16 Great Depression Survival Tips – Apply Financial Lessons Learned TODAY

Avoid making the same monetary errors that were made during the Great Depression. Indeed, that was a time when there weren’t many financial options, but there were some financial decisions that might have been made beforehand and during that would have improved the situation. To put it mildly, it was not the best time.

We may now demonstrate how we have learned from our past experiences and blunders, nevertheless. These are 16 survival suggestions for the Great Depression:

1. Difference Between Needs and Wants

From when you were an elementary school, you were taught the the distinction between wants and necessities. It seemed easy enough to understand that you must prioritize needs. Obviously, you cannot skip things like shelter and buying food.

Even though all prices have been rising and “wants” continue to feel more exclusive, people still continue to nourish that aspect. According to the , the average consumer spends over $1,800 a year on apparel alone. Moreover, the average consumer also spends more than $3,000 on entertainment.

It does not have to be that way. If you are tired of your current wardrobe, there are consignment shops nearby to provide you with fashion at lower costs. Another option is to online businesses that sell affordable, stylish clothing when adding to your wardrobe.  New clothes don’t have to cost a lot, nor should you ever need to pay full price.

In many cases, I will search on eBay, Craigslist, or sites like Craiglist for more expensive clothing listed as “new” or “like new.”  In most cases, I will save around 40% off the retail price.  The same goes for shoes.  I continuously find the greatest online stores for cheap shoes.

To help pay for your new trendy clothes, I suggest reselling your old clothes to those same consignment shops or selling on Poshmark. Always take care of all your clothes. If they are well taken care of, you can still sell old and vintage clothing for a fair price and make money fast.

Pro Tip: Buy used hangers instead! Get rid of old items before adding some new ones, rather than buying new hangers.

2. Save Money for Emergencies

An emergency fund is not a mere suggestion. It is a necessity. So, Save money for unexpected expenses. The Great Depression has shown us what life would be like after an economic crash caused by war, pandemic, a stock market bubble, a housing crash, or another significant event.

Savings should be one of your top priorities, right after necessities like food and shelter. You should avoid skipping it as much as possible. So how do you determine how much money you need to set aside for emergencies?

First, calculate your average monthly expenses. Multiply that by three. You should have money to last you for at least three months to serve as your To make the most of your fund, open an FDIC insured online high-yielding savings account for the best rates.

The has a great guide on starting to build an emergency fund.  They suggest making your monthly savings automatic either from your savings account or through your employer.

Pro Tip: Use cashback-paying online coupon sites when you shop online. I utilize Upromise, which deposits cash rebates into my children’s 529 college savings accounts.

3. Drastically Cut Monthly Expenses

If your monthly expenses are taking a big toll on you, there might be a problem with your budget. It might also be brought on by the loss of jobs, a decline in business earnings, or rising food prices. On the other hand, you might have recently come to the realization that you should be ready for just about anything, and there is nothing wrong with that.

To make your plan happen, you may need to dramatically reduce monthly spending. Yes, the word “drastic” does not often get associated with all sorts of advice. People will instead ask you to do “work on it” without having to go all out.

We are, however, talking about situations like the Great Depression. For drastic times, you need drastic measures. Even though you might not be going through anything similar right now, it is best to be prepared for the worst-case scenario. Even though I tend to be an optimist, I attempt to consider the worst-case situations for my financial situation. I’ve been able to be more inventive and innovative because it has so far worked.

Negotiate Lower Utility Bills

Reviewing and attempting to reduce your monthly reoccurring bills.

These are some examples of monthly utility bills:

  • Mobile phone
  • Cable
  • Electric
  • Gas
  • Home security

Think about using a company like Billfixers to negotiate your bills.

To begin saving, click the logo.

BillFixers will call Comcast, AT&T, DirecTV, Charter, ADT, Verizon, and many more to get you a discount.  In return, the monthly house Up to 50% of your savings will be required to pay the bill negotiation service. the first year.

Try phoning the customer retention representatives for each of your bills if you believe yourself a skilled negotiator to lower your bills. Start by reading the following topics relating to how to reduce your monthly household expenses:

  • Do ADT costs fluctuate?
  • Easy steps for reduced AT&T Uverse prices for current customers
  • Quick steps on methods to reduce existing customers’ Comcast bills

Pro Tip: Read my account of how getting my credit card stolen and spent on Kenny Rogers tickets ended up saving me money over time.

4. DIY Ways To Save Money At Home

To survive the Great Depression, any other financial catastrophe, or even the zombie apocalypse, one had to be self-sufficient. Regrettably, this entails taking away other people’s ability to make a living by offering their products and services, but you must take your family’s budget into account.

Just a few things you can accomplish on your own are listed below:

  • Using a lawnmower to mow your lawn will rapidly pay for itself compared to hiring a professional to do it.
  • Gardening Show some pictures of your landscaping to the nursery in your area and ask them how to care for the plants there. Ask your gardener how much and when to trim the plants back. Make a note of them for the upcoming season.
  • Home repairs Use a DIY book or YouTube to replace your own toilet, faucet, light switch, and other household items.
  • Change your own windshield wipers and car battery on a six- to twelve-monthly basis. When Costco offers instant manufacturer coupons, I purchase replacement windshield wipers there. To replace the wipers on your particular car model, you must watch a YouTube video. Additionally, I changed my own car battery for less than half of what the auto shop charged. Simple auto repairs, like replacing a turning signal light, are actually simple.
  • Purchasing meat in bulk Purchasing meat at a bargain and butchering it at home. Instead of purchasing chicken tenders at $3.99 per pound, purchase large chicken breasts on sale for $1.49 per pound and cut them yourself.
  • Wash your own car A basic carwash typically costs between $6 and $9, but it can easily cost $20 or $30.
  • Cut your own hair – Cutting your own hair became a necessary skill for many people during COVID when governors shut down locations for haircuts.  YouTube videos and hair clippers on Amazon became extremely popular.
  • Cut your pet’s hair If you have some inexpensive hair clippers to trim your own hair, you might as well learn how to cut your pet’s hair as well. Even if you give your dog a bad haircut, they won’t complain.
  • Self-managed IRA – Invest your retirement contributions in index funds instead of actively managed funds.  Data clearly shows the index outperforms the active money manager .  Save money by investing in a low or no-cost index fund for the long-run.
  • Prepare your own taxes – Consider buying cheap online tax filing software instead of paying an accountant.  The has free tax filing software if your income is below $66,000.
  • Painting your own home Painting your home, both inside and out, is not difficult or particularly enjoyable for most people. You’ll spend much less money if you purchase the essential supplies at your neighborhood hardware store.
  • Clean out your own gutters – want and clean them yourself.  Here’s on how to use a telescoping gutter cleaner.

DIY at home everything as much as you can.

Pro Tip – If you can’t do home services yourself, offer to pay cash to avoid potential credit card transaction costs.

5. Reduce and Avoid Debt Trap

If you can avoid using your credit card, then do so. If you have some debts, make sure you pay them in full every month. Interest rates are not going to stay at historical lows forever. You just might drown in interest payments rather than the actual debt that you incurred. To to lessen and evade a debt trap is your priority.

When people are unable to live within their means, debt is incurred. Debt is much more than just using credit cards for convenience. Manage your debt by reining in your impulsive buying habits. Identify your requirements and wants.

Make all purchases with cash to drastically cut expenses.  Actual cash in your hand can show you just how much money you have left. You can physically see it dwindling, making you more conscious about how much money you’re spending. With credit cards, you are given a false notion that you can keep on swiping the card, and you will be just fine.  Of course, until your credit card bill arrives the next month!

Pro Tip: Decide which debts have the highest interest rates and pay them off first.

6. Start Saving Money Today

Make your money work as hard for you as you do!

Power of Compounding

You might wish to read about the following to emphasize the significance of saving money right now:

This video demonstrates the value of compounding:

Online High-Yielding Savings Account

Most of the time, merely saving money in a bank account is insufficient. Interest rates are quite low. While these accounts let you place money aside, they don’t help you build your emergency fund.

The average American family has $40,000 in liquid savings, according to the Federal Reserve’s 2016 Survey of Consumer Finances. According to the FDIC, the national average interest rate on savings accounts is currently 0.05% APY. My FDIC-insured online high-yield savings account is currently paying 0.60% APY. That’s 0.55% greater than the average for the country!

Assuming rates stayed the same, I’m earning $240 in interest at my bank per year while only making $20 in most other bank accounts on my $40,000.  There are a lot of things I can do with a free $220 per year!  Here is a savings interest to compare earnings.

Fee-only Financial Planner Near Me

What you can do is ask a fee-only professional financial adviser for help. He or she ought to be able to give you advice that is tailored to your present financial circumstance. Additional options, including stocks, indices, and others, can be presented by the planner. When you do the weighing with an expert, it is easier to manage the pros and cons of each option.

Start your search with to find one near you.

Pro Tip: When opening a new brokerage account, go for a company that offers index funds with minimal or no fees. An explanation of the distinctions between

7. Eat at Home Instead of Eating Out

The problem is that we all like to tell ourselves, “Well, I’m simply going to treat myself this time.” The once then becomes multiple times.

However the advantages of eating in should be our main concern:

  • Although it might not be enjoyable, it saves you money.
  • While cooking, choose healthier substitutes for traditional components.
  • Portion control may be beneficial for weight loss.
  • Grocery store can help you save more.

Pro Tip: Meat typically costs the most in your grocery cart when you prepare meals at home rather than going out to eat. Look through the weekly online grocery ads to choose your menu for the following week. cheapest meat nearby. If it’s a very fantastic offer, buy extra or in bulk to store it in your freezer.

8. Don’t Waste The Crumbs

Don’t squander the crumbs is more than just a metaphor for saving leftovers. It implies that leftovers should never be thrown away. Not only do leftovers refer to food, but also to items like clothing.

You should strive to pass on any well-kept clothing to your next child, for instance, and so on. It doesn’t mean you won’t purchase some new, stylish clothing, but you can save a lot of money by giving away any gently worn items.

Go to sites like to find the best ideas for repurposing items around your house.  Some cool ideas include turning an old wooden wire spool into a table, the headboard of a bed into a bench, antique platter into a chalkboard, lamp into an outdoor planter, and more.  You don’t have to buy knick-knacks, you can make your own.

Pro Tip: Gather glass and aluminum cans, then sell them to make money. The cost of ten states is Prices for recycling aluminum cans to generate income.

9. Moving To a New State

Not everyone wants to relocate to a new state. To minimize your cost of living, migrate if you have the chance to do so. People who work remotely may find this useful, especially since COVID began.

A new state might just help you escape a financial catastrophe with a simpler life and less debt.

This is your chance to declutter your house before you move.  You may want to start asking around about how you can when moving, get rid of huge furnishings. Of course, it’s an excellent opportunity to clear out your closet and sell old clothes. Decluttering and consigning your stuff can help you raise money that will help with the moving costs.

10. Refinance Your Mortgage Now

I am assuming that you are reading this article after the pandemic. At this point, are at historic lows. If you have enough equity in your house, refinance your mortgage.  Just refinance for the remaining principle, don’t do a cash-out refi, buy a new car, tv, or go on an expensive European vacation.

Go online to see your savings with a free mortgage .  You can check a refinance mortgage calculator that will show you just how much you can save.

Pro Tip: Before refinancing a mortgage, be aware of your closing expenses. With a mortgage for $200,000, closing costs might range from $4,000 to $6,000. If you have a small sum or a limited amount of time left, refinancing might not be worth the bother. Much of your funds could be lost due to closing charges.

11. Buy Life Insurance

The thought of purchasing life insurance makes some people uneasy. Paying hefty premiums for something that could not be beneficial to you while you are still living is difficult. But, life insurance will undoubtedly be helpful to your dependents after your passing, such as your spouse and children.

You may want to consider investing in life insurance if you are the primary breadwinner of your family. If you are older or have pre-existing medical conditions, consider life insurance with guaranteed acceptance and no waiting period.

At this point, you may not appreciate its value to you. Nonetheless, you should always cover all possibilities. This is one of the most crucial the Great Depression’s lessons were learned.

Pro Tip: Take into account the insurance provider’s standing and quality. An insurance policy is only beneficial if the insurance provider is still in business to pay the death benefits to your beneficiary. Only purchase a policy from a reputable insurer.

12. Turn a Hobby Into Business

Many people are reluctant to take their hobbies seriously enough to earn money from them.

Yet, hobbies are the things you genuinely love and enjoy doing. Wouldn’t it be nice to earn money doing something you truly enjoy? Furthermore, I assume you are skilled at it because you have been doing this activity for a while. You may even have learned talents without going to school or spending money on training. Why not profit from it?

There is little doubt that the pandemic has taught us that none of our jobs are secure. Even if you currently have a job, its future depends on how the financial crisis plays out. Companies have failed and fired long-tenured staff.

Consider how you could make money from your activity. It is best for you to have a hobby at home, particularly if there are additional lockdowns in the future. Read our Expert Recommendations for ideas on how to create and profit from side businesses.

Pro Tip: Some hobbies to help make you money include blogging, photography, working out as a fitness instructor, teaching, pet sitting, secret shopper, gardening, drive around others, catering, coaching, handyman, local tour guide, reselling old clothing on Poshmark for people, become a salesman on commission, teaching music, taking surveys, get paid for recycling metal, DJ events, proofreading from home, playing instruments for events, Bartender, using a game app that pays money, recycling for money, negotiate lower bills, become a notary,

13. Find Under the Table Jobs for Extra Cash

Extra cash is always welcome. However, earning more money usually means paying more taxes. Not that it is a bad thing – you will be helping the economy and adding to the GDP – but under-the-table positions will at least provide you with untaxable income from part-time gigs. There are under the table jobs online or around your neighborhood.

Under the table jobs get cash instead of an official paycheck.  This makes sense for small odd jobs like babysitting, lawn cutting, pet walking, etc.  As of 2020, if you are single, under 65 years old, and make $12,200 or more, you will have to file and potentially .

If you have kids, whether they are tweens or teens, urge them to learn how to create money.

Here are some 13-year-olds can find jobs online:

  • Earn money for listening to music
  • Watch movie trailers
  • watch mobile advertisements
  • Reading books for money
  • PayPal surveys for payment
  • Voiceover artist
  • Social media marketer

neighboring businesses that hire 14 and 15-year-olds including:

  • Golf caddy
  • Pool cleaner
  • car washing and detailer
  • Fix computers
  • teach adults computer fundamentals
  • Run errands
  • Snow shoveling
  • Window washing

Early financial education for youngsters is a terrific idea. Their likelihood of surviving any financial crises on their own as they get older is also increased by their work experience.

Even if you do not lose your job, under the table jobs can provide you and your family with supplemental income. The extra money can add to your emergency fund.

Pro Tip: Understand the difference between getting paid under the table vs. getting paid in cash.  Track any cash income carefully throughout the year and file your cash as miscellaneous income on your tax return.  The income tax limits and rules change annually.  Always reference the IRS website or your accountant if you have any questions as we are not financial advisors.

14. Every Penny Counts Budget

When you are substantially lowering expenses, every penny counts. Don’t pass up the chance to occasionally save a few cents. Apps for microsavings like Acorns or Stash come to mind. They invest the difference after rounding your purchase price to the nearest even number.

Acorns explainer video introduction:

Speaking of spare change, you can convert coins into dollars for free.  Penny’s turn into dollars. Do not waste any of them. Go to your local bank or grocery store to use a coin-counting machine to convert your spare change into dollars.

Here are some helpful Coinstar hints and strategies. To see the Coinstar tips in-person, fast-forward to two minutes in.

15. Shop Like a Frugal Consumer

Some people are worried about appearing cheap if they ask for discounts. Consider the markups that companies typically apply to their products. Instead of attempting to obtain something for nothing, you will attempt to purchase something with a lower markup.

Coffee Challenge

Test your coffee-drinking skills. It pushes people to step beyond of their comfort zone and try new things. Even if it’s a muffin, request a 10% discount at your neighborhood coffee shop. I frequently request discounts for services like lawn care, roof replacement, window installation, carpet purchase, etc.

Last Year’s Model

The older model of a product frequently gets discounted when a new model or variation of the same product is introduced. Usually, the older product is not poorer, just less recent. Instead, you might want to acquire that item.

Examples of goods you ought to purchase on sale include:

  • The black travel bag from last year, which resembles the black suitcase from this year but is 40% less expensive, is available at the outlet mall.
  • Shoes – I also like locations to purchase cheap shoes online from the prior season. For the most part, shoe manufacturers make incremental increases per year that aren’t worth paying full-price.
  • Cars – dealer-purchased vehicles is stressful since it’s a high-priced purchase.  Besides doing your research, you should always consider buying the model from the prior year.  The dealers want to stock up on the new models and are usually willing to offer great deals and discounts on last year’s model.

Coupon Sites

Using online coupon sites makes it easy to cut back on your expenses without making sacrifices. It takes a few extra steps but well worth your time to receive generous discounts on anything from clothing to travel to services.

Pro tip: We never mention being a cheap consumer when we advise you to shop with discretion. Use the resources and possibilities at your disposal to save money quickly. Feel free to haggle for the best deal.

16. Remain Positive at All Times

Of course, you cannot make fair use of all the above Surviving the Great Depression if you do not always keep a positive attitude.

The thought of a pandemic might easily cause anxiety. During the most recent lockdown, some people developed clinical depression. There is no shame in the fact that some people have found the uncertainty to be too much.

To survive any crisis, though, you must be focused and alert.

By , you allow your mind to be active and ready for something akin to the Great Depression. You can survive anything if you believe that you can survive anything. Sometimes, it all boils down to being able to plan and enact the plan.

Some tips on and happy may help you remain above your situation. The Great Depression will not be defeated by depression. Of course, recognize the times when you do need to seek help outside yourself. We are all human, after all.

Pro Tip: Although it can be difficult to always be optimistic, positive thinking strategies can be developed with practice. Here are some optimistic thoughts. .

Great Depression Survival Tips Summary

Truly, the Great Depression has passed. You must study how to survive during the Great Depression because you never know when the next pandemic will strike. Find out how to make it through a financial crisis.

We have different options and alternatives for work in the 21st century, unlike in 1928.  For example, there was no Internet and the possibility of remote work.

Be prepared for unforeseen financial surprises by building an emergency fund that is always available.

How did people make money during the Great Depression?

During the Great Depression, the majority of people experienced an average 40% loss in income. Every financial decision is difficult because of the state of the economy. Some individuals did, however, discover ways to earn money. Little Debbie Cream Pies’ creators, O.D. For instance, Ruth McKee and others sold miniature cakes from their automobile for five cents. During difficult times for the nation, many businesspeople hustled and filled a need.

J. Paul Getty might not have been in the food business, but he knew how to use the right timing. He bought a lot of oil stocks as they were being sold at low prices at that time.  He became a billionaire oil tycoon because of that. Here is a list of started during a recession.  Find needs and opportunities based on your own experiences.

All of the aforementioned advice was read by some common people, with the exception of the online employment chances. They put in a lot of labor. The women helped about the house while the men chopped wood. To get by, they had to pawn their treasures. To save money, they grew their own fruits and vegetables and rented out the excess space in their home. Most of them worked more than one job. Even the kids had routes for the newspapers.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top