A zero-balance bank account and a budget without wiggle room are no fun. It’s hard to hear that you need to spend less money. Where’s the fun in that? You may be used to going out whenever you want and splurging on impulse, but to get your budget in order, it’s time to learn how to not spend money.
This doesn’t have to mean sitting around with nowhere to go and nothing to do. I’ve found seven free things to do instead of spending money, and I’m sure you and your budget will love this list!
Knowing when it’s the best time to buy certain items can help you save, too. Check out the 12 best things to buy in October to see what deals you can find on seasonal and surprising items.
1. Host a clothes swap
Whether you wear pin-worthy outfits or just love shopping, it’s way too easy to drop a load of cash on clothes. If buying clothes is ruining your budget, it’s time to host a clothes swap with your friends. Make a few ground rules so you don’t swap stained or out-of-style items. What if clothes size is an issue? Try an accessory swap! How great would it be to switch out your handbag, get a new-to-you scarf, or sport a different necklace?
Sew fun. Don’t feel like organizing a clothes swap? Turn old clothes and on-hand scraps of fabric into all sorts of new creations with these 20 quick and easy sewing project tutorials or learn how you can build a wardrobe on a budget.
2. Visit your local library
Libraries are magical places — you don’t need to spend a dime to get a good book or DVD. It’s all about borrowing! Check out a book and have a reading marathon or host a book club. There’s no need to shell out your hard-earned cash at the movies when you can rent DVDs from the library. You may not be viewing a new release, but you’ll be surprised at the extensive movie collection at your local library. Pop some popcorn, cozy up, and watch a library DVD for movie night!
Read on! Not sure where to start? Awaken your inner child and spend an afternoon enjoying these 19 classic books for kids. Even if you’re a grown-up or a grandma, checking out these classics makes for such a fun reading session. When you’re done, check out these 10 modern female authors!
3. Take a walk
Take a walk to the nearest park or trail system in your city or town. Walking on a regular basis will benefit your health, and you may find it helps with weight loss and muscle toning. Walking is not only great exercise, it will lift your spirits as well. Take time to notice the natural beauty of a garden or the splendor of fall foliage. Even smiling at a goofy, happy dog will turn your mood around.
Rock out! Don’t just walk…rock! Add a little pep to your step with these 7 feel-good songs. You’re going to love every one, guaranteed!
4. Host a game night
There’s no need to leave the house for game night! Dig through your cabinets for all those games you haven’t played in ages and get ready for a good time. Invite the neighbors or stick with the family. Either way, set out snacks, crank up the tunes, and play away.
Get connected! Have friends or family in faraway places? You can host an online game night, instead! Whether you’re playing with old buddies or gathering your grandkids for a little virtual fun, these fun online conversation games are a great way to play!
5. Spend a day at the museum
Entry fees at some museums can be steep, so that’s where free museum day comes in handy. Simply do an Internet search for the museum you’re interested in visiting, and include “free museum day” in the search. Some museums offer a free day once or twice a year, and others do a once-a-month free day. Take advantage of museums to enhance your perspective and critical thinking skills while gaining a chance to learn something new.
Free play! Find which of the museums in your area offer free admission. We’ve rounded up 52 free activities for kids and families in every state.
6. Have a picnic
Take advantage of nice weather and head to a beautiful outdoor spot for a picnic. Inclement weather? Spread a blanket on the floor and picnic inside! You don’t have to go all out with fancy food for your venture. Stick with what you have in the fridge and pantry, such as crackers, sliced cheese, and olives. If you’re stuck inside on a blustery day, warm mugs of hot chocolate and popcorn make splendid picnic food. Best of all, there’s no need to tip the waitstaff!
Pack it up! Packing the perfect picnic can be a bit of an art. So, let’s make it easy! We’ve pulled together our 10 perfect picnic recipes and tips so you can pack delicious eats in an instant and enjoy yourself all afternoon long.
7. Rearrange furniture
You’ve had your eye on the cool side table at the modern furniture store downtown. Unless you win the lottery, it’s never going to happen. What is going to revolutionize your room and keep you on budget? A simple rearrangement of furniture! Moving your couch, shifting end tables, and finding a new spot for your chair will give your room a fresh new look. If you just can’t envision where to move your stuff, take a photo, upload it to one of the many 2D room planner programs available online, and get a better idea of what layout works best for you.
Clean queen! Did all of the furniture moving give you the organizing bug? Tackle every room in your house with these 5 insanely easy ways to get organized.
What do you like to do for free?
I’m a big believer that you don’t have to pay big bucks to have fun! These seven ideas are some of my favorite free activities. I’d love to hear about yours! What am I missing on the list? Leave a comment below and share your fave.
Love freebies? Check out this slideshow featuring dozens of freebies for kids, families, moms, and more!