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The art of frugality
Old 04-11-2007, 11:36 AM   #1
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The art of frugality

I *love* seeing if I can get the things I need for free (or close to free).

I would love to hear the best "scores" (garage sales or other wise) people have come home with. I will start.

- I built my kitchen for $400! Thanks to dumpster diving, recycling, and garage sales. And to be honest It turned out beautiful.

- I built a desk from a plywood crate that turned out great.

- I always keep metal that I find abandoned. You never know when I could do a little metal fabrication to build something beautiful for the house. For example I took some 6" pipe and build a forge which I use to build wrought iron accessories for the house. Oh BTW I used an old rail road tie for my anvil.

RW
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-11-2007, 11:45 AM   #2
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Re: The art of frugality

My company sent me to a one-hour meeting in Munich. To save my company money on the airfare, I had them fly me on Friday for the Monday meeting. I had a great free weekend vacation. That was pretty frugal of me, I think.
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-11-2007, 12:00 PM   #3
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Re: The art of frugality

Sweet! :-D (I love to travel, it is a weakness of mine)

----

Here is one I forgot. The company I work for has a recycle room. When someone leaves they place stuff left behind in this room. Everything is free for the taking. I have come home with a nice book stand, printer, paper binder.

If I only had a xerox printer. They have tons of toner.
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-11-2007, 12:05 PM   #4
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Re: The art of frugality

RW, I used a lot of salvage stuff in my new custom home, too. So much fun. I hope that DH will get into something like metal fabrication when we FIRE, it would be great to make new stuff out of old.
One great suggestion to get good old stuff for free is to hook up with a local Habitat for Humanity. They have Restore's, which are thrift stores to benefit the building projects, and often participate in what are called deconstructions. These are when (usually nice) houses are being torn down to build even nicer ones. The one I worked with did these on Kiawah Island (the fancy golf destination near Charleston, SC) and for example, took all the stuff out of 3 houses that were being torn down to make room for the mansion of Tara Lipinsky! Such great stuff came out of those houses!

Often some of the tearouts aren't worth reselling (like doors/frames) so whoever is helping with the deconstruction can have them for the trouble of taking them out. I got tub/showers, toilets, cabinets, 2 huge sliding glass doors (both are 8 feet across), fireplace insert, 10 ceiling fans, doors/frames, etc. to put in our house.

Fun frugality!
Sarah
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-11-2007, 04:01 PM   #5
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Re: The art of frugality

When my parents sold their vacation home, they gave me tons of stuff that were all good quality and in excellent condition:
27" Philips TV
Entertainment unit
2 recliners
kitchen table & chairs
2 end tables
raisable coffee table (one of the best inventions ever!)

If stuff from parents doesn't count, then biggest scores are probably baby clothes & a stroller off of freecycle.
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-11-2007, 04:59 PM   #6
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Re: The art of frugality

Freecycle rocks!!!

Today I saw a very nice swing for free. It came with the house and the new owner doesn't have kids :-D
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-19-2007, 08:51 PM   #7
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Re: The art of frugality

Wife's cell phone (flip) broke at the hinge so rather than buy new I bought one for $15-20 on ebay that one broke and I was able to buy a bundle of 9 on ebay for $38 bucks, lasted several years when they break she pulls one out of the drawer and reprograms it.
Bought a new washer and dryer last year. Trash company wanted a surcharge to haul the old ones away. The washer was still working so I took it to Habitat Restore. The dryer was a safety hazard so over the course of several weeks I cut it up with tin snips and with the help of a hammer and a large rock worked it right in to my trash can with the regular pick up.
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-19-2007, 09:52 PM   #8
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Re: The art of frugality

Quote:
Originally Posted by Darryl
Wife's cell phone (flip) broke at the hinge so rather than buy new I bought one for $15-20 on ebay that one broke and I was able to buy a bundle of 9 on ebay for $38 bucks, lasted several years when they break she pulls one out of the drawer and reprograms it.
Bought a new washer and dryer last year. Trash company wanted a surcharge to haul the old ones away. The washer was still working so I took it to Habitat Restore. The dryer was a safety hazard so over the course of several weeks I cut it up with tin snips and with the help of a hammer and a large rock worked it right in to my trash can with the regular pick up.
I love it! Nice work.
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-19-2007, 10:36 PM   #9
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Re: The art of frugality

I bought a 42 inch Plasma but got the floor model in lieu of getting a factory one. Then when it took so long to get the 42 inch in the store I asked for the 55 inch one and got it for just a bit more since the price had come down by then. Does this count as frugality California style ??

Just kidding, I love a bargain but this frugality stuff can spoil your life if taken to extremes. Still you guys are my heroes .

Les
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-20-2007, 10:31 AM   #10
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Re: The art of frugality

Quote:
Originally Posted by lsbcal
I love a bargain but this frugality stuff can spoil your life if taken to extremes. Still you guys are my heroes .

Les
Whenever I get something for free, "I feel like I stuck it to the man"!!!

Gave the middle finger to the American lifestyle!!!

... Hmmm ...

As a right wing conservative, I hate to admit that growing up in a hippie town may have rubbed off


My neighbors, growing up, didn't believe in furniture. We all had to sit on the floor. ( They sold drug parafaniala for a living ).
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-20-2007, 11:36 AM   #11
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Re: The art of frugality

RW86347.....I had to chuckle at your comments.....as it's long been my idea that if you want to raise a corporate executive, raise him or her in a tipi, and vice versa, of course.

Our counterculture selves ended up with one kid who had short hair in the seventies, went to the U.S. Naval Academy, and went on to become a spit and polish airline pilot......and one who became a Rush Limbaugh quoting right-wing Republican......

Where my father and mother, lifelong Republicans (well, my mother changed her affiliation when elderly because "I'm tired of men telling me what I can do with my body"), who thought that Dan Rather was a communist, ended up with me......a Buddhist kind of live and let live adherent of voluntary simplicity, a social liberal, (although kind of conservative fiscally).......

Yep, think you can thank your folks for pushing you in whatever direction that was different than their own......funny how it works that way, isn't it?


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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-20-2007, 12:08 PM   #12
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Re: The art of frugality

Well, lessee. When tenants bequeath us with a couch, which is usually a @#!!~**!! hideabed, I horse the thing outside and whack it up with an axe or splitting maul. Very theraputic. After tearing off the cover and foam the wood frame ends up mostly in our fireplace, the rest goes into the dumpster over several weeks. Kinda false economy, as the trash guys only charge $20 or so, but it's good for the tenants to see their landlord going crazy with an axe and leaping up and down on the dumpster trash to compact it. Wildman activity cuts down on extraneous tenant conversation.

Lots of cool windows and doors in frames, 3 1/4" oak flooring from practice burn houses that the fire department got rid of. 5-6 vacuum cleaners that I've retrieved from our dumpsters after folks move - replace a belt or unplug a tube and they are working again - I provide those as free-for-tenant use vacuums at the apartments or give them to longer term tenants in the hopes of promoting carpet care.

Store bought potatos that get soft this time of year get planted - tickles me to turn old food to fresh new.
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-20-2007, 12:18 PM   #13
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Re: The art of frugality

Quote:
Originally Posted by calmloki
Store bought potatos that get soft this time of year get planted - tickles me to turn old food to fresh new.
My kind of guy. I hope that after FIRE I will have more time for dumpster diving.
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-20-2007, 12:19 PM   #14
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Re: The art of frugality

Quote:
Originally Posted by loosechickens
RW86347.....I had to chuckle at your comments.....
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-20-2007, 12:25 PM   #15
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Re: The art of frugality

Entire heating for this year and next from free firewood from downed trees.

This week I got a brand new, safer chainsaw from Craigslist. The one I had had been purchased from a garage sale for $4. That one worked fine, but didn't have the safety features I wanted. The new one cost $100.

Plus free excercise at club split-the-firewood.
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-20-2007, 12:36 PM   #16
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Re: The art of frugality

Quote:
Originally Posted by rw86347
My kind of guy. I hope that after FIRE I will have more time for dumpster diving.
This may seem like an odd question, but by any chance did your dad retire from his former status as a captain of industry to live off the income of his new spouse plus the interest he earned from zero percent credit card offers?

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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-20-2007, 12:39 PM   #17
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Re: The art of frugality

Not our biggest score I am sure, but just after we were married (Broke and trying to furnish our first apartment) DH & I spotted the chair I am now sitting on clearly showing in a dumpster out back of the business next to where he worked. It was in perfect condition!

Twenty seven years later the fabric is a bit warn but it is comfy and swivels well. We have given it a good home and it has traveled the country with us!
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-20-2007, 12:53 PM   #18
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Re: The art of frugality

Bought a timeshare in Cancun off EBay last year at a place we had owned previously, so we knew what we were getting into and what it was worth. It wasn't the week we needed, so we internally exchanged ($100) for the week we needed, then rented through a private party for the week after that at the same resort ($1100). Used credit car miles for 3 of us to fly to cancun--when we got home, I resold the timeshare on Timeshare Users Group for $1400 more than I paid for it. Two weeks on the beach in Cancun and we made $200. Now that's my kind of travel! Tracy
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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-20-2007, 01:11 PM   #19
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Re: The art of frugality

Quote:
Originally Posted by REWahoo!
This may seem like an odd question, but by any chance did your dad retire from his former status as a captain of industry to live off the income of his new spouse plus the interest he earned from zero percent credit card offers?



Hot Damn!

After deciding a couple weeks ago, that I would quit bothering the young people on this board with "pithy" comments, I was killing some time this afternoon, and ran into your comment.

Very inside, but Ha, Nords, and some of the old-timers should be able to appreciate your observation.

Good one.!




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Re: The art of frugality
Old 04-20-2007, 01:19 PM   #20
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Re: The art of frugality

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
Entire heating for this year and next from free firewood from downed trees.

This week I got a brand new, safer chainsaw from Craigslist. The one I had had been purchased from a garage sale for $4. That one worked fine, but didn't have the safety features I wanted. The new one cost $100.

Plus free excercise at club split-the-firewood.
I also heat with wood. I never feel guilty for heating my house to 75, my heat is free.
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