Are you Frugal or Cheap?

Are you Frugal or Cheap?

Frugality and being cheap are not the same thing. Frugality is the quality of being careful with money and resources while being cheap is being unwilling to spend money or overly concerned with getting the lowest price, often at the expense of quality or value.


Frugality involves making mindful and deliberate choices about using your money and resources in a sustainable way that aligns with your values. It can include finding ways to save money, such as by shopping for the best prices or reusing or repurposing items instead of buying new ones.


On the other hand, being cheap often involves a focus on getting the lowest price regardless of the quality or value of the product or service. It can include making decisions based solely on merit and disregarding other factors, such as an item's long-term cost or value.


It is essential to find a balance between frugality and being cheap. Being too frugal can lead to missing out on opportunities or not being able to afford things that are important to you while being too cheep can lead to making poor quality or short-term decisions that end up costing more in the long run.


Frugality can lead to success in a number of ways. By being careful with money and resources and making deliberate choices about how to use them, you can save money, invest wisely, and build financial stability. This can provide a strong foundation for success, both personally and professionally.


For example, being frugal can allow you to save money for emergencies, invest in education or professional development, or start a business. It can also help you to live within your means and avoid debt, which can be a significant burden and hinder your ability to achieve your goals.


On the other hand, being cheap can often result in the opposite of success. By focusing solely on getting the lowest price and disregarding quality or value, you may end up making poor quality or short-term decisions that end up costing more in the long run.


For example, being cheap may lead you to purchase cheap, low-quality items that break or need to be replaced frequently, resulting in higher overall costs. It may also lead you to miss out on opportunities or experiences that are worth paying for, such as education or professional development.


There are many investors who have built their companies by being frugal and careful with their resources. Here are a few examples:


  1. Howard Schultz, CEO of Starbucks: Schultz is known for his frugal approach to business, which has helped Starbucks to become one of the most successful and well-known coffee chains in the world. He is known for his focus on quality, customer service, and sustainability, as well as his careful management of costs and resources.

  2. Sam Walton, founder of Walmart: Walton was known for his frugal approach to business, which included a focus on low prices, cost-cutting measures, and tight control over expenses. This helped Walmart to become one of the largest and most successful retail chains in the world.

  3. Warren Buffet, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway: Buffet is known for his frugal lifestyle and his careful and disciplined approach to investing. He is known for his focus on value, quality, and long-term growth, and for his avoidance of risky or overpriced investments.

  4. Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla: Musk is known for his frugal approach to business, which has helped Tesla to become one of the most successful and innovative companies in the world. He is known for his focus on efficiency, innovation, and sustainability, as well as his careful management of resources and costs.

  5. Tim Cook, CEO of Apple: Cook is known for his focus on efficiency, cost-cutting measures, and a tight control over expenses, which has helped Apple to become one of the most successful and innovative technology companies in the world. He is also known for his focus on sustainability and social responsibility.




What to learn more about becoming Frugal? 


Here are a few books and magazines about frugality that you might find helpful:


  1. "The Millionaire Next Door" by Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko: This book is a classic on frugality and financial success. It examines the spending and saving habits of wealthy individuals and shows how frugality is often a key component of their success.

  2. "The Simple Path to Wealth" by JL Collins: This book is a practical guide to frugality and financial independence, offering advice on how to save money, invest wisely, and build wealth over time.

  3. "The Tightwad Gazette" by Amy Dacyczyn: This book is a comprehensive guide to frugal living, offering tips and strategies for saving money on everything from groceries to home repairs.

  4. "Frugal Living for Dummies" by Deborah Taylor-Hough: This book is a beginner's guide to frugal living, offering practical advice on how to save money, live within your means, and build financial stability.

  5. "The Frugalwoods" by Elizabeth Willard Thames: This book is a personal account of the author's journey to financial independence through frugal living, offering practical tips and strategies for saving money and living a more fulfilling life.

  6. "Frugal Living" magazine is a resource for frugal living tips and ideas, with articles on topics such as budgeting, saving money, and simplifying your life.

  7. "Your Money or Your Life" by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez: This book is a classic on frugality and financial independence, offering a holistic approach to managing money and building wealth.
  8. "The Simple Dollar" by Trent Hamm: This book is a practical guide to frugal living, offering tips and strategies for saving money and living a more fulfilling life.
  9. "The Frugal Shopper" by Eileen Roth: This book is a guide to frugal shopping, offering tips and strategies for finding the best deals and saving money on everything from groceries to home goods.
  10. "The Complete Tightwad Gazette" by Amy Dacyczyn: This book is a comprehensive guide to frugal living, offering hundreds of tips and strategies for saving money on everything from food to home repairs.
  11. "Wise Bread" website: This website is a resource for frugal living tips and ideas, with articles on topics such as budgeting, saving money, and maximizing your income. It also offers a newsletter with regular updates on frugal living topics.


Don't have time to read all of these. Don't worry.  I am happy to do this for you. I will publish the summary of my notes on this website. Please come back and check it out.



Deepak Sharma

Deepak Sharma

Insurance Advisor / WealthGuard


  • My goal is simple, protect what is important to you. I focus my energy on discovering your exposure to risk and building a comprehensive plan to protect you against those risk.