Author Topic: Cheapskate stories  (Read 207465 times)

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Venus193

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #420 on: April 08, 2013, 01:07:36 PM »
Brunhilde didn't even consider this.  The store we were in was a long subway ride away from the other Targets in NYC (the Manhattan one is not accessible by subway).

I realize I forgot to mention that Brunhilde lives within walking distance from the Target we shop in and I take the subway to Brunhilde's neighborhood.  We both have large bag carts with us when we shop there; nobody who drives there needs to have those.

Besides, driving wouldn't solve this problem because the cost of the gas would far exceed the coupon savings.

otterwoman

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #421 on: April 08, 2013, 01:12:38 PM »
I knew a gal who was so proud of how much money she saved when doing her grocery shopping that I don't think she realized that she was negating her savings by driving around. 

For example for her family of 5 she'd crow that she spent about 100 at the grocery store what with watching sales and stacking coupons, then she'd drive over to Alco which was not right next door to the market.  Then if she heard that one store had a good deal on fruit but the other had a good deal on meat, she'd go from one to the next.   

As she was lecturing me about the value of coupons and stacking (which I'll be honest, I still don't understand) and how much it can save you, I was thinking that I hoped those savings was going towards gas.

I use coupons too which helps to save indeed, especially when there's a sale on the items as well, but I don't drive around to get the deals.  The only time I'll get groceries anywhere but Martin's is when I want a corned beef brisket because except for St. Patrick's Day sales, they're usually cheaper at Walmart.

And I'll admit I can be a cheapskate as well.  Or rather a recovering cheapskate.  Used to buy all clothes at Walmart and thrift stores. Or rather all my clothes.  Boy clothes were bought at Target cause frankly, I like their selection better for boys clothes.   A friend teased me constantly about being such a cheapskate and convinced me that it was actually less money spent to get a pair of pants or shoes for $30 than to be constantly replacing $10 shoes or pants.


I do follow the store sales, but Walmart will price match other stores, even on groceries. I just bring the other stores flyers with me and get all the sales, but only have to go to the one store.

DoubleTrouble

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #422 on: April 08, 2013, 01:32:35 PM »
My mother had to lay down the law to Dad a couple of years ago.  She wanted to go into an independent living retirement home, so that she could finally retire!  No cooking, no cleaning, etc.  All the things that a lifelong housewife of her era did.  "But we have to save that money for our old age!" Dad cried. 

"Look.  You are NINETY YEARS OLD. I am EIGHTY-SIX.  All that  money for our old age?  THIS IS IT!"

Flabbered my ghast that he hadn't realized that he'd reached "old age" by then......

Took my cousins' great-grandma until about 98 to realize it ;) She was still cheating at cards too.

Virg

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #423 on: April 08, 2013, 01:39:31 PM »
Piratelvr1121 wrote:

"As she was lecturing me about the value of coupons and stacking (which I'll be honest, I still don't understand) and how much it can save you, I was thinking that I hoped those savings was going towards gas."

If she's paying enough attention to sales to stack coupons, it's very likely she's saving more than the gas that she's using to travel.  Even in a low mileage vehicle, saving ten dollars in coupons will pay for more than fifty miles of driving, and it's not that hard to save ten bucks off a week's groceries by shopping around.

As to understanding coupon stacking, the bottom line is to figure out how to use multiple coupons on the same purchase to save extra money.  One has to pay attention to restrictions, but done properly it can be a real money saver.  Just as a very simple example, if you buy a tube of toothpaste at a pharmacy, and you have a manufacturer's coupon for the item and a generic savings coupon for the pharmacy, you can use both on the one purchase to save more money.  In one extreme case, I saw someone who was able to use stacking and other stuff like loyalty cards and promotions to get "paid" to take stuff out of the store.  That is, she got some items for free due to sales and overlapping coupons and got store credit through a loyalty program for the original purchase price, which she could use to buy other items.  Doing it to that level can take as much work as a full time job, but considering that she regularly got hundreds of dollars of stuff essentially for free every month, I don't see it as much different from working any other job and it made her happy.

Virg

Coralreef

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #424 on: April 08, 2013, 01:39:43 PM »
A few weeks ago Brunhilde and I were in Target with 50-cent coupons for Cuties Mandarin Oranges.  The deadline on them was three weeks later and the store had none left.  We asked two store employees who found out they had no more and couldn't predict the arrival of the next shipment.  They said that they could check the Brooklyn store but we told them not to bother.

Really, it would have cost her two subway fares (now $5) and and hour and a half to save 50 cents?  Some people just can't do math.

Which people? Was Brunhilde acting like she was considering it? Surely you can't mean the store employees; after all, how would they know where either of you lived or what your transportation plans were?

Actually, the employee may not be thinking "coupon/rebate", she/he may be thinking "customer wants Cuties". 

[/right

siamesecat2965

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #425 on: April 08, 2013, 01:42:43 PM »
<snip>
Coupons don't always work for me since many are buy two get x off. I live alone so unless its something that will keep or isn't too pricy, it does me no good.


Yes!  This is one of my biggest peeves.  My pantry is about the size of a shoebox so I certainly don't have the room to store all those extra products.

If a coupon is $1.00 off for two products, I wish the store would allow $0.50 off for one.

Or when the item in question is $3 or $4. If its on sale say for 2.99, a $1 off one might entice me to try it, but $1 off $6 for two, nope, not happening.

wheeitsme

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #426 on: April 08, 2013, 01:47:40 PM »
I used to buy a $15-20 purse at one of the discount stores 3-4 times a year. I then realized these purses weren't made well and I was tired of repairing or discarding them. I now buy one or two well made purses a year for $30-40 and they last. I just change them out if I get bored. Same with shoes, if they aren't made well then they aren't worth a dollar, if you have to keep replacing them.

 ;)

“The reason that the rich were so rich, Vimes reasoned, was because they managed to spend less money.

Take boots, for example. He earned thirty-eight dollars a month plus allowances. A really good pair of leather boots cost fifty dollars. But an affordable pair of boots, which were sort of OK for a season or two and then leaked like hell when the cardboard gave out, cost about ten dollars. Those were the kind of boots Vimes always bought, and wore until the soles were so thin that he could tell where he was in Ankh-Morpork on a foggy night by the feel of the cobbles.

But the thing was that good boots lasted for years and years. A man who could afford fifty dollars had a pair of boots that'd still be keeping his feet dry in ten years' time, while the poor man who could only afford cheap boots would have spent a hundred dollars on boots in the same time and would still have wet feet.

This was the Captain Samuel Vimes 'Boots' theory of socioeconomic unfairness.”


― Terry Pratchett, Men at Arms

Slartibartfast

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #427 on: April 08, 2013, 01:57:08 PM »
As to understanding coupon stacking, the bottom line is to figure out how to use multiple coupons on the same purchase to save extra money.  One has to pay attention to restrictions, but done properly it can be a real money saver.  Just as a very simple example, if you buy a tube of toothpaste at a pharmacy, and you have a manufacturer's coupon for the item and a generic savings coupon for the pharmacy, you can use both on the one purchase to save more money.  In one extreme case, I saw someone who was able to use stacking and other stuff like loyalty cards and promotions to get "paid" to take stuff out of the store.  That is, she got some items for free due to sales and overlapping coupons and got store credit through a loyalty program for the original purchase price, which she could use to buy other items.  Doing it to that level can take as much work as a full time job, but considering that she regularly got hundreds of dollars of stuff essentially for free every month, I don't see it as much different from working any other job and it made her happy.

Stacking in a nutshell: there are three types of coupons.  You can usually use one of each on the same item, if the stars happen to align:

1) manufacturer coupons - the usual kind you see in the newspaper.  The manufacturer pays the store back for the face value of the coupon.  These are almost always for specific brands - $1 off X Brand Deodorant, or $1/2 Suchandsuch Brand Crackers.

2) store coupons - stores put these out to entice you to shop there.  They don't get reimbursed for them.  Sometimes these are for specific brands, but sometimes they're for anything in a particular category - $1 off any toothpaste, or $2/3 frozen vegetables.

3) not really a coupon, but function like one - loyalty programs with cash back.  CVS has the easiest one, in my opinion  :)  The "sale" price is actually the regular price, but then you get a printout on your receipt good for money off your next visit.  So it may be "$2 back on Crest toothpaste" - you pay the normal $4 for the tube (or less, if you stack it with other coupons!) and then you get a $2 coupon for a future visit.  Drugstores love these because they can restrict it per loyalty account, which means they can give away things free (usually something small, like a candy bar) and nobody will come in and buy them out.

I actually get things for "better than free" pretty frequently - about once a week - but that's ONE item out of however many is in my cart that day.  People who go in and get a cart full of groceries for pennies a) have to spend TONS of time chasing deals, and b) don't have much choice in what they buy.  Most couponers happily brag about their "more than free" bargains but quietly pay regular price for the things that aren't available with coupons the rest of the time  :)  Oh, and c) don't have sales tax on groceries.  Some places do and some don't, and those of us who pay 8.5% on everything aren't even getting our "free" items free  :P

Cami

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #428 on: April 08, 2013, 01:59:03 PM »
I knew a gal who was so proud of how much money she saved when doing her grocery shopping that I don't think she realized that she was negating her savings by driving around. 

For example for her family of 5 she'd crow that she spent about 100 at the grocery store what with watching sales and stacking coupons, then she'd drive over to Alco which was not right next door to the market.  Then if she heard that one store had a good deal on fruit but the other had a good deal on meat, she'd go from one to the next.   

As she was lecturing me about the value of coupons and stacking (which I'll be honest, I still don't understand) and how much it can save you, I was thinking that I hoped those savings was going towards gas.


I knew someone like that. She spent hours every Sunday "getting ready to go shopping." She then would drive around cherrypicking the specials at each store -- also more hours, plus gas. I asked her to calculate how much time she was spending  and how much  money she was saving on products she ACTUALLY liked and wanted (versus products she bought only because they were on sale/coupon).  She was actually losing money on the enterprise. I also pointed out that if she worked more hours at her job (which was totally possible) at $15 per hour, less the taxes, she'd recoup what she "saved" in less than 2 hours of work. She kept on with the couponing and driving. Oh well.

Carotte

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #429 on: April 08, 2013, 02:03:10 PM »
Wheeitsme, I thought about the same extract!

I'm actually facing this right now with the purchase of an electric kettle.
I don't really have money to throw around, I would rather not spend more than the minimum, but this could potentially be the kettle I would keep for years and years, so I have to kick myself to go for the middle price range/ good construction and not the cheapy one.
Plus it will be a 100% my kettle (until SO realize that heating water is soooo much faster this way) even if it's not at my place.
Next 'battle', a toaster! Actually, next battle is having my SO do something about kitchen storage place, then buying myself a toaster.

I would call myself a frugal person, but with no personal income and not wanting to clutter myself with knickknacks, it's not a bad thing :).
I do have to remember to allow myself to spend on myself sometimes..

Virg

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #430 on: April 08, 2013, 02:06:50 PM »
The irony is that the boots theory works both ways.  To give my real-life example which actually involves boots, I always wear "hiking boots" for footwear because I like the way they work for me.  I put that in quotes because there are $25.00 cheapies and $500.00 extreme-o boots, and since I wear them all the time they wear out a lot faster than hiking boots normally do.  The thing is, I figured out that a good set of boots lasts 3-4 times as long as the cheapies, so it would seem that they would be the better investment.  But the problem is that the good boots that last that long are $150.00, so they'd have to last six times as long to be worth it, and the big plus is that I always have a reasonably new backup pair of boots.

This is only one example, but there are plenty of situations where the extra quality doesn't justify the extra cost, so it pays to consider the balance in all things.

Virg

Black Delphinium

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #431 on: April 08, 2013, 02:10:20 PM »
The irony is that the boots theory works both ways.  To give my real-life example which actually involves boots, I always wear "hiking boots" for footwear because I like the way they work for me.  I put that in quotes because there are $25.00 cheapies and $500.00 extreme-o boots, and since I wear them all the time they wear out a lot faster than hiking boots normally do.  The thing is, I figured out that a good set of boots lasts 3-4 times as long as the cheapies, so it would seem that they would be the better investment.  But the problem is that the good boots that last that long are $150.00, so they'd have to last six times as long to be worth it, and the big plus is that I always have a reasonably new backup pair of boots.

This is only one example, but there are plenty of situations where the extra quality doesn't justify the extra cost, so it pays to consider the balance in all things.

Virg
Yeah. I know from experience that I wear through $80 Birkenstock sandals at pretty much the same rate as I wear through $10 Walmart sandals. I stopped buying $80 sandals.
When angels go bad, they go worse than anyone. Remember, Lucifer was an angel. ~The Marquis De Carabas

Slartibartfast

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #432 on: April 08, 2013, 02:10:48 PM »
The irony is that the boots theory works both ways.  To give my real-life example which actually involves boots, I always wear "hiking boots" for footwear because I like the way they work for me.  I put that in quotes because there are $25.00 cheapies and $500.00 extreme-o boots, and since I wear them all the time they wear out a lot faster than hiking boots normally do.  The thing is, I figured out that a good set of boots lasts 3-4 times as long as the cheapies, so it would seem that they would be the better investment.  But the problem is that the good boots that last that long are $150.00, so they'd have to last six times as long to be worth it, and the big plus is that I always have a reasonably new backup pair of boots.

This is only one example, but there are plenty of situations where the extra quality doesn't justify the extra cost, so it pays to consider the balance in all things.

Virg

I make that argument about bras - you can go through a lot of $8 K-mart Specials before you approach the price of a $60 good one - and the good ones can get ruined in the dryer just as easily.  I'd rather have cheap ones I don't have to take such good care of  :P  (Of course, that's all moot if you're a hard-to-find size . . . then you buy what fits and wear it forever!)

alkira6

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #433 on: April 08, 2013, 02:11:49 PM »
I have actually had a harder time using coupons in past few years because of extreme couponers.  I can't get the stupid coupons!  My DH gets the coupons that get left behind from the papers people read on sunday, but I never get my circulars with coupons anymore and buying a paper is iffy is you use a machine because someone will buy one paper and while the door is open steal all of the coupons from the rest.

That being said, when I coupon, I coupon. I usually collect coupons from the stacks that DH brings me from work, the ones I get in the mail, the ones my relatives give me (they just shove them all in a bag and give it to me, I clip the ones I want and pass them on).  When the perfect sale comes along, I do get things for free or nearly free.  Detergent for between $1 - $1.50 a bottle, toothbrushes for a dime, frozen veggies for free, lotion, shampoo, conditioner for nearly free.  I fortunately have room to store things, and when I can get things that I don't need, the local food bank will take them.  I gave them almost a case of deodorant, 100 toothbrushes, and a case of shampoo/conditioner that I paid less than $20 for.

Cheapness - Was in a coffee shop with DH using a groupon on Saturday.  Our total after coupon came to $3.  I tip on the original amount and service was awesome, so I threw in a little extra.  The couple behind and to the side of us was using the same deal. They milked it for all it was worth, stole an entire container of raw sugar packets, a whole packs worth a napkins, argued over the total, and left a .50 tip.  Wow.  I can see now why there are less and less groupons for restaurants in my area. 

wheeitsme

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Re: Cheapskate stories
« Reply #434 on: April 08, 2013, 02:12:10 PM »
The irony is that the boots theory works both ways.  To give my real-life example which actually involves boots, I always wear "hiking boots" for footwear because I like the way they work for me.  I put that in quotes because there are $25.00 cheapies and $500.00 extreme-o boots, and since I wear them all the time they wear out a lot faster than hiking boots normally do.  The thing is, I figured out that a good set of boots lasts 3-4 times as long as the cheapies, so it would seem that they would be the better investment.  But the problem is that the good boots that last that long are $150.00, so they'd have to last six times as long to be worth it, and the big plus is that I always have a reasonably new backup pair of boots.

This is only one example, but there are plenty of situations where the extra quality doesn't justify the extra cost, so it pays to consider the balance in all things.

Virg

This is true.  And I think that a truly frugal person thinks about that balance.