U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Economics > Frugal Living
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 12-07-2013, 07:42 AM
MJ7 MJ7 started this thread
 
6,221 posts, read 8,191,806 times
Reputation: 6487

Advertisements

I recently graduated college, and my friends and I have professional careers. Back in college I was a frugal shopper, sometimes (I also worked a full-time professional job through my Masters), and now that we are all out on our own making decent salaries the question is...why are so many people content on saving a dime to live with less quality?

I'm not talking about wining and dining every night or even comparing Aldi brand items to Kraft or whatever...I'm simply talking about the mindset and old saying, "you get what you pay for".

I like to think of myself as a frugal shopper still, however, by frugal I mean this:

example: I will compare beer prices (for the same beer that I want to drink that evening) at Wholefoods and the local liquor stores and grocery stores and buy whichever is cheaper...I do this generalyl for all the foods I eat, however, I do have some rules that I follow when shopping for food (I choose to buy organic when I can).

I agree with and understand that SMART shopping is great, being frugal (as in careful about what you purchase with your money as in my example above), and being flat out CHEAP and only buying things because they are less expensive.

I have a few friends that were super CHEAP in college, one lived off free Jimmy Johns white bread, oranges and Aldi boxes of mac and cheese for nearly 2 years...gross. Now that he has a job he is no longer this way.

Is this all about living within ones means? In my experience people do this even though they make more than enough money to purchase higher quality...it's like people are addicted to saving 3 pennies per lb of beef or chicken or whatever.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 12-07-2013, 07:46 AM
 
Location: Texas
42,203 posts, read 49,740,662 times
Reputation: 66975
Becomes habit, I guess.

My brand of frugality is buying quality when it counts, using things up or over and over or until they simply wear out...most of those things are of better quality so they last longer.

Food is never the place to skimp.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-07-2013, 07:51 AM
MJ7 MJ7 started this thread
 
6,221 posts, read 8,191,806 times
Reputation: 6487
Quote:
Originally Posted by stan4 View Post
Becomes habit, I guess.

My brand of frugality is buying quality when it counts, using things up or over and over or until they simply wear out...most of those things are of better quality so they last longer.

Food is never the place to skimp.
Definitely my motto on clothing and electronics...buy good quality items and keep them as long as you can, pay up now save later in the long run.

As for food, another important frugal thing I do is buy the quantity I need, it is a little bit of a science. When I first moved out of my parents home I was buying and throwing away too much, buy what you use.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-08-2013, 01:59 PM
 
2,429 posts, read 3,053,013 times
Reputation: 3328
This topic has been discussed ad nauseum here. It is a frugal thread, after all. I get that.

Clearly people have different thoughts and habits about money -- spending it, saving it, its value compared to the quality items, its value compared to time spent, etc.

And people have those thoughts and habits because of how they grew up, what they learned from parents/family about money: Did they have a lot growing up, were they poor, what were they taught or what they subconsciously picked up in terms of thoughts about money, budgeting, saving, etc.

That's really all it comes down to. Have you ever seen the show "Cheapskates?" It shows people dumpster diving for food, taking showers with clothes on to shower and wash clothes to save water, and all kinds of IMO CRAZY things to save money.

When you become friends with or get to know people who have different views than yours -- it IS an INTERESTING layer to their personality.

I have a friends of 20 years. I spend my money on gourmet food and books...she spends hers on handbags and accessories. W are similar on wanting to invest, saivng for retirement, etc...but clearly spend out disposable income on different things -- and PRICE POINTS...reltainin to your point about quality. She's Hermes, Chanel and Louis Vuitton....I'm Walmart for clothing, but gourmet for food and eating out.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-08-2013, 02:35 PM
 
2,421 posts, read 3,557,499 times
Reputation: 3448
Unnecessary frugality is just the opposite of over spending. If you are a high earner, you can afford more and better quality. Nothing wrong with that. But spending all you have is where the problem may lie. When your young, you don't tend to think about retirement that much because it seems far away to young people. But, it comes, sooner than you might think, and you want to make sure you have saved enough to be able to enjoy a comfortable life when you finally don't have to work any more and can do some of the things you always thought you would, but never actually got to do.

Everything is relative, and spending too is relative to what you earn. Also, if you are a two person earner, you may want to consider how you might manage should one of you lose your job. People often dismiss this thinking it will not happen to them, but unfortunately it does. So being financially prepared is smart. Yes, there are people who go overboard, but there are even more people who go overboard in the opposite direction.

Being retired now, I can say, I wish I was more frugal during my high earning years. I did save fortunately, but not as much as I should have. Priorities change when you get older. I now can look back and say "Why did I think I had to live in such a large house in such an upscale neighborhood." I now know that I could have been just as happy in a smaller home in a good neighborhood. All the additional money I spent on mortgage payments, taxes, utilities, insurance, would go a long way towards a comfortable retirement, which is the second part of your life. Some words of widom from the old to the young.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-09-2013, 03:16 PM
 
12,422 posts, read 14,547,993 times
Reputation: 14103
If you want quality, but you're also frugal...second hand is the way to go. I've bought top quality second hand items (furniture etc) that'll last at least (maybe more) another generation for one quarter the price it would cost for something new that won't last more than 10 years.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-09-2013, 03:30 PM
 
Location: DFW
6,717 posts, read 11,162,972 times
Reputation: 4972
Generally, the amount of effort I'll spend in finding deals on an item is proportional to its average cost.

I'm likely to spend 10x the effort finding good deals on something that costs around $1000 compared to something that costs around $100.

If I'm short on time, I stop spending time caring about finding the best deals on things less than $100.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-09-2013, 03:41 PM
 
13,710 posts, read 22,821,151 times
Reputation: 18521
The OP is making the assumption that just because a product is less expensive makes it a low quality good. Often products at Aldi test out among consumers as better quality of name brands and are less as they are not paying for an expensive marketing campaigns and slotting fees to the large supermarket chains.

Over the years, I have done any number of blind tests between private labels and the national brands and very often the quality of the generics is equal or better. And more often not, they are produced at the same facility.

===================================

My approach has always been that you should buy the quality you need.

For example, if you are a plumber professionally, buy the best tools out there on the market. If you are changing out the elbow on your kitchen sink, buy the cheap wrench at Harbor Freight.

I paid a LOT more for the bowling shoes that I wear several times a week than the golf shoes I might wear once every three years.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-09-2013, 05:56 PM
 
Location: Columbia SC
7,957 posts, read 6,706,083 times
Reputation: 10701
Frugal when one has little is a good trait and one that could keep you out of trouble. As you start to earn, enjoying the nicer things is good. As you earn more being a bit extravagant is nice as you earned it. The ultimate is OK I have been there and while I enjoyed the $2,500.00 watch, I am just as happy with the $250.00 watch especially when I can still afford the $2,500.00 watch but I am going to invest the $2,250.00 difference for the future.

I say there are stages.

1. I have nothing but I yearn for more and I will work for it. Walmart.
2. I am beginning to earn and I can afford better. Macy's.
3. I am doing well and I can be a bit crazy with it. Nordstrom's.
4. I am doing very well but I want value for my dollar. A combination of all 3.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-09-2013, 07:35 PM
MJ7 MJ7 started this thread
 
6,221 posts, read 8,191,806 times
Reputation: 6487
Quote:
Originally Posted by johngolf View Post
Frugal when one has little is a good trait and one that could keep you out of trouble. As you start to earn, enjoying the nicer things is good. As you earn more being a bit extravagant is nice as you earned it. The ultimate is OK I have been there and while I enjoyed the $2,500.00 watch, I am just as happy with the $250.00 watch especially when I can still afford the $2,500.00 watch but I am going to invest the $2,250.00 difference for the future.

I say there are stages.

1. I have nothing but I yearn for more and I will work for it. Walmart.
2. I am beginning to earn and I can afford better. Macy's.
3. I am doing well and I can be a bit crazy with it. Nordstrom's.
4. I am doing very well but I want value for my dollar. A combination of all 3.
one thing ive learned is not to wear your money on your sleeve (or anywhere else for that matter). funny how many things that were once staples of mine are now not even considered.

i agree that a combination is a must, but would go further to say that some things just arent needed at all...or can be supplemented by other things. not sure if this really fits in frugality arena, more like the minimalistic arena.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Economics > Frugal Living
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top