We try hard to be as frugal as possible.
As I type this, I’m writing it on a brand-spanking-new Samsung Chromebook 3. I bought it for $189.00 at Walmart a couple weeks ago. I needed a replacement for my 2007 Macbook that takes 10 minutes to boot up these days, so I did some research on the cheapest and most effective Chromebooks. The Samsung 3 kept coming up, so I threw caution to the wind and just decided to splurge on it.
I bought it with money we made after a garage sale. To be clear, I paid for it with our Southwest Rapid Rewards Visa (which we use for almost every purchase), and then I went to the bank and deposited the $200 cash we had earned from the garage sale and will pay the credit card balance off with the cash (we pay it off twice a month). I thought about just buying the Chromebook with the cash itself, but didn’t want to miss out on the Southwest points.
To me, buying the Chromebook was a necessity. It was getting to the point where the Macbook just literally wouldn’t work anymore. It took forever to boot up, was slow when it actually started running, and just really made it difficult to get anything of substance done. I knew if I wanted to make a serious run at starting a blog, I needed a new computer (and by the way, if you’re in the market for one yourself, I think this is a pretty good deal, so here’s the link. Disclosure: I’ll get a small commission if you purchase through it.).
So, as i said, buying a Chromebook almost felt like a requirement. So I spent $189 on it. By almost any standard, $189 for a brand-new computer is pretty cheap, but it’s nothing to sneeze at. There are a lot of people out there who would kill to have $189 in their pocket right now, and that brings up an important point that I would be remiss if I didn’t mention: We may be dead broke with a negative net worth, but we aren’t living in poverty, and we shouldn’t act like it.
I’m sure there are going to be a lot of moments throughout the life of this blog where I make our financial situation sound pretty dire. I mean, when your net worth is a negative number, you certainly can’t say you’re in healthy financial shape!
That being said, we aren’t here to play the victim card or sing “woe is us.” We understand just how lucky we are to be in the positions we are in where we have an opportunity to make a wonderful income based on our chosen careers. We aren’t having to decide where we’re going to find gas or electricity money. We aren’t worrying about having enough to put food on the table. We know the mortgage payment is going to be covered.
I guess what we’re trying to say is this: There are people out there struggling to make ends meet, and the last thing we want to do is minimize someone else’s financial struggles by complaining that earning 6-figures a year isn’t enough for us to feel financially stable.
Improving our own financial position and recognizing that there are many others out there who are having much tougher times than we are with their own situations are not mutually exclusive ideas. Truthfully, we feel that there is no better way to acknowledge the privilege we have of earning a good income than to be responsible with our money, and that is one reason we are so passionate about personal finance and, in particular, debt elimination.
Our hope is that we can inspire other people – particularly, debt-ridden high-income professionals, but honestly, anyone – to treat their finances with thoughtfulness and respect, and use their incomes not for the instant gratification of consuming even more goods, but for the long-term construction of a financial foundation that can serve your family for years to come.
It’s a lofty goal, we know, but you can help us achieve it by participating in our discussions. Leave us comments! Let us know what we’re getting right and what we’re getting wrong.
Most importantly, thanks for reading!