Money Saving Articles

Money Saving Tips from the Great Depression

Money Saving Tips from the Great Depression

If you try your best to live a frugal lifestyle, then you’ve probably heard the basic money saving tips for “sticking” to your grocery list, don’t buy brand new, methods to paying off debt and so on. But think back to the Great Depression era and how people had no choice but to save as much as possible and to live the most frugal life possible. The methods they used to achieve a frugal lifestyle can and should also be practiced today. Learn how you can save money and stress less with money saving tips from the Great Depression.

Use it Up

Ever throw away a bottle of shampoo with a little shampoo left in the bottom, but you couldn’t quite get it all out? Or maybe you threw out a bag of rice or beans with a tiny amount left and you thought you’d never use it? You’re not the only one who throws things away with a little of it still left in the container, but think of all the times you could have had one more use out of something. Don’t trash things just because it’s more convenient to throw it away; use it all up! For the shampoo bottle with a little left in it, add a little water, shake it up and get the last use; for a bag with a little bit of rice left over, save it and add it to the next bag you buy.

DIY [Almost] Everything

It’s ridiculous how much money can be saved by making things yourself, instead of buying pre-made. From cleaning supplies to hygiene products and from bread to condiments, with a few basic ingredients you can make so much stuff. Not only will it save you money, but it’s much healthier because of the lack of processed ingredients and synthetic materials. Check out these lists so you can start making your own products: cleaning supplies, foods, hygiene products, baby food, dog food.

Try to Fix Broken Things

We live in a fast-paced society and we don’t like to spend time mending broken things. Instead of immediately throwing a broken or torn item away, take the time to learn how to fix it (or attempt to fix it at the very least). Do you have a shirt with a rip or a lost button? Learn how to fix it by hand before throwing it away; it’s always better to try than to not.

Question Every Purchase

All through our lives we are constantly bombarded with “New” and “Sale” and “For a Limited Time Only”, and quite often we have bought products impulsively and we didn’t actually need them. There are several methods you can use to question every purchase you make, to make certain that you actually need it and not want it.  If you’re in a store and you see an item you’d love to have, say a new grill or a new dining set, don’t buy it just yet. Give yourself a week or two to think about the potential purchase. After the time has passed, your excitement also passes, thus you can think more rationally on if you actually need the item.

Another method you can use, is to imagine a random person offering you the item you want or the cash value of the item. For example, if you’re wanting a brand new TV, imagine you can either have the TV or the cash value for the TV (which would now a days be around $1,000 for a good one); which would you choose? If you choose the cash amount, then you have your answer and shouldn’t buy the TV.


The Great Depression was, to say the least, an economic crisis. To live in the era was depressing and beyond stressful. We can definitely use their money saving tips in today’s time to save money and stress. Take the extra time and the extra steps to use everything up, DIY as much as possible, mend broken items and consider every purchase carefully so you can start thinking and saving as they did in the Great Depression.

Have any other money saving tips from the Great Depression? Be sure to let us know!

One Response

  • Posted by Aaron on Mar 11, 2016

    There are a ton of lessons we can learn from the Great Depression. We love to write about it too as a reminder that it could happen again – and we should all be prepared.

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