This is What Frugal Looks Like is a series that highlights different ways that people can be frugal in their lives- after all, frugality doesn’t have to be drastic or just about clipping coupons. Frugality can be fun and easy. Each respondent answers the same four questions. Today’s interview is with Jennifer from I Am The Working Poor.
What does frugality mean to you?
Frugality for me is having a set of skills that enable me to live on less money than I have in the past. Being frugal keeps me from going into major debt. I don’t feel compelled to purchase as much stuff. I no longer keep as much clutter because I paid so much for it or because it was a gift. I feel I enjoy a higher quality of life by being in control of my finances and having fun experiences instead of collecting stuff.
What is something you do that is typically frugal?
I’m very careful with grocery shopping. I make my shopping list by picking what I need from the sale ads, and matching my coupons with those items. I guess this is an area that most thrifty people think of when they hear the word frugal. At least I see many articles on this subject.
What is something you do that is unusual?
This was a tough question. I don’t know how typical or unusual any of my activities are. The only thing I could think of that was unusual is recycling. I picked this because amongst my co-workers I and one other person that I know of recycle. Our local garbage collector has once a week and twice a week pick up. We only need once weekly pick up due to our recycling. We save $15.00 per month for our efforts. Recycling saves the environment and saves us money. When we drive through the neighborhood on the second trash day we see that most people chose the twice weekly pick up.
What are some of your long term goals that being frugal will help you accomplish?
I long to travel, but I have a low income now. Being frugal allows me to survive, not rack up debt, and save gradually. I plan to move to an area where jobs are more plentiful and the cost of living is lower, and then keep on saving so I can afford real travel. I joke with my husband that moving is the poor mans’ vacation, and I’m always up for a move.