Have you been watching your debt climb? Or, did you just blow a bunch of your savings on Christmas, that new sofa, computer, tv, car, or vacation? A spending freeze can be the quickest way to recover. But, maybe you’re wondering, “Is a spending freeze right for me? or What are the spending freeze rules?”
Whatever the reason … if you need to recover your budget, or make some cash quick, a Spending Freeze is a great way to go.
The first time we did a spending freeze it was pretty tough. There were a ton of things that kept coming up and we just weren’t prepared with how to go about dealing with them. We didn’t have the skills our first time around to say “No,” to everything that came up.
I’ve already shared some Tricky Ways to Stash Cash, but I know you can save the most with a spending freeze.
That’s why I want to help you today.
Make sure you also read my Spending Freeze Tips to Help You Avoid Sabotage as well.
I want you to have success with your spending freeze. So, I’m going to coach you through my spending freeze rules.
Why Do A Spending Freeze?
A spending freeze is a really quick way to build up some cash. The first thing you need to figure out is why you’re doing your spending freeze. Your BIG WHY is the thing that will help you succeed and keep you on track. How much are you trying to save up? What will you be doing with your funds? Download the FREE Spending Freeze Success Packet below in order to write down your goals and your BIG WHY.
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What are the Spending Freeze Rules?
How Long to Do a Spending Freeze?
Each person will have to determine this individually. You may be the type of person that needs to dip your toes in the water and taste a little bit of success before you’re ready to jump in. Or, you could be the person that just needs to jump into the deep end and figure it out once you’re in there.
You could choose a no-spend month, week, or even weekend. I say do the biggest amount of time that you can commit to. Can you do a whole month? Go for it!
When Should I Start?
I know, that freaks you out a little bit, but really, there’s always going to be an excuse for why to delay your spending freeze, but the sooner you start, the sooner you’ll start racking up the dollar bills.
How Do I Prepare?
The simple answer is …. you don’t! What? How can I expect to go all this time without food in the house, or checking my entertainment schedule? Well, if you run out before your spending freeze and buy a bunch of stuff to stock up, you’re kind of missing the point. With your spending freeze you’re learning to make-do with what you have and creatively find alternatives.
You can always be prepared to do a spending freeze by stocking your freezer with bulk meats from Zaycon Fresh. I always buy my chicken from them, so I never run out and have meat in the freezer for every emergency. You can read my Zaycon Fresh Review Here.
You will want to make sure there is a minimum amount of basics in the house. You’ll need toilet paper, and a few basic groceries, like milk and eggs. Most of us have stocked pantries, freezers, and refrigerators. This will be the perfect time to use up all those items that have been lingering there. Hopefully, you’ve been making your freezer meals and have some of those stashed away.
If not, go take the workshop here to learn this great method for saving money every single month.
Use the Pantry Inventory and Meal Ideas Sheet from the Spending Freeze Success Packet to brainstorm and track some ideas for meals to eat.
What If My Partner Isn’t On Board?
First of all, you should not do this behind your partner’s back, especially if it’s going to cause great stress to your relationship. Relationships always trump money. But, even if your partner wants to keep up with their normal spending habits, you can freeze your own spending. You can decide to use up all your household food and quit buying the extras that you normally do. Curb your own spending and you’ll still see benefits from a month of reduced family spending.
Won’t I Be Bored If I Can’t Go Anywhere?
As I tell my kids, only boring people are bored. There are a ton of things to do that do not cost money. Google “Free things to do in (your town).” You’ll be surprised at what you find. There are free days at museums and zoos, you can go to parks, have play dates, play games at home, etc. Be creative. Look around your house and see what sports equipment and games you have. Play Yahtzee, Monopoly, learn hand games or even spend the month decluttering and reading.
What About Groceries?
Odds are, if you’re doing a month-long spending freeze, you will eventually need some groceries. You can probably get away with just picking up some produce and dairy items. Here are some good rules to go by.
- Learn here how to use your leftovers to stretch your groceries.
- If you have canned goods and meat in your freezer, Do Not Buy More.
- Don’t go to the grocery store until the second week.
- Only spend $5 per person, per week on extra groceries. Yes, that will buy enough milk and veggies to get by. Remember, you’re not eating like kings this month. Just trying to spend $0.
- Create a Super Simple Meal Plan in 10 Minutes by following these steps.
Spending Freeze Rules for Super Success:
- Tell your friends and family what you’re doing. Maybe they’ll want to join you.
- Stay out of the stores – window shopping is the quickest way to sabotage your success.
- Learn to be flexible with meals – if a recipe calls for pork and you have chicken, just make do. Want to make teriyaki chicken but don’t have rice? Serve it on baked or mashed potatoes.
- Complete the guidelines in the Spending Freeze Success Packet.
- Make an inventory of your freezer and pantry.
- Create a list of possible meals from your pantry and freezer.
- Make a list of entertainment possibilities.
A spending freeze is a really quick way to sock away a pile of cash. The average family can save nearly $1,000 in a month by following these spending freeze rules. I’m sure you can think of a great reason to save yourself that much money.
So, go do it now. Knock out that debt, set up your emergency fund, or save enough for that big car insurance payment. Whatever reason, this little bit of sacrifice will help you on your way. Don’t forget to read Spending Freeze Tips so nothing will sneak in and sabotage you.
What are you saving for? Tell us in the comments.