Is there a wrong way to be frugal?
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  1. #1
    Registered User KathyB's Avatar
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    Default Is there a wrong way to be frugal?

    I feel like there is no one right way to frugal. Some people are extremely frugal, some are just a little frugal, some are in between. Some people are frugal in some areas to give themselves more money to spend on things that are really import.

    There is advice out there that may not be good advice for me, but it is good advice for someone else.

    We all have different circumstances and different priorities.

    At one point I would have said there is no wrong way to frugal. But yesterday I read an article from someone who tried being very frugal and gave it up. She said “We gave up all our favorite things. My husband and I were miserable.” My initial thought was: If you are miserable, you are doing it wrong.

    This kind of thing might be doable for getting through a short-term situation. But it can’t be sustained over the long term.

    Some general alternative to giving up favorite things:
    Can you get it cheaper?
    Can you get something similar cheaper? Or even free?
    Can you cut back on other things to leave money for it?
    Consider less of something rather than none of it.
    Come up with new favorite things that are cheap or free.
    KathyB

  2. #2
    Registered User josantoro's Avatar
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    I think the people who don't buy ketchup, but help themselves to packets at fast food restaurants, and the like, are doing it wrong. Being frugal by shifting the cost to someone else is not really frugal. Ditto for people who never pick up the check when dining out with friends.

    There are some people, maybe most, who ask how much something is and then pay it. We have always asked, how can we get it cheaper? Your favorite cosmetic is $15 in the drugstore, but what is it going for on Ebay? We used to spend winters at a resort complex, where a 2 BR condo went for $700-800 a month -- we got a 4.5 month stay for $2500 total, by not accepting the "retail" price and looking for an owner who would rent for less.
    Make America Kind Again.

  3. #3
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    This!

    Some general alternative to giving up favorite things:
    Can you get it cheaper?
    Can you get something similar cheaper? Or even free?
    Can you cut back on other things to leave money for it?
    Consider less of something rather than none of it.
    Come up with new favorite things that are cheap or free.

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  5. #4
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    I guess there is a wrong way to be frugal, especially if it comes to cheating or stealing. My mom went to garage sales, which is a fun way to pick up things for a great price. However, people take items from the seller without paying for it. And we see that online as well (people using venmo to make purchases and then reversing the charge after item is shipped). Another one that's pretty popular is buying a dress for prom/homecoming, wearing it with the tags, and then returning it. I even worked in a clothing store where guys bought items for a job interview, wore it and then returned it, saying they didn't need it anymore.

    I agree with Jo, there are ways that may seem like people are saving some $, but it's at the expense of the person/store.

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