Why do we as a society think that if someone is being frugal they must be poor? Why do so many people think that they have to buy name brand everything to keep up appearances?
There seems to be such a stigma attached to people who chose to live frugally. ” Oh they buy their clothes at the second-hand store” Oh they only buy the store brand” “Oh they never go out to eat and if they do they go to the less expensive places” Oh they make all their own stuff”, Look at that older car they drive, and things like that.
Several years ago I was talking to someone and we were talking about this and he was telling me about a couple he knows. She had been divorced and on a very limited income with small children so she pinched every penny she could and lived as frugally as she could. When they got married he made really good money and instead of adapting a spendy lifestyle she continued her frugal ways. They now own their home, they pay cash for their cars, and pay cash for their vacations, and can afford to take several a year, They also have a good amount in the bank.
I know people who make good money, have big beautiful homes, drive brand new vehicles, eat out all the time, buy mostly brand name clothes. But have no savings, no emergency fund and one small hiccup like an unexpected Dr. bill is devastating to the finances. They live paycheck to paycheck all so they can keep up appearances. ( you know keeping up with the Jones).I also know people who don’t make a lot but are the same way they spend way more than they can afford. It makes for a very stressful life.
I read something a while back about the massive amount of credit card debt that a lot of people have and a big majority of them can only make the monthly minimum payment. So with more money going out then you have coming in that causes for a very stressful life. One of the biggest reasons couples fight and get divorced today is because of money problems.
I have to admit that I use to be that way to a point I would spend more than I really had to spend then have to worry about bank charges, will I be able to pay this bill or that bill, can I afford groceries It is not a good place to be. I still was frugal to a point but not like I should have been, like living within my means.
So back to the Question does being frugal mean you are poor? No, It is a little funny because a lot of these people who live frugally and within their means are better off than the ones who don’t. They can afford an unexpected emergency, If a good deal comes along they can get it, they can make repairs if needed. And a lot of times their net worth is a whole lot more.
When I started down the path of true frugallity I decided I was going to make it a challenge to see how frugal I could be, how much I could save by doing it myself. Not having to worry about late charges, bank charges and all the things that go with living outside your means. Having some extra money if we wanted or needed something. It is kinda sad now though because I wil tell my extended family I am making this or that now and it dosn’t even get a rise out of them they are like “of course you are ” haha’
You would be surprised at some of the name brands and super nice stuff you can find at the 2nd hand store for next to nothing, A lot of your store brands are just as good as name brand (some are better and yes a couple of things not so much) and if you are making everything from scratch you won’t need a lot of store-brand products. Eating out takes a lot of money for one person anymore it is 15 to 20 dollars and that is at a less expensive place. Limit how often you eat out and if you do, drink water instead of soda’s forgo the appetizers, and try to make it a special occasion when you go out. You can save so much by making your own, from food, to cleaners, even some of your beauty products. If you need ideas on how to save so you can get out of the spending trap and get on the road to a more frugal life I have 201 ways to save money here. Some of these are very extreme and some are not it just all depends on how bad you want to get out of the debt trap.
So what do you think “Does being frugal mean you are Poor?”
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