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Who is the cheapest or most frugal person you know?

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
I have a friend and her dh who are the cheapest and most frugal and thrifty people I know. They can both take a dollar and stretch it a mile. When they got married they bought her dad's house which is a 2 bed one bath 1 1/2 story older house. They bought it for barely anything which they almost have paid off 10 years later. They also have 2 kids. They own both their vehicles. He works and makes about 35k a year or less I think and she is and always has been a stay at home mom. Most of their money goes into savings and his 401k because he wants to retire when he is 55. They really know where every penny is that they make because they write it all down. They are always taking odd jobs for cash like yard work, snow blowing, house cleaning and all that money goes into savings.
He hunts and fishes and they butcher their own deer meat and for Christmas they get a 1/2 of cow as a present from a family member and that lasts them all year. I think she once told me she only spends like 30-40 a week on groceries. They very rarely go out to eat and if they do they split meals or get a few burgers off the dollar menu at McDonald's. She makes tons of crafts and buys them for almost nothing between clearence sales and coupons. He bikes to work in the summer time. Their temp is turned down in the 60's in the winter and they have not air cond for summer. They had their own well for water until recently something happened and they had to get city water. They burn most of their garbage because you need to buy bags from the city at $2 a piece, so they only usually have one bag a week of garbage. They do all their own household repairs and her dh has built most of their furniture. And this is only a part of their thriftyness.
They have a lot of self control when it comes to money and very good advice on lots of things.
Does anyone else know a thrifty or frugal family that is really extreme? What are they like?
post #2 of 15
I would have to say my grandma and my sister!

My grandmother is 94 and still makes all of her baking and meals from scratch! Even pizza which amazes the great grandkids because most of them are use to frozen or pizza hut

She sews all of her clothes and is still quilting! She grew her own garden last year, but a lot of us have help her work in it!

My sister and her husband bought an old house at auction for about 25,000. They did all of the remodleing and upgrading their self and have save a ton of money. They went to the habitate stores and bought all of her bathroom and light fixtures. They salavage old wood out of barns and did the floors. She went on Craigs list to find applicances and other stuff.

He traded out the electrical work that was done for woodcrafting.
post #3 of 15
The cheapest person I know personally was my great aunt (as in grandmother's sister). She bought used dented lableless cans and every lunch and dinner was two cans. They never knew what they were going to have. Even when I visited, I got to pick the can! Their kids had nothing growing up. On the rare occasion when they had to eat out, the whole family would split one meal and then she'd take all the ketchup packs, handiwipes, and plastic spoons as she could. Once I heard a story about her filling her purse at a buffet after she got full. They bought cars at police auctions that had re-possessed and were at minimum 15-20 years old. And she died a lonely unhappy millionaire. Her life could have been so much richer if she'd shared it ~ with anyone.

The most frugal person I know personally is me. lol (I've met way more frugal women on Mommysavers but I've never met any of them in person). We buy used cars and pay cash. We are a one car family. We live technically at the poverty line (but no one including the kids would ever know). I can make a dollar stretch. I make a menu, plan for food, waste as little as I can. We live in a 1100 sq foot townhouse / semi, and plan on paying it off as fast as we can. But we live frugally, not cheaply. We live generously and make life choices not based on how much we can afford but on how far we can cut back so we have more time to be with the kids. (My husband is a student and I work part time).
post #4 of 15
My friend Josie and her dh. They have no children so that probably makes it easier but they sure do live on a very tight budget but don't seem to suffer for it. They seem very content and comfortable with what they have. She's good a sewing and makes her own curtains,bedspreads,throw pillows, and some clothing. They plant a huge garden each summer and can it all. They have only one car and it's a newer one they paid cash for it. Their mortgage is paid off completely (they bought a fixer upper and did all the work themselves) she used to make her own soaps and candles,selling the excess. They salvage items from junk yards or rummage sales. It amazes me how they make their money stretch!
post #5 of 15
First, there is a HUGE difference between cheap and being frugal to me. Cheap is not a good thing while being frugal is, to me. Sort of a pet peeve with me.

The cheapest person I know would be my inlaws. They buy the cheapest toys, cheapest clothes, etc. even if they don't need them. One of my favorite examples is when they bought my second child a premie outfit before he was born because it was only a quarter. I was 9 months pregnant and my first baby was over 8 pounds so I had very little doubt that he would fit into an outfit for under six pounds.

The most frugal person I know is my mom. She has taught me well. She is so good at saving money and I hope to be just like her. She, as I, believe that spending more on something quality is better in the long run than spending money on something that won't last because it is cheap.
post #6 of 15
Originally Posted by Claire View Post

First, there is a HUGE difference between cheap and being frugal to me. Cheap is not a good thing while being frugal is, to me. Sort of a pet peeve with me.

I agree Claire. Cheap tends to have a negative connotation to it. Frugal is "wise with your money" ~ to my understanding anyway.

Compared to my friends, I think I am the most frugal. I think things through and am not very impulsive when it comes to shopping and having "all the right things". We don't have a lot of "stuff" and our house has what it needs and is not cluttered with the latest Must haves!

I grew up appreciating the things you EARN out of life. So I never really took stock in big purchase items. I liked seeing how far my dollar could stretch because I worked hard ot make that money. I didn't want to blow $100 on the latest coolest jeans, I wanted to see that $100 go towards many things: CDs, perfume, make up, etc. (as a teen).

As an adult, I am the same way,especially being on a one income family. I feel it's my repsonsibility to make sure that the home front is taken care of wisely and that the income Dh brings in is not foolishly splurged. He worked hard for it and spent a lot of time away from us to make a better life for us all so I don't want him to feel he needs to work any harder to "support" his wife and her "habits", does that make sense?
post #7 of 15
The cheapest people I know are my in laws. Especially my MIL. They try to get by with buying the cheapest things and then they complain about their stuff breaking all the time.

I am definitely the most frugal person I know. All of my friends have spent their way into major debt. I rarely buy anything unless I have a coupon and it is on sale. I keep our thermostat set at 65 in the winter and 80 in the summer. I mend clothing until it is literally falling apart or too worn and I go to yardsales as often as I can to buy my DS clothes and toys. We hardly ever go out to eat and I make a lot of dinners from scratch and take the leftovers to work for lunch. I only go grocery shopping on my way home from work so I don't have to make special trips. A lot of our furniture is hand me down or made by my DH. We do all of our own home repairs. We have a garden in the summer and freeze or can all of our surplus. However, we do have our weaknesses, like cable TV.
post #8 of 15
The most frugal people I know are my parents. They have lived in the same house for over 30 years, and it was paid off early. They buy well-made cars that are about two years old, pay cash, and keep them until they start to become a financial drain. Dad's car has nearly 300,000 miles on it, and it looks and runs great.

Mom shops sales only, clearance racks, and off-price stores (Marshall's, TJMaxx, etc.), and always looks classy. They pay cash for everything.

I read "The Millionaire Next Door" and swear they were writing about my dad! When I told him about the book, he heartily agreed with the concepts (live below your means, and to heck with the Jones'), so I got the book-on-tape version for him and he loved it.
post #9 of 15
The cheapest person is my dad or my inlaws. They will spend money when it is something they want. Otherwise it is the cheapest route. I remember a pair of sissor I recieved from my inlaws for Christmas. They came in a cute holder for the fridge. Those sissors wouldn't cut paper.

Other than people I have met on line I am the most frugal person I know. I make my own laundry soap, use vinager as fabric softener, sew and craft a lot. We have remodeled our house with used items. The latest was rebuilding the beam in our great room. I used brown paper and glue on the drywall. Since this beam was smaller than the orginal, I used cardboard, paper mache and again, brown paper and glue. Now it looks like I have a old beam sitting on a old U shaped box beam. All it cost was a sheet of dry wall. Our house doesn't look cheap, it looks wonderful! When you are willing to do the extra work, you can save tons of money.
post #10 of 15
My parents are pretty frugal. I guess that's where I got it!
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