Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Is Frugal Living The New Trend?

The Latte Era Grinds Down by Daniel Gross in the October 22, 2007 edition of Newsweek shares a new phenomenon of buying smaller and less expensive that is spreading across America. It's now cool to try to live within one's means. The article shares stories of people making their own lattes, using scooters for transportation, going for right-sized homes, eating out less and, potentially, eliminating cosmetic treatments.

This is great. To me, frugal living has been looked down upon for the past two to three decades. It was much cooler to live the high life, even if it required debt. After all, the eighties, nineties and the aughts were all about living at the edge and pushing the envelope. Million dollar mansions, $60,000 cars, and $8 lattes showed that one had "made it." If one created an expensive lifestyle on debt, so much the better for "beating the system."

For many, frugal living is an excellent way to become wealthly. Now more people are espousing spending less than one earns, Ways to Be Frugal While Building Wealth and Buying Only What One Needs. I'll know that frugal living is a major trend when mainstream media begins interviewing frugal bloggers more than bloggers who are in debt :-)

For more on The Practice of Personal Finance, check back every Wednesday for a new segment.

This is not financial advice. Please consult a professional advisor.

Copyright © 2007 Achievement Catalyst, LLC


Boomie said...

Hey, I've been asked by both U.S. News Report and CBS Evening news for interviews but I have flatly turned them down. Why? I don't need the publicity and I enjoy my quiet, frugal yet profitable lifestyle. Once the media is involved all hell breaks loose.
Frugal is nothing new. Millionaires have been doing it for years. Millionaires don't use credit cards nor boast about their rewards, mileage points or whatever gimmick. The poor can't get their hands on credit cards so, who does that leave?
The housing mess should prove once and for all that granite countertop, marble bathrooms, stainless steel appliances and oversized homes mean absolutely nothing.
LIVE WITHIN YOUR MEANS. ACT YOUR WAGE! You can't ever, ever, go wrong with that!

Super Saver said...


Good point. Frugal people, especially wealthy ones, may not want any publicity.

Congrats on being sought after for an interview. It shows the media may finally have some recognition of benefits of being frugal.

Amy said...

Wow, the most recent comment right now (Posted By: blacroix @ 10/22/2007 11:23:05 AM) is by the first gent in the article, and it makes him and his wife sound even more down to earth.

I'm not sure if frugality is the new trend, or if it's an effect of the price of gas and the weak housing market with a smidge of Inconvenient Truth to give it a hipper image.