Author Topic: Cheapskate stories  (Read 222027 times)

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siamesecat2965

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #855 on: August 01, 2013, 12:54:13 PM »
My story is not so much cheapskate as illogical.  I have relatives who will drive miles to get the cheapest gas, but the gas is maybe only one or two cents cheaper than a much closer gas station.  I never did the calculations, but I wouldn't be surprised if they spent more money traveling to the farther gas station than to get the more expensive gas.

 
I've actually done the calculations. My car, and my last one, both had 18.5 gallon tanks. I generally try and fill up weekly, to stay on budget, so figure 8-9 gallons. if you save .3 per gallon by driving out of your way, that's a whopping total of .27 PER WEEK, and just over $14 a YEAR. Yeah, my time is too valuable to be traipsing all over eternity and back to save that little.

I will say for me sometimes, its a mental thing. I won't go too far out of my way, but will wait, if gas is .10 more a gallon. still not a huge savings, but its the idea of it, for me.

Thankfully last summer they added gas at my local Costco, which is right by where I go weekly to grocery and other shop, so I just swing by, and fill up. And if I'm not up that way, and need gas, I just go wherever its convenient.

ica171

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #856 on: August 01, 2013, 01:03:09 PM »
snip

People want to buy a car for a trip and figure $700 would be a good price. (They are usually quite disheartened to find out that it is not easy to buy a car in the US if you don't have a US address. And even more disheartened when people laugh at the $700.)

snip

Yeah, I would think having to get insurance would make that plan not very feasible. However, from what Top Gear has taught me, and what I've heard from friends who've gone traveling in England (not sure about the U.K. as a whole), that is an option and it can be cheaper than renting a car. A friend went to visit relatives in England and buying a car was something like half the price of renting. So she bought a cheap car and gave it to her niece before they left. I think her price was $700 or less, too, and it was a nice car.

The stories about people being cheap because they think the prices are too high reminds me of me. I wear lots of T-shirts because they're cheap, cheaper than nice shirts. I have money in the monthly budget that's supposed to go toward my clothes but I never spend it. When I do go clothes shopping I usually come home with nothing. $10 for a plain T-shirt? $40 for jeans? No thanks. I saw a pair of shorts online for $50 the other day, and I can't even fathom shopping at a place like Anthropologie, where a shirt can be close to $100.

I'm only 30, but I remember when you could buy a decent house for less than $50k. I definitely get nostalgic when I look at prices these days. We just had a guy out to look at our foundation and he had recently been on vacation to California. He was talking about house prices with a friend who lived there and said our modest 4-bed 1.5-bath 1300 square foot house would go for upwards of $700k there. It's on the market now for $115k.

BarensMom

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #857 on: August 01, 2013, 01:11:16 PM »
Re the above house stories, my parents paid $10,500 for their 900 sq. ft. house in 1952, it sold for $444K in 2005.  That's living in the Bay Area for you.

It puts me in mind of the time DH was the youngest member of a pastor search committee back in the 90's.  The other members had either paid off their homes or had much smaller mortgage payments.  When it came time to determine the new pastor's housing allowance, all the other members wanted to give him about $250/month (in the SF Bay Area - really?!?).  DH was incredulous and asked them, "Do you realize how much homes costs nowadays?"  They wouldn't budge even when DH brought our mortgage payment book ($1300/month) and a copy of a real estate magazine to a meeting as proof.  Finally the association and the seminary contacts had to tell them the facts of life.

StuffedGrapeLeaves

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #858 on: August 01, 2013, 01:15:01 PM »
Re the above house stories, my parents paid $10,500 for their 900 sq. ft. house in 1952, it sold for $444K in 2005.  That's living in the Bay Area for you.

It puts me in mind of the time DH was the youngest member of a pastor search committee back in the 90's.  The other members had either paid off their homes or had much smaller mortgage payments.  When it came time to determine the new pastor's housing allowance, all the other members wanted to give him about $250/month (in the SF Bay Area - really?!?).  DH was incredulous and asked them, "Do you realize how much homes costs nowadays?"  They wouldn't budge even when DH brought our mortgage payment book ($1300/month) and a copy of a real estate magazine to a meeting as proof.  Finally the association and the seminary contacts had to tell them the facts of life.

$250/month for the SF/Bay Area????  You can't even get a closet for that.

BarensMom

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #859 on: August 01, 2013, 01:25:23 PM »
Re the above house stories, my parents paid $10,500 for their 900 sq. ft. house in 1952, it sold for $444K in 2005.  That's living in the Bay Area for you.

It puts me in mind of the time DH was the youngest member of a pastor search committee back in the 90's.  The other members had either paid off their homes or had much smaller mortgage payments.  When it came time to determine the new pastor's housing allowance, all the other members wanted to give him about $250/month (in the SF Bay Area - really?!?).  DH was incredulous and asked them, "Do you realize how much homes costs nowadays?"  They wouldn't budge even when DH brought our mortgage payment book ($1300/month) and a copy of a real estate magazine to a meeting as proof.  Finally the association and the seminary contacts had to tell them the facts of life.

$250/month for the SF/Bay Area????  You can't even get a closet for that.

Yup.  The chairwoman of the committee was paying $250/month on the mortgage for the house she purchased in 1968.  So she thought that was a reasonable amount, never mind that little thing called "inflation" over 20+ years.  The rest were retired people around my parents' age who paid off their houses years ago.

Outdoor Girl

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #860 on: August 01, 2013, 01:48:16 PM »
Friends of mine moved to California in 1999.  They didn't think they would be there that long so decided to rent, rather than buy.  And then kicked themselves.  They could have bought a nice 3-4 bedroom place in their area for $250,000ish at that time.  When they finally started looking a couple of years ago, the same thing was $650,000ish.

I'm in a bedroom community of a large city.  We aren't a suburb but a lot of people do the hour commute, either driving or by train.  So homes aren't cheap.  My 2+1 bedroom bungalow was $165,000 when I bought in 2004.  Now?  It is appraised at $240,000.  But when I add up the amount of money I've spend on upgrades - and I'm not done yet - it is pretty close to the $75,000 increase in value.  I know routine maintenance stuff doesn't really count as upgrades but still, that's a lot of money I've put into the place and I haven't even done the kitchen yet.

Stuff that has been done:  installed new front steps, with some retaining wall; replaced all the windows and doors; redid the bathroom and the powder room; new flooring in the basement; new interlock stone driveway with additional retaining wall and pathway work; new siding, roof, deck; spray foam insulated the garage to provide barrier to the rest of the house; a lot of minor repair stuff; landscaping, which I'm doing all myself.  Stuff that still needs to be done:  new furnace, air conditioner and hot water tank; new kitchen; upgrade electrical to handle additional kitchen outlets; redo the main floor flooring; repair ceiling where it is coming apart between drywall sheets; paint the whole inside; finish the landscaping (I'm on year 3 of a 5 year plan).  And stuff I'd like to do eventually:  put in a gas fireplace somewhere as an emergency heat source.  I know the fan won't run without electricity but I've been told it will still put out a bit of heat if you are in the direct vicinity.  I was thinking about putting it in the master bedroom with a full set of closets/shelves/drawers built in around it.  I'd like to install a Murphy bed in my small spare bedroom so I have more room for guests but can keep the room clear for my craft and computer stuff.  The rest of the stuff I want to do is just replacing furniture and appliances.  Could I win the lottery soon, please?   :D
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Piratelvr1121

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #861 on: August 01, 2013, 02:11:23 PM »
I see that a lot with "suggested" household budgets. For example, $100 in groceries should feed a family of four for a week. I'm not sure where these people are, ages and other particulars, but we (DH, DS & I) spend $150 - 200 per week on food. We don't eat expensive cuts of meat or all organic, or all name brands either.

I could feed us on that for a week, by taking shortcuts, substituting more grains instead of vegetables, but I think that is an unrealistic number to throw around and nearly every budget book I have seen uses $100 per week for four people.

I agree, I spend between $130-150 a week for a family of five and with the way my older 2 can put food away I usually end up having to go to the store halfway through the week to get more snacks.  And that's with watching sales and clipping coupons when I can find them for things I'll buy. And we don't get expensive stuff either.
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siamesecat2965

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #862 on: August 01, 2013, 02:20:53 PM »
The stories about people being cheap because they think the prices are too high reminds me of me. I wear lots of T-shirts because they're cheap, cheaper than nice shirts. I have money in the monthly budget that's supposed to go toward my clothes but I never spend it. When I do go clothes shopping I usually come home with nothing. $10 for a plain T-shirt? $40 for jeans? No thanks. I saw a pair of shorts online for $50 the other day, and I can't even fathom shopping at a place like Anthropologie, where a shirt can be close to $100.

 

I don't consider this to be cheap, but frugal. You aren't inconveniencing anyone or making anyone go without, or impacting anyone else because certain items cost more than you choose to pay for them. And unless you constantly badmouth people who are willing to pay that much for things, then you're fine.

Im cheap about certain things as well; while I work in a store where a t-shirt can be $30 or more, pants over $100, and so on.  I get a nice discount, even on the sale stuff. And when I didnt work there, I waited for sales as well. Certain things, yes, I will pay more for since Im a firm believer in you get what you pay for regarding some things.  But others, nope, I go as cheap as I can.

My friend's DH however, I posted about him upthread. he wont get a haircut unless he has a coupon, and its only $10 to begin with. She also told me he wears his undies until they are literally falling apart, in spite of the fact he buys the cheapest he can.

Kariachi

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #863 on: August 01, 2013, 02:52:26 PM »
Re the above house stories, my parents paid $10,500 for their 900 sq. ft. house in 1952, it sold for $444K in 2005.  That's living in the Bay Area for you.

My grandparents paid 15k for their home about 55 years ago. Thirteen years ago they sold it for, due to the renovations my grandfather did and the fact that it was now closer to NYC, about 300k. The buyers sold it a few years back, when it officially reached 'outskirts' position, for somewhere around double that.

Meanwhile our place is about twice the size and cost 80k. Nice place too. Floors aren't level, but neither is anything else in this county.
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Piratelvr1121

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #864 on: August 01, 2013, 03:42:17 PM »
Our floors aren't level either. In fact you'd be hard pressed to find a straight line in this house. We like to say the house is as crooked as we are, but we like it that way. 
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

nutraxfornerves

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #865 on: August 01, 2013, 04:42:54 PM »
Quote
hat is weird because many times a round trip is cheaper then a 1 way!
Ah, I was making the interesting assumption that, of course, everyone was familiar with the kind of traveler I meant.

These are people who can't buy a round trip ticket because they have no idea when they will return. It's sort of "I'm going to quit my job, take off for some country where I can live cheaply, and see how long my money lasts." There are ways to do this that result in returning home, not completely destitute, with the memories of a lifetime. That's for another thread about travel.

The cheapskates fall into two categories. Those who want to squeeze every penny in every way, to travel as cheaply as possible for the longest times. These are the ones most likely to expect the embassy to fly them home. And those who think it's a great game to see how low a price they can get for something, even if they are relatively well off.

Both kinds tend to do the same things. Common examples I hear about, some less ethical than others: Bragging about bargaining for half an hour until the old lady in the vegetable market lowers the price by 25. In a country where that might mean a day's ration of rice for the old lady. Bragging about browbeating the guesthouse owner into cutting the price of the room in half. Not worrying about any problems associated with staying in a cheap fleabag that doubles as a brothel. Riding for free on the top of a train. Sleeping on the floor of the train station.

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Elfmama

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #866 on: August 01, 2013, 05:58:06 PM »
...    He came to our open house and spent the ENTIRE TIME muttering under his breath about "can't believe anyone would pay 100k, my entire house only cost $7000, ridiculous amount of money, can't believe it, absurd amount of money, blah blah blah..."

I wonder if he'll still feel that way when the time comes that he wants/needs to sell his house!   ;D
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drzim

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #867 on: August 01, 2013, 06:10:13 PM »
Re the above house stories, my parents paid $10,500 for their 900 sq. ft. house in 1952, it sold for $444K in 2005.  That's living in the Bay Area for you.

It puts me in mind of the time DH was the youngest member of a pastor search committee back in the 90's.  The other members had either paid off their homes or had much smaller mortgage payments.  When it came time to determine the new pastor's housing allowance, all the other members wanted to give him about $250/month (in the SF Bay Area - really?!?).  DH was incredulous and asked them, "Do you realize how much homes costs nowadays?"  They wouldn't budge even when DH brought our mortgage payment book ($1300/month) and a copy of a real estate magazine to a meeting as proof.  Finally the association and the seminary contacts had to tell them the facts of life.

$250/month for the SF/Bay Area????  You can't even get a closet for that.

I have friends in San Fran that pay $250/month for a parking space!

Piratelvr1121

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #868 on: August 01, 2013, 08:11:23 PM »
Re the above house stories, my parents paid $10,500 for their 900 sq. ft. house in 1952, it sold for $444K in 2005.  That's living in the Bay Area for you.

It puts me in mind of the time DH was the youngest member of a pastor search committee back in the 90's.  The other members had either paid off their homes or had much smaller mortgage payments.  When it came time to determine the new pastor's housing allowance, all the other members wanted to give him about $250/month (in the SF Bay Area - really?!?).  DH was incredulous and asked them, "Do you realize how much homes costs nowadays?"  They wouldn't budge even when DH brought our mortgage payment book ($1300/month) and a copy of a real estate magazine to a meeting as proof.  Finally the association and the seminary contacts had to tell them the facts of life.

That doesn't surprise me.  My bff belongs to a very small parish, so small that they don't have their own priest, they have one come down from another town about an hour, hour and a half drive away.  So this guy says liturgy in his own parish then drives down to theirs every Sunday.   

Now granted he is paid for his own parish but the former parish council only wanted to pay him some small piddly amount for gas and insisted that if he had anyone to visit (Ie homebound parishioners) then he'd just have to squeeze that in on his Sundays because they weren't going to pay him extra to come down during the week!

Also, not so much money related but it used to be that during the summer they'd make liturgy later in the evening and then in the winter make it an hour earlier.  Some parishioners wanted to keep the liturgy at 4:30 year round but others piped up and said "Look, Father has to drive an hour and a half home every Sunday night and we have some people who have a half hour drive into town!"  So a vote was passed and now liturgy is at 3:30 pm regardless of Daylight Savings.

There are just some, or were some on the council who were only interested in what was convenient and cheap for them while squeezing the church's pennies till they screamed.   One guy, who is no longer on the council, does not like the priest and keeps trying to get a new one just for their church but the diocese won't since it's not worth it for such a small church.   Besides, most of the parishioners (like bff) adore the priest they have.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

kherbert05

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #869 on: August 01, 2013, 10:01:09 PM »
[...] or buy travel health insurance. [...]

On a tangent, I never buy travel health insurance, as my credit card covers medical emergencies. Most international credit cards do when you charge the plane ticket but many people don't know this. Most credit cards also have rental car insurance (if you pay with it) so I also never get insurance when renting. Of course, check the rules on your credit cards and see if their insurance meets your needs.

Just my cheapskate advice for the day.

When Hurricane Sandy devastated the east cost of the us i was halfway through a trip to Europe. On the way back I was in line to check in and started talking to the person behind me. She was supposed to fly back either the day Sandy hit or the day after but because of the hurricane the first flight back she could get was 5 days later. Trip insurance paid for the hotel, meals, and transportation - she got almost another full week of vacation for free. 

I never got trip insurance before but after talking to her I am thinking it might be worth it.

My grandmother broke her hip traveling in Europe. Her travel insurance paid for: her surgery and rehabilitation, my aunt's ticket out and back, my aunt's hotel room for two weeks, my grandmother's ticket back upgraded to first class (for more space), a private nurse to fly first class next to her, and a limo (also more spacious) for the two hour drive back to my grandmother's home.
I'm lucky that my only medical emergency outside the US happened in my Mom's hometown. My Great-Grand-Uncle (My grandmother's uncle) met us at the hospital and cut through any red tape. For a long time he was the only doctor in that region. He was the head of the hospital for a long time also. 


Because of my food allergies - I definitely would have insurance when traveling outside the US, now.


 
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