It’s not impossible to save money when you are broke.

In fact it can even be very easy if you know some of the clever ways and tips in this article – as many as 25 really clever ways and tips for saving money even when you are broke!


Can You Really Save Money When You Are Broke?

Of course you can!

And yes, it can be way easier than you imagine.

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I remember watching a movie in which a martial arts instructor was teaching his students about taking on an opponent.

He purposely chose an individual that was bigger and more muscular than he was and began the demonstration.

He invited the opponent to begin to fight and because of the size of the man he chose to rush the instructor and try to overpower him.

The instructor was smaller and quicker and jumped out of the way as his opponent came at him.

The instructor avoided the contact and pushed his opponent further beyond where they were going to collide and sent his larger opponent crashing onto the ground.

His point was that he used the other man’s weight and strength against him.

You may find yourself in the unenviable position of being broke.

You are so broke that you don’t have two nickels to rub together.

In all honesty, you are in a good position.

The fact that you are broke has caused you to stop and consider your financial situation and caused you to realize that something needs to be done.

The reality is you need money to live, you need savings, and you are broke.

It is important to use the weight and strength of this indebtedness that is rushing you to your advantage.


25 Clever Ways & Tips to Help Save Money When You Are Broke


1. Have Gratitude

The first important step when faced with anything negative in our lives is to determine how we’re going to handle it.

We can deny that it is happening and choose to ignore it, we can curl up in a ball and hope it passes over, or we can stand up to the challenges of life and use them to strengthen us.

Therefore, the first action step is not an action item at all.

It is an attitude and the first positive step in saving money, when you’re broke, is to have the attitude of gratitude.


2. Analyze 

What distinguishes us from the rest of the animal kingdom is our ability to be cognitive thinkers.

We are problem solvers and we can analyze a situation, rethink our position, and take another direction as needed.

It is important to analyze your financial situation and determine what your thoughts are about money, the use of money, and how you envision a positive outcome on the use of money starting now.

In other words, what brought you to this point in time as it relates to your finances and what different roads do you need to travel on from here on out.


3. Have a Budget

Action always starts from a plan.

For an individual who finds themselves in a financial crunch, it is important to go back to your budget and see where it may be out of balance.

Also, it’s a perfect opportunity for an individual who has doesn’t have a budget to start one.

It is an easy process and simply outlines all of the income coming from your hard work and efforts and then sets up financial parameters as it relates to what will be spent.

Line items that feed into the expense side of the budget include rental or mortgage payments, utilities, phone service, insurance, savings, entertainment, clothing, etc.

Each of these items should have an amount that reflects what will be spent.

You need to stay within those limitations.


4. Have Goals

When wishing to save money when you’re broke, it is important to have goals in mind.

Goals are the driving force of our actions.

When we want to achieve a result achievement of that goal will be determined by the actions that we take.

Some of the possibilities of goals that you may wish to work towards include financial independence, a particular amount set aside in savings, possible future vacations, major purchases, etc.

All of these goals are financial and are driven by financial actions that are taken by you now.


5. Exercise

As part of the plan for savings, it is important to exercise

One might rightly ask about the value of exercising as it relates to savings?

First of all, your situation may be causing you extreme stress and anxiety.

This in turn has a detrimental effect upon your body and particularly your mind and heart.

It is important to de-stress and a powerful action that can be taken to beat stress in one’s life is through exercise.

The other important aspect of exercise is that it is a strong indicator of your discipline and self-control.

In your financial situation, you need to reaffirm your control of the situation and this can be accomplished symbolically by your exercising.


6. Read 

Now it is time to curl up with a good book.

Not a book about romance, mystery, murders, etc.

A book about finances and specifically personal finances that will provide some practical hints and tips and also help stimulate you to think about your attitude and relationship with money.

Through reading and learning, you can begin to adjust or reprogram your thinking as it relates to money.


7. Track Your Money

A practical tip to demonstrate how money slips between our fingertips are to start keeping an expenditure log.

This means that every time a credit card or debit card transaction is made, spending of cash, etc. that transaction is recorded.

The important information is to capture the date, where the transaction was made, the amount, and possibly any triggers or circumstances that caused that expenditure to happen.

This exercise will show where all of the money goes for some time but also demonstrate possible triggers or reasons why that money was spent.

Perhaps comfort or needed validation is tied to our expenditures.

By keeping an expense log you will be able to see not only where your money is expended but why.


8. Use the Right Tools

To help you stay on track there are several tools that you can utilize to keep you motivated, engaged, and demonstrate your progress.

Some of those tools that you can use would be to create a financial journey diary or journal in which you write about your life-changing decision to get your finances in control.

You can write down various inspirational quotes, talk about your successes, record your shortcomings, etc.

The journal can be a positive way of staying on track.

Also, there are many financial apps that you can download at no cost to help you with the attainment of your goals and will reflect how your financial path to financial independence is progressing.

One such app is mint.

Another simple tool that you can use is a spreadsheet.

Through spreadsheets, you can create graphs to show your climb in your net worth, the decline of your indebtedness, and reflect your progress.


Growing Your Income


9. Garage Sale 

Now that we are working on the mind and helping to identify and possibly address some negative situations that clutter our financial thinking, it is an opportunity to de-clutter our house as well.

Therefore, a positive and concrete way of bringing additional revenue into your home and start saving is through a garage sale

Going through your home take those items that have not been used in a while brushing the dust off of them and conduct a garage sale to earn money.

This can be a positive thing both mentally, physically, and financially.


10. Open a Savings Account

As a positive action open a savings account.

The amount of seeding this account may not be a significant amount of money.

That doesn’t matter.

What matters is that you are taking action and positive action at that.


11. Automate Savings 

Another positive step is to begin to automate your savings.

By taking this action step, you will begin to feel good about controlling your money and directing it towards an ongoing savings plan.

This is a positive step that will also be part of the process of declaring that you are in control.

Also, automation is powerful because it will just happen and you won’t need to think about it.

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12. Side Hustles

On the income side of the ledger, you have decided to earn more income.

This can be accomplished through what is known as “side hustles.”

You can choose to drive for a delivery service such as Uber or Lyft or you can go to various websites such as to take on freelancing opportunities, etc.


13. Windfalls

As you progress along your dedicated path of financially being independent, you will be rewarded because as you appreciate money, money will appreciate you.

When pay raises or bonuses come your way, it is important to think of them as not having occurred but stash that money away in your savings.

This is especially true if you receive a pay raise.

It is best not to increase your expenses up to that new level of income but continue your expenses as if the pay raise hadn’t occurred.


14. Miscellaneous

There are a variety of miscellaneous ways an individual can earn additional income.

For instance, an individual could sell plasma which is a part of the individuals who are part of your blood, and generally, this can be done twice a month and will earn some additional revenue if a plasma collection center is in your community.

Also, an individual can utilize their skills and talents and make them available to their friends, family, and neighbors.

Examples could include doing any odd jobs around their homes, lawn maintenance, hauling away trash, etc.

By searching the Internet and using keywords such as site hustle or ways to earn additional income, your screen will be populated with a variety of options that may resonate with you to earn additional income.


Cutting Your Expenses


15. Cable 

Moving to the expense side of the ledger there may be items that need to be reduced or eliminated as it relates to expenditures within the household.

One of those big expenditures can be the provision of cable services through a local company.

Often, the cable provides hundreds of channels of entertainment that an individual can watch.

Realistically speaking know how many channels can you view.

Therefore maybe it is time to cut the cable or reduce streaming services that you have subscribed to.

The potential of saving $100 or more a month is a strong possibility.


16. Car 

We love our cars but in reality, they are very expensive to purchase and to operate.

Maybe as a baby step, you can choose to park your car and use public transportation or carpool to work with others.

Also, if you are bold and daring enough maybe the selling of your car is indicated.

The savings will be realized in gasoline, maintenance, insurance expenses, etc.


17. Bike 

For the good of your finances and the environment, if it is possible, why not purchase the bike and utilize that as your primary means of transportation.

Additionally, you could couple this motor transportation with the use of public transportation and not only have a significant impact on your financial condition but the environment as well.


18. Groceries

Groceries can be a big expense for households.

Ways that you can cut down on your grocery bill include:

  • Not shopping while you are hungry
  • Shopping at discount stores
  • Shopping in bulk
  • Using coupons
  • Utilizing a grocery list


19. Thermostat

Energy costs are another big expense for a household to incur.

Adjusting the thermostat down a couple of degrees in the wintertime and up a couple of degrees in the summertime can help individuals shave money off of their utility bills,


20. Pay off Debts 

When you are brave enough, it is important to look at your credit card bills and read them over carefully.

Through passed legislation, credit card companies are required to show you what your overall cost will be with any outstanding balances that are paid off with only the minimum monthly amount paid.

This can be very revealing as a lot of our credit card balances will take us a significant number of years to reach the point where we have a zero balance.

Also, pay attention to the interest that is charged on your balance each month.

Then realize, that rather than having that money go to these big financial institutions, that money is being put into your savings account.

It is important to pay off your debt.


21. Negotiate 

Speaking of credit card debt, why not negotiate with your credit card companies to see if they would lower your interest rates.

If they are willing to reduce the APR by a percentage point or so, this will help you to realize some additional savings.

It is important to remember that the credit card companies are better served by your paying them interest.

Keeping you happy and satisfied as much as possible through the reduction of interest will prevent will be their goal rather than you paying your balance off through a consolidated loan or a debt reduction plan.


22. Coupons 

In the mail, online, or other circulars you will be offered coupons at various retailers to reduce your expenditures.

Especially as it relates to groceries, it is important to utilize his coupons as much as possible to shave off money from your total bill.

Also, there are certain days of the week where grocery stores will endeavor to attract more customers and as such offer specific discounts.

This is especially true as it relates to senior citizens receiving a discount on a certain day of the week.


23. Roommate 

Another great way to reduce household expenses is to take on a roommate.

This action will help to share the overall expense of housing.

It is important to remember to have some sort of agreement in place as it relates to shared responsibilities and expenses in place to mitigate any potential financial conflicts that may present themselves.


24. No Spending 

Most individuals agree that it takes roughly 30 days to create a habit.

This habit can be good or bad.

As a possibility of saving money even if broke is not to spend money as much as possible over a timeframe of 30 days.

This will demonstrate to you that some of the spendings may be needless as well as developing a good financial habit of spending money that it is needful.


25. Follow the Plan 

You are on a good path and it is important to stay on that path.

Do not let your guard down but remember to follow through on your plan of action and make it a lifelong commitment as it relates to your finances.

Other interesting Money Saving articles to consider reading:


Personal Story

I was down for the count.

Creditors were calling me every day.

I would call the bank every morning to find out about money in my checking account and I would always hear the unsympathetic automated voice telling me that I had a negative balance.

My checking account was overdrawn and every time I would scrape up the money to put into the account, another check would hit plus overdrawn fees and I would hear the same message the following day about a negative balance.

I was spiraling downwards and it was just a matter of time till my crash.

Fortunately, I was able to “pull up” from this frightening experience through education, determination, and developing a strategy.

I was able to use the situation to my benefit and come to grips with not only my actions but my attitude.


Saving Money When Broke FAQs


What is the Worst Thing About Being Broke?

The worst thing about being broke is how it makes an individual feel.

They may feel like a failure, that somehow they are less of a person than they ought to be, or that have let people down.

Remember that none of these lies is a true being.

Your situation is a result of choices that have been made and nothing more or nothing less than that.

An individual is in a good position to utilize the situation to their benefit, learn from it, build upon it and leverage it as a learning opportunity.


What is the Best Thing About Being in Debt?

The best thing about being in debt is that it is an opportunity.

It is an opportunity to become more self-aware, to learn, to build one’s self-confidence by overcoming a circumstance in their life, and gaining strength from that experience.


You Can Do It

If you are in debt, this may seem to be an overwhelming and depressing place to be.

It is important to remember that you are bigger and stronger than this and you can use this situation to your benefit to turn around what is happening in your life.



The bully of indebtedness and having no money is rushing you.

For the sake of your well-being as well as your financial situation, it is important to utilize this enemy of indebtedness to your advantage by utilizing the strength of this opponent against themselves.

Again, this company has paid $25+ million to members:

SurveyJunkie (only USA, Canada, Australia residents allowed). You can earn money sharing your thoughts. They have already paid $25+ million to their 20+ million members just for sharing their thoughts and opinions. Click here to join SurveyJunkie for FREE

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Apart from being a seasoned Personal Finance expert who has written for top publications around the world, I bring significant personal financial experience. Long story short... through bad financial choices... I found myself $100,000 plus in debt. I was able to dissolve this indebtedness and regain financial solvency. This financial turn around was accomplished through reading, studying and implementing a financial plan. My financial plan included paying down my debt through budgeting, being cognizant of where my financial resources were being spent, changing my attitude about money and understanding the binding chains of the improper use of credit. Today, and for 10 years, I have been debt free and have invested wisely to enjoy my current retirement. This is allowing me to write to help others make, save and grow money wisely!