to learn how to make money blogging and get started today!

In 2005, I discovered this thing called “blogging” and decided to try it out. I was a brand-new mom at the time, had recently quit working as a nanny, and was hopeful I could make enough on the side through online ventures to be able to replace my income and be able to stay home.

My husband was in law school and we were living on a beans and rice budget, trying to stay out of debt. We never, ever dreamed that my little blog idea would grow into what it has become.

In all honesty, when I started MoneySavingMom.com, I remember telling people that I hoped to make a side income from it. I never could have imagined that by the end of 2008, I’d be making full-time income from blogging!

And in all my wildest and craziest dreaming, I never would have envisioned that this blog would allow my husband to come home full-time, would provide the means for us to support ministries we love dearly (in the US, in the Dominican Republic, and in South Africa), and would enable us to provide incomes for our small (but amazing!) team.

How I Make a Full-Time Income from Blogging

Over the years, I’ve heard the question again and again and again: How do you actually MAKE money blogging??

People seem intrigued by the idea that our family actually makes a really good income from this blog and other related online ventures.

In these monthly posts, I want to give you a comprehensive and detailed look at our different income streams and expense streams to give you a better idea of what’s working, what’s not working, and how I actually make money blogging. I always find these posts fascinating and inspiring when I read them from other bloggers.

It helps me to learn the real nitty-gritty details of what is and isn’t working, how bloggers are diversifying their income, and what they are experimenting with.

Some bloggers share these types of posts and include specific numbers of exactly how much they make every month. I’ve opted not to do that because I feel like sometimes people can get hung up on numbers and miss the bigger picture.

Instead, I want share detailed percentages of our income and expenses — not only will this give you a very accurate picture of our earnings, but it will be something that is relatable, no matter the size of your blog or the income you make.

My hope is that these detailed reports not only help give you a better picture of how I make money blogging, but I hope they inspire you with new ideas on how you can increase your income or improve as a blogger or online entrepreneur.

Ready for the numbers? Here’s our income and expenses report for the month of November 2016:

November Income

Note: Some of the links below are affiliate links. All of the products listed below are products and services we’ve used before. If you have any questions about any of the income or expenses, you can leave a comment and we’ll do our best to reply.

All Revenue Streams

Affiliate Revenue Streams Detailed Breakdown

Want to know more how affiliate programs work? Be sure to check out my post on How to Make Money Blogging.

November Expenses

  • Payroll expenses — 33%
  • Advertising and Promotion — 20%
  • Subcontracted services — 12%
  • Other (Office space rent, PayPal fees, shipping/postage fees, merchant account fees, bank service charges, utilities, travel expenses, wifi, etc.) — 10%
  • Web-based tools (InfusionSoft, Feedblitz, GoDaddy, Dropbox, Harvest, etc.) — 9%
  • Computer, hosting, Internet expenses — 7%
  • Partner & Affiliate Payments (Sign up for our affiliate program for our products here.) — 5%
  • Health insurance — 4%

Percentage of Income Versus Expenses

Once again, I was very excited to have a good revenue to expenses ratio. We’ve been working hard to diversify our income and think outside the box and it’s really been paying off!

Recent Experiments

Blog Coaching Program

In November, I launched the 4-Week Blog Coaching Program as an experiment to see if there was enough interest in me doing group blog coaching to possibly put together some products and launch a dedicated blog on this topic.

I’ve blogged for so long that sometimes it feels like I’m a Grandma Blogger instead of a Hipster Blogger and that I’m so old-fashioned about how I do things that I’m not up-and-coming enough to really teach new bloggers. 😉

But I have a passion to help other bloggers and I love to share what I’ve learned and the mistakes that I’ve made. So I just jumped out and put the 4-Week Blog Coaching opportunity out there.

My big hope was to hit 100 sign-ups in 3 days. The cost of the program was $97 and I knew that was a lot of money to ask people to pay — especially kind of on the spur-of-the-moment. But I also knew that if I was going to prove that there was a market for me to teach other bloggers about blogging, I needed to be able to find 100 people willing to pay $97 in 3 days.

Well, I was shocked and thrilled that over 300 people signed up!!! And I ended up have the best time ever doing the blog coaching and can’t wait until I can do something like it again!

ConvertKit Versus InfusionSoft — What a Wild Ride!

So, I told you all that we were switching from InfusionSoft to ConvertKit. We set everything up and starting making the switch. We decided to test it out and learn the program by running all of the Blog Coaching Program through ConvertKit — including all of the sales and the emails related to the program.

Well, we ended up running into all sorts of glitches and issues. It wasn’t with ConvertKit, but with other programs we needed to use in order to run a launch and coaching program.

A lot of people didn’t get their emails or even get on the email list. We had to manually go in and fix all sorts of things. We had issues with payment processing. And we saw some huge holes in the overall system that would cause headaches for us in big ways for future launches.

My team spent a lot of time on the phone with ConvertKit and the other programs we were using to connect everything to run a launch. Ultimately, because of all of the issues and problems and the fact that there didn’t seem to be any fixes for some of them with our set-up and how we wanted to run things for future programs, we decided to go back to the drawing board again.

As of right now, we’re moving forward with trying to clean up everything currently in InfusionSoft and learn InfusionSoft to see if possibly we can make it work for what we’re wanting to do. It’s been hours and hours and hours of effort from my team, but they are making some headway and I’m hopeful that we’ll have a good email/course download system in place in the next few months.

This Month’s Featured Question

This month’s featured question is from Catherine:

Hi, Crystal! I’m a newbie blogger. I’ve started a chart for tracking things like email signups, Facebook page likes, Instagram followers, etc., to see how they’re growing each month. When it comes to Google Analytics, what should I pay the most attention to? Pageviews or users or something else?

This is a fantastic question, Catherine! First, let’s talk about what Google Analytics is and how bloggers use it.

Google Analytics is a Google service that helps website owners track the traffic they get to their website. Using Google Analytics, you can find out how many people have visited your website, what they’ve looked out, how long they’ve stayed, and where they came from.

This is very important information because it helps you get to know your audience better, and knowing your audience is key to running a successful blog.

Here is a quick breakdown of a few of the most important metrics to look at in Google Analytics:

  1. Pageviews — This metric shows the total number of pages that were viewed on your site. (More pageviews = higher traffic.)
  2. Sessions — This shows the number of times visitors are actively engaged on your site. As Google Analytics puts it, “A session is a group of interactions (pageviews, purchases, etc.) that take place on your website within a given time frame.”
  3. Users — This is the total number of visitors that have had at least one session on your site.
  4. Bounce Rate — Your bounce rate is the percentage of visitors that stopped by, but only looked at one page before leaving your website — meaning they bounced in and out again without exploring your website further. If your bounce rate is high, it might mean that your content isn’t grabbing their attention OR that you’re marketing to the wrong target audience. TIP: Statistics show that visitors to your website will decide if they want to explore your website further in the first 6 seconds of their first visit. (Note: We actually have a high bounce rate because most of our posts are encouraging people to click off our site and go to another site to sign up for a freebie, download an ebook, or get a great deal. So for us, because that is the nature of MoneySavingMom.com, I don’t worry as much about the bounce rate.)
  5. Average Session Duration — This shows the average length of time each user spends on your website. This is valuable in learning whether or not your visitors are engaged. (Longer sessions = more engagement.)
  6. Pages per Session — This metric shows how many pages your users are looking at during their time on your website. (More pages = more engagement.)

We keep records of how our pageviews, sessions, and users are compared to last year and the year before. We also pay attention to where visitors are coming from so that we can make sure that what we’re doing is performing.

For instance, right now we’re working on increasing out Pinterest traffic. So we’re paying close attention to which posts are performing the best on Pinterest and then we make sure to promote those the most often on our boards, as well as promoting posts that are similar and keeping what is working in mind when planning and writing new posts!

Highly Recommended Blogging Resources

Make Money Blogging

Want to Start Your Own Blog?

I’m here to help! Check out my comprehensive guide on How to Make Money Blogging with updated information and links. It includes step-by-step help on how to set up your blog, best practices for blogging, and all the details on how to make money from blogging.

Also, if you haven’t done so already, be sure to sign up for my FREE 5-day course on How I Make a Full-Time Income From Home. This video course will give you an inside peek into my blogging and business journey, will share lots of inspiration and hard lessons I’ve learned in the process, and will encourage you with ideas on how you can make a part-time or full-time income from home, too.

Previous Income Reports

More Posts on Blogging

Our Week Staying at an Extended Stay America (my completely honest review!)

(Note: This post contains affiliate links. Read our disclosure policy here.)

Over Christmas break, our family traveled to Wichita, KS to visit both of our families. While we were there for six days, we stayed at an Extended Stay America. They had contacted us about possibly trying out one of their hotels and because we were going to be staying in Wichita anyway, we said we’d love to try staying there instead of our usual hotel.

It was our first time to stay at an Extended Stay America and we weren’t sure what the experience would be like! I wanted to share a really honest review of our thoughts on this hotel chain for those of you who might be interested in trying out this hotel chain for an upcoming vacation or some travel you have planned this year.

First off, Extended Stay America is designed for longer stays and is a really affordable option compared to most hotel chains — especially if you are planning to stay somewhere for a week or longer.

From the research I did, you’re usually going to pay around $69 to $79 per night for a regular room. However, they offer weekly, biweekly and monthly discounted rates.

Plus, they have discounts for seniors and military and government personnel. They also have a free Extended Stay Rewards Program where you can earn instant rewards + get $2500 annual savings on other brands.

The rooms are spacious and every room has a full kitchen! We loved having the ability to bring all of our own food and cook all of our meals in our room! It definitely not only allowed us to eat healthier, but it also saved us quite a bit of money.

No matter where you stay or what room you book, every single room at all locations has a fully equipped kitchen with a full-size refrigerator, stovetop, and microwave. You can request a large assortment of different types of kitchen items — we got pots, pans, dishes, utensils, and a few other items. There were a number of other appliances we could request, too.

Some locations even have ovens and/or dishwashers! Because we got a larger room, ours had both.

They also offer a FREE grab-and-go breakfast every morning. This free breakfast included: coffee, hot tea, hot chocolate, instant oatmeal, pre-packaged muffins, and an assortment of granola bars.

They also offer free in-room wi-fi and cable. I will say that the free wi-fi speed was a little on the slow side and we ended up paying $3 per day to upgrade to the much faster premium wi-fi. I thought $3 per day was incredibly reasonable and the premium wi-fi was much faster and worked on up to six devices!

The rooms aren’t fancy, but they are very adequate and we found the facilities to be clean. They also offer a small workout room that had three different pieces of fitness equipment in it.

They also have laundry facilities on-site. It cost about $5 in quarters for a load of laundry to go through the washer & dryer (including the cost of detergent). This seemed high to us, however, we haven’t used a laundry mat in ages, so I have no idea what the going prices usually are for doing laundry at laundry facilities!

I’d say one of the biggest differences between staying at a regular hotel and at an Extended Stay America is that they don’t offer daily housekeeping services — unless you want to pay an additional fee. They do offer weekly housekeeping services for stays over 8 days.

Since we were only there for 6 days, we didn’t get housekeeping services. However, we just told the kids that we were all going to be the housekeepers and they had fun trying to make the hotel beds as well as the hotel housekeepers usually do! 🙂

We did find that we needed fresh towels about 4 days in and we went to front desk and asked for them and they said we could have fresh towels or sheets any time we wanted them!

Speaking of the front desk, we found the staff at Extended Stay America to be extremely kind and accommodating. They definitely seemed like their job was to serve their customers well and they went out of their way to do that.

Overall, we were very pleased with our stay at Extended Stay America and felt it was very worth the price you would pay. We would definitely stay there again and would recommend it as a great option for budget-conscious families — especially if you are going to be staying in one location for a week or longer.

Thank you to Extended Stay America for offering us the opportunity to stay in their hotel for free in exchange for this review.

Save 20% Off any Extended Stay America Reservation!

Want to book a stay at Extended Stay AmericaUse promo code MA7SM at checkout to get 20% off one reservation booked online with Extended Stay America by 1/23/17 with a checkout date on or before 5/31/17. This coupon code is valid on a stay of 1 to 29 nights at any Extended Stay America hotel.

Discount will be applied at hotel upon check-out. Reservations based on availability. Offer cannot be combined with any other offer or negotiated or special rate, including but not limited to Advanced Purchase. Valid only on original reservations.

Discounts do not apply to extensions/modifications. Cannot be applied to reservations already booked. Only one promotion discount per thirty days can be used by the same guest at the same hotel location. Offer valid only at Extended Stay America hotels.

Go here to book your Extended Stay America reservation and use your 20% off coupon code.


A Peek Into My Life This Week (+ how I find time to read!)

Welcome to my weekly Sunday post where we take a break from money-related posts and I share about what I’m loving right now and give you a little peek into our life from the past week.

What I’m Reading

Last week, I read Read the Bible to Your Kids by Rachel O’Niell (she’s a blog reader and she sent me a copy of her ebook to check out!). I was so inspired by Rachel’s encouragement that you don’t have to make Bible Reading with your kids some big complicated thing. Just reading and talking about a verse or two or three every day is a great start.

I also finished A Portrait of Emily Price and The Year of Yes. I wouldn’t say either were stand-out books. A Portrait of Emily Price was a pretty slow read and I didn’t fall in love with the characters as much like I have in some of the author’s other books. I did enjoy the references in the book to Rome as I got to visit there last year!

I thought that The Year of Yes could have used a LOT of editing down and it still would have accomplished the same thing. However, that said, as this is my Year of Yes, I thought it was a good book to help kick off the year. (Note: If you do pick this book up, it’s not written at all from a Christian stand-point and is crass at times. Consider yourself warned!)

This week, I’m continuing on reading books from my bookshelf from four different categories: Candles in the Dark (an old Christian reprint), A Trip Around the Sun (a spiritually encouraging book), The Giver (a story-driven book), and Grace Not Perfection (a book on life improvement).

I’m hoping to finish both Candles in the Dark and Grace Not Perfection this week. I’ll let you know how that goes next week! {See my Reading Goals for 2017.}

How I’m Fitting in Reading Right Now

Multiple people have been asking how I find time to read. This changes with every season of life, but here’s how I’m fitting in reading right now:

  • I’m spending 10-15 minutes reading spiritually encouraging books in the morning — I do this in conjunction with my morning Bible reading.
  • Then, I’m spending 10-20 minutes in the afternoons/evenings reading a non-fiction book or story-driven book. I’m doing this during my afternoon offline time (from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.) once our afternoon chores are done and before it’s time for dinner prep. I usually have a short 10-20 minute window here while the kids are busy doing other things. It’s a nice before-dinner treat for myself!)
  • And then I try to find at least another time either one night or on the weekends when I can fit in another hour of reading.

Between all of this, I can easily get through an average of at least 1-2 chapters of a book every day.

When people tell me that they don’t have time to read, I disagree. I don’t think you should ever say, “I don’t have time for XX.” Instead, choose to say, “I’m not prioritizing that because I’m prioritizing XYZ instead.” Which is totally okay.

But when you change how you talk about time management, it also reminds you that how you spend your time is a choice. We can’t control all the variables of our every day life, but we do have many choices and are not just a victim of our calendar or circumstances! 🙂

For me, because reading is a priority, I choose to find pockets of time to include it as part of my routine and then have made it a habit to include that in my every day life.

What I’m Loving

My dad got us a foosball table for Christmas and we have been loving it. It’s been the source of much laughter and hooting and hollering at our house the past week as we challenge each other to games.

Silas beat me one time this week — which he was SO proud of! I’m definitely going to have to work on learning some new moves and strategic plays because all his practicing is making him harder and harder for me to beat! 🙂

We also played an epic three-night-long game of Ticket to Ride. We played it on our Apple TV and just played for 30 minutes before bed every night as a family. It was so much fun and definitely is something we’ll be doing again. It’s a great way to wind down, it’s something we can all enjoy, and it brings out all of our competitive sides in a big way. 🙂

What I’m Watching

This week, I watched YouTube videos on how to be more successful at YouTube. Because that’s one of my goals for 2017! I’ve also been following a few YouTubers. One of my favorites is Happily a Housewife.

As a family, we watched Greater for our family movie night. It was a good movie with a great and very inspirational message (thanks to the reader who recommended it), however, I thought it was kind of slow to progress in parts and I was shocked that it had the language that it did for being rated PG. I’d highly recommend that you don’t choose it for a family movie night unless you’ve watched it first as parents and feel like it would be appropriate for your kids.

https://www.facebook.com/MoneySavingMom/posts/10154454727923227

Did you see this video online? It went viral around Christmas and I’ve watched it multiple times… because the dad’s facial expressions and commentary and dry sense of humor just make me laugh! 🙂

What I’m Listening To

This week, I listened to my friend Karthi’s podcast with our executive pastor, Eric Hoffman. If you’ve been following me on Instagram, you know that I’m involved in a discipleship group at church that has been deeply impacting me as a person.

Eric is the one who created the discipleship group curriculum, so if you’ve been at all interested in what we’ve been learning, these two podcasts will give you a taste of some of what we’re diving into in our discipleship group: Part 1 is here and Part 2 is here. I think it would be well worth your time to listen!

Thank you for all your music suggestions last week. You reminded me that I should start listening to Pandora while I’m working on the computer. Truth be told, I’d kind of forgotten all about Pandora since we started using Amazon Prime music on our phones.

One reader recommended the Hymnstyles station on Pandora and I’ve been enjoying the majority of the songs that it plays!

What are YOUR favorite Pandora stations? I’d love to know now that I remembered Pandora exists! 🙂

What I’m Excited About

In 2017, I made the commitment to get back to goal-setting, become a paper planner girl again, go to bed no later than 11 pm every night, and be offline from 3 pm to 8 pm every day (among a few other goals).

We’re one week in and I cannot believe how much these simple tweaks have changed the flow of our days. Our house has been so much cleaner, I’m spending a lot more time with Jesse and the kids, I’m investing more in real-life relationships, I’m making time for fun, and I still have time to get all the important business projects done + have time for some things I love (like reading!)

Honestly, I think that the key for me has been compartmentalizing my time and committing a big chunk of my day to be completely offline. I can’t wait to see how the next few months play out, but I’m so hopeful that this routine is going to be a really fantastic fit for this season of our lives!

In Case You Missed It

My Posts This Week:
My #1 Tip for Finding Frugal Friends
Why Our 3 Kids Share a Bedroom
BIG Changes Are Coming to the Blog This Year!

My YouTube Videos This Week:
2 Habits I Want to Develop in 2017
My 10 Goals for 2017
My One Word for 2017

What are you reading, loving, watching, listening to, and/or excited about? I’d love to hear!

5 Money Tips to Start Your Financial Year Off Right

Guest post from Krystal of Little Light on a Hill:

The start of a new year is a great time to learn money tips that will help us better manage our finances from the get-go. We are given a fresh start, a new beginning, an opportunity to wipe our financial slate clean, so to speak. And really, who doesn’t want to do a better job managing their money?

Every year, I sit down and have a money meeting with myself. In this little pep talk, I renew my focus for the year, highlight any areas I know I need to improve, and dream big!

I fully credit these mini-money planning sessions as the way my husband and I were able to pay off over $80,000 of debt in the past few years. They helped us stay laser focused, and provided motivation when it seemed like we were only making minimal progress.

With the dawn of a new year, it’s time to once again have my annual money meeting. If you’d like to start your financial year off right, here are 5 tips I hope will help!

1. Look back on the previous year.

What are some of the strengths and weaknesses you had in your finances?

Think about some of your good habits… and bad habits. What do you think were your strengths when it came to managing your money? How much progress did you make? Is there any area you want to improve in?

I keep a finance journal that helps me track some of these things. At the end of every year, I jot down how much money we have in checkings or savings, how much we invested for retirement, and how much debt we paid off.

2. Identify areas you’d like to improve.

I also think about the things that held us back from meeting some of our financial goals.

Did we eat out too much? Did we spend more than we budgeted on vacation? This helps me identify triggers that make us lose control of our finances very quickly. By seeing these triggers, I can enter the new year knowing what to watch out for.

For example, we spent WAY too much money eating out the past few months. Once I realized that, I recognized that it was usually on days we were out and about and I hadn’t thought about dinner until we were well on our way home. To combat this in the new year, I’m going to plan slow cooker meals on our busy days to avoid the temptation to stop for fast food on the way home.

3. Set goals for the coming year.

How much more do you want to accomplish in your finances this year?

What are some habits you need to change? Are there any resources or books you want to invest in? Where would you like to realistically end the new year, financially speaking?

I like to set 3-5 realistic goals that will also stretch me! For example, this year our financial goals are to (1) build up our savings account to cover at least 3 months of expenses, (2) invest as much as my husband’s company will match in his 401(K) retirement account, (3) start investing for our girls’ college expenses, (4) research the right IRA plan for us, and (5) pay cash for our family vacation this summer.

Maybe your goals will be to pay an extra $300 a month to debt, save $2,000 for emergencies, or start investing for retirement. Whatever is most important to you right now should be your focus! If you are passionate about it right now, it will give fuel to your fire and keep you motivated to reach those goals!

4. Track your progress and check in often.

When you sit down to pay your bills, you should have a general idea of how much money you can use to go towards your goals. Each month just start chipping away at your goals, one by one.

Then throughout the week, make sure you glance over your budget to double check that you are still on track.

Have weekly money meetings with your spouse to make sure you are both on the same page.

Write down your goals and cross them off as you meet them!

The important thing is that you know where your extra money is going and if you are using it wisely. Tracking your progress is just a way to keep you motivated by seeing how far you’ve come.

5. Keep moving forward.

Don’t be discouraged if you don’t meet your goals every month. I know that even if I don’t meet my goals, I’m still so much farther along than if I hadn’t set them at all.

Celebrate your progress, and keep moving forward. You will be so glad you did when the end of 2017 gets here, and you can look back on all of the things you accomplished!

Krystal is a teacher-turned-homeschooling-mama of two. Recently becoming debt-free herself, she is passionate about inspiring others in their debt-free journeys. You can follow along as she blogs about faith, family, and finance at Little Light on a Hill.

My $3.86 Kroger Shopping Trip — Markdowns!

I ran into Kroger last night after an appointment and found some great markdowns! I was especially excited about the Greek yogurt for just $0.10 each!!! I don’t think I’ve ever found it marked down so much!!

Here’s what I got:

  • 7 Yoplait Whips (one is not shown because Kaitlynn asked if she could eat it!) — $0.29 each
  • 1 Greek yogurt — $0.19
  • 4 Greek yogurts — $0.10 each
  • 2 other specialty yogurts — $0.49 each

Total with tax: $3.86

You can watch my quick video here where I talk more about what I got and how I find markdowns. (Have you subscribed to my YouTube channel yet? I’ve been posting fun, inspirational, and motivational videos every day and would love to have you join our little community on YouTube!)

What deals have YOU gotten recently? Tell us in the comments.

My #1 Tip for Finding Frugal Friends

It can be discouraging to be surrounded by people who are not budget conscious. You can feel weird, crazy, and little “on the outside.”

I well remember the days when Jesse was in law school and it seemed like we couldn’t go to so many different social outings because we didn’t have any money to spend. It was discouraging — and sometimes embarrassing!

We wanted to be able to make friends and hang out with people, but it felt like every invite was to some place that cost money. And in those days, we literally had to use every single dollar to put food on the table and to pay our bills.

The balance in our entertainment category of our budget was a big fat zero almost all of the time!

Occasionally, we’d save up all our extra pennies, nickels, dimes, and would cash in the few extra dollars we’d saved over six months for a $0.50 movie from Family Video + a few items off of the dollar menu! Seriously, that was about the extent of our very rare splurging in those early years of marriage.

Over time, I learned to get really creative and to think outside the box. For instance, when Jesse was in law school and some of his friends were having a party, the host asked if everyone could pay $4 each to cover the costs of the party.

We didn’t have $8 extra in our budget for both of us to attend, so I emailed the host to ask if I could bring snacks and drinks (that I’d gotten for free or almost-free with coupons using money from our grocery budget) instead. She was so gracious to say “yes” to my offer — and we had a fantastic time at the party!

You are Influenced By What You Surround Yourself With

You often are very influenced by the people you surround yourself with. If everyone you associate with is spending money pretty extravagantly and telling you that you “deserve” this, that, and the other — even if you can’t afford it — it’s going to be hard to stick with your resolve to live frugally.

On the other hand, if many of your friends are living frugally and simply, if they are content and totally “get” you when talk about buying something secondhand or saving up to pay cash for things, it will be a lot easier to keep on your slow and steady journey toward debt-freedom or achieving your other financial goals.

This is why I can’t encourage you enough to make the effort to surround yourself with friends who don’t think you’re crazy for being so frugal. And not just friends who don’t think you’re crazy, but friends who are just as frugal — or more frugal! — than you are!

The Benefits of Having Frugal Friends

It’s much more fun when you don’t go it alone. Here’s how having frugal friends will benefit your life:

1. You’ll Be Able to Swap Skills

Your frugal friends will more than likely be glad to barter skills and talents. It saves everyone money — and it saves you all a lot of frustration, too.

Your frugal friends might also be interested in having regular swap parties where you swap clothes or toys your kids no longer need or even items you got for free with coupons.

2. You’ll Learn New Skills and Money-Saving Tactics

Your frugal friends will teach you new money-saving skills and techniques you would have never thought of or tried on your own. Pretty much every frugal idea I know of is something I’ve learned from another frugal friend.

In addition, my frugal friends have challenged me to try things I probably wouldn’t have tried on my own — like making homemade soap!

3. You’ll Stay Inspired

Whenever you’re feeling burnt out on sticking with a budget, just call or email one of your frugal friends and she’ll be sure to listen and then remind you of why you’re doing what you’re doing — and that it will be worth it.

4. You’ll Have Fun

It’s a lot more fun to save money when you’re among friends who are also committed to living frugally. Plus, they’ll laugh at your crazy thrift store experiences or used car adventures.

Where To Find Frugal Friends: My #1 Tip

If you want to find frugal friends, go hang out where frugal people would hang out. Here are some ideas of where frugal people hang out:

  • Yard Sales
  • Consignment Sales
  • Your Local Library
  • Thrift Stores
  • Used Book Sales
  • Swap Meets
  • Frugal Websites/Message Boards
  • Local Facebook Yard Sale Groups
  • Freecycle
  • Dave Ramsey Financial Peace University Classes

Start looking around in your area for opportunities, events, and classes that would attract frugal people and then:

Show Up — This is the most important step! Get brave and just show up! If you don’t ever take the first step, no one is likely going to just randomly show up on your doorstep wanting to be your new frugal friend!

Meet People — Talk to people at these events. Ask questions. Find out their stories. See if there is camaraderie. Don’t be discouraged if not everyone you meet becomes your fast friend. But keep putting yourself out there and showing up and asking questions and building relationships.

Volunteer — One of the best ways to really develop deeper relationships is to volunteer your time. Many consignment sales offer the opportunity to help at the sale in exchange for first dibs on the items in the sale or extra discounts. This would be a great way to get to know people better and maybe find a new frugal friend or two!

Teach a Class — Do you have a frugal skill such as cutting your grocery bill with coupons? Consider offering to teach a class at your local library or community center. This one-time class might turn into some lifelong friendships!

Invite People to Join a Frugal Friends Club — Once you start to discover some frugal people in your area, you could invite them to join a frugal friends club. Not only would this be a lot of fun, but it would be a great way to really be inspired by others and to learn new money-saving skills! For more information on starting a frugal friends club, read this post.

You just never know where you’ll find an amazing frugal friend, but if you keep your eyes open, I can almost guarantee that you’ll find some other frugal folks who live in your area!

Where would YOU go to find frugal friends? Tell us your ideas in the comments!