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View Full Version : Anyone here NOT need to pinch pennies, but pinch them anyway?


HenDuck
06-15-2006, 08:17 PM
We have been extremely blessed in our financial situation. While we have always made a decent income and have managed to keep our heads above water, we have recently made a huge jump in our household income, thanks to some smart business decisions by DH.

My dear friend said to me recently, "You need to stop buying your clothes at Ross." Hey, what's wrong with Ross? :confused3

I also won't buy any clothes unless it's on sale (if I'm not shopping at Ross)...

I have also been pricing WDW resort rates. We can definitely stay at a Deluxe if we want to. But I can't get myself to spend the money! We have stayed in pool homes off-site in the past and when I compare one versus the other, I just can't spend twice as much to stay on-site.

My friend told me I'm just a penny pincher by nature.

Ok, I'm not cheap. I mean, we ARE going to WDW...it's not like we're going to stay at home and watch the grass grow for our vacation. But even with our finances being, well, good, I still can't splurge (or "upgrade" as my other friend calls it.)

Anyone else like that? And do your friends call you a penny pincher?

Just wondering... princess:

wearegoingtoDisney
06-15-2006, 08:31 PM
Well I can't say we are at the point where we don't have to pinch pennies but I do think I often pinch more than we need to. I just have a hard time justifying overspending. I am all about getting the best value for my dollar. For example we would probably be finacially ok if I didn't buy our bread at the outlet for 4 for $5 or if I didn't wait until chicken breast goes on sale for 1.99/lb and I probably could buy myself a shirt for full price once in a while without breaking the bank but I just can't. I find it wasteful. I understand where you are comming from. I often think about what I would do if I were really really rich...I still would not buy a fancy car as I really feel a car just needs to get you from point A to point B. I probably would get to go to Disney more often!!!

canwegosoon
06-15-2006, 08:33 PM
Yes...my friends are shocked when I bring out coupons, and shop sales etc...
You should see the thanks I get from people in the market when I hand them a coupon I know I will not use for an item they have in their cart. Money buys choices, and I like mine to buy as many choices as possible!!! My friends can not understand why I don't have a landscaper and a cleaning person, but yet I own 3 homes and DVC... :confused3

Toots
06-15-2006, 09:00 PM
When do you know if you really have enough? I'm a penny pincher also.

We have no debt, own our home and cars and pay off our credit cards each month. Evenso, it's hard to just relax and spend, especially without a coupon. :teeth:

We could also afford a deluxe at Disney, but wouldn't consider it. I noticed once we started paying cash for our automobiles we really thought about how much they cost. Maybe it's the same with other things. ;)

disneyohana
06-15-2006, 09:00 PM
Some people think I'm silly when I am really careful w/my money on small things, but I will buy a big screen TV. They don't realize that that is how I can get big things once and a while. If you add up all the little dollars, you can afford the big things eventually. As for WDW, I do stay on site but at the Caribbean Beach. Even when we save up enough and even though we love the Polynesian & Yacht Club, I just can't spend the extra $150 to $200 a night.

pearlieq
06-15-2006, 09:12 PM
DH and I are blessed not to have to scrimp to survive. I'm very, very grateful for that. Still, I'm very dilligent about our finances, and always looking for a bargain.

It's not so much that I pinch pennies all around (I'm not looking to turn into Howard Hughes) I just economize on things that are less important to me in order to get things more important to me.

For example: In terms of jewelry, I own my wedding set and one necklace. But I'm taking a last minute trip to Vegas soon. My MIL has so much bling she could pass for a rapper, but would never consider taking a vacation that didn't consist of driving to their local campground.

Everyone picks their own priorities.

disneysteve
06-15-2006, 09:20 PM
I just economize on things that are less important to me in order to get things more important to me.

Everyone picks their own priorities.
I'm pretty much like the OP. We could spend a lot more on stuff, but choose not to because we see no point in doing so. If we are happy buying clothes at Wal-Mart and Target, why suddenly start going to Nordstrom's just because we could afford it? Yes, we could also afford a Disney deluxe, but we would be miserable crammed into one of those tiny rooms when we could be enjoying the luxury of an offsite condo with 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, a full kitchen, 3 TVs, etc.

I agree with pearlieq. We all have different priorities. Though we may shop for many things at Wal-Mart and other discount places, we will splurge and buy top quality on things that are really important to us.

We also have different goals. I want to retire no later than 62. That means saving a lot of money now. So I'm perfectly happy living well below our means now to allow us to afford our long-term goals.

scmickeygal
06-15-2006, 09:28 PM
We are blessed to not have to live paycheck to paycheck. By no means are we VERY well off either, but we do well. I am not a penny pincher yet, but I like to save money when I can and I have found many ways on this board to do so, but I have also seen things and said "These people dont live or their giving up too much" I have figured out that I am going to be in debt basically all my life because I want to live a little bit, but I am grateful for what I have.

Sometimes convenience in this busy world is worth paying that few extra cents to me. I read once where someone steals the ketchup packets from restaurants and fills their ketchup container and never has to buy any. This to me is crazy because its too time consuming. I just want convenience sometimes.

I learned when we were in the army to wait to have kids because there are people out there that will NEVER see Disneyworld!! Man, can you imagine? NOw, I have a home, two cars and two wonderful jobs to raise my little one on. I am truly blessed.

Anyway, We don't have to, but we do save when we can, but not without living also!!!

Anne34
06-15-2006, 09:38 PM
When do you know if you really have enough? I'm a penny pincher also.

We have no debt, own our home and cars and pay off our credit cards each month. Evenso, it's hard to just relax and spend, especially without a coupon. :teeth:

We could also afford a deluxe at Disney, but wouldn't consider it. I noticed once we started paying cash for our automobiles we really thought about how much they cost. Maybe it's the same with other things. ;)


I am exactly the same way!! I do buy more than I used to, but still can't justify spending the money for a deluxe resort or buying a car more than every 6/7 years.

We pay charge everything and pay off the bill at the end of the month. If the bill is large one month, I feel like we need to tighten our belts the next month (and we really have no need). I agree, some people are just penny pinchers.

staceyfe
06-15-2006, 09:51 PM
For me, getting the most for my money has become so much of a habit, I don't think I could quit using coupons even if I won the Powerball. Saving money on lots of little items allows me to spurlge on other things that are more important to me. Plus, I'm like the OP, I can't see spending money on something that has little value to me just because I have the money to spend.

And a small side thread: today I found hair color on clearance at Target for $2.75/box. Well, I loaded up on 3 boxes and had 2-$2 coupons and 1-$1.50 coupon. So 3 boxes cost me $2.75. I was ecstatic. But the checker made a comment at the beginning of my transaction that I was "cheating", 'cause I was getting it on clearance and had coupons. Then, when she saw the total ('cause I only bought the haircolor and one 48 cent item), she said it was almost a sin. Well, she may have been kidding me, but I told her I always use a coupon for a clearance item if I have it. And I'm thinking to myself "I have more money in the bank because of it". It really sort of made me mad to be judged by a checkout lady for trying to save some money.

kcrew
06-15-2006, 10:07 PM
Great to hear from others that think like me. I wonder, at what point can you "afford" a Deluxe, rather than a Value? How do people make that differentiation? I am paying cash for my upcoming stay at POP. I COULD pay cash for a stay at the Poly, but I just CAN"T....For me I just can't splurge when there is a reasonable, less expensive alternative. It's truly a physical thing for me...when I find a bargain I get a true adreniline rush :banana: when I find out I have overpaid for something I actually feel ill... :guilty:

sunshinegirl
06-15-2006, 10:47 PM
As I get older (31...LOL!), I think that I pinch pennies less but look for true value more. That is, I will not spend tons of time online looking for freebies, but when I see good ones, I will sign up for them. I do not clip coupons for groceries, but I always keep an eye out for things like buy one get one free meals or free kids meal nights at our favorite restaurants.

I also believe more in the "you get what you pay for." Some things are truly worth the money to me...like staying in the DVC so that our kids are in a separate room and we all get a good night's sleep every night. But that is just a total value judgment based on our family. On the flip side, I buy almost all of my family's clothes, including my own, at Kohl's and almost always when I have the extra 15% off coupons. :)

I think a big part of it is having scraped for things in the past, I almost feel guilty not scraping anymore. So I temper our nice vacations with modest cars, clothes, etc. It kind of creates a balance that allows us to reward ourselves for working really hard but at the same time stay grounded in the real world where you do (or SHOULD) have to work hard for what you get.

Tricia

Tinker*Shell*Bell
06-15-2006, 11:14 PM
We are in the same boat as most of you. No real bills, montly pay-offs on the cards, and a really good income. But I still clip coupons, search for discount codes and free shipping offers. I will buy with a sale, coupons and a mail in a rebate (Colgate just paid me $2.00 for "buying" toothpaste and brushes.)

I spend when it is important to us (good stroller) or when it will be extra special (Ploynesian) but My clothes are from sales and the kids are too.

No shame in saving where we can. Money comes and money goes. I hate to think we'd ever be "there" again but one never knows.

PolyHereWeCome
06-15-2006, 11:48 PM
OP - Yes, we're "penny pinchers", although I prefer to think of us as smart shoppers ("penny pincher" sounds so negative). We enjoy using coupons at the supermarket, love manufacturer's rebates (and freebies and overage), use internet codes for on-line shopping, hitting the sale and clearance racks, and researching big-ticket items (and even small-ticket items) so we can be truly educated shoppers.

It's powerful to be in control of your money, and we get pleasure out of making good buying decisions. We probably could afford to not use coupons, but why should I waste money? The only debt we have is our mortgage and we could pay that off easily, but at 4.75% plus tax advantage, we do better in the long-run by putting our money in stocks and bonds.

And as far as staying or not staying deluxe at WDW, to each his/her own -- For us, the Poly. has been a magnificent place to stay and completes the vacation. Staying off-site or value sounds like a real cost savings, but this is one area that we won't pinch on (but can't imagine ever paying rack rate).

juligrl
06-15-2006, 11:54 PM
Yep, I'm cheap and I make no bones about it. Could I afford to not be cheap, yeah and we'd be alright, but I like getting good deals on things and clipping coupons. I figure with the money I save on the small stuff, we'll be able to justify the big stuff.

Alice28
06-16-2006, 12:07 AM
I like just getting the most value for my money. For example, I *know* every month Target has a special on Pampers. So I buy that week, with coupons, and stock up. Why not? Saves me at least $5. I stock up when things are on sale. Maybe I don't *have* to, but it's just common sense to me. I refuse to shop at major department stores without the addt'l 10-20% off coupons they have practically every weekend.

However, we are still kind of in the stage of life where it's necessary to be frugal- we have 3 young children and rarely have extra money to splurge with. My MIL however is PERFECT for this topic. She is a millionaire a few times over, but she loves to shop at Ross, TJ Maxx, has her coupons, etc. But you know what- she and my FIL living like that all their lives is what helped them become millionaires! She splurges on things like massages and nice trips, but otherwise she lives pretty frugally.

:)

HenDuck
06-16-2006, 12:44 AM
Gee, I feel so much better hearing from other people who feel like me.

I have a girlfriend who is always telling me to "live for today" and that I "deserve it" by splurging on this and that. But she has $50k in credit card debt and no savings to speak of. :confused3

We are not misers, but we're not spendthrifts either. We do travel regularly, but we fly coach or on frequent flier miles. We like to stay at nice places that give us a good deal for our money (our fav near DL is Embassy Suites because you not only get a suite with two rooms, you get free cooked to order breakfast and a nightly reception!)

I think we're more middle-of-the-road kind of people and we'll probably always be so. I do hope to stay at a deluxe WDW resort some day, but not right now, when a pool house suits our needs better.

I asked the original question because you just never know what other people's situations are and you just shouldn't assume. Just because I drive a Toyota (as opposed to a Lexus, like my girlfriend mentioned above), doesn't mean that I have less in the bank or couldn't afford the "upgrade".

I'm so very greatful that things are looking good for us financially. I just don't see that as a license to spend more just to spend more!

Thanks again everyone!

princess:

travelitis
06-16-2006, 02:05 AM
With the epidemic of overspending and growing personal debt, as I see it, the penny-pinching (within reason) is to be admired and emulated rather than criticized. Where is the glory in wasting your money no matter how much you have, anyway?

DisneyMomJen
06-16-2006, 07:38 AM
We have been extremely fortunate over the past few years since my husbands income has increased considerably. Even though our income has increased, I do not feel like it has. I will ALWAYS use coupons with my rule - 'Goal should be to get an item as close to $0 as possible'. We own at DVC and stay in a 2 bedroom (4 kids) and deluxe resorts. My absolute favorite is the GF. But, the only way I feel that we can justify staying Deluxe or buying into DVC is with me paying for it through my Ebay sales and getting discounted rates! Otherwise, I would feel extremely guilty. I also see how some people just blow their money on 'little' things and then think they cannot afford go to Disney. Thes 'little' things all add up.

barbeml
06-16-2006, 07:52 AM
DH and I live below our means for a number of reasons. I don't believe in paying interest (just on the mortgage), I enjoy the thrill of getting a good deal, and you never know what tomorrow will bring.

I know too many people who spend it as fast as they earn it and are completely unprepared when something bad happens: job loss, illness, 9/11 (which all but destroyed my brother's business).

In a week I start a new job which will almost triple my current annual salary. We already have retirement funded, a healthy emergency fund, etc. so I plan to open a couple of dedicated savings accounts: one for my only nephew and one for vacations.

It's all about balance and priorities. Because we pay ourselves first, we know we can spend what we want on things that matter to us.

ncbyrne
06-16-2006, 07:55 AM
DH and I are financially secure. Not wealthy by any stretch of the word, but comfortable enough not to worry about bills. I am 60, DH 61 and we earned every penny to be where we are. Our parents grew up in the Depression era and taught us to be wise with $. A poem I heard constantly was:
Use it up,
Wear it out,
Make it do,
Or do without.
My granddaughters make a game of picking up every coin they see on the ground. They have a "found money" (literally) Mickey Mouse bank to keep it in. In 3 years they had $26.41 cents to spend on our last WDW trip.
Yes, we are proud penny pinchers! :thumbsup2

MrsPete
06-16-2006, 08:00 AM
Yep, I fit into this category. When DH and I were married and moved into our first house, we were dirt poor. We literally had $200 and one car between the two of us. Now, 16 years later, we're very comfortable. We're not where we want to be forever, but we're on track to retire at 57 and are happy with our situation. However, that doesn't mean we throw money around -- spending more because you have more makes no sense.

My shopping habits have changed a bit, but they're still thrifty: I still buy what groceries I can at the salvage store. When I go to the grocery store, I stock up on reduced-for-quick-sale meat, but I'll also buy good, fresh fish when I want it (something I couldn't afford in the past). I don't have any problem buying used clothing, and most of the new clothing I buy is on sale; however, if an item I really want is full-priced, I might buy it. I do not use shopping as a hobby, nor do I buy stuff-stuff-stuff-stuff-stuff just for the sake of buying stuff. In furnishing our home, we have not bought cheap-o furniture in a box or faddish accessories; instead, we decide what we want to keep for a long time, then we buy those items. We see cars as necessary items to get us from point A to point B safely; we're shopping for a new one right now, and though we could afford a loaded SUV, we're probably going to buy a 2006 Honda Civic.

The bottom line is that if we don't make oodles of money. If we hadn't lived a frugal lifestyle, we wouldn't be comfortable right now; and if we didn't continue to live a frugal lifestyle, we could easily lose that comfort level.

disneysteve
06-16-2006, 08:03 AM
As I get older (31...LOL!), I think that I pinch pennies less but look for true value more.

I also believe more in the "you get what you pay for." Some things are truly worth the money to me
I agree with you, Tricia. We're a bit older (41 and 42) and have definitely grown to look more at value than at price. When we were in our 20's and early 30's, it was all about "how cheap can we do this?" Now, it is more about "how can we get good quality at the best price?" So we are still price conscious, but we're generally looking at a better quality of item (or experience) than we used to.

We've also learned to value our time more. Running around to various thrift shops and discount markets isn't something we do nearly as much anymore because the amount we save isn't worth the time we lose in the process. I'd rather pay more for something at our local supermarket than make a special trip to Aldi's to save a quarter.

barbeml
06-16-2006, 08:43 AM
Gee, I feel so much better hearing from other people who feel like me.

I have a girlfriend who is always telling me to "live for today" and that I "deserve it" by splurging on this and that. But she has $50k in credit card debt and no savings to speak of. :confused3
princess:

I know what you mean...I guess misery loves company. It's always our friends & family who are in debt who needle us about buying a McMansion or a BMW.

I tell them we go to WDW every year, have no car payments (our cars are less than 2 years old) and our house (small, but in a very desirable neighborhood) will be paid off in 7 years...that usually shuts them up! ;)

DVC Sadie
06-16-2006, 09:03 AM
My in laws always laugh when I pull out coupons while shopping in a grocery store, but I was raised by depression era parents. My father was 50 and my mom was 43 when they received me so my way of thinking may be skewed a tad. ;)

When my dh and I first started out 20 years ago I made him drive me to 3 different grocery stores every week so I could buy all of the loss leaders at each store. Now that times have changed financially I usually just go to one store but still use coupons when I can.

I notice that I do spend a lot more money now but its for higher end items and would rather do without than buy something of less quality. For me its all about the quality and how much enjoyment we can get out of said item.

Grumpy's Gal
06-16-2006, 09:27 AM
GUILTY!

In my case, it's genetic. My parents are both....well.....let's say FRUGAL! I love that word!

But I just can't justify paying full prive for things when I can get them for so much less........ :rolleyes1

robsmom
06-16-2006, 09:45 AM
I think i am somewhere in between. I grew up with a frugal mother and learned to be frugal when i got married and was saving for a house. I believe that you can and should take advantage of any sale or discount that you can (and who cares what the sales person thinks - although ususally they think its great when people get good deals!). I buy alot at Kohl's and Target and buy most of my clothing on sale or at the outlets. I always check the clearance racks. I don't refill my ketchup or steal it from restuarants but i will keep any that we get from fast food and will give that to my son to use at home. At the same time, i do realize that i don't have to be as frugal now and so there are times when i buy the nice outfit that i really like and we eat out more than we should. My theory is that saving a little here and there is what allows the splurges!

dvcgirl
06-16-2006, 10:34 AM
Well, we sure fit into this category. We're certainly not misers and we have a wonderful quality of life. However, we save a tremendous amount of money by sticking to "middle of the road" on the *big* purchases we make....like houses, cars and vacations. We bought far less house than we could afford, and we paid cash. We drive Toyotas and keep them forever when most in our income bracket drive luxury. We buy them "gently used" and we pay cash. And we're just fine with staying in nice clean, safe hotels in the areas where we travel.

When we want to go "deluxe" we'd only do so with a great deal. Right now, we're living in Orlando, but we do prefer staying on-site at Disney when we vacation there. So we'll rent DVC points and pay less than 1/2 of the rack rate. Or we'll stay at the Swan/Dolphin where we have a friend who can get us an outstanding rate. We also prefer traveling at "off-peak" times since we like to avoid crowds and have no children (so no school schedules to worry about). This all works in our favor as there are tremendous deals to be found if you're up for Europe in December....that sort of thing. But we simply won't pay full price for it...even the AP rate at the deluxes is out of control.....and we most definitely can afford it. But why pay excessive amounts for something if I don't have to?

salmoneous
06-16-2006, 10:47 AM
Let's put in this way. DW and I have been very fortunate. We have well paying jobs we enjoy, no kids, and have never suffered an unexpected financial crisis. We managed to have enough extra cash to pay off our mortgage after a few years.

And where were we two nights ago? In the clearance section of Target. Looking at $25 worth of toys I want to buy my nephews. Only 30% off? Nah, we'll wait and see if it goes down to 50% off.

Yeah, we're cheap.

shades
06-16-2006, 10:57 AM
OP: Great topic! Everytime I click on - and wait for a .01 cent "paid click" to load to my account, I wonder to myself why on earth am I clicking for pennies?? Because I like "FREE" stuff and it is addictive - just like all of the freebies I've signed up for. I love getting free samples in my mail box! The days I receive Disney Dollars from *************** are really exciting!

I save on things that are less important to us and in-turn, have more money to spend on things that are.

lindakmonty
06-16-2006, 02:34 PM
We are like a lot of you that have posted. It isn't that we can't afford to do certain things, we just choose not to. Maybe that is why he's 44 and retiring next month. It's all about choices!! We don't eat out a lot, I no longer have to have a new outfit once a month, my son doesn't have to have all Ralph Lauren and Tommy clothes in his closet.... guess my mom taught me to save for a rainy day. One of my co-workers wives had a brain anurizm (sp?) back in March and he's been off work since then to be with her... I don't think most people could go months w/o a paycheck. It really makes you think, it could happen to anyone.

DawnM
06-16-2006, 02:54 PM
ME! ME! ME!

I have gone to Disney 3 times this last year (1 week each time) and have spent LESS than many of my friends who went for only 1 week! And that includes gas/transportation!

I do that in all areas of life that I can....get good quality at the best bargain I can get.

We have a good income, but we want to be able to save each month, put $$ into our 401Ks, Education fund, and have NO debt other than our house. We can only do this by being somewhat frugal.

Dawn

PS: We are paying CASH for our adoption from China this year! YEAH!

barbeml
06-16-2006, 03:08 PM
PS: We are paying CASH for our adoption from China this year! YEAH!

Wow! And congratulations!

HenDuck
06-16-2006, 04:18 PM
I agree with you, Tricia. We're a bit older (41 and 42) and have definitely grown to look more at value than at price. When we were in our 20's and early 30's, it was all about "how cheap can we do this?" Now, it is more about "how can we get good quality at the best price?" So we are still price conscious, but we're generally looking at a better quality of item (or experience) than we used to.

We've also learned to value our time more. Running around to various thrift shops and discount markets isn't something we do nearly as much anymore because the amount we save isn't worth the time we lose in the process. I'd rather pay more for something at our local supermarket than make a special trip to Aldi's to save a quarter.

Yeah! What disneysteve said! :thumbsup2

We will pay for certain things while on vacation just to make the vacation run smoothly. When we travel to DL, we usually get to LAX right around rush hour. I'm not making DH drive in that mess, so we spend the $$ to have a car service pick us up. It is nice to have the funds to pay for things that make your life easier. (But again, we just have our usual van driver come and pick us up, no need for a limo...)

A perfect example of my "smart shopping", I did some Christmas shopping on the disneyshopping.com website this morning. They were offering $25 off an order of $100 or more. Well, you can bet I jumped on it when I saw that they had things that I wanted for my Christmas list (all marked down, of course :teeth: ). BUT, I made sure I only spent a few dollars over the $100 requirement because then my discount was as close to $25% off as possible!

I still like to work those numbers to get a good deal! :cool1:

AND Congratulations to DawnM on your new bundle of joy! :woohoo:

Have a great day everyone! princess:

westjones
06-16-2006, 04:23 PM
I 'pinch pennies' (or shop smart) so that I can continue to stay home and take care of things here. We could easily increase our income if I were to go back to work, but I would rather shop carefully and continue to enjoy our lifestyle.

When they kids are grown, I will probably go back to work because it will be boring staying at home when they no longer need me, but for now pinching pennies can be entertaining, motivating, and gives us the means to have the lifestyle we enjoy.

DJ

mommiepoppins
06-16-2006, 04:26 PM
DH and I are blessed not to have to scrimp to survive. I'm very, very grateful for that. Still, I'm very dilligent about our finances, and always looking for a bargain.

It's not so much that I pinch pennies all around (I'm not looking to turn into Howard Hughes) I just economize on things that are less important to me in order to get things more important to me.

For example: In terms of jewelry, I own my wedding set and one necklace. But I'm taking a last minute trip to Vegas soon. My MIL has so much bling she could pass for a rapper, but would never consider taking a vacation that didn't consist of driving to their local campground.

Everyone picks their own priorities.
:rotfl2: :rotfl2: :rotfl2: she could be a rapper

azgal81
06-16-2006, 05:44 PM
I do pinch pennies but I also don't need to. I save most of my income and love being frugal!

disneymom3
06-16-2006, 09:04 PM
Well, I am pretty sure I learned from the best. My mom was waaaayyyy beyond frugal. Waaaayyyy beyond. The woman used to cut up napkins so they would last longer and they were napkins she had picked up at Wendy's or McDs. There were definite frustrations dealing with this while growing up, but I definitely learned the difference between wants and needs! As I grew older, I saw the opportunities she had because of being frugal. Things like taking 25 of us on a cruise and picking up most of the tab. She passed away in Feb and left each of us 8 kids quite a tidy sum. Then a month or so ago, we were sort of invited out to dinner with DHs sister after another family event. I said to DH, "It is not in the budget to go out to eat. We already went out to dinner this week." He just chuckled at me and said, "So says the woman with several thousand dollars in the bank. It's not in the budget." and shook his head. Guess mom wore off on me!

nbodyhome
06-16-2006, 10:25 PM
We make a good living - but I am very careful about money, and would be even if we made a lot more. You hear the phrase "the rich get richer", and a lot of people with money do live frugally - adding to their own wealth, even when they don't need to. We are going to Europe in September - and as much as I'd have loved to have had an Eiffel Tower view room, I opted for us to stay in a different area of Paris for 68 Euros per night (at a family run, but very well regarded hotel). Same with London - we are going to be a little out of the main area, but only $100 US per night at a bed and breakfast (with full breakfast). I just don't feel right splurging a lot of money on a hotel anymore (maybe just very occasionally for a night here and there).

I don't skimp on healthy food - nor on buying boxes with smaller sized servings (like chips in a 50 count box, or pistachios) if my husband wants to snack. In the long run, making those changes are good for my health especially (since I eat the healthy food!) and should save money on medical bills.

Most of my clothes are from Target or Sams or BJ's, but at 75% or better off in most cases (I don't like to spend more than $5 - $10 per piece, except for my sun protective clothing I buy online). I don't feel cheap, though, when a friend mentions going to Goodwill and getting clothing for .50!

Anyway - my husband isn't a saver, and I'm not as adept as earning money as he is. So it works out. :) He makes the money, I keep the checkbook - we each get "mad money" to spend as we want, and I keep our bills down as much as possible.

nbodyhome
06-16-2006, 10:28 PM
My Uncle Bill had 11 kids, he was very frugal too. He'd come home with a pile of thrift store or garage sale clothes, and whichever kid could fit into them got them. :)

He was very, very thrifty - and raised 11 kids on one salary, and left my aunt a house that sound for 900K or so (to one of her very much grown up kids) a few years back, and plenty of money in the bank. He passed on in the early 1990's, but I wish I'd spent more time with him and learned from him earlier on.

disneysteve
06-17-2006, 08:15 AM
I am very careful about money, and would be even if we made a lot more. You hear the phrase "the rich get richer", and a lot of people with money do live frugally - adding to their own wealth, even when they don't need to.
I couldn't agree with this more. I know many people who are always whining about not having enough money, not being able to afford something, rushing to the bank to cash their paycheck on Friday, etc. These tend to be the same people who I see being incredibly wasteful with their spending - going out to lunch every day, going to concerts and movies regularly, taking trips to the casino frequently, getting their hair cut at some upscale salon, etc.

They sometimes seem jealous or envious of those who are more financially secure, but don't seem to understand that it is their own spending habits that are keeping them from being more secure.

sweet maxine
06-17-2006, 08:39 AM
********

westjones
06-17-2006, 09:03 AM
Anyone read "The Millionaire Next Door"? It talks about how many wealthy people live a frugal lifestyle (which is probably how they got to that point--wish I had understood that in my 20s, we would be much further ahead in our retirement planning right now had I understood how much those early years can impact your future finances).

DJ

dpayne1969
06-17-2006, 09:35 AM
We are not rich by any means but yes we make a good living.It amazes me to see friends who "think we are rich".They see my 24 foot pool in my backyard & assume wow they are rich.Little do they know we got it used from my relative for $500 pump,filter,& deck included!Me & hubby drive older 1992 vehicles,we do have a 2,000 Sq ft double wide which at this time is my biggest bill every month.We should online sales,coupons,& the mall.Folks dont realize when my kids come to school dressed in Abercrombie & Aeropostle that we got the items for $10 or less thanks to this very board!So they just see the items we have & wear but dont ask where they were bought or for how much they just assume we paid full price.They dont realize my 14 year old son perms my hair & puts my hair color in that i bought from walmart.Whereas my friend goes & pays 40-60 to get her hair colored!Yes i let my kids do my hair but they ask to it.My mom is actually paying my son to perm her hair,cause he does such a good job.I cant see paying someone 80.00 for a perm when they cost 6.00 at Walmart.For me its the thrill of how much can i save this week,or how much can i get that for.LOL.This board has taught me lots & i love it.So thanks to everyone for sharing these sales, deals, coupons. :thumbsup2

nbodyhome
06-17-2006, 10:04 AM
I couldn't agree with this more. I know many people who are always whining about not having enough money, not being able to afford something, rushing to the bank to cash their paycheck on Friday, etc. These tend to be the same people who I see being incredibly wasteful with their spending - going out to lunch every day, going to concerts and movies regularly, taking trips to the casino frequently, getting their hair cut at some upscale salon, etc.
.


My husband used to eat out all the time - breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks from vending, etc. Just his lunch bill could be $10.00 in itself a lot of the time (not each day, but a few days a week). Now he prefers that I make a lunch, he doesn't like spending his money on eating out as much either. :)

I wish he'd saved something from the previous years, but once we have a house next year, I'll be pushing money into retirement very quickly. I don't get my nails done, I go to the Hair Cuttery just a few times a year, and any color comes from a box. I just don't like spending money friviously - I like doing things that matter (like going away and making memories) than buying junk. We live in an apt. right now, which I like - because I can't really buying anything, there is no room. :) Living in apartments really trained me not to overspend at all, and it will be nice having lots of room in a house without clutter.

dvcgirl
06-17-2006, 10:21 AM
The more I read this thread, the more I think that we really all *need* to be pinching pennies. I don't care how much you earn, unless you're in the upper eschelons of wealth, well, most of us need to save and then invest to meet our goals. Maybe we all don't need to pinch those pennies as much as we do, but few of us have the luxury of just spending without thinking. And yet, we know people who make 20% of our income and think less about what they spend their money on then we do.

sk!mom
06-17-2006, 12:48 PM
I haven't read all of the thread but I just wanted to say that I can't imagine ever not pinching pennies.

DH loves the saying, "take care of the pennies and the dollars will take care of themselves." Of course the reality is if you are watching your pennies you usually have a death grip on the dollars.

That being said, I love that fact that it has been many years since I had to go to the grocery store with calculator in hand but I still shop for the best deals. I seem to be physically unable to pay full price for anything. By watching our pennies we are able to afford the things that we enjoy and have the peace of being debt free.

kinntj
06-17-2006, 01:09 PM
ME! ME! ME!

We have a good income, but we want to be able to save each month, put $$ into our 401Ks, Education fund, and have NO debt other than our house. We can only do this by being somewhat frugal.

Dawn

PS: We are paying CASH for our adoption from China this year! YEAH!



Congratulations! We've done that twice without debt! That tax credit is nice to get back at the end too. We put $20,000 into their college fund.

sk!mom
06-17-2006, 01:18 PM
And as far as staying or not staying deluxe at WDW, to each his/her own -- For us, the Poly. has been a magnificent place to stay and completes the vacation. Staying off-site or value sounds like a real cost savings, but this is one area that we won't pinch on (but can't imagine ever paying rack rate).

To me, the whole point is "pinching pennies" in some areas so that you can afford whatever is important to you. Splurges tend to be different for each of us. Some choose deluxe vacations others deluxe homes. We tend toward more modest but frequent splurges. To each his own.

kinntj
06-17-2006, 01:43 PM
I'm new to the "penny pinchers" club. Every time I shop I think of the people on here that motivate me to save my money and not buy junk. This morning at the grocery store I didn't buy any magazines off the rack and I usually buy at least one. I really enjoy my Money magazine subscription, so there's no need to any more than that.

My Dh does make good money, so we can live relatively comfortable. We live in a nice house, but it's taking awhile to get it decorated to our liking. I pick up things on sale here and there that would look nice. We're getting to the point where we can pay cash for our cars now, so that will be an added bonus when the time comes (1 lease to get rid of--2 more years on it). Dh's car will be paid off in 2 more years, so we're hoping not to have any car payments at that time.

All I have to say is it feels really good to have money in the bank. I just started another change "jar"; which is my DH's used Folgers plastic coffee container. It's a nice size and durable enough to fill up for our next vacation.

You guys are inspirational!

crisi
06-17-2006, 03:57 PM
I think one of the frustrating things for newbies or those that do NEED to pinch pennies around here is that there are so many of us who do have disposable income, in some cases, I suspect fairly significant disposible income. We are frugal people though. But it IS easier to fit in a vacation or two a year being frugal and making good money than it is when you make something more along the U.S. median income - or if you make good money and aren't frugal.

And, I know that when I didn't have a big disposable income I thought about all the things I would do if I did - and how lame the excuses were for NOT spending it if you wanted it. And now....yeah, I could afford the $200 jacket I lust after at Nordstrom, but I haven't shelled out for it and probably won't.

DawnM
06-17-2006, 04:06 PM
Thanks! How wonderful for you to have two! We have two bio sons and are adopting another son.

We are figuring the entire cost will be just over $20,000 and we will be getting about $18,000 back with taxes (federal and state) and my DH's reimbursement program.

We probably won't do it again, but we need to finish our 950 sq. ft. basement (currently unfinished) and we are waiting for our reimbursement to do that. That will add about 95,000 dollars value to our home in this area!

We do a LOT of sweat equity in houses. We buy houses that need fixing, have unfinished sq. ft., or whatever and fix them up and sell them. We may very well have enough after this one to actually buy a fairly nice home with CASH!

That is our ultimate goal.....to owe nothing on anything!

I have even looked into possibly getting a job at a University (I have a counseling MA that includes college admissions counseling) so that that kids could get free tuition.

Dawn


Congratulations! We've done that twice without debt! That tax credit is nice to get back at the end too. We put $20,000 into their college fund.

jeankeri
06-17-2006, 10:16 PM
My son always asks me if we're broke because I only buy items in the supermarket when they are on sale. I'll show him the receipt after (it shows how much you save when you shop by sale price, coupons, etc) and say "Since we saved $46.00 buying the things we use on sale, we have the money to go see the movie you want on Saturday. " It's true we could afford to do it anyway, but why be careless with your money when there are ways to economize?

arminnie
06-17-2006, 10:39 PM
I like just getting the most value for my money.
I think that pretty well sums it up for me. Plus I have absolutely no interest in impressing others.

I went to a reunion today with the women from my Stanford Business School class - most of whom live in multi-million dollar homes in Northern California. I wore a tshirt and a pair of pants from Wal*Mart. I could not tell you what one person had on - and I doubt if anyone noticed what I was wearing either. Lots of people told me how great I looked, but I think that's what all 60 year old women say to each other.:thumbsup2

It used to be a joke at work about what bargain I'd gotten on what I was wearing. I never paid full retail.

I remember going shopping with a friend who spent $900 on clothes that were NOT on sale. She made at least 50% more than I did (although I was very well paid) and inherited from two divorced parents. But she also spent a fortune on "services" everything from a cleaning person to someone to pay her bills for her and someone to run errands like pick up dry cleaning.

I have been retired for 5 years. She would love to retire but told me that her financial advisor has told her she can't afford to. I don't know that I really have that much more money than she does but my "burn" rate is much lower.

sara74
06-17-2006, 11:30 PM
Agree Agree Agree! When DH and I moved in together in 1996 we were SO broke. We had less than $500 combined, he was working at a bagel shop (with a BS in developmental biology) and I was in dental school and had to borrow $ to help cover our expenses. Now, 10 years later we are living on 10 times what we had then and sometimes it seems like not much has changed!

Things I still do...never buy chicken breasts over 1.88/pound.

switch cars with DH during the week to gas his up in Massachusetts (where gas is $.20 cheaper/gallon)

buy all of our clothes on sale. The kids' stuff I buy on clearance at the end of a season for the next year. DD has all these great clothes from Gymboree that I got for $5 and paid no shipping either! I got our exersaucer for DS (had borrowed one for DD) at a consignment shop and bought clothes while I was there.

Drive a car into the ground. We have a 2004 Sienna but we also have a 1997 Camry with 135,000 miles on it - still runs great!


Things I don't do anymore...buy dented/torn boxes and cans. They always freaked me out a little and now that we don't HAVE to, I avoid it!

Buy cheap furniture...we learned our lesson with a cheap couch on clearance that didn't hold up. (however all the accessories on shelves, pillows etc were on clearance at Kohls+15% off)

live in a sketchy neighborhood in a 3 family house with a crazy landlord peeing on our garden!


Things I do with the increase in income that we have had...

fund our IRAs
fund kids college accounts
renovate our house
cut work hours to part time
have another baby!


Yep,we'll always be cheap. I don't care if the clothes DK's wear are this year's or last year's, there will be plenty of time for them to care about that later!

sara74
06-17-2006, 11:53 PM
Forgot to add that we have just put aside an emergency account that covers 6 months of our expenses, just in case. (and we both carry personal disability policies, but you just never know)

Cheap for us, means being able to sleep better at night. Of course I do still daydream about the McMansion, but not now. Maybe someday...with a little :wizard:

HenDuck
06-18-2006, 12:24 AM
remember my girlfriend that drives the Lexus? She didn't have the money to put a deposit on her kids' kindergarten tuition, but she is going to take a luxury cruise in October (after already having taken no less than 4 trips this year - one to London!) :confused3 I guess the school doesn't take plastic. :sad2:

She is a good reminder to me that our feelings of entitlement can get way out of control.

Yes, we both work hard and deserve to treat ourselves once in a while. However, that "treat" for me can be a latte or a pedicure. For her, it's a trip to Neimen Marcus for a Kate Spade purse or a Swaroski (sp?) crystal encrusted cell phone - I kid you not! All on plastic, of course.

Anyway, I wasn't meaning to rag on my friend. I do love her dearly. But she just can't see why I save and pinch those pennies, and I can't see why she spends recklessly.

We just agree to disagree. ;)

Thanks to everyone for chiming in and offering support!

princess:

Goobergal99
06-18-2006, 12:48 AM
We are blessed with having a fantastic income and we certainly don't need to pinch pennies. I live by the motto "live for today because tomorrow may never come" So yea, I am spend thrifty, don't clip coupons, shop at an expensive food store (not because I think it is better quality but because it's open 24 hours and sometimes the only time I can go is after 11:00 pm.)

If I feel we are spending a little too much, DH or I pick up some overtime. It may seem irrational to some ppl but I like to spend money, I know I can get a lil carried away but I also know that all my bills are paid, my child goes to a good school, we always have food and we barely have debts. I am also very young, so having all of these things in my early twenties is even more of a blessing.

When we go to to Disney, we usually stay vaule or moderate, not because we couldn't swing the Poly (which I love) but we would rather have more spending money to do the lil extras. But we also get there almost every year.

Then again, I do save change for my DD to use when we get to Disney, and I certainly look for a bargain, but if I see something I want and it isn't necessarily on sale, I don't deny myself the item. :goodvibes

Kellyscrapbooks
06-18-2006, 08:01 AM
And a small side thread: today I found hair color on clearance at Target for $2.75/box. Well, I loaded up on 3 boxes and had 2-$2 coupons and 1-$1.50 coupon. So 3 boxes cost me $2.75. I was ecstatic. But the checker made a comment at the beginning of my transaction that I was "cheating", 'cause I was getting it on clearance and had coupons. Then, when she saw the total ('cause I only bought the haircolor and one 48 cent item), she said it was almost a sin. Well, she may have been kidding me, but I told her I always use a coupon for a clearance item if I have it. And I'm thinking to myself "I have more money in the bank because of it". It really sort of made me mad to be judged by a checkout lady for trying to save some money.

This might be OT, but I would call the store and complain about the way she made you feel. Even if she was joking, it was rude and uncalled for. You weren't "cheating" and you certainly weren't "sinning" and for her to imply either was highly inappropriate and just think if she had said it to someone who was a new coupon clipper, or a young kid who is just trying to learn the ropes of saving money, they may never have tried to save money for themselves again. I would definatly be making a phone call.. .this made me angry FOR you.

staceyfe
06-18-2006, 08:54 AM
This might be OT, but I would call the store and complain about the way she made you feel. Even if she was joking, it was rude and uncalled for. You weren't "cheating" and you certainly weren't "sinning" and for her to imply either was highly inappropriate and just think if she had said it to someone who was a new coupon clipper, or a young kid who is just trying to learn the ropes of saving money, they may never have tried to save money for themselves again. I would definatly be making a phone call.. .this made me angry FOR you.


Thanks for the support. The store was Target. Maybe I'll shoot them an email...

luvsmickeymouse
06-18-2006, 12:15 PM
My point here to respond to this is I have to be careful. But , Everyone that I know makes alot more than I do, and we seem to have so much more. They waste and waste and waste and my kids and I are careful. I live on alot less than everyone that I know, and I have better credit and we go to Disney every year. I think that by being careful and wise no matter how much money you have is the right thing to do. We always have very nice meals and yes we have leftovers. My bills are paid every month. If I made more money, I would still be careful.

grlpwrd
06-18-2006, 01:46 PM
My dh and I have a comfortable life and yet we still pinch pennies. He has been laid off a lot because that is the nature of his field (contract engineering) so it's wiser that we live this way anyway. We hardly eat out, our kids go to great public schools, I drive a 1991 Landcruiser, and many, many other frugal things.

About the Target incident, please do say something. I am a member of couponing boards and to have a "coupon cop" act like that is inappropriate. Let the people at Target know so it doesn't happen to anyone else, too.

Disneyrsh
06-18-2006, 02:07 PM
I'm seeing a common thread in the posts; why shed the behaviors that helped to make one wealthy once one becomes wealthy?

I don't think there are any Hiltons on the Disboards-most of the posts I read were from people who earned their way to wealth rather than were born into it-any trust fund babies here?

I'm curious if they approach money differently than the bourgeousie.

And by the way, what happens when a Carpe Diem grasshopper kinda girl meets and marries a Save For Tomorrow ant kinda guy? Well, we're not broke, despite my best efforts, and we're not rich, despite his! :teeth:

Caradana
06-18-2006, 02:57 PM
I was @ Ross in San Francisco on Friday, and I picked up a gorgeous Ralph Lauren slim-fit polo in kelly green for $24. LOVE THAT.

HenDuck
06-18-2006, 04:06 PM
Caradana,

I love Ross too!

Sometimes I look at my outfit, and it is 90% from Ross (I can't find shoes there.)

I usually find Liz Claiborne, Dockers, Ralph Lauren, and as we speak, I and wearing a cool Jones Sport t-shirt!

Oh, and except for my recent Mickey suitcase purchase from disneyshopping.com, I only buy my luggage from Ross, and I never pay more than $40 for a name-brand rolling 26" suitcase. :)

Nothing wrong with that!

I do love a great deal!

Happy Father's day everyone! :wave2:

princess:

tinker&belle
06-18-2006, 08:15 PM
Can someone please tell me about Ross? We don't have one here...is it a big city thing?

dwheatl
06-18-2006, 09:04 PM
Ross is a clothing and furnishings dept. store, like Marshall's and T. J. Maxx. I just bought a beautiful purse there for $20. It was funny, because I had gone out shopping with my sister, who is a shopaholic, and we went into a Brighton store, which I had never seen before. I saw they were having a handbag sale, and I saw one I thought was cute. On sale, it was $150. That's not my kind of sale. The only purse I would pay $150 for would be one with $130 inside. :rotfl:
I was raised by frugal parents, as was my husband. We both have horror stories (his mom served rice and canned tomatoes for dinner and told them it was rice pilaf; my mom brought home the sanitary napkin disposal bags from the cheapie motels around DL and made me take my off-brand oreo-like cookies to school in them ) but we both got to have decent vacations as kids because of our parents' habits.
We paid off our house last year, a 30 year mortgage paid in 14 years because of our good habits. We're staying at the Dolphin this year as we have before. I'd like to stay at the Yacht Club or GF sometime, but we still have 2 kids to put through college. Someone I am close to has stayed at the GF a couple of times, but hides from creditors because he has spent so far beyond his means. Using coupons is no sin, but the way Americans are encouraged to dig themselves into inescapable debt is.
Remember, we're not cheap, we're thr-r-r-r-ifty (use your best Scrooge McDuck accent :thumbsup2 ).

arminnie
06-19-2006, 01:35 AM
I was @ Ross in San Francisco on Friday, and I picked up a gorgeous Ralph Lauren slim-fit polo in kelly green for $24. LOVE THAT.

I'm in the SF Bay area this week and can't wait to go to Ross. I've spent the past two days with Stanford friends (a mini GSB reunion), but will be shopping tomorrow after brunch with two classmates.

pirateofthecarolinas
06-19-2006, 07:27 AM
I am frugal to a point. I would rather spend my money on better quality items than junk. I never pay retail and always look for a bargain.

I knew my spending habits were rubbing off on my children when my DS3 said I couldn't buy something because it was too 'spensive. :goodvibes

Lori

nbodyhome
06-19-2006, 08:04 AM
Ross is a clothing and furnishings dept. store, like Marshall's and T. J. Maxx. I just bought a beautiful purse there for $20.).

It's funny, I won't even pay $20.00 for a purse. :)

I think everyones idea of frugal is different, though I am sure $20 isn't a bad price at all! Instead of saying I am frugal, I do like to say that I like to know I get the best value I can. We each find value in different things - whether it's getting a great rate on rooms through Europe, or staying at the Pop Century, or paying $5.00 for a nice shirt (while someone else might be paying .50 at the thrift store, that makes my $5.00 seem expensive!!!!) Or $20.00 for a purse - whatever is important to you.

I like to know I bought a good quality item at a good price, like my Champion workout pants, normally $30.00 for $7.50. That is the price of some other workout pants you can get full price, but these should last me for a few years at least and not wear down and get full of holes.

imsayin
06-19-2006, 08:08 AM
It's funny, I won't even pay $20.00 for a purse

I won't either. I saw a purse I liked at Target yesterday, it was $20. I just couldn't buy it. I hate to buy anything that is not on sale or clearance.

nbodyhome
06-19-2006, 08:08 AM
Oh - I also will make a point if anyone thinks I'm overspending (not that it is their business, but I don't want anyone thinking we are loaded, either!) to mention prices.

It was funny, we got married in 2004 - I wanted an inexpensive wedding, it did get a bit more than we planned (but still under $3000.00 including a sit-down meal of BBQ and such for 50 people, and a photographer who gave us all the negatives). We went to Sams Club for a cake and cupcakes, etc. - and my sister had asked my mother if I really needed roses for the wedding (she, who probably spent over $1000.00 on roses for HER wedding 10 years earlier). My mom said that, and I'm like "do you think $30 on flowers is too much"? We were getting them at Sams Club, and my mom then shut up. :) I even fretted if we should buy one more set of flowers - which we did, so it was 6 dozen for under $50.00.

kinntj
06-19-2006, 09:07 AM
It's funny, I won't even pay $20.00 for a purse. :)

I think everyones idea of frugal is different, though I am sure $20 isn't a bad price at all! Instead of saying I am frugal, I do like to say that I like to know I get the best value I can. We each find value in different things - whether it's getting a great rate on rooms through Europe, or staying at the Pop Century, or paying $5.00 for a nice shirt (while someone else might be paying .50 at the thrift store, that makes my $5.00 seem expensive!!!!) Or $20.00 for a purse - whatever is important to you.

I carry diapers and juice cups in my purse, so it's got to be a cheap but well put together purse. It's gotta be big too. I found a purse at Walmart (before I boycotted them) for $12.00 and has lasted a year so far and looks great. It's large enough to fit many toddler items into and fits over the shoulder or can be carried in my hand.
I don't believe in paying alot for a purse either. I get tired of one design and want to switch, so I don't feel guilty when I pay very little. I love Coach, but refuse to pay the price for one. It would have to be a garage sale item or a give away from a friend.

eliza61
06-19-2006, 09:26 AM
As another poster said, I also think every one's ideas of penny pinching are different. I'm a shoe-aholic. I will gladly pay $300 for a pair of manolo blaniks but I have a heart attach if I have to pay more than $10 bucks for a pair of jeans and I'm a professional coupon clipper. Go figure :confused3 . While I drive a 10 year old jalopy so I won't have a car note, I won't go to Disney unless I can stay Deluxe. While I'm not completely debt free, I save 10% of my salary in my 401K and another 10% for my kids college tuition. I guess I a middle of the road penny pincher

Hey wasn't there a picture of Donald trump shopping at Walmart a while back.

Mkaz
06-19-2006, 09:43 AM
My husband and I have come a long way since we'eve been together. We never had a church wedding, or a reception. We went to the JP after work one day and were married. It's been 12 years, and we still have no regrets. We rented a run down trailer for $200.00 a month. Our main staples were ramen noodles and chicken. We drove vehicles that cost $1,000.00, and we even had to get loans for them. We pinched every single penny we earned.

Those days have since past, and we have loosened up a little. However, we live below our means because we will never forget our days of ramen noodles and chicken.

crisi
06-19-2006, 09:44 AM
As another poster said, I also think every one's ideas of penny pinching are different. I'm a shoe-aholic. I will gladly pay $300 for a pair of manolo blaniks but I have a heart attach if I have to pay more than $10 bucks for a pair of jeans and I'm a professional coupon clipper. Go figure :confused3 . While I drive a 10 year old jalopy so I won't have a car note, I won't go to Disney unless I can stay Deluxe. While I'm not completely debt free, I save 10% of my salary in my 401K and another 10% for my kids college tuition. I guess I a middle of the road penny pincher

Hey wasn't there a picture of Donald trump shopping at Walmart a while back.

Yep....and frugal will depend on how much you start with. If you "don't have to pinch pennies" at $100,000 a year in income, you might be frugal differently with $250,000 in income. The Manolo's may be a luxury you can't afford if you have three kids on the same income, no matter how old the car you drive is. And with three kids in the Valley or Boston, your shoes may all be from WalMart on the same income. A lot of budget boarders live beneath their means, and, that means that they probalby pinch a few pennies somewhere.

I'm fond of the Dollar Store and the Walgreen's Super Saver Catalog. But our Disney trips usually involve a huge food budget - we aren't frugal when it comes to dining out. If you were to "type" me during my Walgreens shopping trips (just the stuff in the catalog, paid for with last month's gift card), you probably wouldn't type me as someone who then spends $200 on a single meal at WDW.

We don't have a Ross' - but we do have a Nordstrom Rack - three peice Tommy Bahama outfit for my cruise - silk skirt, tee and sweater - that started at $340 for $40. Now if I were really frugal, I'd just wear what I already own, I have clothes.

disneysteve
06-19-2006, 11:57 AM
Now if I were really frugal, I'd just wear what I already own, I have clothes.
It's amazing how many people just don't understand this. For the vast majority of us, buying new clothes is a luxury, even though we don't think of it that way.

I very rarely buy new clothing items. When I do, it is generally to replace something that has worn out. If my blue dress pants get a hole in the knee, I go out and find new blue dress pants. When my toes tear through my socks, I buy some new socks. I stick with clothing that is timeless, rather than buying what is in fashion this year and looks out of place next year. I doubt if I spend more than $300/year on clothing. I know plenty of people who spend that much or more every month. I've got shirts and pants in my closet that I've had for 10 years or more. They still look and fit fine. I see no reason to replace them.

kfeuer
06-19-2006, 01:11 PM
I've got shirts and pants in my closet that I've had for 10 years or more. They still look and fit fine. I see no reason to replace them.

Frankly, it's alot easier for men to do this then women. Men's fashions don't change nearly as much as women's do. Also, most women's clothing isn't made to last 10 years just from a quality standpoint.

sk!mom
06-19-2006, 01:15 PM
my mom brought home the sanitary napkin disposal bags from the cheapie motels around DL and made me take my off-brand oreo-like cookies to school in them ) but we both got to have decent vacations as kids because of our parents' habits.

OMG, that is the funniest yet most disturbing example of extreme frugality that I have ever heard :rotfl2: I'm going to save this story for the next time that my DD complains about drinking water at a restaurant.

My DH and I have some pretty good childhood stories of thriftyness but you have topped them all. Kudos to your mom!

sk!mom
06-19-2006, 01:36 PM
Originally Posted by disneysteve
I've got shirts and pants in my closet that I've had for 10 years or more. They still look and fit fine. I see no reason to replace them.


Frankly, it's alot easier for men to do this then women. Men's fashions don't change nearly as much as women's do. Also, most women's clothing isn't made to last 10 years just from a quality standpoint.

I agree with disneysteve. DH and I buy only classic pieces- on sale of course. We can then wear them until they are absolutely worn out.

Women's styles do change but I don't buy the latest styles. No gaucho pants for me because I will look ridiculous in 5 years when I'm still wearing them. :thumbsup2 I also only shop when I actually need something so I don't have tons of clothing.

I do find that men's clothing seems to last longer. We both buy quality when it is on clearance but his last longer.

Disneyrsh
06-19-2006, 01:56 PM
. No gaucho pants for me because I will look ridiculous in 5 years when I'm still wearing them. .

You don't have to wait 5 years for them to look ridiculous.

barbeml
06-19-2006, 02:01 PM
You don't have to wait 5 years for them to look ridiculous.

:lmao:

I get most of my clothes from Land's End and LL Bean. They are classic styles that wear like iron and last forever!

HenDuck
06-19-2006, 02:25 PM
Yes, I do buy quality items where it counts. I bought a Toyota because I know it will be at least ten years before I need to replace it. I could have bought something cheaper, and I do have a BIL in the car business, but I wanted a quality car since I travel a lot everyday to and from work.

We usually buy good quality computers, electronics, appliances and home furnishings. These tend to be higher end purchases but I don't mind spending the extra money because I expect these things to last for years and to give me good service for that time. And we do pay cash for all of the above.

Most of my suits for work are better quality items. I want to look good when I'm in court and I stay away from trendy looks so that I can use my suits for 5+ years. Ann Taylor items last for years! (I of course, only buy them off the sale rack or at the Loft).

But my everyday work clothes and "play clothes", I will buy from Ross, WalMart, even Sam's club or Costco or other outlet stores. The reason is that I have a 5 year old who likes to spill his snacks popcorn:: not only on himself but on mom as well. I don't like to worry about my everyday clothes getting stained, if it will mean that I won't be able to laugh it off with DS.

While I don't routinely shop at thrift stores, I do go there at Halloween time when looking for costume items. If I happen to find something there that I like, I don't hesitate to pick it up. To this day, my favorite black Calvin Klein t-shirt came from a thrift store. I have had it for over 5 years and I love it! (And I think I paid $4.99 for it.) :teeth:

And I will still eat ramen (or leftovers) for lunch, which costs me anywhere from 25 to 99 cents per day! I usually only go out to lunch twice a week, and one of those days is a regular lunch I have with a girlfriend I wouldn't get to see otherwise.

It might sound crazy to others, but it is a balance that we each find for ourselves.

Have a great day everyone!

:wave2:

dvcgirl
06-19-2006, 02:28 PM
As another poster said, I also think every one's ideas of penny pinching are different. I'm a shoe-aholic. I will gladly pay $300 for a pair of manolo blaniks but I have a heart attach if I have to pay more than $10 bucks for a pair of jeans and I'm a professional coupon clipper. Go figure :confused3 . While I drive a 10 year old jalopy so I won't have a car note, I won't go to Disney unless I can stay Deluxe. While I'm not completely debt free, I save 10% of my salary in my 401K and another 10% for my kids college tuition. I guess I a middle of the road penny pincher

Hey wasn't there a picture of Donald trump shopping at Walmart a while back.

I agree with this...I mean, there are things that we'll spend money on that others would *never* spend money on. We will spend a decent amount on a nice bottle of wine with a meal. It doesn't bother me in the least to spend $80-$100 on a bottle to complement a really good meal. We eat in at least six days a week, work really hard, save a little over 40% of our gross income....and so we will splurge on a nice bottle every now and then. But high end clothes, the whole fashion thing in general..I see that as a *huge* budget-eater for many of my women friends. Between clothing, make-up, skin products, salon and spa treatments....they spend a small fortune.

Mind you, we would never have spent big $$$ on a bottle of wine ten years ago when we made about 1/3 of what we make now. We have always to had a very good sense of what we could afford and what we couldn't afford. This is where many people screw up. They want things, a certain lifestyle, and so they purchase that lifestyle. They'll start saving tomorrow....nobody else is saving anyway so what's the big deal right? I'm sure that there are *many* people on these boards who take vacations to Disney World that they really have business taking (from a financial standpoint). Years ago, it wouldn't have been possible. Now, with such easy credit....it's a snap. And it's frightening.

I guess my point is....all of us "penny pinchers", well I don't necessarily see us as "penny pinchers". We're just doing what we're supposed to be doing. We're not living above or right our means....we're living below them. It's just that there are so many people spending every single nickel that they make that we stand out as a little "odd" to some.

And when we do splurge, it really is for our own enjoyment. Neither of us could care less what anyone thinks of us with respect to the things we buy....and I think that's important. It's so easy to get caught up in the Joneses thing....

mickeyfan2
06-19-2006, 05:25 PM
I mean, there are things that we'll spend money on that others would *never* spend money on. We will spend a decent amount on a nice bottle of wine with a meal. It doesn't bother me in the least to spend $80-$100 on a bottle to complement a really good meal. We eat in at least six days a week, work really hard, save a little over 40% of our gross income....and so we will splurge on a nice bottle every now and then. But high end clothes, the whole fashion thing in general..I see that as a *huge* budget-eater for many of my women friends. Between clothing, make-up, skin products, salon and spa treatments....they spend a small fortune.
Everybody is free to spend their money how they please. You buy an expensive bottle of wine, drink it and it is gone. That is your choice and your right. Your women friends buy expensive clothes and they still have them the next morning. That is their choice and their right. I don't see the need to compare.

disneysteve
06-19-2006, 05:45 PM
You buy an expensive bottle of wine, drink it and it is gone. That is your choice and your right. Your women friends buy expensive clothes and they still have them the next morning. That is their choice and their right. I don't see the need to compare.
I don't think she was comparing. I think the point was that it is perfectly fine to splurge on luxuries from time to time if it is within your means to do so, but too many people pamper themselves on a regular basis when they really can't afford it.

mickeyfan2
06-19-2006, 05:54 PM
I don't think she was comparing. I think the point was that it is perfectly fine to splurge on luxuries from time to time if it is within your means to do so, but too many people pamper themselves on a regular basis when they really can't afford it.
So how does she know that they buy luxuries that they can't afford? Unless one sees their paycheck, bills, investments etc, how can one make a statement that they can't afford it? I would only care it they asked me for the money to buy the luxury or pay a bill after just buying a luxury.

dvcgirl
06-19-2006, 05:58 PM
Everybody is free to spend their money how they please. You buy an expensive bottle of wine, drink it and it is gone. That is your choice and your right. Your women friends buy expensive clothes and they still have them the next morning. That is their choice and their right. I don't see the need to compare.

Jeez.....I wasn't comparing...just making a comment. Yes, it everyone's right to spend their money on whatever it is they want. You are absolutely right. However, you need to be able to afford it, and I know *many* women who spend more on clothes, make-up, salon/spa treatments than they should. In fact, some of their husbands have no idea just how much they spend because they handle "the bills". Many women look at these things as absolute necessities.

mickeyfan2
06-19-2006, 06:05 PM
However, you need to be able to afford it, and I know *many* women who spend more on clothes, make-up, salon/spa treatments than they should. In fact, some of their husbands have no idea just how much they spend because they handle "the bills". Many women look at these things as absolute necessities.
First if they can or cannot afford it is none of my business, unless they want to borrow money from me.

How do you know how much they should spend on these things? How do you know that they are spending too much and their DH does not know?

Again we all have different opinions of necessities and it is none of my business either.

dvcgirl
06-19-2006, 06:21 PM
First if they can or cannot afford it is none of my business, unless they want to borrow money from me.

How do you know how much they should spend on these things? How do you know that they are spending too much and their DH does not know?

Again we all have different opinions of necessities and it is none of my business either.


How do I know....because they *tell* me. "Oh, if Bob ever knew how much these shoes cost..." That kind of thing. Over years with family and friends it becomes obvious what people's finances are like.

I have an uncle who is on his fourth re-fi in 3 years. Now he's refi-ing with rates going up. What does that tell you? Tells me he's pulling more cash out of his house. How do I know....he called me to ask me for my friend's number (my friend is a mortgage broker).

Another friend of mine from high school works at a Verizon Store. Her husband is an EMT...they have two kids. She shops at Banana Republic and Anne Taylor ("because she needs nice clothes for work). It's a fair statement to say that they don't make enough money to support her "need" for clothes from Anne Taylor (even the ones on sale).

So, people don't need to send out their financial statements to signal that finances are out of order. No, their financial well-being doesn't affect me at all. I only offer advice when asked. Even if people do ask I'm very cautious about what I say, because in almost every case, people will revert back to their old habits, and friendships can be lost.

But this is a conversation about penny pinchers. And in a previous post I said that those of us here who think we are penny pinchers are the "normal" ones. We're just doing what we're supposed to do....discerning the difference between wants and needs, and evaluating purchases before we make them. When we do make purchases we're clear on whether or not we can actually afford them. For many people I know that piece of the puzzle is missing.

disneysteve
06-19-2006, 07:14 PM
So how does she know that they buy luxuries that they can't afford?
I know exactly what my coworkers earn. I know exactly what the employees at my temple earn (because I'm on the board of directors and approve their contracts). I have a pretty good idea what some of my friends earn from conversations we've had over the years. And, of course, I know how much DW and I earn. You don't need a bank statement to know where people stand financially if they tell you willingly.

Does their spending affect me? No, not at all. However, when one of these people hears me talking about our next Disney trip and they say how they would really like to go but can't afford it or they start talking about how much credit card debt they have, it's hard not to take notice of their finely manicured nails, the fact that they have their hair done every few weeks at an expensive salon, the new car they are driving, the fact that they go out to lunch every day, etc.

You (general you) can spend your money however you like, but you can't spend it frivolously and then go around complaining that you're broke. You can't have your cake and eat it too.

Here's one example. A woman DW and I know recently recommended to DW that she start going to her salon (and I know this woman's income, though I don't exactly know her husband's but I have a pretty good idea). She was raving about the woman who does her hair. Well, we know for a fact this couple has a fair amount of credit card debt as she has told us herself. At various times, she has discussed their struggles to afford things. Well, she pays this salon $170 to do her hair including cut, color, style, etc. DW could barely keep her mouth closed and not blurt out what she was thinking. DW cuts her own hair because she can't stand paying Hair Cuttery $18 to do it. The woman said, "I know I really can't afford it but she does such a nice job." That pretty well sums it up.

HenDuck
06-19-2006, 07:53 PM
- that's what I got last year when my spendthrift friend and I sat down and really talked dollars and cents.

I always assumed she made way more money than me, since I work for the government and she has her own law practice.

But it turned out that most years, we made almost the same amount of money (because she has large overhead expenses).

Now, I have always had a mortgage, retirement funds, college fund for DS, and no credit card debt. She has always had designer everything, NO mortgage and a five-figure credit card debt that only seems to get bigger every year.

Then I realized how much trouble my dear friend was in. :guilty: Because if she was trying to support that kind of lifestyle on my income, she was crazy!

And this is the friend who continually tries to convince me to "live for today", etc. :confused3

Then I have another friend who works in the same place I work, in the same job. She has a small house, drives a second-hand car, shops at Ross and sales. But she paid cash for her last DL trip (last month) and says she could do it again now if she wanted to. She and her husband paid cash for an extension they built onto their house (around $30k).

When you look at my two friends from the outside, you'd think the spendthrift "had" more money. But I know the truth.

Looks can be deceiving. ;)

dvcgirl
06-19-2006, 08:11 PM
- that's what I got last year when my spendthrift friend and I sat down and really talked dollars and cents.

I always assumed she made way more money than me, since I work for the government and she has her own law practice.

But it turned out that most years, we made almost the same amount of money (because she has large overhead expenses).

Now, I have always had a mortgage, retirement funds, college fund for DS, and no credit card debt. She has always had designer everything, NO mortgage and a five-figure credit card debt that only seems to get bigger every year.

Then I realized how much trouble my dear friend was in. :guilty: Because if she was trying to support that kind of lifestyle on my income, she was crazy!

And this is the friend who continually tries to convince me to "live for today", etc. :confused3

Then I have another friend who works in the same place I work, in the same job. She has a small house, drives a second-hand car, shops at Ross and sales. But she paid cash for her last DL trip (last month) and says she could do it again now if she wanted to. She and her husband paid cash for an extension they built onto their house (around $30k).

When you look at my two friends from the outside, you'd think the spendthrift "had" more money. But I know the truth.

Looks can be deceiving. ;)

Oh, I agree....looks can be deceiving. Your example of a friend who is a lawyer is a classic one. Lawyer salaries run the gamut. My Mom was a real estate secretary for years for attorneys. Some made great money, and some were salaried making what say a tenured teacher makes...nice living, but not big bucks. My BIL is an attorney and started out making peanuts. He didn't start pulling in a nice salary for several years.

Sometimes though, it's not all that tough to figure out....in the example of family. Many of us have a pretty good idea how our family members are doing. And some professions like nursing, well, it's not too tough to figure out a ballpark salary for someone like that.

I think many people would be shocked to learn what some small business owners earn. For example, I know a few busy landscapers down here who earn six figure salaries.

DVC Sadie
06-19-2006, 08:21 PM
Oh, I agree....looks can be deceiving. Your example of a friend who is a lawyer is a classic one. Lawyer salaries run the gamut. My Mom was a real estate secretary for years for attorneys. Some made great money, and some were salaried making what say a tenured teacher makes...nice living, but not big bucks. My BIL is an attorney and started out making peanuts. He didn't start pulling in a nice salary for several years.

Sometimes though, it's not all that tough to figure out....in the example of family. Many of us have a pretty good idea how our family members are doing. And some professions like nursing, well, it's not too tough to figure out a ballpark salary for someone like that.

I think many people would be shocked to learn what some small business owners earn. For example, I know a few busy landscapers down here who earn six figure salaries.


ITA! I just saw an article that said the median income for small business owners was 141,000.00 across the country. We too know of a lot of small business owners in both Maryland and here in Mississippi who make a lot more then that.

mickeyfan2
06-19-2006, 08:45 PM
I know exactly what my coworkers earn.
WOW. Where I have worked you are forbidden to tell coworkers how much you make. It is possible that the manager makes less than the worker, based on many factors. I would take to work somewhere where everybody knows that everybody makes.

When a friend or relative starts to tell me personal financial information, I just politely tell them I don't want to know. That puts it to rest. If I am asked a personal financial question I just tell them politely that I will not answer.

We prefer to have fun time with our friends and family. We play cards for one thing. No need to brag to others about our accomplishments or look for sympathy in a setback. Do you know how many times people have said, "When did you get that new car?" when they finally see it. Many times we have had it for more than a year. We never tell anybody we are looking or purchased unless we want to donate our old car to them.

It seems to me that I run with a different type of person. We enjoy our visits and see no reason to get into finances.

disneysteve
06-19-2006, 09:43 PM
WOW. Where I have worked you are forbidden to tell coworkers how much you make.
My work situation is a little different than most. I'm a physician in a 2-doctor practice. We have 3 employees. Technically, I'm also an employee of the practice, but I'm fully privy to the practice's financial data, so I know what the employees earn. I don't know if they know each others salaries, though, and I don't think they know mine.