Is this guy too cheap?

April 30, 2014 — 14 Comments

I can always count on my post “How much car can you afford” to post to pull in some good comments.  Check out one I got a few days ago:

Sigh. My multimillionaire dad drives a 1999 Honda Accord with the paint peeling off. It drives my mom crazy.

All I could think about when I read this was “first world problems”!!  Wow, how upset this daughter is that her dad drives an old, beat up car!  She even gave it a “Sigh” at the beginning of the comment!  She says it drives her mom crazy, but obviously drives her crazy as well.

So this begs the question, is this guy too cheap?  He’s a multi-millionaire and is driving around in a beat up 1999 Honda Accord with the paint peeling off.  I’m sure he bought the car with cash (maybe even used) and has held on to it since.  I’d also guess that he didn’t grow up with much money and is determined to never have that problem again.  What do you think?

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14 responses to Is this guy too cheap?

  1. I don’t think he is too cheap although it would help the car out a bunch if he would get it a paint job before it rusts out. Why is driving a 15 year old car too cheap anyhow? Perhaps cars aren’t a luxury to him, just a way to get around. He knows no one will steal it. The insurance is probably cheap, he is probably comfy driving it, etc. My criteria with cars has always been that they have 4 good tires, I don’t bump my head getting in and now with arthritis and multiple knee replacements, it has to be a car I can get in and out of easily which ends up being a Chrysler/Dodge mini-van. I think our current one is 8 years old.

    I suspect that he may splurge on other things that are important to him. While other than a mode of transportation, I would rather, when I have the money, splurge on something that is special to me, like a top of the line sewing machine and let me tell you the one I wouldn’t mind having runs about $6K! It isn’t any body’s business how my husband and I spend our money, or for people to think we are cheap. Why should this guy spend it in ways that others think he should just because he has more money than us?

    • Wow, I didn’t know you could spend so much on a sewing machine! It would be interesting to see what he does splurge on… maybe I’ll follow up with the girl and see if I can learn more.

  2. If it gets him from A to B then what’s the problem? He obviously doesn’t need a “status symbol” car to impress clients in order for him to become a multimillionaire. Buy the wife a Lexus to keep the peace and move on…

    • Ya, he has millions in the bank account… he’s obviously self-assured enough to not need a nice status symbol to let everyone know he’s rich! I’ve already failed that test with my new used car!

      • Some of the comments I read are quite hilarious…status symbol. Why must any and everything over some $% be a status symbol. If I like that particular brand or car for what it is (be it an engineering marvel/or revolutionary design) for a reason to purchase say an Audi, BMW or NSX. Why must is it that person is trying to impress the world with his/her shiny shit. Some people think inside of a very tiny box.

  3. Dan — A car’s sole purpose is get you from point A to point B. The multi-millionaire no doubt feels he has more important things to spend his money on — like philanthropy. So, no, he’s not too cheap.

    • True, it’s probably quite telling to see the ratio *some* millionaires give to charity vs spend on cars… I’m assuming most people with less money have the opposite ratio.

  4. To each his own. If that’s the car he wants to drive then so be it. Perhaps his frugalness is how he accumulated his wealth. If mom or daughter do not like it, maybe they can take their car when they go on outings with good old dad.

    • I’m with you Susan, I definitely think that’s how he has accumulated his wealth. I’m sure the daughter has a much nicer car the way she talks

  5. The problem is not that the father is too cheap but that the daughter is too shallow. Apparently she has no real problems if she can focus on this

  6. Without much more information than this it is hard to come to a conclusion. We each approach things like this through our own lens of experience.

    • Yes, it really is hard to know what’s going on without the full story. It’s amazing to see how fast a family can change… going from a dad who seems to be incredibly frugal/smart with money, to a daughter who may not be the same!

  7. Wow, I want to upgrade my 1994 Honda Accord to a 1999 and feel like a multimillionaire. I wonder if he is going to sell his ride. I just thought maybe if he get’s his car painted his family will back off. (or not)

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