Soaring costs of every single thing around us lets us rethink our lifestyle over and over.

Whether it’s food, living cost or any other basic essential, the price of everything is going up by leaps and bounds. In spite of earning well, most of us often end up missing various luxuries of life. Right?

So, the whole scenario always compels us to save money. In this context, what tends to be a bliss for us is nothing but a coupon site. The thrilling curated coupon sites like CouponsMonk and Groupon really help us to save some extra bucks. Whether it’s a weekly grocery purchasing episode or buying an expensive piece of jewelry, we look for a discount on these websites.

Does that mean we’re acting cheap? What do you think?

Of course we’re not! The two terms “budget-friendly” and “cheap” varies a lot. Most of the time people misunderstand these two concepts. They think someone who is conscious about his spending is nasty.

So, I thought of throwing some light on the difference between living frugally and being cheap. Have a look and share your thoughts in the comments.

1. Price Vs. Quality

Cheap people only look at the price; frugal people look at the quality.

For a cheap person, nothing is more than money. Howbeit, when it comes to a budget-conscious individual, money can never be superior to quality.

Example: In a grocery store, someone picked up a frozen dinner while getting enticed to its affordable price. Later on, she noticed that it consists of some unhealthy processed ingredients. If she still purchases the product for the price, even though she would prefer healthier options (and has the money for it), she is cheap.

If she thinks health comes first and doesn’t end up purchasing the product, she is budget-friendly, whether she decides to spend the money on a quality dinner or a completely different meal.

2. Mind Vs. Heart

Cheap people react immediately from the mind; frugal people react more slowly and from the heart.

A person might be on a budget but he gives importance to the overall value of a specific thing. Yet, for a cheap person, his expenditure is the most significant factor.

Example: A budget-friendly person might not contribute hugely to any charity. Instead, he will find other ways to compensate, like giving some extra time. On the other hand, a cheap person will neither contribute nor give his time. He may donate some old clothes to charity, but you have to look at the heart. Is that an act of kindness, or a lazy way to avoid selling the items. It’s about the heart.

3. Cost Vs. Importance

Cheap people prioritize spending less; frugal people prioritize the important things.

For a frugal person, cutting down the costs on little things and saving money for bigger dreams makes sense. When it comes to a cheap person, spending the least is the only mantra!

Example: Someone who is on a budget might not go out for weekend parties but she will definitely attend festivals and events that are important to her. Whereas, a cheap person will neither go for the former option nor the latter one. For her, money is meant to be in the bank and the piggy bank only.

4. Overusing Vs. Smart Replacing

Cheap people reuse things to a fault; frugal people find smart ways to purchase new things.

I’m not talking about clothes or jewelry. Those who are on a budget definitely reuse such things. However, cheap people recycle even the basic essentials at home.

Example: Whether hand soap or shampoo, cheap people try to reuse everything. They will refill those bottles with water and try to make the most out of it, even to the point of making the soap practically useless. It might only be 30 cents that they’re saving by doing this, but they still do it!

Budget-conscious people will rather look for a coupon or sale to purchase new bottles.

5. Sacrificing Comfort Vs. Sacrificing Luxuries

Cheap people sacrifice comfort; frugal people sacrifice extreme luxuries.

A cheap person doesn’t believe in the concept of standard of living at all. A frugal person tries to save money while not depriving himself or from his basic desires.

Example: Someone who is cheap will not enjoy his life at all. If someone thinks twice before buying an ice cream for his kid (because of the price, not for health reasons), he is cheap. A person who tries to act on a budget will definitely not do that. He might not prefer to go for a yearly international vacation. Yet, when it comes to the basic desires, he lives comfortably within his budget.

If you were confused between these two terms, I hope it’s clear now. Remember, if you plan to save money, it doesn’t make you cheap. If you are able to maintain a flourishing financial life while fulfilling your and your family’s obvious desires, you are budget-friendly.

Be frugal, don’t be cheap! And remember, being frugal can be fun!

About the Author:
Clara Decker is the free time writer and full-time internet surfer. She likes to work on making in-home life better in society. She lives like an entrepreneur to support her husband at the month ends.