The Millionaire Next Door

An Unexpected Lesson in Frugality

 Harry and his wife are among members of the Balance Sheet Affluent crowd.  Even so, Harry never expected that one day his daughter would dramatically change her retail clothing store patronage habits.  

His daughter, a college freshman, was home from school one weekend.  On Saturday, Harry asked her if she would help him deliver a carload of give aways to the nearest Goodwill store which was adjacent to four of the top 100 high income neighborhoods [out of 208,790] in America.  She had never been in a thirft store of this type. While Harry was inside the store picking up his tax receipt, his daughter wandered away.  He found her later with an armload of designer clothes heading for the check out lane.  According to Harry, she explained that the clothes she purchased were nearly new and would have cost her more than 5 times what she paid had she bought them at the mall. . . even on sale.  Two weeks later his daughter with her 3 college roommates was back at the same Goodwill store taking advantage of more “bargains.”

For a girl who had never shopped at a thirft store in her life, this was quite a radical change.  Harry feels certain that had he suggested that his middle class coed daughter purchase her fall wardrobe at a used clothing store “wild horses couldn’t have dragged her near such a place.” However, his daughter made up her own mind and used her own money to buy her purchases. 

4 thoughts on “An Unexpected Lesson in Frugality”

  1. Great article! Even though I like to shop retail stores; Kohl’s, Marshall’s, Not 5*, the thrift stores do have good deals. A very good lesson for a college student.

  2. he must have thought, THAT’S A RELIEF! I guess as a parent, all you can do is to set an example and raise your children’s awareness on these issues and hope they make the right decisions. Hard not to force them to do stuff sometimes. Always better to have them figure out the good path on their own.

  3. Perspective is everything. Just realizing that the item is new to you, makes it new! I love my 1999 paid for car, and I bought it in 2000 and it seems new everytime I drive it after giving it an intense cleaning! Attitude, having a great attitude!

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