Frugality: Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing.
As part of the Plan for Attaining Moral Perfection series, I will be living one of the 13 virtues described by Benjamin Franklin in the Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin. You can read how all this got started here. This week I’ll be focused on living the virtue of Frugality.
Last week’s virtue was Resolution. As part of this exercise, I resolved to finally get to some of the items that have been on my todo list for a long time. One of the older, but important tasks was doing something with my old 401K accounts. There are lots of ways to “do something” with those accounts. Perhaps my todo list item should have been a little more clear. It’s difficult to figure out the correct next action for “do something”. Depending on who you ask, there are several correct ways to accomplish this. I’m choosing the easiest and minimalist approach of transferring my old accounts to my current employer’s plan. Feel free to tell me why I’m an idiot for doing this in the comments.
To do this, there is a lot of process. First, you need to make sure your address is up to date with all the old accounts. This takes up to 10 business days in some cases. Second, you need to request a transfer check to be mailed to your address. In my case, the check must be made out to a very specific bank and include my social security number on it, which is against policy of my previous employer’s accounts. At that point, there is some paper work to do, and the check can then be mailed back out with my elections on where to invest the money. During resolution week, I got the process started, and have some checks in the mail. We’ll see how it all turns out.
I’ll start this week’s virtue in a couple of minutes by shopping at the less expensive grocery store, only buying what we absolutely need and purchasing the cheapest items. Lately, I’ve been shopping at the more expensive place, buying organic when available, and usually going to the store when hungry which leads to a lot of impulse buying. This has also been a negative impact on the family’s grocery budget.
If you’re interested in the book that inspired this, it is available for less than $4 including shipping on Amazon. If you buy it through my link, by clicking on the image, I get 14 cents for the referral.