When Should You Start Saving Money? People Over 50 Who Saved Money Young Share Where They Are Now

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Sometimes, when I feel like having a good cry, I look at my student loan statement and choke up when I see the five-digit balance still marring my monthly bills. I'm already frugal — always have been; but I wonder what my financial situation would be like if I had taken it even further all these years. One Redditor posed that exact question, asking people who saved all their money at a young age and are now over 50 years old how things turned out and if they regret their choices. Was it worth scrimping and saving? Did their quality of life suffer? Did they truly get to live?

It's a double-edged sword, really — years and years of sacrifice to hopefully have a better life later on. Then again, it seems many of these people didn't look at is as sacrifice at all. They lived a wonderful life on very modest means and then continued to live a wonderful life spending and splurging here and there. Can you really have the best of both worlds, and is it always a happy ending?

While that seems to be the case more commonly, there are some people who saved and saved and still ended up with very little in the end. Here are some of their stories.

1It Runs In The Family

10 million buckaroonies is quite impressive. Investing in real estate seems to be where it's at and can be a huge source of passive income; in fact, investing in general is a smart idea, even if you're broke AF. Renting out properties was actually mentioned in several of the comments on this thread. They must be on to something.

2Paying For College And Traveling The World

This couple must have been seriously smart with their money to fund two college educations and do that much traveling. Sounds like a fairytale to us, especially considering people with student loan debt today likely won't retire until they're 75 years old.

3When Things Don't Go As Planned

This is absolutely something to be careful with. When you make a point of living frugally (or extravagantly), it can become a lifestyle you're so used to that you can't imagine it any other way — and that defeats the whole purpose. Don't do it all for nothing. If you're going to save everything for a good majority of your life, there should be some kind of reward for it.

4Striking A Balance

This is the misconception about being frugal: a lot of people think it means living a boring, dirty, low-quality life. This frugal gal can tell you such is not the case! There is a way to do it and do so comfortably, as this couple did. It's about compromise.

5Nasty Rental Houses

This person's frugal habits certainly paid off. A home on the beach, three college educations paid for, and retiring at 48? Sign me up.

6The Cheapest People Ever

Being thrifty is a great skill to have; but you don't have to exercise it all day, every day. We all need to loosen up every now and again. Making coffee at home is great and totally saves money over time; but go ahead, girl — treat yourself to that pumpkin spice latte once in a while.

7Knowing That It's Totally Worth It

Not all of us are going to make $100k a year. In fact, most of us won't.  But this person is a great example of how even people with a little more money need to practice safe spending in order to have the kind of future they want.

8No Regrets For The Earlier Years

While making some sacrifices financially is cool and all, you certainly don't want to look back on your life and regret having done so. These parents made it work like pros — and it's other people in the family wishing they had learned to do the same.

9Reaping The Benefits Of Frugality

Nothing is terrifying quite like knowing your financial future is shaky, seeing no signs of retirement anywhere in your future, and worrying nonstop about how you'll continue supporting yourself while also enjoying life.

10Tomorrow Isn't Guaranteed

"Plan for tomorrow but don't forget to live today." That might explain all of this perfectly. Finding a way to adequately save for the future while still enjoying your life now is crucial, because as dark as it may sound, none of us knows what the future holds. Don't wait to be happy. It's a lifestyle, not a destination.