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What Is Frugality?

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On this blog I aim to share my personal advice on how to save money and be more efficient with your personal finances to help you hit your long-term and short-terms goals.

I do this by promoting a frugal lifestyle – but what exactly does that mean?

Whilst I would love to coin some fantastic explanation for it myself, I actually think this definition from Wikipedia is very clear and concise:

“Frugality is the quality of being frugal, sparing, thrifty, prudent or economical in the consumption of consumable resources such as food, time or money, and avoiding waste, lavishness or extravagance.”

As the definition states, being frugal is not just about managing your money well but also your time!

Someone who is frugal will be less likely to make impulse purchases, will often shop around for the best price and will forego certain luxuries in the short-term to help them reach their longer term goals.

Is being frugal a bad thing?

Whilst it may sound like an old fashioned word, it is actually a very widely practiced form of financial management in the modern day – especially at these times where wages are not increasing as fast as house-prices, rent and inflation.

It is not uncommon for people who practice being frugal to be labeled as ‘being tight with money’ – but is it really a bad thing? Not at all.

Being frugal is not the same as going without and not spending money! – It simply means doing so in a more controlled way and within your means.

It is no surprise that there has been a sharp increase in credit card debt over the past 10 years as people continue to live beyond their means.

In the longer term it is those who live a more frugal life that will achieve a higher net-worth throughout their lives.

What does a frugal lifestyle look like?

What does being frugal look like on a day-to-day basis?

In its simplest form it means planning ahead, having a strict budget to allow you to live within your means.
Alongside this you look to get the best value out of those regular expenses to make your money go further, areas such as:

  • Household bills
  • Grocery shopping
  • Mortgage/Rent payments
  • Debt repayments

Where possible you look to reduce the price you pay for these areas of your life to free up money for other things such as luxuries, holidays, etc.

It means understanding what you earn and what you spend on a monthly basis to ensure that you can meet your obligations and still have funds left for those other more fun areas of your life without accruing debt.

Whilst many are quick to criticise those who live a frugal lifestyle – you should not do so unless you have tried it yourselves and seen the many benefits it can bring to your life.

Many people have pulled themselves out of debt, have bought their first house or become millionaires from living a frugal life! So why not give it a try today.

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