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What Is Frugal Life According To You.

Discussion in 'Money Matters' started by saileela85, May 23, 2019.

  1. Gauri03

    Gauri03 Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Precisely. Frugality implies choice. Poverty is not a choice.

    For me frugality boils down to a simple philosophy — a reasonable cost per use (total cost/total uses). As has been said before, it is a subjective assessment; what is reasonable for me might be unreasonable for someone else. Put simply a purchase where I cannot justify the cost per use is an extravagant purchase, the actual price of the object being a lessor factor. Usually this means paying for high quality items at a higher price point balanced by buying fewer things that I actually use.

    I play badminton recreationally once every few months. For that purpose a $25 Wilson racquet is value for money, while a $200 Yonex racquet is a frivolous extravagance. I play about 5 times a year, and I've had the same racquet for 5 years making the cost per session of badminton ~$1. For an occasional interest that is the most I'm comfortable paying. On the other hand I run 3 times a week averaging ~25 miles a month. Instead of skimping and buying cheap shoes on sale, I purchase custom fitted $200 running shoes. For a distance of 300 miles per year the cost per use is less than a $0.67 per mile or ~$1.3 per run, about the same as the rarely used badminton racquet! That to me is value for money and far cheaper than injuring my feet in poor quality shoes and paying for a specialist, MRI and orthotics (made that mistake and paid for it). On the face of it most people would say a $25 racquet is cheaper than $200 shoes but a quick cost per use calculation shows them to be an equivalent expense (for me).

    Often cheap things have a surprisingly high cost per use because they simply don't last. I'd rather buy fewer, higher quality items that provide a higher number of uses over a longer period of time. Not only is it more frugal than buying many inexpensive things I don't use, it is the more environmentally responsible way to purchase.
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2019
  2. Positivity02

    Positivity02 Silver IL'ite

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    Being frugal is a tough choice but a valuable one in today's economy where consumers are exploited with innumerable choices.
    In our family, we try and adapt frugality where ever possible. Some examples,
    -Don't buy books. We make use of local library and free online resources.
    -Avoid paying full price for clothes as much as possible. Once I did for a dress & in less than a month saw the same dress in clearance for almost 70% discount. Never made that mistake again.
    -Limit eating out to once a month by meal planning & trying restaurant recipes at home in fraction of the cost.
    -Buy seasonal vegetables & fruits.
    -Compare prices across different stores before making a big purchase & choose the best option. We mostly try to wait & buy during Thanksgiving or sale time to get the best value.
    -Prefer staying in Airbnbs while on vacation where kitchen is available. We buy basics like bread, milk , eggs etc in local grocery and manage few meals & visit restaurants only few times during the trip. This is a big saver.
    One area we try not to be very frugal is in groceries, where we try to buy good quality items as health shouldn't be compromised in name of frugality.
    hermitcrab likes this.

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