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Old 02-09-2020, 01:36 PM   #1
CyberCubed
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Is anyone else, "El Cheapo" when it comes to spending money?

I've been trying to spend the bare minimum of money as possible and saving everything and putting it in the bank. I feel like I have become, "El Cheapo" when it comes to spending money.

- I spend the bare minimum on food I possibly can. I rarely go to restaurants, I don't buy expensive food, at lunch on a workweek I try to spend no more than $4 a day on lunch.

- I rarely go to the theater to see a movie, maybe only 3 times a year. I don't have cable on the TV. I don't have any subscriptions to netflix or Disney+ or any other online streaming service.

- I don't buy blu-rays of movies or shows anymore and never digitally. I watch everything for free or extremely cheap as possible.

- I don't buy videogames at full price anymore and haven't for about a decade. I can't remember the last time I spent $59.99 on a videogame. I try to go no more about $40 on a game and wait for them to get cheap. I also don't pay for any online service like PS+ or Nintendo online.

- I don't buy toys or action figures anymore. I retired from buying TMNT toys since like 2013. I still have the ones I owned though.

- I don't buy comic books other than TMNT and don't buy single issues anymore either. I buy the collections. No point in buying floppies.

- For clothes I wear the same clothes for years until they get rips/tears or are basically unwearable. I have a wardrobe of many T-shirts, sweatshirts, dress clothes/pants, jackets, etc. I wear for years.

- My phone bill is only $31 a month, thank god.


My biggest expense is buying metrocards for the NY subway since I have no choice and no way to get to work otherwise, it's $33 a week. Yikes.

Is anyone else, "El Cheapo" when it comes to spending money these days?
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Old 02-09-2020, 03:48 PM   #2
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I wouldn't say that I'm cheap, but I like to know that what I'm paying for is an honest exchange for what I'm getting. This is why I don't like dealing with commissioned sales, or even moreso - low level sales people or contractors who get spiffs or kickbacks. Those deals are the worse - some guy trying to manipulate a conversation to over charge you thousands above the real cost of say, a carpet job, just so he can make a ten dollar spiff. It's like "dude, God I'll give you twenty bucks, just price the job correctly, my God".

I hate those situations and so from time to time it probably looks like I'm cheap, but the fact is I don't mind spending any amount of money on a fair exchange. I've got so many stories supporting this concept it's not even funny.
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Old 02-09-2020, 04:17 PM   #3
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Eh, I'm similar in some of those things. I prefer "frugal".
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Old 02-09-2020, 04:20 PM   #4
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Pretty much. There's a lot I just don't see much point in bothering with, which I why I likewise rarely eat out or get fast food, and anymore most of my restaurant visits are for family member's birthdays.

Rarely buy clothing, and not usually unless I see something I really like that much and the price is reasonable.

The Dollar Tree I service for work has a freezer section. Usually my last store of the day, so sometimes I grab a few frozen meals or steamer bag veggies in there before heading home. Some of it you have to watch the calories, etc, on, but some of it's decent enough stuff for just a cheap quick thing. Keeps a bit more of the day's pay in the pocket.


I'm not one to go upgrading and replacing things that still work fine either. Heck, my alarm clock is still the old Sony Cube "Dream Machine" I got for my 9th birthday in 1988. Still works fine, no reason to replace the trusty old thing. The only thing that has changed with age is the sleep button is 8 min instead of 10, but it's been like that for many years. They don't make stuff like they used to, and should it ever give up on my one day, I'll probably just put it away somewhere and not have the heart to get rid of it.

I do buy figures, but only what I really want and I don't really do the expensive ones. That said, 'Rise' has saved me money by not having much I've wanted.
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Old 02-09-2020, 08:21 PM   #5
triplexxx
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That term "El Cheapo" always makes me laugh. Bob Barker first popularized that term in my life (the Money Game pricing game, when the last two digits of the prize vehicle were below "10"). It's funny terminology.
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Old 02-09-2020, 08:44 PM   #6
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Isn't this just maintaining a budget.
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Old 02-09-2020, 08:51 PM   #7
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Toys are currently my biggest vice. Although even then I try and "smart shop", and this place over here at the flea market gives me fantastic deals on stuff, so I usually get a few things for free and the rest at a discount. But after bills and gas that's definitely what I spend the most money on. I try and keep it under $100 per paycheck, though.

I used to blow $100 a week on comics when there was a place over here, but that was 10 years ago and I really don't buy many anymore. When I do go, a few times a year, I'll still usually spend $50-100 but mostly on stuff that's in their Discount or Bundle boxes. Stuff that comes out this week for $3.99 will be in the dollar bin in three months, or even the 50-cent box if there's a tiny crease on the cover that you can't even see. And they bundle entire runs or mini-series together and sell them that way at a discount rate, which is a great way to get a lot of stuff at once without going broke. They also often sell older TPBs for like $5 if they're either used or just not moving and they need to clear space. It's a little out of the way but they're a fantastic store.

I still buy games and movies, but I almost never spend more than $20 on any single purchase for either. I just go to GameStop when there's a sale and get like 4 or 5 games for $40 or so. And there's a WalMart over here that rotates its movies constantly, plus less consumer interest has led to prices dropping sharply on DVDs and Blu-Rays, anyway. Stuff that came out right before Christmas for $25 is already $12-15, and most stuff that's a year older or more is in the $5 bin. Plus there's FYE and their huge Used selection. Sometimes you find good stuff there Used for like $2-3. The only stuff that comes out on disc that stays stupidly overpriced is Game Of Thrones and anything by Disney. Disney stuff is ridiculous. Only they could think $25 for a movie that's many years old is reasonable in 2020. And their stuff NEVER drops in price, it comes out overpriced and stays that way forever unless you get it used. ($30 for a single Star Wars movie? Suck my dick, Mouse. ) GoT is stupid for being like $60-70 for a Season, too, but at least that's a TV show and not a 90-minute or two-hour movie.

So yeah, not cheap, but "thrifty". I get what I want without over-spending. Usually. Sometimes when I'm in the toy section I feel like a drunken lech in a whorehouse on payday.

In my business, since I'm often helping people try to lose weight, you find out that a big thing people waste money on is food. They either go out to eat too much, OR they bulk-shop and buy tons of stuff they never eat anyways. The smartest way to manage this is in two parts: 1. Try and keep track of your daily meals, both eaten out and at home, factoring in what the food you're cooking cost, and try to keep your daily "food budget" at around $12-15, which is totally reasonable for most folks. And 2. This is less practical depending on where you live, but if you can, only buy about two or three days worth of groceries at a time. You'll spend more time at the store but you'll spend less money, have less clutter in your fridge or shelves, and less stuff goes bad. Less waste all around, especially in your wallet. Although again, depending on where you live, some people can't do this, but a ton of people I know do it. As a pleasant side effect, these two things can dramatically help in weight management.

Many if not most people spend at least $20 a day on food and some people I know spend as much as $40, especially if they waste money at Starbucks or Dunkin' or whatever for their stupid overpriced coffee. I'm like geez, buy a f*cking thermos and make it at home, it costs you $10 or less a month, dummy.

I find that the lazier people are, the more money they spend, usually for the sake of "convenience". But being broke isn't very convenient, so it's actually backfiring on 'em.
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Old 02-10-2020, 03:19 PM   #8
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I used to blow $100 a week on comics when there was a place over here, but that was 10 years ago and I really don't buy many anymore.
I did that with Star Wars comics back in 2015. That was slightly addictive, since I was working near a Forbidden Planet store at the time.
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Old 02-10-2020, 03:27 PM   #9
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Hell yeah, there used to be a terrific place just ten minutes from my house. At one point they expanded into the lot next door to where they already were, and I helped them move in a bunch of big glass display cases, so between that and the amount of stuff I used to buy I had a permanent 10% discount and one free comic on my Birthday. It was awesome. I'd hit them up every Wednesday and almost every Saturday, but I was also moving furniture at that point so I would often get cash tips every day. If I got $20 or $50 and got home before 8pm, then Bam, off to the comics shop. That's how I managed to grow a huge collection of over 10,000 books between 2001 and 2009.

Then they closed. They sent everyone to the next-closest place, which is still very awesome, but they're about a half hour away so it's just not as convenient. I also have a lot more expenses now than I did back then.
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Old 02-10-2020, 03:48 PM   #10
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Hell yeah, there used to be a terrific place just ten minutes from my house. At one point they expanded into the lot next door to where they already were, and I helped them move in a bunch of big glass display cases, so between that and the amount of stuff I used to buy I had a permanent 10% discount and one free comic on my Birthday. It was awesome. I'd hit them up every Wednesday and almost every Saturday, but I was also moving furniture at that point so I would often get cash tips every day. If I got $20 or $50 and got home before 8pm, then Bam, off to the comics shop. That's how I managed to grow a huge collection of over 10,000 books between 2001 and 2009.

Then they closed. They sent everyone to the next-closest place, which is still very awesome, but they're about a half hour away so it's just not as convenient. I also have a lot more expenses now than I did back then.
Although I still go to the LCS from time to time, I've basically done ALL of my monthly buying from mail order now since 2008. I started with Mail Order Comics and when they were absorbed by DCBS I just moved to them from that point forward.

I live in an area of the Chicagoland that grants me accessbility to basically the entire footprint of the Chicagoland area and there are a lot of comic stores. So the fact that I use DCBS should say something about the discounts.

Comics are offensively expensive nowadays - if I didn't use DCBS for so long, I'd probably have walked completely by now. But ordering the way I do keeps prices down to what are basically 2000/2001 price levels and that's with bags and boards included.
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Old 02-10-2020, 04:31 PM   #11
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Yeah, ever since they went to the high-gloss paper everything skyrocketed. It's like yeah, it's nice and "shiny", but all things considered I was perfectly fine with newsprint.

Between 1938 to 1987, comics went from ten cents to 75 cents. Between 1987 and 2010, prices went from 75 cents, to $1.25, to $1.50, to $1.75, to $1.95, to $2.50, to $2.99, to $3.99. And that's just ridiculous. I understand the better paper and ink costs a lot more, but again, I never asked 'em to do that.
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Old 02-17-2020, 08:37 PM   #12
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I'm pretty cheap with things and love saving, but I mean you can't take money to your grave so living in cheap sounds horrible.

Never cheap out on food, the taste and qualify of more expensive food can definitely be tasted. Sure you can point out some things that taste as good as the cheap option but overall you can get a better meal by paying more. I go to expensive restaurants at least once a week.

Same with clothes, it sure doesn't feel the same to wear a walmart shirt than some nicer fabric clothes from a designer. Yeah, it's an expense but it just fits nicer and it's worth it. Same with other self care products.

You can be frugal with other stuff, I don't buy junk food much or stuff that's there to get you to impulse buy. I also don't watch many movies in theaters, I do pay Netflix and amazon prime. But I save a lot of money shopping online. I do buy some games and toys but I've also become rather selective. If I want something I get it.

I do have an expensive PC however the amount I save because of how fast it is, more than makes up the price. And again any hobby you might have from running to painting, any hobby can get very expensive very quickly, but if you enjoy it, it's worth it.

In general I'd rather spend my money on experiences rather than things. Going to some special events or travelling is a lot more important, seriously travel.

I'm cheap but you have to treat yourself, you are worth it.
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