Anyone else extremely frugal?

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
jb1
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Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by jb1 » Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:35 pm

Dont know what it is with me. Im very basic. Havent bought clothes in 2 years. Can go without eating lunch just to save $5. Kinda want new shoes but dont really "need" them. It kinda sucks. I make about $40k a year, which is peanuts, but surely i should be able to purchase goods in life without feeling like i wasted money. With that being said, im not afraid to put $1k in an index haha.

Anyone else frugal?

MathWizard
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by MathWizard » Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:43 pm

I'm frugal in some areas to make sure I can save and spend in the areas I want to spend in.

I drive older cars, but just got back from a trip to Europe.

It gets easier as your balance gets larger and your returns are helping you more than just your contributions.

jb1
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by jb1 » Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:48 pm

MathWizard wrote:I'm frugal in some areas to make sure I can save and spend in the areas I want to spend in.

I drive older cars, but just got back from a trip to Europe.

It gets easier as your balance gets larger and your returns are helping you more than just your contributions.
Same, Im 26, my car is from 2006 and I plan to drive it until the wheels fall off (350z). Also got back from a euro trip last year too!

I just feel that if I spend $20 of food or clothes, thats $20 I couldve invested instead. I was without a job living at home for the past 2 years, so it really taught me how to not waste my money on things I dont need

rec7
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by rec7 » Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:52 pm

I am really frugal. I kept a pair of tennis shoe 22 years. That was kind of crazy but they were so comfortable. My car is the oldest car at the stop light by far. I am talking all four directions. I love the line in the Bible about being content. Once you get middle age you start to see things don't bring you happiness.
Last edited by rec7 on Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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randomizer
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by randomizer » Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:57 pm

Being frugal is good. Realizing that spending a bunch of money isn't the key to happiness. Means you need to save less for retirement too.

Don't want to be pathological about it (eg. starving yourself), but like in all things: moderation is the key!
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F150HD
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by F150HD » Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:58 pm

my family used to tease one Uncle for being cheap. He'd sneak his own wine into a restaurant and pour a glass under the table.

Of course, as I got older and learned how much a glass of wine is marked up at a restaurant....I understood!

The Wizard
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by The Wizard » Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:58 pm

No.
Never been extremely frugal.
I have certain things from 20-30 years ago that I still use, yes.
But I spend a few thousand dollars a month on travel related activities...
Attempted new signature...

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arcticpineapplecorp.
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by arcticpineapplecorp. » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:02 pm

Different definitions but I tend to think frugal seems to be more acceptable than being "cheap". If you're frugal you're being careful with how you spend money and want to get good deals. Being cheap is not wanting to spend money. Only you can determine if you're frugal or something else.

Couple other thoughts:
1. I don't think you should skip meals "just to save $5". This can have health effects over your lifetime. You need to make sure you're getting the required nutritional balance/proper diet including fruits and vegetables. There are stories of people who ate very cheaply but they did damage to their body. Here's one story of a girl who ate nothing but ramen noodles for 13 years (since she was 5). She's now 18 years old but has the body of an 80 year old.
Readman's doctors said she is malnourished and has the health of an 80-year old. She weighs about 98 pounds at 5'3". source: http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/h ... -1.1312782
What you might save in money by skipping meals might cost you down the road in terms of costly medical care. Pennywise, but pound foolish in my opinion.

2. Not sure you need to buy clothes every year (or two). I wear clothes I've had for several years. I don't care about fashion and don't have to have the latest. My appearance is neat and I take good care of my clothes. You can always find clothes cheaper if need be at consigment stores or goodwill, etc.

3. You say you want new shoes, but don't need them. At least you understand the difference betwen wants and needs. You'd be surprised how many people don't understand that difference. Then they treat everything like a need, when mostly what they satisfy is wants. If you need shoes but don't buy them, that's the same problem as #1 above (you're feet may pay the price over time). If you don't need them, but you can afford the shoes and want them, there's nothing wrong with buying them. If you don't need them and can't afford the shoes but want and do buy them, that can become an issue financially if it becomes a pattern.

4. You seem down on your salary. It could be low depending on where you live, what your expenses are, etc. As an example, if you have roommates maybe it's ok, but if you live on your own you might feel like money's tight. You'd feel like a pauper on $40,000 in San Francisco but there are some places in the rural South USA where you might live fairly well on that. If you want more income or "stuff" then you might need to switch jobs for higher pay, get retraining in jobs that pay more or pick up a second job/side gigs, etc. It's not complicated. Earn more or spend less or a combination of both. Perhaps you can't spend any less. You might have to earn more if you have wants that you're not satisfying (like shoes).

5. If you're putting $1000 into an index fund you're doing better than some who save nothing. I've known people who have no money in a savings account for emergencies (let alone retirement savings). That's asking for trouble in my opinion. So are you just frugal with purchases, because you're trying to save?

6. Finally, regarding feeling like you're "wasting money", if you get value from what you buy how can that be a waste? It would be a waste of money if you paid more for something than it's truly worth or you bought something and it broke/didn't last, etc. But if you buy shoes and you've gotten the fair market price, how can that be a waste? Money is supposed to be spent. It's not supposed to be stored. It's only value is that you can exchange it for goods/services. You (and most of us) defer some of that spending now for consumption later on (in retirement). Otherwise, you'll just leave money to others to spend (charities, family/friends/heirs). All money will be spent. The only question is when and by whom. There's only four choices there (and/or combinations of these four):

You can spend your money now
You can spend your money later
You can give your money now to others (charity/family/friends)
You can give your money later to others (charity/family/friends)
Last edited by arcticpineapplecorp. on Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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yellowgirl
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by yellowgirl » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:02 pm

Dh and I are frugal and also making peanuts compare to most people on this board. We are still thinking if we should get a side hustle to increase income. But on the other hand, we have sweet schedules and spending a lot of time together. We are stress free family now and I don't know if working more hours will create stress for us. We are both mid 30's so this is the time to make more money. We cut back a lot but still feel behind when reading posts of people saving > 100k a year :greedy (share networth progression post). There is only so much we can cut.
Last edited by yellowgirl on Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Helo80
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by Helo80 » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:06 pm

I think you'll find a lot of frugal people here, but also don't fret over splurging on stuff either. If you have to buy a $5 lunch here and there, it's not going to break your investment portfolio. What adds up is if you consistently eat out for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

With investing, keep in mind that you'll likely be receiving social security (at what age and what benefit is anybody's guess), as well as, your 401k, roth ira, possible pension, and individual tax account. Compare that to some people who don't think about retirement until they're 40 and think how much of a head start you have. There are many people out there who have never made more than $50K per year that have more savings and financial security than people earning $250k to $300k per year.

It sounds like you have good financial habits OP.... just don't be afraid to spend a dime. It's a marathon, not a sprint.

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F150HD
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by F150HD » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:09 pm

forgot about this show...until now.

Sharing The Bathtub | Extreme Cheapskates

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=saXtX7v ... sNkt6g4JgI

I won't even point out the 1:25 point in the video.... :wink:
Last edited by F150HD on Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Helo80
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by Helo80 » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:11 pm

rec7 wrote:I am really frugal. I kept a pair of tennis shoe 22 years. That was kind of crazy but they were so comfortable. My car is the oldest car at the stop light by far. I am talking all four directions. I love the line in the Bible about being content. Once you get middle age you start to see things don't bring you happiness.

With the Bible and a Biblical community of believers, it helps coalesce around being content with the blessings of your haves and not the have nots.

I would imagine most people are pretty happy driving off the lot in a new Mercedes S-Class for $100K+. Now, what makes them want to trade said vehicle in 3 to 5 years? There's also something to be said about happiness when it comes to financial security.

Helo80
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by Helo80 » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:14 pm

F150HD wrote:forgot about this show...until now.

Sharing The Bathtub | Extreme Cheapskates

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=saXtX7v ... sNkt6g4JgI

I won't even point out the 1:28 point in the video.... :wink:

I can only imagine....

I saw some video with Extreme Cheapskates about a family with like 4 kids who uses old rags and t-shirts as toilet paper so that they don't have to buy TP in the store and how they save like $300 per year now.... My favorite line from that video that I remember to this day is the woman, (rough paraphrase) "Well, anybody who knows about the harsh environment of a washing machine and detergent knows that all the bacteria are killed." I just wanted to scream, "C. diff!!!!!!!"

youdiditr2
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by youdiditr2 » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:23 pm

jb1 wrote:Dont know what it is with me. Im very basic. Havent bought clothes in 2 years. Can go without eating lunch just to save $5. Kinda want new shoes but dont really "need" them. It kinda sucks. I make about $40k a year, which is peanuts, but surely i should be able to purchase goods in life without feeling like i wasted money. With that being said, im not afraid to put $1k in an index haha.

Anyone else frugal?
I dont' consider myself frugal, but I pretty much do what you said above. Dont' buy new clothes. I don't eat lunch, but that's to save my belly, not $. haven't bought new shoes in 3 years, but I have 5 pairs I still haven't worn. I dont' feel frugal, just my lifestyle and what I do

lightheir
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by lightheir » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:27 pm

I think you have to be frugal if you're in a HCOL or even MCOL area at $40k per year and living within your means, for which I definitely include savings toward retirement. I def had to watch my cash flow carefully when I was at $40k/yr in a HCOL area, and I definitely felt that money was a limiting factor in many life decisions at that level of income (and I wasn't even supporting a wife or family.)

I would say I'm typically frugal by nature, but as a counterpoint, I will remind again that being too consistently frugal and/or avoiding all financial risk can be disadvantageous, if not problematic. This doesn't mean you should go crazy and take big risks above your means, but for sure, the frugal lifestyle is definitely NOT the be-all-end-all answer to all financial problems. Meeting my much-less-frugal-than-me wife was a big eye-opener for me; I had assumed my frugal ways were absolutely the best way leading to happiness and financial security, but she showed me that I was definitely too conservative and risk-averse, and that sometimes it's worth it to even spend beyond your means for a short time if it's for the right reason.

As an aside, to me, one of the challenging things about being at $40k of income or under is that it's hard to accumulate enough capital to start REALLY benefiting from stocks, bonds, and other investments. You may do everything right, beat the vast majority of hedge fund managers on the planet by taking home 3 years of 30% return of investment on your portfolio, but then realize that you've only managed to turn $4k into $8k which is a very different scale than turning $40k to $80k or $400k to $800k. I feel like despite my 'best index fund practices' that I executed from age 21 to 30, I likely would have been better off spending the invested money outright at the time, as I ended up having so much more money to invest after a single year of 'real' income that it rendered those 10 years of accumulated returns moot. (I say this knowing full well that it would have felt too irresponsible for me to spend that money back then without putting it toward retirement or emergency funds.)

Dottie57
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by Dottie57 » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:31 pm

I din't like "frugal". I prefer "thoughtful about spending money". I save first, then spend. Most months there is money left over which goes to savings account.

mortfree
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by mortfree » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:33 pm

I am selectively frugal.

For instance I will not hesitate to buy a new big screen tv or put a few thousand down on a car, but will greatly debate whether to buy small things like new sneakers, clothes, etc. because those small purchases add up quickly and I'd rather be in a position to buy the bigger things that I value more.

Edit: Nike, Polo, Nautica are typically my go to brands.
Last edited by mortfree on Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

lightheir
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by lightheir » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:35 pm

I'll also chime in as counterpoint to some of the above -

As a n=1, but which has definitely been true for me, spending money on quality clothes has DEFINITELY been worth the money for me now that I'm approaching my middle age years.

I'm like the last person you'd expect to say this - all of my undershirt T-shirts are polyester ones that I got from participating in local 5ks/10ks - I literally have no others that I've purchased, and my underwear and workout socks are all as rock-bottom as Target as you can get. I myself have limited fashion sense, and I pretty much never buy clothes for myself because I think they are 'quite fashionable.'

But for sure, the impact professionally and socially that good clothes (that my wife bought for me - again, her good judgment, not mine) cannot be understated. I was never slovenly or wearing ill-fitting clothes to begin with, and I honestly thought I dressed perfectly functionally fine, but my wife pointed me toward more expensive and better clothing for special circumstances that I never would have considered and which I though was a total waste of money at the time of purchase.

I can honestly say I was completely wrong and she was completely right. This has been proven to me time and time again in various work and social circumstances - people from my past often do a double take when they see me, even though I'm the exact same weight and size that I was when I was age 18.

Just my perspective - a lot of folks here on BH and elsewhere immediately toss clothing out the window as an item to save on when going for frugality, but I'm just saying that good, appropriate, well-selected clothing has a lot of benefits that shouldn't be immediately dismissed in favor of saving a buck.

AntsOnTheMarch
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by AntsOnTheMarch » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:36 pm

Skip your lunch (or breakfast) without worry. Skipping meals will likely improve your health (unless you are doing so as a result of an eating disorder).

One of the best ways to control chronic diseases like diabetes is by medically supervised fasting. The roll of fasting as a cancer cure is showing positive results in studies by researcher Valter Longo. Okinawans have been studied for their longevity and one a central tenet of their diet is to eat less.
Hara hachi bun me (腹八分目/はらはちぶんめ),[1] (or hara hachi bu, and sometimes misspelled hari hachi bu), is a Confucian[2] teaching that instructs people to eat until they are 80 percent full.[3] Roughly, in English the Japanese phrase translates to, “Eat until you are eight parts (out of ten) full”[3] or “belly 80 percent full”.[4]
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hara_hachi_bun_me
Then there's this:
Heart and cardiovascular disease deaths drop dramatically in Norway -- ScienceDaily
Life was hard in occupied Norway during WWII, but the occupation had one surprising result: deaths from heart attacks dropped precipitously, because Norwegians ate less fat, smoked less and were more physically active. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2 ... 160927.htm
I cite links to support what should be common sense. Look around in any developed country and you see ills of excess, not privation. The human genome is built on the ability to survive and thrive through times of hardship (food shortage) as long as periods of readily available food follow. We would not otherwise have survived this long. I'm talking days, weeks and even months of shortages. A human body will be negatively impacted by misssing a meal about as much as Warren Buffett will be negatively impacted by losing a dollar.
Last edited by AntsOnTheMarch on Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.

misterno
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by misterno » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:39 pm

My father's pajamas were 30 years old and it still looked new.

I am trying to break his record but I can not find the same 100% polyester ones.

Anyway it has been maybe 10 years that I buy any clothes. The company I work for is extremely lax in dressing.

Dottie57
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by Dottie57 » Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:46 pm

lightheir wrote:I'll also chime in as counterpoint to some of the above -

As a n=1, but which has definitely been true for me, spending money on quality clothes has DEFINITELY been worth the money for me now that I'm approaching my middle age years.

I'm like the last person you'd expect to say this - all of my undershirt T-shirts are polyester ones that I got from participating in local 5ks/10ks - I literally have no others that I've purchased, and my underwear and workout socks are all as rock-bottom as Target as you can get. I myself have limited fashion sense, and I pretty much never buy clothes for myself because I think they are 'quite fashionable.'

But for sure, the impact professionally and socially that good clothes (that my wife bought for me - again, her good judgment, not mine) cannot be understated. I was never slovenly or wearing ill-fitting clothes to begin with, and I honestly thought I dressed perfectly functionally fine, but my wife pointed me toward more expensive and better clothing for special circumstances that I never would have considered and which I though was a total waste of money at the time of purchase.

I can honestly say I was completely wrong and she was completely right. This has been proven to me time and time again in various work and social circumstances - people from my past often do a double take when they see me, even though I'm the exact same weight and size that I was when I was age 18.

Just my perspective - a lot of folks here on BH and elsewhere immediately toss clothing out the window as an item to save on when going for frugality, but I'm just saying that good, appropriate, well-selected clothing has a lot of benefits that shouldn't be immediately dismissed in favor of saving a buck.
I think you are right on the clothes. I just don't think you need to stuff a closet with clothes. Quality but fewer pieces.

runner3081
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by runner3081 » Fri Jul 21, 2017 10:29 pm

Very frugal as well, but it does not suck for us. My wife and I enjoy the minimal and frugal style we mostly live. Stuff does not make us happy, saving money for financial freedom and not sweating if the roof leaks, an AC unit goes out, etc feels much better than "stuff".

-Clothes - been 5+ years since we bought new clothes. We do occasionally buy clothes at used stores. Our annual clothing budget for the three of us (daughter included) is $300. The majority of this comes from my running shoes.
-Cars - Older which means lower insurance and licensing costs
-Electronics - 8 year old laptop, old tablet with cracked screen, Kindle fire, lower end Moto G phones
-Cell Phones - Zero cost through FreedomPop.
-No Cable TV, internet only
-Cooling - AC is 84 during the day and 81 at night
-Our weekend activities with our daughter are free (free parks, free passes, library, etc)
-Eating out - We don't do it unless we have been gifted a gift card
-I don't eat breakfast and only a granola bar for lunch. This is for health preference, not being frugal though. I eat to live, not live to eat.

...of course, I broke the bank at work today. Bought a "side" of potatoes for $1 at the work cafe for lunch :)

bigred77
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by bigred77 » Fri Jul 21, 2017 10:54 pm

I am not frugal. I save 1/4 to 1/3 of my income and spend the rest as efficiently as possible (by efficient I mean I spend in ways that bring me the most happiness).

It helps that I make enough where I don't have to be frugal but life is too short. If our income doubled, our spending would double (or at least come close). Our savings would double too but the percentage would stay the same. There's no shortage of things I want to do or have, if I could afford it.

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9-5 Suited
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by 9-5 Suited » Fri Jul 21, 2017 11:01 pm

The world always seems to offer us risk at every turn! Saving too much risks becoming the richest man in the graveyard. Saving too little risks three square meals of Alpo. As usually seems to be the case, the answer lies in balance and having a plan.

I've found that the most helpful plan is to determine how much I need to save to live the life I want using conservative reasonable projections, and then happily and mercilessly spend the money that's left on things I enjoy. If you are one of the "the free library is my jam" types, then your spending pile will likely involve a lot of charitable giving. There are no shortages of ways to use money to make you happy! But you have to budget with the intent to spend money and then commit yourself to doing it with a smile.

When my wife and I created a shared budget and included a defined amount of annual spending, it was incredibly liberating for me as someone with your inclination toward frugality. Something changed in my mind - the money we allocated to spend was already spent mentally, so as long as we hit the goal I don't care at all about seeing big bills on fairly lavish individual spending items. I'm completely at peace with it and it has made me much happier and focused only on spending efficiently on the things we like.

Point
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by Point » Fri Jul 21, 2017 11:03 pm

Separating needs from wants is very important to secure your future. There is nothing wrong with spending as long as your hitting your financial goals.

AF_Engineer
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by AF_Engineer » Fri Jul 21, 2017 11:10 pm

I'm frugal when it comes to "experiences". I hate to spend money eating out, and it's hard for me to spend money on a vacation. I also hate buying flowers for my wife, or anything else that is temporary. But if I need a tool, or a vehicle, or an appliance, I'll buy the best I can find that will last forever and then not buy another one again until it croaks. Drives my wife nuts, but at least she gets some swell tools & appliances for her birthday!

I'd rather buy something tangible that I can keep for a while for utility or investment (like antiques), but not the stuff that would probably make life more enjoyable. But I get plenty of enjoyment on saving the money and buying/investing in more lasting things, that's just me.

TheHouse7
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by TheHouse7 » Sat Jul 22, 2017 12:10 am

Yeah, I'm wearing the same shirts I started dating my wife in. Same shoes issues. I really enjoy paying for others tabs/ getting people gifts that are a little over the top for our age (late 20's).

Enjoy your super power and show up with a half gallon of the good stuff to your friends weddings!

:beer
"PSX will always go up 20%, why invest in anything else?!" -Father-in-law early retired.

Traveler
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by Traveler » Sun Jul 23, 2017 9:05 pm

Compared to some of the people in this post, I'm a spendthrift because I spend a fair amount on clothes, buy a new car (and then drive it for 10+ years), spend $15K or so on multiple international vacations each year, eat out several times a week, and spend $100 a month on hair color.

On the other hand, I save about 50% of my gross income, have furniture that is 15+ years old, don't buy much random "stuff", prefer experiences over things, live in a paid-for townhouse that was built in the early 70s but is five minutes from work and meets my needs, and buy moderately priced clothes (since I buy stuff regularly).

A friend from work calls me cheap but I think I have a good balance based on my primary interest (travel) and rarely forgo a purchase to save money.

iamlucky13
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by iamlucky13 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 1:18 am

Compared to most people I know, I'm extremely frugal. I guess compared to several posters here, I'm pretty moderate.

I never skip meals to save money. It's not even feasible with my metabolism. But I often do things like go grocery shopping on work trips to save money even though I'm getting per diem. My wife tempers my frugal habits a lot though. She's not very favorable towards PB&J or sleeping on a couch instead of in a hotel when visiting relatives.

I also haven't bought clothes in several years, but that's because I despise clothing shopping, not because of the frugality. My wife finally broke down and started bringing home clothes and nagging me until I try them in front of her so she can decide what stays or goes back. I'm hard on clothes.

I spend far more freely than I did when I was in college (I ate out only twice over the entire 4 years and almost never drank because beer seemed too expensive) and for several years afterwards though. Being well established in my career and having started tracking my progress towards financial goals (retirement, free and clear home ownership, overall savings growth for future lifestyle improvements) has helped. And yet, also constantly in my mind is the thought of how long my savings would last in case of long term job loss or disability.

There are also some things I just don't go cheap on, especially appliances and tools. The real cost of going cheap on things that get a lot of use has made itself evident too may times in the past.

lightheir
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by lightheir » Mon Jul 24, 2017 5:50 am

Traveler wrote:Compared to some of the people in this post, I'm a spendthrift because I spend a fair amount on clothes, buy a new car (and then drive it for 10+ years), spend $15K or so on multiple international vacations each year, eat out several times a week, and spend $100 a month on hair color.

On the other hand, I save about 50% of my gross income, have furniture that is 15+ years old, don't buy much random "stuff", prefer experiences over things, live in a paid-for townhouse that was built in the early 70s but is five minutes from work and meets my needs, and buy moderately priced clothes (since I buy stuff regularly).

A friend from work calls me cheap but I think I have a good balance based on my primary interest (travel) and rarely forgo a purchase to save money.
No kids? It's MUCH easier to save 50% of gross with no kids. I honestly would be saving 75% of gross easily if I were single with no kids - that all changed nearly instantly once the need to move to a good school district happened!

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tennisplyr
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by tennisplyr » Mon Jul 24, 2017 6:14 am

I am for sure but you know what, I think "frugal Boglehead" is an oxymoron. What do you think?
Those who move forward with a happy spirit will find that things always work out.

bluebolt
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by bluebolt » Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:09 am

My frugality at your age allowed me and DW to amass considerable savings over a 20ish year period. Now, we don't have to think about what we spend. In both cases, we were/are living significantly below our means.

By the way, good work OP - you'll see that it was totally worth it in several years.

Ruger
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by Ruger » Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:15 am

I am in most things, because they are not important to me. I will buy a car and drive it until it falls apart. I buy my clothes at super marked down prices, or I get them at places like the Goodwill. I only need two or three pairs of shoes and I'll wear them until they fall apart...you get the picture.
However, when I do find something important to me, I'll spend the money on it.

indexonlyplease
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by indexonlyplease » Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:21 am

jb1 wrote:Dont know what it is with me. Im very basic. Havent bought clothes in 2 years. Can go without eating lunch just to save $5. Kinda want new shoes but dont really "need" them. It kinda sucks. I make about $40k a year, which is peanuts, but surely i should be able to purchase goods in life without feeling like i wasted money. With that being said, im not afraid to put $1k in an index haha.

Anyone else frugal?
This is the reason for a budet when you are young and starting off. Then you know where the money goes. If you budget $25.00 for clothes a month then you can buy a new shirt, shorts or shocks. But make sure you buy on sale. Then you will have not guilt when you spend the money.

Also, depend on your career. If you wear a uniform to work everyday you don't need that much clothes. If you are in a office and are looking to move up the ladder, I would think a part of you career is spending money on clothes. It's just a part of the work force these day.
Last edited by indexonlyplease on Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:24 am, edited 1 time in total.

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knpstr
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by knpstr » Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:23 am

I like to think myself as frugal.
Though I don't know that I'd say I'm extremely frugal.

There is a line there where frugality can turn into cheapness or miserliness, which can affect ones life negatively.
Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking. -Marcus Aurelius

KlangFool
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by KlangFool » Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:24 am

bigred77 wrote:I am not frugal. I save 1/4 to 1/3 of my income and spend the rest as efficiently as possible (by efficient I mean I spend in ways that bring me the most happiness).

It helps that I make enough where I don't have to be frugal but life is too short. If our income doubled, our spending would double (or at least come close). Our savings would double too but the percentage would stay the same. There's no shortage of things I want to do or have, if I could afford it.
+1.

"Enough" is the key word here.

Save enough to reach your goal. No more and no less. Spend the rest to enjoy your life.

KlangFool

indexonlyplease
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by indexonlyplease » Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:27 am

knpstr wrote:I like to think myself as frugal.
Though I don't know that I'd say I'm extremely frugal.

There is a line there where frugality can turn into cheapness or miserliness, which can affect ones life negatively.
This is very true. Like the old man that left millions of dollars to family when he died. But he drove around in a 20 yr old car, and dressed like a homeless person. That person becomes so frugal all their life, so when the made it to retirement, they did not know how to enjoy the money.

Why? Because it hurt them to spend it.

Rupert
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by Rupert » Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:33 am

Why do you want to retire by 38? That may be your problem right there. You seem to be giving up things you want (shoes) and possibly things you need (lunch) to retire at what I think is an unrealistically early age. I had an uncle who worked 80 hours weeks for years. He was completely obnoxious about how he was making and saving all this money so that he could retire early and travel. Unfortunately, he was (quite literally) hit by a Mac truck on his drive to work one foggy morning and killed. His wife, my aunt, has really enjoyed traveling in retirement. She now lives in a nice house on a golf course and plays bridge all day when she isn't on one of her Viking river cruises. Too bad my uncle didn't live to see it. Point being: Live a little, even if it means working a little longer.

hulburt1
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by hulburt1 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 7:48 am

I lived frugal all my life. I go to Walmart at the end of summer to buy my summer cloths. I had the same shoes for 4 years. walking down a hill fell no soles. 4 years later I slipped and broke a rib. My new shoe cost $29. I have 4 cars (04,05,95,72) all run.

I'm 64 and still have a $100 weekly allowance. We live on $60000 but have made $350000 this year in the stock market. I started to spend a little more It's very hard to change. I have 2.3m I'm 64-wife61 she is not as bad as me but close. I do travel but sleep in the car. I do rent cars for trips.
I have taken 5 trips spent for car $2700 and have driven 45000 miles. You can make a nice bed in the passage side. Wife will not go she does have standards. I can say I'm a very happy with being me.

nova1968
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by nova1968 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 8:19 am

misterno wrote:My father's pajamas were 30 years old and it still looked new.

I am trying to break his record but I can not find the same 100% polyester ones.

Anyway it has been maybe 10 years that I buy any clothes. The company I work for is extremely lax in dressing.
If you want to be Frugal why buy pajamas in the first place.
Last edited by nova1968 on Mon Jul 24, 2017 8:20 am, edited 1 time in total.

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knpstr
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by knpstr » Mon Jul 24, 2017 8:20 am

indexonlyplease wrote:
knpstr wrote: There is a line there where frugality can turn into cheapness or miserliness, which can affect ones life negatively.
This is very true. Like the old man that left millions of dollars to family when he died. But he drove around in a 20 yr old car, and dressed like a homeless person. That person becomes so frugal all their life, so when the made it to retirement, they did not know how to enjoy the money.
I absolutely get what you're trying to say, though I'd caution that one can be happy driving a 20 year old car and wearing old clothes, hopefully the man wasn't complaining about money and life, if he was that would be a shame. And leaving money to heirs is a rather noble thing to do in my opinion, if you can do it after providing for yourself how you see fit.

We are all a little different on how we want to live life. So while someone may look cheap, they may not be cheap. In my view, making your life worse in your own eyes, by not spending money is being cheap. That doesn't mean someone else looking at person saying "look how he lives, he is cheap!" means the observer is correct. Individuals have different values and shockingly different preferences.
Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking. -Marcus Aurelius

nova1968
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by nova1968 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 8:37 am

There are many different ways to be frugal depending on ones values. For example a couch potato or sports fanatic may be frugal but would it be worth the inconvenience to cut the cable if you spend all your time watching TV.
One effective way of being frugal is to conduct market research and get at least three quotes on the purchase of high end items. Its also useful to be very selective when it comes to mechanics and contractors.

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goingup
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by goingup » Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:01 am

No, not especially frugal. I like quality and value in just about everything.

I'm a BH primarily because of the idea of investing wisely with low-cost funds. Never aspired to have a low-cost lifestyle.

miamivice
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by miamivice » Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:02 am

jb1 wrote:Dont know what it is with me. Im very basic. Havent bought clothes in 2 years. Can go without eating lunch just to save $5. Kinda want new shoes but dont really "need" them. It kinda sucks. I make about $40k a year, which is peanuts, but surely i should be able to purchase goods in life without feeling like i wasted money. With that being said, im not afraid to put $1k in an index haha.

Anyone else frugal?
I used to be frugal, but that was before I got married and had kids.

Today, not so much.

BW1985
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by BW1985 » Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:21 am

AF_Engineer wrote:I'm frugal when it comes to "experiences". I hate to spend money eating out, and it's hard for me to spend money on a vacation. I also hate buying flowers for my wife, or anything else that is temporary. But if I need a tool, or a vehicle, or an appliance, I'll buy the best I can find that will last forever and then not buy another one again until it croaks. Drives my wife nuts, but at least she gets some swell tools & appliances for her birthday!

I'd rather buy something tangible that I can keep for a while for utility or investment (like antiques), but not the stuff that would probably make life more enjoyable. But I get plenty of enjoyment on saving the money and buying/investing in more lasting things, that's just me.
I'm right there with you.
"Squirrels figured out how to save eons ago. They buried acorns. Some, they dug up, for food. Others, they let to sprout, in new oak trees. We could learn from squirrels." -john94549

fiverus
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by fiverus » Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:41 am

I'm frugal too, however, a new shirt or shoes once in awhile is a good thing. I spend a bit more on clothes but my clothes has lasted me for years. Plus they wash and wear remarkably. I have clothes 20+ years that don't look like rags. I only wear these clothes to work. On the weekends more casual and less expensive. Same goes for shoes.

As far as spending $5 on lunch there are better and healthier ways to save on eating. I make my own meals and bring my lunch everyday to work, this stretches my grocery bill as well. You save tons and is much more healthier then fast food. What can you buy with $5?

JimmyD
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by JimmyD » Mon Jul 24, 2017 10:01 am

miamivice wrote:
jb1 wrote:Dont know what it is with me. Im very basic. Havent bought clothes in 2 years. Can go without eating lunch just to save $5. Kinda want new shoes but dont really "need" them. It kinda sucks. I make about $40k a year, which is peanuts, but surely i should be able to purchase goods in life without feeling like i wasted money. With that being said, im not afraid to put $1k in an index haha.

Anyone else frugal?
I used to be frugal, but that was before I got married and had kids.

Today, not so much.
Took the words right out of my mouth. Wife and kid just require more money and I've learned to suck it up and deal with it.

Doug E. Dee
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by Doug E. Dee » Mon Jul 24, 2017 10:25 am

I felt mildly guilty about spending $2.71 at Dunk's for an ice coffee yesterday.

I try to avoid their over priced product but wanted the boost for a 2 hour drive home.

Frugal, heck yeah!

harvestbook
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by harvestbook » Mon Jul 24, 2017 10:45 am

I have a reputation for being frugal. My father-in-law loves to take the family out when we visit, his favorite restaurant, Everyone orders $10 drinks, steaks, etc. I am sure he ends up spending $400 or so. He even made a comment last time that I looked "horrified" and was insulted one time when I ordered just a salad.

He's 69, in poor health, is underwater on a condo he will never live long enough to pay off, leases a new vehicle, works a full-time job paying $15 an hour, and indulges himself on every whim. He was CEO of a large retail chain of around 100 stores his family owned (my wife was extremely wealthy as a child but it vanished almost overnight when Walmart crushed the regional chains).

Yes, I am horrified at his state of existence. But all I can do is save more and spend less, and try to be reasonable when MY family wants to do something that I see as a splurge. I have literally never bought new clothes except maybe four or five pairs of shoes. I bought my first new car a few years ago, with the intention of keeping it until it dies. I paid off my house as fast as I could. I don't even like to eat out at all, even if someone else is paying--I hated being "waited on" because it feels like I'm the one doing the waiting.

I don't really worry about the Joneses. The way I look at it, my investments gain on their self-indulgence. Benjamin Franklin is my hero.
I'm not smart enough to know, and I can't afford to guess.

2Birds1Stone
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Re: Anyone else extremely frugal?

Post by 2Birds1Stone » Mon Jul 24, 2017 10:52 am

Frugal to an extent.

When my SO and I moved in together 6 years ago we were grossing ~$56k combined in a HCOL area.

To this day we live on ~$45-50k/yr (net) but our income has more than tripled. We will be financially independent in less than a decade.

Doesn't feel too bad to be frugal. :sharebeer :moneybag

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