I’m a born and raised New Yorker, which is why I feel I have a lot to share on the city! I’m also a big fan of frugality, and studying personal finance (PF) is one of my hobbies. I like to read PF books and blogs, watch shows like Dave Ramsey or Suze Orman, and budget. Yeah, I legitimately enjoy budgeting.
I’ve always been frugal. As a kid, I had to be. I got a scholarship to a private boarding school but my parents didn’t have a lot of money, so I learned to budget carefully. I learned to anticipate expenses that my parents used to take care of—small things like deodorant or highlighters could totally throw my budget off if I didn’t plan for them. I found car rides to save my parents the $40 cab fare from the train station when they visited; I stored my computer with a local friend during the summers and split the proceeds with her when I sold it at her yard sale, and so on. If I didn’t track and limit my spending so carefully, I wouldn’t have been able to afford essentials like school books.
I don’t really have to be frugal anymore. Today I can afford basics like shoes or shampoo without wincing over the price. And yet, frugality has stuck with me. I save about a quarter of my earnings each month (before the recession killed my salary, I saved one-third). This is money that I use for vacations, for retirement saving, and for helping out my parents.
My motto is this: Frugality is the art of putting money to its best use. I spend less where I can so I can splurge where I choose. I live in a pleasant but under-developed immigrant neighborhood and spend 30% of my income on housing (significantly less than most New Yorkers). I take care to buy cosmetics on sale but pay over $1,000 per year on hair salons. And I try never to spend money unnecessarily when I can get something cheaper.
I also am a writer, so I decided to combine that love with my PF obsession and create this blog! I look forward not just to sharing knowledge but to creating a community with readers and fellow bloggers.
If you'd like to contact me, send me an email at: frugal nyer at gmail dot com. All one word, of course, with the appropriate symbols!