Category: Our Finances

119

Put Your Life on Frugal Autopilot

We don’t have a budget. For anything. Ever. When I first shared this, folks were mildly shocked. After all, Mr. Frugalwoods and I are all about saving money, so how on earth do we skip this most basic of financial conventions? Through habitual frugality. Mr. FW and I have been living frugally for so many years that it has become our modus operandi. We’ve programmed ourselves to see the world through a frugal lens such that it’s...

108

How We Manage Our Household Finances

I know you all spent the weekend just hoping I would publish a post this morning about how Mr. Frugalwoods and I manage our money. Right? Right?!? I know I did. I’ve received a number of comments and emails lately asking for greater illumination of our financial mechanics and so today, I will oblige. I’d especially like to thank Emily from Evolving Personal Finance for her excellent questions after my August 2014 Expenditures post as well as a...

102

Why I’m Not Buying Any Clothes in 2014

‘Cause I’ve stopped wearing them. JOKE! Quite simply, I don’t need more clothes. But that’s never stopped me before. So why am I stopping now? I’m a thrift store maven and I have a bag of tricks on how to get a good deal at goodwill, but, still. Truth is, I love clothes. Can’t help it. Not going to lie. I love finding thrift store steals and pairing them up with garage sale belts, hand-me...

123

Behind the Scenes of a Happy Frugal Marriage

Since most of my writing is devoted to how Mr. Frugalwoods and I save money and what we want our money to do for us, I figured folks might like to know how we manage said money in the context of our marriage. I’m writing up a series of posts on the details of our financial management, but I wanted to start with our philosophical underpinnings. I think that identifying financial goals and long-term plans are the true first...

12

A Frugalwoods Vacation: What We Spent, What We Didn’t

Last weekend Mr. Frugalwoods and I attended a friend’s glorious wedding–held at a brewery no less (yes, we have awesome friends). Being us, we made the journey on the cheap. Still, I can’t help but wonder if we could’ve done it even cheaper…what do you think? Here’s the rundown: Total Cost of Trip: $535.50 Estimated Savings: $1,509.96 Airfare The distance was such that driving wasn’t an option, so we bought our plane tickets far in advance and were flexible...

32

Do You Really Need That? Don’t Be Owned By Your Stuff!

Stuff is the lifeblood of the American Dream, apparently. Our culture inundates with the clarion call to buy, to spend. Whether we NEED the proffered product is a secondary, if not tertiary, purchasing determinant. I fail to understand this seemingly unique-to-Americans drive to consumption. People buy material goods they don’t need in order to fill houses that are too big and then feel pressure to move to ever-larger houses in order to perpetuate the cycle. And then there’s an entire industry...

34

Frugal Hound Costs $930.35 Annually

Pets are costly and while the most frugal option is not to have a critter at all, Frugal Hound (a rescued retired racing greyhound) brings so much joy to our lives and is well worth the expense. Though we love her dearly, we see no reason to spend serious dough; we care for her in a frugal, compassionate way. We believe in preventative healthcare and no spending on pet frivolities… yet, she still costs almost a thousand bucks...

49

Why Did We Buy Our House?

Buying a house is falling out of fashion in the Financial Independence and Early Retirement community. Not “Green Polyester Leisure Suit” out of fashion, more “Cherry Cabinets and Ornamental Backsplash” out of fashion. The oft-cited, and extensively researched, post on the matter is the awesome and amazing JCollinsNH’s “Rent v. Owning Your Home, opportunity cost and running some numbers.” If you haven’t read it, you should. Go ahead, I’ll wait. I weighed in with my own “Should...

22

Is an Emergency Fund necessary?

We’ve all heard the personal finance truism: Keep three to six months of living expenses in the bank just in case. But do folks pursuing Financial Independence and Early Retirement (FIRE) really need an emergency fund? Originally the emergency fund was conceived in response to the all too common cycle of debt and poverty. People who scrape by, living paycheck to paycheck, can be utterly devastated by an unexpected one time expense. But we’re not...

12

You CAN Save Your Way to Financial Independence

I recently attended a conference for work and in a session on personal finance, the speaker espoused that one cannot get rich by cutting out small luxuries because “necessities” are so expensive. This speaker went on to say that you’ll never “save your way to financial stability” and that the best thing to do is focus on making more money. Needless to say, I disagree with this stance for a number of reasons: 1) In fact you...