Welcome To Real Sophisticated Consumer

What is the real sophisticated consumer blog?

Whereas I once was suddenly frugal, these days I focus on writing about products and services that provide the most value for your time and money–and mine. I want you to be a smart shopper and sophisticated consumer.

My Home Energy Audit

Yesterday, a consultant from Pro Energy Consultants spent the morning here, doing a home energy audit of my nearly 50-year-old house. I was under the impression that a home energy audit would be a simple walk through of my house, with the consultant noting the need for a programmable thermostat or the fact that someone needed to switch out regular…

Suddenly Frugal Seal of Approval: Rice Cooker

It’s rare for me to give out two Suddenly Frugal Seals of Approval in one week, but it’s been crazy lately, and these two services/products really have made my life easier by saving me money and time. The first time and money saver was ServiceMagic, now Home Advisor. And now today I’m tipping my hat to my rice cooker. I…

Ins and Outs of Insulation

Today I learned more about insulation that I ever wanted to know. That’s because we determined that the traditional fiberglass insulation that our contractor had installed earlier this week–but hadn’t yet enclosed in drywall–had to come out. This had nothing to do with the contractor or the quality of their work. This had everything to do with the noxious smell…

10 Grand in My Hand

Do you watch the DIY Network show “10 Grand in Your Hand”? It’s a great program for anyone who is considering a renovation and wants to learn how to save money on the project by doing things yourself. I love host John DeSilvia’s no-nonsense approach to projects, and, frankly his Brooklyn accent–it brings me back to my New York roots….

Haggling How Tos

Today I’m spending the day with a reporter for a national news outlet (can’t reveal it quite yet) who will be shadowing me as I hit the stores to haggle. My goal? To get the best deal possible on cabinets, countertops, appliances and furniture for our kitchen renovation. I’m used to haggling in my freelance writing business, but that usually…

5 Tips for Bartering Goods and Services

I’ve been looking at the photo header on the blog (the pinecones and candle) and feeling like it’s out of date. Well, not only is it out of date since I took it to illustrate a story on free Christmas decorations, but I’m not sure it represents “suddenly frugal” as well as another image might. The image that keeps popping…

Reusable Shopping Bag Savings Going Down the Drain

A few weeks ago I’d written about taking reusable shopping bags with you when you go to the grocery store. Because I wanted to highlight the stores that reward you for bringing your own bag. In response to that post, I started doing some research into exactly which stores gave what kind of benefits. I did this because the information…

8 Simple Rules For Using Freecycle

One of the fun things about running a blog is keeping track of stats. That is, the statistics that show not only how many people read my blog daily but also what websites are linking to my blog–and leading readers here–and what search terms people used that eventually had them showing up at Suddenly Frugal. I’m guessing that lots of…

7 Ways to Stay Warm and Cool Your Heating Bills

We got the shock of our life the other day when the heating oil bill arrived. No, the price hadn’t skyrocketed to a point that we were feeling faint. Instead, we had a $600 credit because oil prices had dropped so much. You see our oil company has a monthly payment plan that, last year, barely covered our oil bills….

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Leah Ingram is a freelance writer, lifestyle, and money-saving expert. Her mission is to help you become a real sophisticated consumer and get the most bang for your buck.

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