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Old 05-29-2011, 05:11 PM
 
28,896 posts, read 53,948,549 times
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My wife and I save, save, save. We have a really nice nest egg and investments. No one would ever accuse us of being spendthrifts.

Then there's my brother-in-law. He's 45. He still lives with his parents. He makes gobs of money as the owner of his own engineering firm. He writes a token amount to pay for his part of the mortgage, but doesn't begin to cover the food, the property taxes, the furnishings, the utilities, and the what not.

His entire wardrobe consists of free polo shirts given to him by vendors. He will not go out to eat, will not date, and drives a fourteen-year-old used car that leaves oil stains in the in-laws' driveway. His only daughter is a freshman in college, but he refused to pay for private college. Instead, he made her go to the cheapest university he could find, and established her residency with us so she could get the in-state tuition rate. He has never taken her on a decent vacation and complains about her spending any money. What's more, his parents are almost as cheap. Rather than brew a new pot of coffee, they'll heat up the coffee from the day before. And the list goes on.

So where do you draw the line? When does the saving of money get in the way of actually having some kind of life?
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Old 05-29-2011, 05:20 PM
 
Location: The Triad
34,091 posts, read 82,473,972 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpg35223 View Post
Then there's my brother-in-law.

So where do you draw the line?
When does the saving of money get in the way of actually having some kind of life?
your BIL sounds like a Class A Jerk
those inclined to not have a life will do so regardless of claiming frugality.
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Old 05-29-2011, 05:27 PM
 
Location: SE Michigan
6,191 posts, read 18,089,614 times
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There's a recent identical thread here (minus the pissing and moaning about your BIL):

//www.city-data.com/forum/fruga...ot-frugal.html
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Old 05-29-2011, 05:31 PM
 
5,546 posts, read 9,965,693 times
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Hmm, I'd say he's crossed that line into cheap land.

At times I've had dreams that I live with my parents and then I wake up and realize, wow, that was only a dream. Thank God (not that they are not or were not good people, but youngins' are to fly out of the nest at some point). Well, it should be as I am well over 40. Shakes head.
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Old 05-29-2011, 05:43 PM
 
28,896 posts, read 53,948,549 times
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Originally Posted by chiroptera View Post
There's a recent identical thread here (minus the pissing and moaning about your BIL):

//www.city-data.com/forum/fruga...ot-frugal.html
Hah. Don't get me started....

Seriously. There's a difference between being frugal and measuring everything in life by how much it costs. Frugality is a way for you to enjoy life without breaking the bank. Cheap is letting money drive every decision of your life.

Another example? We were having dinner one night with my BIL and In-Laws, and MrsCPG happened to mention how my brother and his wife were adopting a child from Ethiopia. The two had exhausted all other avenues and simply wanted a child to raise.

First and only question my in-laws asked? "Well, how much is that going to cost them?"

Okay. If somebody had told me that about their brother, I would have had dozens of questions, such as how they found the boy, what the processes would be, what they'd name the child, when the child would be coming to the U.S., etc. etc. etc.

Meanwhile, the cost of the adoption would never enter my mind.
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Old 05-29-2011, 05:45 PM
 
Location: Moscow
2,220 posts, read 3,852,955 times
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Frugality becomes cheapness when it negatively impacts others.
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Old 05-29-2011, 06:04 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Keim View Post
Frugality becomes cheapness when it negatively impacts others.
that is a good answer.
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Old 05-29-2011, 06:21 PM
 
Location: In America's Heartland
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Why is you 45 year old BIL still living with his parents? Aren't they just enabling his cheap and bad behavior?
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Old 05-29-2011, 06:36 PM
 
Location: Victoria TX
42,618 posts, read 86,592,874 times
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I think there is a disconnect, and the two do not flow, even though there might be an overlap.

Frugality is making reasoned choices about expenditures of money in terms of the value that can arise from the spending. On the other hand, being a cheap bastard stems as a form of greed, in which a person seeks to amass as much money (as well as personal favor) as possible, through the minimization of outlay.

The distinction is social, rather than economic. The frugal person is often quite generous with his money, when he sees where it can buy benefits even for others. The frugal person offers money, when someone has given something and not requested payment in return. The frugal person will loan money, with no expectation it will be paid back. Conversely, the cheap bastard thinks he has gotten away with something, if he can get something for nothing even from a needy person.

The cheap bastard will have a garage sale, and refuse to sell something if he can't get his price. The frugal person would set his junk out with a sign on the curb that says "Free".

Why would anybody throw out yesterday's coffee, when all you need to do is add water to the grounds and reheat it? I can usually get three days out of mine. Not throwing away something that can still be used is not cheap, it's frugal. Not eating food and letting it be thrown away is neither cheap nor frugal, it is stupid and wasteful.

Last edited by jtur88; 05-29-2011 at 06:52 PM..
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Old 05-29-2011, 06:47 PM
 
Location: in a galaxy far far away
19,105 posts, read 16,488,806 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keim View Post
Frugality becomes cheapness when it negatively impacts others.
Very true.

When you're picking off the plates of your co-workers because you're too cheap to buy or bring your lunch to work (but you make three times the salary these other co-workers do) .... then I'd say that person is just cheap. No frugality involved.
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