Announcing the Save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge

243 Comments

You’ll notice that I haven’t written a lot about frugality on this site.

That’s because Americans suck at frugality. We spend more than we make. We’re terrible at deferring our immediate wants and investing for the long term. We go into debt. And we blame everyone but ourselves.

Remember, fundamentally, there are two ways to have more money. You can earn more money or cut costs. If you’ve been reading this site for a long time, you’ll notice that I’d much rather focus on increasing your earning potential, whether through investments or entrepreneurship. I hate talking about frugality because, for most people in America, frugality is hopeless.

That all changed a couple weeks ago.

I read this article, which explained that “As many as 80 percent of Americans are stressed about their personal finances and the economy.” I found that astonishing. Although people’s behaviors don’t change overnight, nearly everyone I’ve been talking to has been worrying about their money.

Right now, people don’t care about proper asset allocation or understanding average stock market returns. The people I’ve talked to want to know how to save money right now.

That’s why tomorrow, I’m launching the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge.

How to save $1,000 in one month using the CEO Model

Here’s how it works: Each day in November, I’ll post one suggestion to cut your spending. If you spend time each day working on the day’s post, the vast majority of you will save over $1,000 in one month. Even if you don’t, saving $700 is sure better than nothing. I’ll post tips for the first 15 days. For the last 15 days, I’ll turn to I Will Teach You To Be Rich readers to submit your best frugality tips.

We’ll work through some of the tips from this woman, who paid off $14,330 in 20 months. Like I wrote earlier, there are no secrets to getting rich. You can sit here and read every tip and feel good about yourself. But only the people who spend time implementing will save any money.

I promise: No stupid frugality tips

As I mentioned, I hate frugality and all the frugality sites that waste my time focusing on saving money on frozen orange juice and rice cakes so I can save $1 per week. $1? I find that much money in my shoe every day.

I’m not trying to save $1 or even $10 per week, because it’s not worth changing your behavior for that kind of money. We’re aiming to save $1,000 in 30 days. That’s why this series will not include suggestions like “Start a garden” or “Buy day-old food from bakeries.” I certainly won’t tell you to cut your rent or move to a cheaper place, because NOBODY WILL DO IT! Does anyone ever follow those tips? No, but it sure makes other personal-finance authors feel good about themselves for coming up with a suggestion that theoretically, maybe, somehow could save money for the moron who would do it. Not here.

Only join if you’re serious

But I will ask you to cut back on some things – sometimes radically. For example, if you get your nails done or eat out every day, that’s gone this month. If you were planning to buy a big-screen TV, you can forget about it in November. You can pick it up next month, but I bet you’ll think twice once you save $1,000.

While it’s fun to read stuff like The Money Diaries because you get to laugh at other people’s spending, the 30 Day Challenge is different because it’s intimately personal. It means you have to look at your spending.

This is a 30-Day Challenge. Everything should be able to be accomplished within 30 days, but you have to commit to doing it. In other words, I’ll make most of my advice completely practical and sustainable. Because Americans suck at stopping consumption, we’re all going to have just sack up and stop certain things – which will feel incredibly painful – this month. Some of my tips will simply involve you physically going to a place where you cannot spend money to save yourself from your own spending behavior. It won’t feel good. Have you sat in a library on a Saturday afternoon and read books? Probably not (unless you’re Asian). You will this month.

Are you willing to save $1,000 in 30 days?

Would you be willing to cancel your cable? Or pick one habit and drop it cold-turkey? Would you be willing to see how far you can push yourself to save money for 30 days?

Earlier this month, I asked iwillteachyoutoberich readers how much time they’d be willing to spend saving $1,000 in a month.

How much time would you be willing to spend to save $1,000 in a month

Good news: If you spend 1 hour per day on the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge, you’ll easily save hundreds, if not the entire $1,000.

Hopefully I will, too. That’s because I will be participating in the Challenge, and I’ll chronicle my savings along with everyone else.

Now what?
This starts tomorrow, Saturday, November 1st. Check back to http://www.iwillteachyoutoberich.com every day for the newest tip.

* * *

Full list of the Save $1000 in 30 Days tips

If you liked this, check out my Premium tips — one long, tactical tip per week. Save money or get a 100% refund.

scrooge

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243 Comments

 
  1. Saw your dead-of-the-night twitter and decided to check it out, since I work third shift. Tell you what – working third shift saves me a lot of money – I can no longer drink on any weeknights! No bars, taxis, tips, resturant bills, etc, etc. It’s probably not feasible (or desirable) for most people to switch to third shift for that reason, but I also get a third shift ‘premium’ of an extra $0.50/hr, or $1000 a year – so theres something.

  2. Great idea, Ramit.

    I also hate tons of frugal tips that helps to save few bucks. That is not the way to go and I think it is better to focus on increasing earning potential.

    First, because there is no theoretical limit, how much we are able to earn (while we can’t save more than we earn).

    The second point is I find increasing my incomes more creative and challenging, while frugality always somehow decreases my comfort of life.

    But there are of course good habits and ideas that are important about saving money and not spending them in a stupid way. I hope your challenge is a good opportunity to share them and for many readers it would be profitable.

  3. “Have you sat in a library on a Saturday afternoon and read books? Probably not (unless you’re Asian).”

    That’s not very nice =P

    …but as an Asian, I have =(

  4. I live in a third world country, earn 2000 USD post tax, and I anyways save 1300 USD. Frugality is in our genes maybe.

    Please make a challenge that actually challenges!

  5. Nice idea, count me in. Don’t really know if I’ll be able to save $1,000, but maybe it will be close to it…

  6. I did my own version of this challenge during October, using the advice from the Consumerist article. And I have to say those tips work wonders. Using those guidelines saved me a little over $1500 this month.

    Going cash only was the number one factor in controlling my spending. It forced me to look at my wallet whenever I was in the mood to spend and think ahead to any other planned expenses for the week. My biggest money sink was eating out. The happy side benefit to going cash only was that not only did less eating out mean more money saved, it also helped me lose 7 pounds.

    Great idea for a challenge!

  7. November is pretty much the only month of 2008 where I might actually be able to do this – it’s the only month where my earnings will be high enough! (Mmm… college… tasty debt…)

    That pretty much proves your point, doesn’t it? All the frugality in the world may have helped me pay off my credit card over the past year, but only earning more will get me $1,000 a month in savings.

    I’m in.

  8. I’m in. I can probably get the money in a day.

  9. This is going to be hard with all the Black Friday deals in November. Lots of extra temptations…

  10. Sweet. I also am interested in tips that don’t start with buy your groceries every month at Sam’s club.

    I’m definitely in.

    Oh as a side note. I concur with zain on the inappropriateness of the Asian comment. I know you meant a joke but still…

  11. With more time I would definitely be in, but I am caught between being a retail manager and one of my own entrepreneurial adventures. Maybe in the near term future!

    Jesse W.
    htttp://www.subprimeblogger.com

  12. [...] in the knowingly precocious flavor of its namesake, it is called the “C.E.O. plan:” Ramit Sethi Save $1000 in 30 days challenge C = Cut one habit cold-turkey Reduce eating out Stop drinking 4 [...]

  13. Hi Ramit,

    This sounds great. I’m in. While I’m somewhat skeptical about actually saving the full $1000, like you said, $700 is better than nothing.

    Additionally I really enjoy your site and have encourged my bf and other friends to get on board.

  14. [...] over at iwillteachyoutobereach.com has created this challenge of saving $1000 in 30 days.  Its unique in that it doesn’t [...]

  15. Many of these things, we already do. Like no cable (I honestly don’t want it, though), I do my own nails now, no big screens, and I eat out maybe once a month.

    Oh, and by doing these things, my husband and I now save over $1000 a month, so there’s proof that this stuff works. I’m open to more ideas, though, so I’m in!

  16. Ramit,

    This sounds like fun. I know it will be tough at times, and considering I only have $900 left over after bills (not including fuel and food), I will need to find a way to make some more money. Here’s to an exciting challenge. Can I reach $1000 without starving?

  17. I’ve spent tons of time at the library, and I’m not Asian. :P Also I cancelled cable years ago, and I’m moving to a cheaper apartment in three weeks. Frugality tips don’t work for me because I already don’t do things they say not to do. I’m looking forward to hearing something different for a change.

  18. Wow am I glad I followed you on Twitter yesterday. Send Pam Slim a thank you note for loving you so much.

    I need to save a big pile of cash to meet a couple of goals for myself. I HAD set of goal of saving a measly $800 in November, but now you’ve inspired me to try to stretch myself to $1000!

    Thanks and you’ve won another subscriber.

  19. I’m definately in! I can use these times.

    I’m going to deveop this idea in my new position as a training director for a software company. What an awesome way to deliver information, training and help others make big changes.

    THANKS!

  20. Why don’t you use Seesmic for your videos? It’s free, and even easier than Youtube. Plus replies are built in allowing for a conversation to start faster.

  21. Ramit, this is a GREAT idea. I will definitely be signing up. Can’t wait for your book to be published too. Keep it up bro.

  22. Ramit, those frugality tips are only stupid for people who are even stupider. There’s a certain mindset those practices cultivate that naturally saves thousands and also earns more.

  23. I wish this challenge was in October, November month will be a busy one with Black Friday sales and holiday season around. This time around as retail sales are beaten up with recession talks I feel there will be huge markdowns and money can be saved in a big way I feel. This will be a tough challenge and I’m really looking forward to see how I can keep my hands off of those deals.

    thx Ramit

    Kalyan

  24. Ramit,
    I guess you should promote readers to save money in % of your income instead of $s. That will cover lots of income demographics. However, I am up for the challenge on top of what I am regularly savings.

  25. The blog is great, but yeah the Asian comment was a bit third grade like. how would you feel if I told you to switch to IT where your siblings work?

  26. @tony the tiger – how would you feel if we told you to stick to making corn flakes?

  27. I love the challenge and would not take offense if I was Asian. I would take it as complement. I will keep in mind there is always a sale. Sales are marketing tools to get consumers to spend more. If its on credit how good of a deal can it be?

  28. I may have gotten my first tip. If asian’s save by going to library, I’m going to the library. Emulate those to repaet there sucess. I think I got it. Thanks

  29. Ha, well I can certainly try. I do a lot of her tips and am also debt free. I’m saving 2K of my small salary per month for my wedding in April. Not much left over. Fortunately I can do this cause I shacked up with my fiance in his house, and rented my larger, fancier, newer house. We are in 870 sq feet with 3 cats and a dog and its going GREAT! :)

  30. I can’t wait to get started!

  31. Hi Ramit,

    I’ve been reading for over a year now, but have never commented. Although I really enjoy reading your blog, today I was shocked to see you say “this series will not include retarded suggestions” and go on to criticize other blogs. I feel disappointed that you – a writer I considered clear-spoke and insightful – would stoop so low as to use derogatory language and criticize the good work of others. I was considering taking your blog off my Google Reader, but have decided to inform you first.

    Thank you for your attention.

  32. I’m ready to save some money.

  33. Ah, good! I’m glad more are jumping on the frugality bandwagon.

    I know it’s not sexy, but it’s the other half of the personal finance equation, and it’s just as important as increasing your earnings.

    Personally, I wish I got on the frugality bandwagon sooner myself.

    I’ll be following this challenge with great interest.

  34. Ramit,
    You’re an intelligent guy. I am looking forward to some good tips.

  35. Am I the only one who always read it “Ram it”? *blush*

    Anyway, is the goal to save $1000 in the month, or in a year, or what? (Just wanna know what I’m shootin’ for.)

    For example, I feel like I’m saving in the long run, but not for the month, by buying Christmas gifts on Ebay & other auction sites right now instead of waiting until closer to Christmas when there will be more people bidding.

  36. Nice. I am ready for this Challenge.

  37. Doing this is impossible for me… i don’t make enough to try this exercise.

  38. “Have you sat in a library on a Saturday afternoon and read books? Probably not (unless you’re Asian).”

    I am a pure Asian (born there, grew up there but live in U.S. now). I think Indian folks are not far different.

    By the way, I love your blog.

  39. From m-w.com:
    Frugal: “characterized by or reflecting economy in the use of resources”

    I don’t understand why you’re dissing frugality. Isn’t it exactly what you’re advocating?
    You talk about spending less than you earn, and cutting costs. How does that differ from being frugal?

  40. Danh — you don’t have to save $1,000. What if you saved $100?

  41. I am excited to participate in this challenge, although my monthly income after just rent is less than $1000. But saving anything is better than nothing. Although, I’m betting it will be hard to stick to it when Thanksgiving comes around …

  42. [...] checked my inbox today and I got an email from Ramit Sethi on a challenge to save $1000.  Here’s how it works: Each day in November, I’ll post one suggestion to cut your spending. If [...]

  43. I’m with Elkit on this one:
    When it comes down to it, what’s the difference between going to the library and buying frozen orange juice?
    Why is OK to drop cable but not move to a cheaper apartment if you’re overpaying?

    As a personal example, my wife and I recently switched to cheaper versions of groceries and started meal planning. It took us a couple of hours to initially take stock and make a plan (and the first trip to the grocery store was rough), but now it only takes us 20 minutes a week to plan. We eat just as well as before, but we eat smarter and are saving $25/week. That’s 10% of the $1000 goal right there!

    That said, I’m looking forward to you and your reader’s new ideas for saving more money.
    Good luck

  44. Thanks, I am always open to bettering my saving/spending habits. I have to agree with MyMoneyYourMoney on relating in % instead of $ so individuals like Danh can meet a goal instead of a $ amount. That’s just my opinion. I hope to give some insite later on during the month of November.

  45. [...] over at iwillteachyoutobereach.com is giving challenge their readers that his tips can save $1000 in month of number. He also promises [...]

  46. I’ve been procrastinating about buckling down on the savings long enough! Let’s do this!! :-)

  47. I know you know your audience – but it’s worth pointing out – somebody who can save $1,000 is most likely making a substantial income. There are many people who really should be focusing on the income side. As an example: A person living, say in SF on $40K would be taking home less than $2000 per month and paying at the very least $500 in rent. Saving $1000 from that might be possible, but it’s not going to address the core problem – underearning.

  48. I’m in. Who doesn’t want $1000?

  49. Done! I just used some money I had from stock I sold earlier this year (when it was worth twice what it is now) and paid off the wife’s car. Between the monthly payment and the amount I’m saving in interest, I’m already there. Ramit, thanks for all of your hard work.

  50. [...] week I’m following Ramit Sethi’s challenge to save $1,000 in 30 days and listening to Alastair McIntosh from the above Do [...]

  51. Interesting. I just dared myself to not spend money eating out for lunch this week, so i saved about $7/day. Guess that would be about $140 after a month, plus maybe some gas money.

    But i’d have to question something. Is the point to not spend $1000, or to actually save $1000 (and put it away somewhere).

    Your example of putting off buying a big-screen tv until the next month is not saving anything to me — it’s just waiting. You will still spend that money. Saving in my mind implies sacrificing something. So for this exercise that would be getting a not-so-big-screen tv or a lesser-quality screen.

    Still, i’m interested, and will be reading.

  52. Ok, but what about down your expectations? why buying a 52″ LCD when you can purchase something between 40″ and 50″?
    but in addition as Ramit said if you wait one or two months is possibe getting into some discount or a big sale
    I come from a third world country and I’ll say I have a “big training” in don’t spend money in frugalities, when you need to live with 2000 or 3000 US$ per month and the things are more expensing than in USA, you really learnt a lot about how don’t waste your money.

  53. [...] Rich is definitely one of the earn-more-money guys. So it’s truly a departure for him to launch the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge because it includes a healthy dose of [...]

  54. I I want in!!! I am going to approach this Idea with an open mind and try to make the best of it. I already save as much as I can, but if I can save more….count me in. I recently moved from Miami, FL to Queens NY, and things here are way more expensive than Miami. For example, my rent is too expensive….. Now, my plan is to save as much money to buy a home, and used that rent money to pay for my own investment.
    Ramit, I been reading your website for a year and a half, and I want to thank you for all your efforts to get people financially aware. This is the first time that I share my thoughts, I guess I been sitting on the side lines.

  55. [...] to Save $1,000 This Instant 01Nov08 Ramit Sethi at I Will Teach You To Be Rich has a 30 day challenge, to save $1,000 for the month of November. This is AWESOME, and I am definitely on [...]

  56. I agree with MyMoneyYourMoney, for some people $1K in a month is impossible. Percentages is more realistic.

  57. [...] definitely one of the earn-more-money guys. So it’s truly a departure for him to launch the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge because it includes a healthy dose of [...]

  58. I already do the lunch thing. It does take planning though. We are order out junkies. Only because I forget to take out the chicken/fish, etc. from the freezer before I leave work. It’s all about planning and I’m definitely working on that, and I look forward to following your steps. I’ve even sent this site to my daughter in college so she can share with her friends. If you start young, it will last a lifetime, hopefully. Thank you so much. Blessings.

  59. [...] to my RSS feed. Thanks for visiting!Ramit at I Will Teach You to Be Rich has announced his Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge. During the month of November, he’s urging people to get off the couch and actually take [...]

  60. [...] Announcing the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge – Oooh… this is definitely worth following Tags: money [...]

  61. Great idea! I am in!
    I think I am going to try to make $1000 extra as well as save $1000. I did your tips for the day and I already sold something on Ebay within the first hour of listing it! There are a few things I have been meaning to post on Craigslist as well.

  62. [...] in America, that we could actually save up cash before December to use for Christmas gifts. This blog I ran across today, has daily tips to help you save $1000 in November. I know I am going to [...]

  63. I was already planning a “No spend Month”, an idea I got from an article and another blogger.
    So far we are 1 week in. Total spending not including bills $319.75
    I won’t have to buy groceries or gas for one of our 2 cars until the end of the month.
    ALL my bills are paid (except the mortgage), EARLY!
    And the best part, we have already saved $960 and are set to save close to $1500.

    I’m going to try to focus on earning extra money the next few weeks as well, so maybe it’ll be even more!

    Looking forward to reading your tips. :)

  64. [...] at I Will Teach You To Be Rich has started a great series on how to save $1k in 30 days. So far the first two tips have been great!  I can’t wait to see what the other 28 will be. [...]

  65. I take my lunch at least twice a week, but I don’t always eat it (I fall prey to the got-a-better-offer demon). Suggestion, if you cook dinners at home, as I do, because I have a family, pack a meal-size left over as you clean up (or supervise the children cleaning up!). Don’t take it the next day, you’ll be tired of it and tempted to go out, take it the following day. If you cook every night, you’ll always have something waiting to take. If you don’t, keep some frozen entrees, cans of soup or sandwich fixings on hand. You’ll save and you’ll eat better. Added bonus: you won’t get ticked when you feed those spoiled leftovers to the disposal, because you’ll be eating them!

  66. Hmm… I have to admit I’m a bit skeptical about whether or not you’ll tell me anything new. The first two tips already don’t apply.

    1. My husband and I already “pack lunches” every day (I work from home, and he usually comes home – only a couple miles – for lunch or packs a lunch to take with him).
    2. Utilities are covered in our rent, so the thermostat thing doesn’t matter to our finances… though right now our AC/heat is off since the weather is so nice.

    It seems like your blog is aimed toward people who might go, “Ooh, I never thought of not drinking beer every night!” or “I guess I could give up a clothes-shopping trip or two this month!” rather than people who are already frugal in most areas of life.

    That said, I’m subscribing and looking forward to seeing what you suggest!

  67. [...] Can you save $1000.00 in 30 days without eating Ramen noodles three times a day? (IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com) [...]

  68. Best way to improve your life that I can think of is NOT HAVING CABLE. It sounds crazy at first, but I figured out that if you get home at six and watch tv or have it on at least until you go to bed at 11, you’re wasting 5 hours a night, where you are either a complete vegetable or working very inefficiently. I got rid of it and I get a lot more done and aside from that I get a lot more sleep. My body feels a lot better, less aches and pains, and I’m more focused at work. Once you get off of the tube for a while it’s not as hard as you’d think. I have removed 90% of my exposure to advertisements and instead of spending 100 dollars a month to waste time, I spend 30-40 on a season of my favorite show and watch an episode or two a night. It makes it much easier to keep track of how much time you’ve wasted, because let’s face it, we all need time to relax a little, It’s just that it tends to get out of control if you like background noise or if you get into a ton of shows. I have actually been able to get to the gym during the week! Amazing.

  69. I’m disapointed by the first two tips of your challenge. I already do that since many months. Sure things, it works althought I didn’t compute how much I saved. But it doesn’t help me saving more. I will look for the upcoming tips.

  70. [...] doing pretty good with this. I’m also doing Ramit’s save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge, so I’m cutting back a bit more for this [...]

  71. –First of all commenting on DanG’s comment. That is somewhat of a barrier right there, what about trying to do it better? Saving a little more money, or eating a bit more healthier with packing lunch etc. I don’t know about you guys but Ramit has given me inspiration.
    –I went out for the first time ever yesterday and went Sunday Ading-Coupon Clipping. So I checked out the ad’s/coupons and planned my attack. We were pretty running on empty with foods, I feel I may have gone overboard, I spent 200, but then again I saved 160$ (BTW *RAMIT*) Do you feel grocery savings counts toward this months figure?
    –Times have been hard, me and my wife are younger, we have a daughter that just turned 2 on the 31st. We owe 2500$ back rent (We’re living in a house that’s above what we can handle, yet we can’t figure out how to tackle saving enough money to move somewhere else). We owe the IRS 2300$, which I need to start payments on but we’re drowning little by little each month as it is, a month behind on a bill here and there. I’m trying to stay away from credit and work that down, luckily our credit debt isn’t that bad. Anyway long story short, I needed some motivation and now I have it. Besides your post I’m using my daughter’s birthday as a mile marker, I already feel like a better person. My wife was even shocked at my shopping spree/saving ambition.
    –Yes this is getting to be a long post but I’ve never been much of a blogger or anything of the type so I guess its built up! A tip of my own to add out there that I’m doing for myself. If you’re a smoker, and can’t quit right away, go ahead and set yourself a cutback. I smoke a pack a day, well I’m going to make it half a pack a day this whole month, and aspire to decrease from there, no barriers, no hold backs. For the better health of me, my pocket, my daughter, and my life on the back end. Good luck everyone and I look forward to seeing what else Ramit has to offer, and what type of feedback accrues.

  72. Ramin,
    I saw the link to your post over at Get Rich Slowly, great challenge! I will be following along.

    I teach a couple of personal finance classes. One is a debt elimination class, the other covers this exact topic, where to find extra money in your budget. When I teach this, I take the same postion as you, that it’s not about quitting cold turkey and depriving yourself but merely about being more aware of your spending choices.

    To comment the commenters:

    @Jeremiah: “But i’d have to question something. Is the point to not spend $1000, or to actually save $1000 (and put it away somewhere).”

    That’s what I teach in class; we call it “reverse budgeting”. Basically, instead of looking at what is spent, look to find areas to save a few bucks. After that, “seize the savings” by depositing the savings (or better yet, having it direct depositied) in a separate bank account at a separate bank (no debit card or checkbook, only online banking). It’s still accessible, but not that convenient to get to. To your point, you could save that money, but without “seizing your savings”, it ends up getting spent elsewhere.

    @Kacper: “The second point is I find increasing my incomes more creative and challenging, while frugality always somehow decreases my comfort of life.”

    Is eating out 2x week as opposed to 3x week going to decrease your comfort of life? Probably not. Cut off the HBO or Showtime? Probably not. There are plenty of rich people that are broke because they don’t look at the other side of the equation. I’m looking forward to Ramin’s tips to see what he comes up with.

    @Zain: “Have you sat in a library on a Saturday afternoon and read books? Probably not (unless you’re Asian).

    That’s not very nice =P

    …but as an Asian, I have =(”

    As a non-Asian, I have noticed this when I’ve been in the library too. I’ve also made the observation that most Asians are not only more frugal, but smarter that us Americans that spend our times in the malls. We shop in the stores, while the Asians OWN them.

  73. I agree with the person who said that not having cable makes a big difference in what you spend. If you only have regular network TV the only ads you’ll see are for drugs that someone young doesn’t need (if you even bother to watch TV at all)

    I have seen this in action with my 4 year old son. When he goes to my mom’s (who has cable) he sees toy ads on all of the channels he watches. This equals much begging and whining for the toys he sees. At our house the only channel he gets to watch cartoons on is PBS= no ads = no whining for new toys. Apply this same principal to adults and you will see real savings.

  74. [...] by matt wallaert, lead scientist There is a lot of chatter on the personal finance blogs about I Will Teach You To Be Rich’s new challenge, where they are trying to give you tips to save $1,000 dollars in 30 days. I was [...]

  75. First time reader and commenter. I think this is a great idea, but your attitude is very-offputting. Think bigger, man. Small-mindedness (as evidenced by your use of terms like “moron” and “retarded”) has no long-term viability.

    Some of the things you don’t like (ie, starting a garden) – you might want to consider that “one size fits all” tips can also be just as useless. Wouldn’t it make more sense to address the tips to lifestyle?

  76. Wow. Calling people ‘retarded’ and ‘morons’ for following ‘stupid’ tips? This from someone who has S. Orman under Recommended Reading? Oh brother.

  77. Wow. Just stumbled upon this and I am going to give it a try this month. Few days late but what the hell. I just need to cut back the drinking and I am good to go!

  78. For those who say they already save 1000, I read this challenge to save 1000 ABOVE what you already do. My only question is in regards to (O)ptimized savings. If I cut a bill by $45, do I only count November’s savings or the whole year? I yechnicaly saved more than $45, it just will be realized monthly. To make it harder, I’m only counting one month’s worth..

  79. Ramit,

    If someone has the time and the space to devote to a garden to grow herbs and vegetables – please explain why it is a “retarded” decision?

    Considering that JD over @ getrichslowly has linked to your site regarding your challenge and that he has posted a series of articles on his gardening efforts this year, maybe you need to rethink your attitude towards gardening.

    Also stereotyping library users isn’t a healthy attitude either – I’m certainly not Asian, yet I’m a regular library user.

    I’m interested to see your other suggestions for your challenge, but take the chip off your shoulder.

  80. Heh, J.D. and I talked to each other about the posts. I love his blog. But we have different audiences, and I don’t like spending tons of time to save a little bit of money, while he is an expert at frugality and distilling advice down to practical, down-to-earth tips. There’s room for everyone in the blogosphere.

  81. I think “retarded” might not be the best word to describe gardening as a path to save money, but the problem with the kind of frugality Ramit criticizes is that it isn’t practical.

    Telling a single 24-year-old computer programmer like myself who lives in a city flat to start gardening to save money is stupid, because I’ll never follow through on it, and the time I will have spent in the attempt will be wasted. But that same advice for my parents in the rural Midwest, however, probably saves them $200-300 per summer.

    I will say that I do happen to brew my own ales, which makes my beer habit cost less than it would otherwise, but I’m also not going to tell everyone they should start homebrewing because it’ll save them money. Also, I wouldn’t tell a single parent struggling to pay the bills on minimum wage that they should spend half an hour this month tweaking their asset allocation, because chances are that the only savings they have is a cash emergency fund, not IRAs.

    The point is to dispense advice that is universally useful and practical to implement.

  82. Matt, that’s a good point. Well-said.

    The only difference of opinion I have is about “universally useful” advice. Such advice is usually so obvious, it’s useless.

    I’d rather offer advice that I would actually do — advice for a much more targeted audience. By definition, that advice won’t be useful to everyone, but you can’t be everything to everyone.

  83. [...] week. I’m posting on my regular schedule (4x/week) plus I’m following Ramit’s Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge. He’s a good writer and I enjoyhow he breaks down the psychology behind personal [...]

  84. [...] personal finance blog community.  I learned about it from Get Rich Slowly, but it originated at I Will Teach You To Be Rich.  The challenge is to save $1000 in 30 days (the 30 days of November).  Each day, I Will Teach [...]

  85. [...] Ramit Sethi, the blogger behind I Will Teach You To Be Rich, has issued one heck of a challenge: if you follow along with his challenge, in 30 days you’ll have $1,000 in the bank. [...]

  86. [...] over at I Will Teach You To Be Rich has thrown down a challenge. Can you save $1,000 in 30 days? He, like us, is annoyed with crappy [...]

  87. Nice idea, but the current median family income here in Ohio is $58,000/year. After taxes this means a monthly paycheck of about $3,400. Note that this is the median, so fully half of Ohio families live on less than this! I doubt many of them could save $1,000/month without selling off their children.

  88. Greg, how about saving $50? Or $100? Can you do that?

    Seems to me that’s better than doing nothing.

  89. I’m a few days late, but I’m in.

  90. this sounds really interesting.
    unfortunately after i pay my bills i only have $240 left for the month (for food and anything else i want to do or need to buy). i could give up a couple of luxuries (netflix and internet) and add maybe $75 to that total, but then i’d probably end up spending that money on things to fill those holes.
    still, i’m intrigued to see what ideas you have.

  91. [...] bucks heading into the holiday season, now’s a great time to do some last-minute saving. Announcing the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge [I Will Teach You to Be Rich via Get Rich [...]

  92. [...] money right now. Thats why tomorrow, Im launching the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge. Announcing the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge | I Will Teach You To Be Rich INTEL E8400 // Gigabyte EP45 Extreme // 4GB DDR3-1600 // Palit HD 4870 // Antec 1200 // Seagate [...]

  93. You wrote: “That’s why this series will not include retarded suggestions like “Start a garden” or “Buy day-old food from bakeries.” I certainly won’t tell you to cut your rent or move to a cheaper place, because NOBODY WILL DO IT! Does anyone ever follow those stupid tips?”

    Um, yeah. Hubby and I moved to a cheaper city which allowed us to retire at age 34 (about 6 months ago). Maybe *you* want a few extra bucks in your pocket. We wanted to transform our lives. And we did, with one of those “retarded” suggestions. (We really want to start a garden, but we travel too often to tend it. So, we’re not living a boring life, either.) Fellow retards are welcome to see what we did by clicking through to our blog. :D

    (I apologize that we haven’t really updated since we retired, but updates are coming.)

  94. [...] bucks heading into the holiday season, now’s a great time to do some last-minute saving. Announcing the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge [I Will Teach You to Be Rich via Get Rich [...]

  95. [...] US (if Obama wins), I think it is important for everyone to spend their money in smart ways.  The Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge might just help us [...]

  96. I’m in, even if I don’t save $1000, it is never a bad thing to save money. How do we get on the email list with hte extra tips?

  97. I’ve found that the best way to get American wealthy is to sue the living shit out of some company. My neighbor did it, and moved. My boss did it and divorced his wife and bought a nice 20yrd old wife. I would like to do same.

  98. This sounds like a fab idea.

    Just a little note. I’m AA and I not only visit my local library I work at a library. I never buy movies or even go to the movies or rent movies. My local library usually has all the latest releases. Before I buy books I read it first at the library before spending cash. Also the library usually has alot of free programs available so its a good place for entertainment, not just reading. Another plus free wireless and free internet access.

  99. Who wants to bet Sundarlal (2 comments above) comes back one day and asks me to delete his comment because he’s embarrassed about it showing up in Google?

  100. You said no lame tips. Tip #1 seems pretty lame to me. Seems to me gave up on teaching the right lesson which is frugality. Or rather than calling it frugality, call it sensible purchasing: want vs need. You’re right that Americans suck at saving. But that won’t change unless people push the agenda just like banks push theirs with credit cards. I save well more than 1K per month on a moderate income with a stay at home wife 2 kids and have been debt free since 1997. The real lesson is don’t get in over your head…ever…and you have little to worry about regardless of the economy. Here’s my tip….get a 6% checking account from http://www.charterco.com, follow the rules and don’t overspend. Common sense and discipline. Oh, I should mention that I’m making 6% on a credit card loan of 0% (that’s tip 2…but only if you’ve got discipline).

  101. What if you only make $1000.00 a month? Don’t count me in. This Fancy Feast cat food tastes pretty good by the way. What cable? My 13 inch TV works great, even with the rabbit ears. This Commodore 64 doesn’t do too bad, considering the screen has only black and orange lettering, but I do get to the library on some weekends (to use their ‘puter.) Anyway, good luck to all the people who can make it work. I envy you. Now, back to studying for my trig exams.(by candlelight, no less)

  102. [...] bucks heading into the holiday season, now’s a great time to do some last-minute saving. Announcing the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge [I Will Teach You to Be Rich via Get Rich [...]

  103. [...] bucks heading into the holiday season, now’s a great time to do some last-minute saving. Announcing the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge [I Will Teach You to Be Rich via Get Rich [...]

  104. [...] over at I Will Teach You To Be Rich has thrown down a challenge. Can you save $1,000 in 30 days? He, like us, is annoyed with crappy [...]

  105. [...] out this Save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge and try to implement some of the suggestions (or all of them!) this month to see if they can work [...]

  106. In order to save 1000 in a month I would need to cut my expenditure to 200. My rent is 300. So is this plan just for overpaid people?

  107. [...] The Save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge Ramit is creating a list of thirty essential savings tactics that he believes will add up to $1,000 in savings a month for people who really strive for it. I particularly like tip #4, involve your friends. (@ i will teach you to be rich) [...]

  108. [...] The Save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge Ramit is creating a list of thirty essential savings tactics that he believes will add up to $1,000 in savings a month for people who really strive for it. I particularly like tip #4, involve your friends. (@ i will teach you to be rich) [...]

  109. [...] 2008 finances , howtos This fella, Ramit Sethi from Stanford is teaching his readers how to save $1000 in 30 days. For me obviously, this guy has to be considerably financially well-off to have a site called [...]

  110. Just wanted to say fair play to you mate. Good advice and I look forward to the rest of the tips!

  111. When do you post your tip of the day?
    I usually don’t see till the next day.
    BTW gas prices dropped a lot, but if you shop for gas online before you fill out it’ll save you few bucks! So that’s another $10 – $15 in your pocket

  112. it would be good if you could rethink the use of words like ‘retarded’ to express your disapprobation. it’s hurtful to a lot of people, who understand it perfectly.

  113. [...] Buffet – but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try. For his part, Ramit’s taking his readers through a day-by-day self-improvement in November, and I’m going to join in, posting my results of each incremental attempt here. Down to [...]

  114. I’m actually shocked that people can save $1000 a month. Everyone else must make a lot more money than I do (not surprising) and then spend a TON more. I suppose I’m living frugally. Half of our household salary goes to paying off the mortgage and school loans. The rest goes into savings or the $1200 a month of actual living expenses. I don’t think I’ll be able to cut out 80% of our budget. Food is pretty important!

  115. [...] saw a link regarding this challenge to save $1000 in a month. I figured that since I just spent 1000 shekels on a new battery, it would be [...]

  116. [...] The Save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge Ramit is creating a list of thirty essential savings tactics that he believes will add up to $1,000 in savings a month for people who really strive for it. I particularly like tip #4, involve your friends. (@ i will teach you to be rich) [...]

  117. Thanks for helping out! American consumers owe $14 trillion which is 36% more than the current national deficit. It is also rising by over $26,000 a second. We have a serious problem. Thank you for raising the level of discussion on this issue and finding ways to get people to really think about their out-of-control consumption.

  118. I was super excited to find this article! I’m still psyched about the whole concept but so far, I’m only able to use 2 of the 5 tips. I already pack my lunches (I’d say 90% of the time), we’ve always keep our apartment conservatively heated/cooled, we don’t have cell phones, only a land line. Selling stuff on e-bay is something I’m working on, as well as getting my husband (the “friends” thing) on board with what I’m doing (since we don’t have social lives which cause us to spend money on entertainment). I was disappointed at first that some of these tips weren’t helpful but for myself and those in a similar situation, we need to realize that just because Ramit is spoon-feeding us these tips, we should be able to brainstorm other tips to replace the ones that seem to not apply to us. For instance, regarding the packed lunches, can I make them even cheaper? Perhaps even without comprimising the quality by buying in bulk? Instead of managing the thermostat better, could we be more diligent about turning off electronics that aren’t in use or maybe taking shorter/cooler showers? Instead of optimizing our (non-existent) cell phone bill, are there other options for our land line service? Don’t give up on this challenge just because some of Ramit’s tips don’t apply… replace them with others that do! Good luck everyone.

  119. [...] The Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge ] – I Will Teach You To Be [...]

  120. [...] Announcing the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge [I Will Teach You to be Rich] “Each day in November, I’ll post one suggestion to cut your spending. If you spend time each day working on the day’s post, the vast majority of you will save over $1,000 each month.” [...]

  121. I think I can do this. My family will hate me, but I think I can do this.

  122. We retired at 34 on the basis of one of those stupid tips: we moved someplace ridiculously inexpensive. We travel the world 6 months of the year now. No regrets so far.

  123. Hi Ramit,

    I totally agree with you that there is plenty of room in the PF blogosphere. I also understand that ideas such as “Start a garden” and “Buy day-old food from bakeries” aren’t ones that you’re enthusiastic about. I also understand that the ideas you called “retarded” mightn’t be a good fit to your target audience.

    But to call frugality ideas that you don’t particularly care for “retarded” when some of your readers may find them perfectly valid isn’t the best way to communicate.

    My suggestion is that at the conclusion of your series you list frugality ideas that you aren’t enthusiastic about, with a brief explanation as to why.

    By the way your fuel hedging suggestion is a really good one.

    Cheers

  124. [...] inspire you, check out the $1000 in 30 days challenge. Adjust the amount to something realistic for your income level, and start [...]

  125. [...] you can still catch up! Personal finance blogger Ramit Sethi is giving us a tip each day on how to save $1,000 this month. Not all tips are applicable to everyone (for instance I don’t have control over my heat to [...]

  126. [...] If you want to avoid taking out payday loans, then find ways to spend less than you earn. Try out Ramit’s 30 Day Challenge to Save $1000. Even if you can’t save $1000, you’ll have some cash to stash in the bank for an emergency. [...]

  127. I’m taking the money saving challenge! I do some of these things already, so not sure I’ll save $1,000, but I know I can save something!

  128. [...] Announcing the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge | I Will Teach You To Be Rich [...]

  129. [...] The Save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge (@ i will teach you to be rich) With the economic downturn and the holidays fast approaching, people are looking for ways to save some money. Over at I Will Teach You To Be Rich, there’s a challenge going on for readers to save $1,000 in 30 days. Each day, blogger Ramit will give tips on how you can meet this goal. [...]

  130. [...] The Save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge (@ i will teach you to be rich) With the economic downturn and the holidays fast approaching, people are looking for ways to save some money. Over at I Will Teach You To Be Rich, there’s a challenge going on for readers to save $1,000 in 30 days. Each day, blogger Ramit will give tips on how you can meet this goal. [...]

  131. [...] but your thermostat shouldn’t be set at 75 degrees during the winter.  Ramit Seti’s 30 Day Challenge to Save $1000 shows that for every 1 degree your thermostat goes down during the winter, you save approximately [...]

  132. [...] at I Will Teach You To Be Rich has started a challenge for November, aiming to get his readers to save $1,000, about £500, in 30 [...]

  133. [...] Will Teach You to be Rich has a Save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge. I like the idea of this challenge although it would be hard for me to save $1000 when that is my [...]

  134. [...] The Save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge Ramit is creating a list of thirty essential savings tactics that he believes will add up to $1,000 in savings a month for people who really strive for it. I particularly like tip #4, involve your friends. (@ i will teach you to be rich) [...]

  135. [...] 9th, 2008 10:57pm MST in Computer Checking in on my promise to spend smarter in November. Ramit has posted tips for days 6 and 7, and I’m also making progress on some of the previous days’ tips. [...]

  136. [...] of our clients, Ramit Sethi and I Will Teach You To Be Rich, is a few days into his Save $1000 in 30 days challenge.  For 30 days Ramit will give his top tips on how you can save money quickly and [...]

  137. [...] November 10th, 2008 @ 7:00 am | Author: admin As part of his goal to get readers to save $1,000 in 30 days, personal finance blogger Ramit Sethi suggests setting up a personal fuel hedging fund to protect [...]

  138. [...] part of his goal to get readers to save $1,000 in 30 days, personal finance blogger Ramit Sethi suggests setting up a personal fuel hedging fund to protect [...]

  139. I run a blog on current trends in the personal finance market. I was glad to see your goal to help readers save $1000- in 30 days. We need leadership from responsible people such as yourself in helping people get ahead and be responsible for their own fiscal needs.

  140. I write one of those “retarded” frugal living web sites, as you refer to them. I don’t tell people to buy day-old bread, but I have recommended starting a garden (but I have actually done both myself). My site is for the people who have a difficult time coming up with $1000 by any means, not those who “find a dollar in their shoe” without even trying. About five years ago I was literally homeless. Today, after implementing the tips that I mention on my site (yes, I have actually done every single one of them) I now make more money than at any other point in my life, I own stocks, I have a retirement fund and I have taken major strides in repairing my credit. Remember, there are people out there that don’t know the first thing about personal finance, need some help (“I’m unemployed, now what” is one of the top Google searches that leads people to my site) and have never earned or managed to save much money. They need to live off less than they earn, and the “stupid” frugality tips are a good first start for them.

  141. [...] Announcing the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge | I Will Teach You To Be Rich (tags: useful tips star savings saving personalfinance personal money lifehacks lifehack frugal) [...]

  142. [...] help myself on this one. I was reading a post from the blog I Will Teach You to Be Rich on how to save $1000 in 30 days. It is a pretty interesting article, go read it. Anyway, I noticed the author, Ramit Sethi, [...]

  143. [...] at I Will Teach You to Be Rich, Ramit Sethi has started the Save $1000 in 30 days challenge. credit: Matt McGee Save Baby, [...]

  144. [...] Announcing the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge. Each day this month, I Will Teach You to be Rich is presenting one tip to help readers save money now. Ramit is guaranteeing that he will not include “stupid frugality tips.” One such tip that passed the test is to involve your friends with your savings goals. [...]

  145. [...] let me clarify, he first told me that he is doing something on his web site where he is launching a 30-Day Challenge for people to save [...]

  146. Hi Ramit,

    Admittedly, I am new to your Blog. I am waiting for a tip that will help us out. Here is what we already do:

    We are “retired” on disability (both my husband and I)

    We own our land and mobile home in an emerging third world country

    We pay about $143.00 USD in property taxes, annually

    The country we live in is a petrol producer so we buy our gas here

    We use minimal indoor light at night (outdoors is illuminated with low voltage and/or motion detector lights)

    We raise our own organic food to supplement our diet (not a lot because we have only 20M squared)

    We shop both sides of the US border for the best buys (for instance PVC pipe costs about $1.25 in the US but $4.50 here; guess where we get ours)

    We are in our SON’s family cell phone plan

    We RARELY eat out and I cook almost all of our meals from scratch, using local ingredients

    We don’t drink

    We have NO heater or AC

    I regularity use eBay and/or Craig’s list

    We shop once a month or less at a large discount store and have a stockpile of non-perishable foods and goods that we use

    We barter with neighbors for things like eggs

    We don’t have “no spending” days… we have occasional “spending” days as absolutely necessary

    We wear casual clothes until they wear out and buy “new” at the local thrift store or one in the US

    We recycle as much as we can (like milk jugs for slow watering plants)

    We save for all nine of our grandkids (a nominal amount) and some for ourselves (direct withdrawl)

    We use a bank that provides us with free banking services and online banking. We pay almost all of our bills online (no postage)

    We read free books from an exchange at out local postal service

    We do pay for our DSL as part of our local phone service but not only is it our internet but it is our Skype connection to the US

    Periodically, we get part time jobs for an influx of cash (we are limited as far as work by our disabilities)

    We travel using our timeshares (that we bought on Ebay) so it cost us about 1/10 of what it would cost us to pay full fare

    We negotiate for reductions in the interest rates on our credit cards as frequently as possible

    We own 2 fairly late model “cross-over” cars (2006) that we bought in 2007, as salvage vehicles at less than half of the cost of new. Our last vehicle we bought was in 1994 before these.

    We converted some of our cash to the local currency when it was at an all time high conversion rate

    Because of our fixed income we are still looking for new ways to save! We don’t expect to save $1000 a month but any new ideas are welcome!
    Thanks Ramit!

  147. Seems that many people do not like either the idea of getting rich or are fresh out of ideas.

    I scan money saving sites for vouchers and offers daily… even a free cup of coffee helps :-)

    Started off by selling one item on ebay and was hooked, an ideal way to de-clutter and get some cash for doing it…

    So far I am half way to $1000 goal, it may get tougher as month goes on but I even looking for extra work

    You need to set targets goals and go for them part of the challenge

    Thanks for sharing your tips and advice

    Kev

  148. All it takes is common sense, effort and will power and with that combination people can change the way that they live. People have gotten their “needs” and “wants” confused in this day and age and with a little change anything is possible!

  149. [...] you Ramit for the great money saving tips! Take his money saving challenge and see how you [...]

  150. I just wanted to say Thank You for this challenge! So far this month I’ve saved $264.49 and it’s only the 17th of the month.

  151. [...] For those keeping track with me with Ramit’s 30 Days to Save $1,000 Challenge: [...]

  152. [...] is Tip #13 of of the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge. (See past [...]

  153. [...] has been posting a lot more tips on his  Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge. I’m just going to put a few of my thoughts on the tips. I really encourage not only to look at [...]

  154. Since I don’t have any bad habits to break that cost money and I don’t eat out because my $400 a week won’t allow me, I’m interested in the making money part.

  155. Ramit… Are you going to consider falling gas prices as contributing to your “saving $1000 in a month” challenge.
    Here is my gasoline expenses each month starting march 08… $240, $247, $315, $370, $352, $294, $317, $272, $153 (Nov)

  156. [...] is meant to coincide with his Save $1000 in 30 Days challenge (that I also wrote about [...]

  157. some of the so called frugal tips will save you $ now, and definitely save your $ in the future for the simple reason that our country runs this way: chemicals are used agressively in every single thing: to cause the greatest harm to humans so that the sister Pharma gets 600,000 xs the cost of meds. Since the FDA is a “front” for the chemical & Pharma’s most folks “accept” what there false reports appearing to be “real” and from “authorities”. Were you aware that the USA has been #1 in infants deaths for years? The #1 cause: chemicals. Formaldehyde one of the most toxic chemicals on the planet to humans is used in everything the the FDA put right thru Donald Rumsfelds asparteme with formaldehyde inside of it. So it is used in everything now practically that you buy food wise, & everything you buy new. So is the fructose corn syrup & WHY is it in everything? Why are they spending $30m & more to convince the public that it is “safe”? You are NOT rich if you do not have your health! So: get wise, & be richer by making it yourself, & visiting “frugal tip groups”; what good is wealth if you are dead or ill?

  158. So…instead of posting the same little tips frugality websites offer, you’re posting the same big tips frugality websites offer. Sorry, but so far – not an ounce of originality in your tips. I’ve seen them all before.

    Also nice little bit of racism there, assuming only Asians use the library. Smooth.

  159. You should shut down your website immediately. If people don’t start buying more stuff, the economy will never recover and more people will lose their jobs. Do the patriotic thing, spend everything you have and max out your credit cards.

  160. Saw this only a couple of days ago and signed immediately. I’m coming at it from another angle, because I have been unemployed for about a year, and it’s getting really really tight. My mom has been great about helping me with rent, but all the other bills just keep coming and my savings is almost depleted. So I’ve committed to my own “Live on $1000 for 30 days” challenge, using the tips you list to help me cut back in little ways and keep me motivated. For the next 30 days I’ll strive to live on a $1000 budget (not including rent) and see how it goes. Thanks for the tips. Your blog straight talk is great!

  161. [...] I have a few minutes I decided to go ahead and update everyone on how I’m doing with the Save $1,000 in 30 Days [...]

  162. So, I’ve looked at your blog about saving $1000 in 30 days and have decided it doesn’t really apply to me since I don’t even get $1000 a month, and I barely have any of the expenses you target as areas to cut back in.

    But I’ll give you some money-saving hints since as a poor student, it’s one of the things I do best.

    Keep an eye out on sales, and have the money to take advantage of them: quite often stores have heavily reduced food, clothing and other items, and if you’re in the right place in the right time you can benefit greatly from them. For example, the other day I bought this great skirt from Rivers (never heard of it? I live in Australia…) for $6.95 and the RRP (original price) was $59.99.

    Pool your resources: often it’s cheaper to buy in bulk, but if you don’t have somebody to share then it becomes expensive and a waste. Sharing shopping with housemates or neighbours can help save on money and wastage – especially when stores have those awful multibuy deals where you can only get the discount if you buy at least 2 of the product.

    Write a list: pretty obvious for grocery shopping, but also helps for the non-regular items. Writing down exactly what is Needed (not Wanted) will help you remember things, prevent you from buying unnecessary junk and will allow you to be on the lookout for great deals.

    Secondhand: op-shops (thrift stores to you) offer unique, quality clothing and other items at a low price, if you know how where to look. Also, garage sales and council pickup if you have that brilliant thing in your area – though remember, if it’s not on the nature strip or if there’s a moving truck next to it, you can’t just take it home.

    Eat cheaply: it’s been said so many times before. Buy food and make it, grow it yourself, dumpster dive etc etc. Really think whether you need something, and save going out to a restaurant for special occassions and not just when you’re too lazy to cook. Cereal is an all-day meal, so always have a box on hand.

    Be creative: making and growing things is far cheaper than buying them.

    Share: in addition to the above (sharing groceries), sharing everything is cheaper. Though obviously I’m a little biased because I live in a share-house. You can share meals, rooms/beds (twin-share accommodation in hotels etc), bills, dwellings, carpool, heck you can even share showers to cut down on water consumption. Also, lending and borrowing those books, CDs, movies and other things you aren’t using between friends and family helps cut down on entertainment related expenses aswell.

    Shop around: well duh, but some people are too lazy. Competition is a part of business, so there’s always a cheaper alternative out there if you care to look. For example, I’m paying $9.95 a week for unlimited use of a local gym because I shopped around and didn’t just go for the over-priced uni gym because it was there (which is something like $110 every 6 months plus $6.50 for every class you go to). Plus, a constant fee rather than per class makes me want to actually go and use it.

    What else can I tell you? I apologise for putting all my tips into a long comment rather than writing my own blog about it, but I’m kind of lazy like that. Besides, it’s about time I went to bed so I can get up and do stuff tomorrow (well, today technically). A final financial tip is to not go on exchange when at uni, or to get into a degree in which is exchange is possible but allows you the option to go somewhere where the cost of living is relatively low. I’m going to Europe, which is going to leave a nasty hole in my pocket even with the various scholarships and whatnot.

    Thankyou for reading my long-winded comment, and I hope you have gained some insight from wasting your time reading it.

  163. [...] Christmas Shopping.” On other fronts, Green Panda continues the project to rise to Ramit’s Save $1,000 in 30 days challenge. Student Scrooge has kicked off an entertaining new feature, “Frugal Court,” [...]

  164. [...] Lastly, get some advice and be humble enough to receive it. Looking for some ideas? Check out the Save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge. There you’ll find a tip a day for saving money, small decisions that together have a big [...]

  165. [...] (Scroll down to read all of his suggestions here) [...]

  166. [...] doing pretty good with this. I’m also doing Ramit’s save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge, so I’m cutting back a bit more for this [...]

  167. I went to Japan on a 4 week vacation, but unfortunately lost all my work hours on return. Sold some crap that didn’t use anymore, and made $1000 for the month.

  168. Ok, so, having committed to this challenge, my wife and I re-assessed what we were spending and where we could make a difference while raising two toddlers in SF. We realized that with focus and a bit of luck, we might reach the $1000/mo. goal. Right now, we are projected to save around $869 per month, and hope to find another source for the other $131.

    Moving: We searched craigslist and friends, everyday & relentlessly, until we found a larger space – 1 more bedroom! — for less money in the same safe neighborhood. Really, it was just a question of doing the work!

    Car: Sell the old maintenance and buy new ($15k), which we project will last us another 8 years or so, and provide a return on lower petrol and auto maintenance costs. ALthough the savings difference of these is minimal — and largely due to unforseen economic effects — it should count over time.

    Cellphone and birthdays: Reality.

    The table:

    itemization 11/8/08 12/8/08 rel savings percent
    rent 3350 2895 455 14%
    petrol 200 100 100 50%
    cell 35 40 -5 -14%
    Bdays 25 66 -41 -164%
    auto maint 100 0 100 100%
    subtotal 7418 6549 869

    Now, we will be working on food costs, lower our travel expenses via connecting to online deals, etc.

    Good luck everyone!

  169. I have save almost $50 – $75 a month on my electric bill. I got a clothes line @ Home depot for $35.00 and a bag of clothes pin for $4.00. On bright sunny days I hang my
    clothes in the morning and they are dry in the evening. PLUS!!!! This tip is good for the environment

  170. [...] *Fingers crossed* But to help get focused I’ve subscribed to Ramit’s “Save $1K in 30 Days Challenge” at iwillteachyoutoberich.com. I’ve been looking at the tips, but right now, finals [...]

  171. great tips. Another is that if you are going to buy something anyway (gift, new clothes, etc.) go to http://www.retailmenot.com and look for a coupon. It could save you 50-60% off what you were going to buy.

    Here’s my savings so far:
    1. carry lunches 3x per week – 120/month
    2. turn thermostat down and unplug unused appliances including internet router at night – 25-50/month
    3. sold something on eBay – 450
    5. optimized cell phone bill – 30/month
    8. cancelled gym membership – 60/month
    10. Use free points at cabelas for Christmas gift – $20
    24. telecommute 1 day per week (i drive a large truck that’s paid for and have a long commute) – 24/month
    ##. used coupon at retailmenot to buy new clothes that i needed for new job’s dress code (saved 50%) – $200
    ## shot deer instead of buying beef at grocery store (assuming 100lbs meat with average cost of beef at $4/lb) – 400

    so in the last month I saved a total of 1354.

  172. [...] is Tip #29 of of the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge. (See past [...]

  173. [...] crony of ours (inspired by Tip No. 18 in Ramit Sethi’s Save $1,000 in thirty Days Challenge) sent an e-mail to co-workers suggesting no bureau present giving. Most responded enthusiastically. [...]

  174. [...] Days to Fix Your Finances at The Simple Dollar Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge at I Will Teach You To Be Rich Create Your Personal Bailout Plan at Lifehacker How the 90% Rule Can [...]

  175. [...] is a link to the first in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  176. [...] is a link to the second in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  177. [...] is a link to the third in an ongoing series billed as the 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  178. [...] is a link to the fourth in an ongoing series billed as the 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  179. [...] (Similar to Ramit/I Will Teach You To Be Rich’s suggestions to Create a “No Spending” day once a week, Go cash-only for 15 to 30 days, and Pack lunches for the rest of the week from his Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge) [...]

  180. [...] Save $1,000 in 30 days. I follow this guy regularly. [...]

  181. [...] a half now.  We make them for the whole week at once.  This was Ramit’s first tip in the save $1,000 in a month challenge.  We had been trying to bring our lunches for a while but it just wasn’t working out.  We [...]

  182. [...] is a link to the fifth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  183. [...] is a link to the seventh in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  184. [...] for more?  Check out the money saving tips on I Will Teach You To Be Rich, The SCORE Women’s Success Blog and Entrepreneur magazine. [...]

  185. [...] for more?  Check out the money saving tips on I Will Teach You To Be Rich, The SCORE Women’s Success Blog and Entrepreneur magazine. Possibly related posts: [...]

  186. [...] is a link to the eighth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  187. [...] is a link to the ninth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  188. [...] is a link to the tenth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  189. [...] reads is written by Ramit Sethi of IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com.  Ramit is an admitted frugal-hater, writing in one post, “I hate frugality and all the frugality sites that waste my time focusing on saving money on [...]

  190. [...] consultants will find a way to monetize their knowledge. Chris Brogan does. Ramit Sethi does. Christine Comaford-Lynch does. Suze Orman does. No matter how much they give [...]

  191. One key thing missing from your superb list is to register with a cash back site (money back) such as MyFreeSuperstore and get money back on all your essential shopping. I’ve saved a fortune in the 9 months I’ve been doing it.

  192. [...] is a link to the eleventh in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  193. I like this idea. However, I take issue with you claiming no one will ever follow advice on being frugal. Millions of us do it. And it’s not just $1 a week we save on some small thing; I save thousands of dollars every year. Multiple small things add up, to a lot. It’s usually the smaller things that we can control.

    In fact, our household is quite comfortable now with one (mediocre) income. And yes, we have a full-sized house, 3 cars and many extras, as well as money in the bank. We also can regularly give to charity. We are not deprived. Frugality buys freedom! When we once again become a 2 income household, ALL of the second income will go into the bank.

    We Americans don’t HAVE to spend whatever we make. In fact, we shouldn’t. We need to stop being so wasteful. And it’s not only a matter of personal wealth but of helping our planet survive for future generations.

    You should look into it more.

  194. [...] is a link to the twelfth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  195. [...] is a link to the thirteenth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  196. [...] tips. I suspect many other Millennials feel the same and that’s why he made this list. His save $1000 in 30 days challenge is a very useful resource and a great place to start if you’re not familiar with his [...]

  197. [...] is a link to the fourteenth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  198. [...] is a link to the fifteenth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  199. [...] is a link to the sixteenth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  200. [...] is a link to the seventeenth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  201. [...] am I going to do this? I have selected a number of “tips” from his 30 day challenge ( here) that I think I can apply to my lifestyle and spending [...]

  202. [...] is a link to the eighteenth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  203. [...] It’s not what it sounds like–it’s not a “money-is-everything-in-life” type of blogs.  As long as you’re making money or need money, you might as well make informed decisions about it.  I can’t promise that you’ll find all your answers in a blog or a book. . . but it doesn’t hurt to check a blog or read a book as you make your own financial decisions.  I’ve been working on the “Save $1,000 in 30 days” challenge available at this site. [...]

  204. [...] is a link to the nineteenth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  205. [...] is a link to the twentieth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  206. [...] is a link to the twenty-first in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  207. [...] is a link to the twenty-second in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  208. [...] is a link to the twenty-third in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  209. [...] is a link to the twenty-fourth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  210. [...] my income over the next few weeks. I hope to tackle something similar to Ramit Sethi’s Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge concurrent to a  increased income challenge of $1,000 in 30 [...]

  211. [...] is a link to the twenty-fifth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  212. [...] is a link to the twenty-sixth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  213. [...] is a link to the twenty-seventh in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  214. [...] is a link to the twenty-eighth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  215. [...] of the biggest changes I have made over the last few months is due to Ramit Sethi’s $1,000 challenge. (link includes all 30 tips) Ramit challenged readers to save $1,000 in one month and shared tips [...]

  216. [...] is a link to the twenty-ninth in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  217. [...] is a link to the last in an ongoing series billed as 30 Day Challenge to save $1,000 by Ramit Sethi at IWillTeachYouToBeRich.com, his blog on personal finance (banking, saving, [...]

  218. [...] out Ramit’s 30 day plan for saving $1,000 – this is frugality that is smart, and doesn’t require a lot of sacrifice – just some [...]

  219. [...] Save $1,000 in 30 days challenge – Ramit Sethi [...]

  220. [...] been hammering on the idea of focusing on the big wins instead of worrying about $3 lattes here and there. It’s far better to focus on cutting 25% [...]

  221. [...] the arrival of the chill winds and brisk weather, comes Ramit’s Save $1000 in 30 Days Challenge. It looks like fun and is easy enough, so I decided to give it a go. You should, too. You [...]

  222. Hey,

    These are great tips. Being a high school student, I have no personal work-related income, but I’ve already had my parents implement some of the automation strategies you’ve discussed.

    I did want to point something out, though. I’m not sure if you’ll be able to read and act on this among all the other comments, but there’s a typo that seems unique to this page. In your list of tips, you’ve misspelled the word gardener in #26. I realize it’s just a minute detail and analogous to a frugality tip if your points are more like having strong content, but it’s still an awkward-looking error.

    The Economicist

  223. Frugality, and frugal tips, can definitely pay off big time. Whether you’re trying to save $1 off an item with a coupon or hundreds off your utility bills, frugality is key.

    You say you hate “retarded suggestions” but you suggest some blatantly obvious ones: implement a no spending day once a week, turn down the thermostat, DIY, etc.

    Frugality is all about awareness. There’s nothing wrong with frugal advice or frugal thinking…I like your 30-day challenge, I just wish that you wouldn’t promote the negative stigma of the word frugal.

  224. [...] read this post over at I Will Teach You to Be Rich.  I’m already trying to save about this much money each [...]

  225. [...] $1000 per month challenge 09Aug09 I recently read a blog on guy who wrote “I will teach you to be rich” Last year he [...]

  226. [...] $1000 Challenge Day #1: Pack lunches 10Aug09 This tip was taken right from the original site “I will teach you to be rich.” [...]

  227. [...] Fortunately, Ramit’s tips don’t really focus on that type of dialouge.  Ramit and his team focus on real strategies for earning more and saving more.  One of the first things I’d ever read by Ramit was focused on the CEO approach.  He was saying that to have income like a “CEO” you need to Cut Your Costs, Earn More Money and Optimize Your Spending.  It’s not a scam and you can (and should) read all about it here. [...]

  228. [...] Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge It is impossible to run a successful business if you don’t have your personal finances in check. The tips were simple, practical, and easy to execute and stick with. Thanks to the challenge I was able to set aside $3000 the first month. [...]

  229. [...] Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge It is impossible to run a successful business if you don’t have your personal finances in check. The tips were simple, practical, and easy to execute and stick with. Thanks to the challenge I was able to set aside $3000 the first month. [...]

  230. [...] Click here to see Announcing the Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge [...]

  231. [...] to the RSS feed for updates on this topic.Powered by WP Greet BoxI’m happy to report a big win with our rent situation. We’ve lowered our monthly expenses. Long story short, the deal for a [...]

  232. [...] and just wanted to hunker down and save money. As a result, I launched something called the “Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge,” where I showed people tactical ways to save money using fresh psychological techniques. [...]

  233. [...] for a fresh look at MLM in general. Choose to read the back issues of Networking Times, or take Ramit Sethi’s 30-day financial challenge. Read up on Twitter hashtags or ways to feed your blog into your Facebook and Twitter accounts. [...]

  234. [...] had participated in Ramit’s Save $1,000 in 30 Days Challenge and was able to save and earn some money from either adapting or adopting his [...]

  235. [...] moment which I have, obviously, just come across. I would challenge everyone to do it. I found this guy who is issuing a similar challenge, only his is much more guided. I’m following the steps I [...]

  236. [...] for more?  Check out the money saving tips on I Will Teach You To Be Rich, The SCORE Women’s Success Blog and Entrepreneur [...]