5 Money Lessons My Thrifty Couple Friends Taught Me

How do we save money correctly? I think we all know the answer to that. Open a bank account, keep the cash, avoid clearances, blah blah. But do we really know how?

Personal finance is a longstanding and a complicated issue. Obtaining a secure account will never be enough for someone who always thinks that everything in this world is a necessity. 

Do you want to know why whatever you do, or how hard you work you always end up having $0 balance at the end of the day? I think you should start checking your spending habits.

Now, do you have that friend who’s exaggeratedly thrifty? If you have one, I strongly suggest that you keep them in your circle and observe how they handle their finances. 

I’ll tell you about the couple I met here in Dunedin.

I studied international nursing when I arrived here in New Zealand, and we were in the same class. Being seatmates for quite some time, we became friends. 

After knowing them for almost two years – I found out that they have loads of money to support their needs and still have enough for their wants. They’ve also been to different parts of the world, and they’re not even 30 years old. 

They taught me a lot of things that I’ve known all along but just ignored. After a few days of hanging out with them, I ended up adapting some of their financial beliefs and habits. Here are some of my top favourites, 

THEY DON’T BUY ANYTHING ON SALE EVEN IF THEY THINK THEY NEED IT (sometimes even if I think they need it lol)

Yep, I think we’re all guilty when it comes to buying things we don’t need. I know this has been the most common reminder of all time. I know this from the bottom of my heart, but I just 100% ignore it. 

Whenever we go to the mall, I can’t help but to observe their spending habits.

They always deliberate whenever they want to buy something, even if they might need it in the future or whenever. Then after a few minutes of discussion, they end up not purchasing anything and choose to deliberate more for a few days. LOL

Credits to Istock photos

It gave me the realisation that we always buy things on sale because we think we might need them, even if we already have something comparable at home. 

And that’s how we usually get carried away, and boom! We go home with the same product we bought a week ago but with just a different colour. 


Ever since I’ve been friends with them, I’ve never bought anything more than $100. Even my wedding gown cost $49.99, it looked awful at first, but after some alteration, it ended up looking like it’s worth $700-$900. We bought it in a thrift shop. 

We never buy clothes for more than $2NZD when we’re in a second-hand shop, but if we’re in a boutique, we don’t purchase anything that’s more than $50NZD. 

Plus, most of the clothes I buy from clearance shops are nice and classy. Sometimes, I even find treasures like Zara and Cotton On. At least, if I don’t wear them much or if they don’t fit anymore, it’ll be easier to give them up. 

It’s better to have a backup plan when things get out of hand than a pile of expensive clothes that will wear and tear in time. 


Save now, buy later – I think that’s always their mantra. They never buy anything that involves split payments. I know it may be impossible for some, but I realised that if you’re patient enough to save – it’s possible. 

And whenever they buy something, they always check the tag description to verify if there are free goods and the discount or the interest if they pay it in cash. Let’s all be honest, we usually look at the price tag, and then that’s it. 

Credits to IStock Photo

They create a plan for everything, especially when it comes to spending. And to be honest, I’m amazed by this couple’s attention to detail. 


This couple taught me that patience is a virtue. They will look around for as long as they can if they want something. It doesn’t matter if it’ll take days. They won’t stop till they find something cheaper.

She always tells me things like, “don’t buy that chair for $100, if you can get it in Kmart for less than $50”. She also taught me that having fun is a matter of personal opinion, and having the patience to look for coupons and discounts before buying something is always a good thing to consider. 


This couple helps everyone. They are kind people who speak kind words to those who need it, especially the struggling ones. I know this may be out of topic, but I think it’s quite important.

They don’t overcharge their tenants as landlords, they lend money to those who need it, live with a positive mindset, and remain humble beyond compare. 

These are just some of the things they’ve taught me for almost one year. I realised that if you’re with the right people who can influence you with the proper mindset, your goals become more attainable and realistic. 

Then the next thing you know, you’ve saved up more than you could ever think.

Everything becomes too overpriced, and people keep on purchasing things they don’t need because of FOMO (fear of missing out). 

Even though I have a huge debt, I was able to save money. Don’t get me wrong, it’s okay to indulge yourself and enjoy your hard-earned money, but sometimes, the world gets so greedy that people’s lives just revolves around it. 

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