So…..Do you ever wonder? Am I frugal? Or a cheapskate? Am I in tune with, and respectful of the limits of my income? Or, am I driven to get by for as little as possible?
If these thoughts bounce around your head, here are some points to reflect upon. By the way …my points are for “normal consumers” with “normal incomes”. But obviously there are exceptions to every point, and yes, everyone’s situation is different. That’s epically so if working with a super modest wage. If that’s your reality, it’s not fair to rate yourself at all.
– You simply never eat out. You’d like to, and you can afford to, you just don’t – you’re a cheapskate.
Instead, you don’t eat out every day, only from time to time – you’re frugal.
– For no good reason, you don’t own a car – you’re a cheapskate
Rather, you buy a new car every 5 to 7 years, after the one you’ve been driving is paid for – that makes you frugal
– You don’t have cable TV. In fact you don’t have a TV at all. You would rather put the monthly cost in the bank. You watch hockey at the neighbours place; you never bring the munchies – you’d be a cheapskate
Instead, you own a TV; in fact it’s a flat screen. But it’s not top of the line; it only has a few whistles and bells Time around the TV is fun, lots of laughter and banter. -congratulations!!!! You’re frugal.
– When your clothing gets “unexciting”, you donate it to charity or pass it on to friends or extended family. As an adult you’ve been known to wear someone else’s hand-me-downs. You’re OK shopping at The Salvation Army from time to time – These habits make you frugal But if your clothing never gets old and when it’s no longer exciting you turn it into rags, You don’t own anything that was purchased new…………not even underwear. You think the Salvation Army Thrift Store charges outrageous prices, – you’re likely a cheapskate
– You never buy just anything. Even when you’re forced to, you still put it off hoping for a deep discount sale. You clip coupons, use discount cards, and you feel bad for days after spending money – you’re cheap.
You never or very rarely splurge. You’re aware of sales trends; you know where you can get the best deals on almost anything. People ask you for direction for their own purchases. You check flyers for coupons. But that’s not something that drives you. Overall you buy almost everything you need and some of what you want – you’re frugal
– You dread “occasions” associated with gifts, events like Christmas, Birthdays, etc. You avoid gatherings where gifts are expected, but you feel bad about the free meal you’re missing out on. In the meantime, you love it when people give you things. You don’t always use them. Sometimes you sell them or return them for cash. The money goes into your bank. – guess what? You’re cheap.
Or you “set limits” and you stay within the amount you’ve set. You are creative in your gift giving and you shop for gifts in advance of need. You own a tickle trunk – these practices make you frugal As you reflect on these points, remember that there are many reasons to either “buy or not buy”. A limited financial resource is certainly one. So it’s important that you do not confuse economic reality with anything else. People who are genuinely financially constrained or challenged are never cheap. They should never feel they are!!!