Being frugal is definitely not for everyone, but once you get in the habit, it can be a hard thing to break. If you’re truly frugal, then you’ve probably experienced friends and family giving you odd looks. However, it’s okay. Know that when people look at you oddly when you do these things, you’re definitely not alone.
1. Using coupons and buying generic
To the average person, a $0.50 doesn’t really mean anything. But, a really frugal person understand that it all adds up and that there’s no need to spend lots of money on food and other grocery items.
2. Checking used stores first
Most people love getting new things. We live in a consumerist society where people are more comfortable throwing things away than getting them fixed. However, a frugal person understands that there’s nothing wrong with used items, and that many times thrift stores and similar places will have better-quality items which, with a bit of love, still have years of life in them. Sometimes new is unavoidable, but not always.
3. Staying in instead is better than going out
Sure, going out is great, but you can have almost as much fun staying in—and it costs easily half the money! Most people don’t understand how much fun you can have without spending a dime.
4. Spending more money on high quality items
Being frugal is not the same as being cheap, but most people don’t understand that. If you spend a little extra money on a high-quality item, then it will last much longer than if you bought a cheaper item that had to be replaced twice. It might seem counter-intuitive, but it makes sense to the truly frugal.
5. Packing a lunch for work
It baffles most people that you could want to bring your lunches to work. After all, going out for food is only a few dollars, right? But, what most non-frugal people don’t realize is that that money adds up really quick. Sure, once in a while a splurge on lunch is great, but every day it costs quite a bit of cash and eventually gets boring.
6. Being comfortable with saying no
Saying no to something—like going out for drinks, or buying the newest model of phone even though yours is perfectly fine—is difficult, and most people just don’t get it. Frugal means saying no to some things in order to get other things—namely, a full savings account or a debt-free life. It’s well worth it; but that can be hard to explain to others.
7. Living within your means
Credit is a necessary evil, but you can’t let it control you. This goes back to saying “no” sometimes, but it’s also having an understanding of where you stand financially and what you can and cannot do. Sure, you could take out another loan to pay it off faster, but then you’re paying that loan instead. Living within your means is freeing and the integral part of being frugal.
8. Budgeting out expenses and/or adding to savings every check
Most people either don’t understand how to budget, or they simply don’t budget. The same goes for savings accounts. Trying to explain to someone who doesn’t do either is sometimes very difficult. To the non-frugal, the idea of holding off for later is difficult to grasp. But that’s okay—it’s not for everyone, and you’ll definitely be ahead in the long run.
So, what habits do you have that people look at you strangely for? Tell me in the comments below!