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Old 01-25-2018, 01:06 PM
 
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To me, there’s a difference between being “frugal” and being “cheap”. Frugal people try to get the best value for the money they spend, and are willing to spend more money on higher quality things, they think long term.

On the other hand, cheap people only care about the “cost” of something (i.e. the initial sticker price). Value, quality, and product longevity mean nothing to them, only saving a buck in the moment does, even if it costs them more down the line. In other words, cheap people think short term.

That’s what I mean when I say some people are cheap to their own detriment, they’re the type of people that’ll spend a dollar to save a dime, or trip over a hundred dollar bill to pick up a penny!

An example I can think of is with a vehicle. A frugal person here’s a grinding noise coming from the engine, they take it to a shop and it turns out it needs a new water pump, so they pay to have it fixed. The cheap person, on the other hand, experiences the same problem, takes it to a shop, they balk at the price saying “that’s too expensive” and ignore the problem. Then one day their vehicle overheats and it cracks the cylinder head, causing a much more expensive repair than if they would’ve fixed it when it first started. Their “quest” to save a buck has bit them in the butt and cost them 10x more, and frankly I LOVE when this happens to stupid people. Maybe they’ll learn, but it’s unlikely!

What are your experiences dealing with people like this? What are your thoughts on the subject?
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Old 01-25-2018, 01:19 PM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmy12345678 View Post
To me, there’s a difference between being “frugal” and being “cheap”.
And then there's just being poor.

Quote:
What are your thoughts on the subject?
A thread on the distinctions will pop up in the frugality section so often that it should be made a sticky thread. There.
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Old 01-25-2018, 01:25 PM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
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Frugality can be a mania bordering on mental illness. Maybe not to Hetty Green levels, but short of being part of a religious order that emphasizes poverty, denying yourself and family small, reasonably-priced comforts and conveniences is carrying it too far.

Which is why I've never advocated frugalism or minimalism as part of more sensible consumer thinking. You simply don't have to go that far other than for moral or religious reasons that control your life choices.
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Old 01-25-2018, 01:32 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MrRational View Post
And then there's just being poor.
Using the excuse of "being poor" is just a cop out for lazy people afraid of actually having to work, or make some sacrifices in their lives. Being poor is a mentality, not a death sentence that's impossible to get out of! I have no sympathy for people who do the same thing over and over again (i.e. living paycheck to paycheck and blowing every penny they earn on stupid things they don't need, or not making wise purchases) and expecting a different result!
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Old 01-25-2018, 01:47 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Quietude View Post
Which is why I've never advocated frugalism or minimalism as part of more sensible consumer thinking.

Minimalism is an Aesthetics thing, some would classify it as "art", though I see that as a bit limiting.

I'm frugal. I save today so that I may enjoy tomorrow (meaning retirement), and tomorrow I'll save so that I may enjoy my time right up till the end. As pointed out, though, my frugality is a Long term thing. I buy the absolute best quality XYZ that I can afford, so that I may enjoy a better quality XYZ, which usually functions better, is better made, lasts longer and retains much more value over the long haul in the event I want to sell. I do not suffer either comfort or convenience for my frugality.

I'm also cheap on occasion, when I know something will have limited use and no resale value. A one-time-use tool that I don't mind cheaping out on so long as I think it can make it through that single use. Occasionally it comes across as being opulent... buying the much more costly per unit small bottle of whatever vs the Bulk sized item that's 50x cheaper per unit... but the small bottle is less Total cost than the big bottle. If it's something that'll go to waste (I'm thinking about huge containers of condiments ~ we simply don't use enough of most things to have it gone before the expiration date), it doesn't matter how good of a "deal" I got, only the out of pocket expense.
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Old 01-25-2018, 02:15 PM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
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Originally Posted by Brian_M View Post
Minimalism is an Aesthetics thing, some would classify it as "art", though I see that as a bit limiting.
I'm not even that kind - I see it (economically/financially at least) as sheer posturing. I mean, having only one Rolex and two Brioni suits in a nearly empty apartment in the Forties... how impressive. :P

Quote:
I'm also cheap on occasion, when I know something will have limited use and no resale value.
I wouldn't categorize that as cheap. My tools range from Snap-On and Matco to Harbor Freight Tools - the latter being those need-once, good-enough tools or big sets of something in which I will replace the well-used items with quality ones, and get one or two or zero uses from the rest (router bits come to mind).

Cheap... is buying something you know is substandard or insufficient and just choosing to live with it when more money spent would bring useful value.
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Old 01-25-2018, 02:43 PM
 
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Yeah, I'm a snap-on/craftsman/HF guy too for tools... the stuff I use more than once a week is now all Snap-On (or, was back when I was still spinning wrench). It only hurts once vs cheap tools that hurt every time you try to use them (and deal with rounded-off fasteners).

People who live on camp chairs in half-million dollar houses are not "minimalists", they're house poor. Maybe that's the same for your example?

I suspect the Real dividing line is centered upon those who understand the difference between Want and Need and have no problem limiting their Want spending. Nearly everyone around me has to satisfy their Want cravings with 2nd day Amazon orders for stuff that, if I see a second time, it's in the trash or for sale on facebook. A couple of my in-laws are 1 paycheck away from total financial ruin, and yet get 6~10 boxes each and every week of "stuff". It's all (or nearly all) Wants, with no thought of what tomorrow may bring.
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Old 01-25-2018, 03:09 PM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
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Originally Posted by Brian_M View Post
YI suspect the Real dividing line is centered upon those who understand the difference between Want and Need and have no problem limiting their Want spending.
We're on exactly the same page. That's pretty much the core expression of my efforts these days.
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Old 01-26-2018, 03:19 PM
 
Location: I'm out searching for me... If you see me, let me know... ;--)
3,277 posts, read 1,704,708 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmy12345678 View Post
Using the excuse of "being poor" is just a cop out for lazy people afraid of actually having to work, or make some sacrifices in their lives. Being poor is a mentality, not a death sentence that's impossible to get out of! I have no sympathy for people who do the same thing over and over again (i.e. living paycheck to paycheck and blowing every penny they earn on stupid things they don't need, or not making wise purchases) and expecting a different result!
Ain't you sweet?? *sarcasm*

Millions of people will now.get up and find the success they were just to lazy to search for before you spoke your wise words.
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Old 01-26-2018, 03:52 PM
 
849 posts, read 363,090 times
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Originally Posted by Wild Flower View Post
Ain't you sweet?? *sarcasm*

Millions of people will now.get up and find the success they were just to lazy to search for before you spoke your wise words.
People need to take responsibility for their situation in life. If you've backed yourself into a corner due to unwise life choices (having unwanted children, marrying a bad partner, working crappy jobs, etc), you have no one to blame but yourself!

I've avoided those mistakes and life and have some semblance of self control and restraint, so I've managed to improve my lot in life through sheer willpower. Imagine that? I was unsatisfied with where I was in life, I scarified, somewhat controlled my impulses (I know it's hard!) and invested wisely with my money (i.e. saving up and purchasing a cheap car instead of shackling myself to monthly car payments, still have had only two in my entire life, one for each vehicle I own!) and things got better.

BTW I'm by no means what I'd call "successful" yet, as I'm only 23 and still have my whole life ahead of me at this point. It's a constant struggle everyday to improve my living situation, as I'm always looking to make things better, never want to be stagnant and complacent!

If you're poor, as I've been many times in my life, and you're expecting "the stars" to align and change your fortune or some kind of hand out, you're in for a rude awakening! Take charge of your own life and make it what you want or shut the hell up and be life's *****! Because NEWSFLASH, NOBODY else cares whether you are successful or not, YOU and you alone determine that!!!


"It takes constant effort to be happy, it takes nothing to be miserable!" - Me

"Men are not against you, they are merely for themselves." - Gene Fowler

Last edited by jimmy12345678; 01-26-2018 at 04:02 PM..
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