What is the value of free to you?

Curious how rationally FDers feel about free things. I don’t care about Costco free samples as much as before, and I’m also over company provided free swag. It turns out, I can actually have too many tshirts.

I will still get irrationally angry when I’m reading an article and a paywall pops up though.


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But you can never have too many koozies or beach towels. :slight_smile:

Rational? FDers? Have you looked at the political or aborted Roe thread? :laughing:

Yes, paywalls are something we’ll have to get used to. I don’t like them either, but understand, and accept their purpose. I’m at an age where time is more valuable than money (to an extent), so I’ve turned down some decent dinners because they wanted to pitch annuities, some “we can managed your retirement funds to get more Social Security”, etc. I no longer accept the UPS/Fedex offers to pay me for my opinion, specifically because of the time involved. Fortunately, those disappeared during Covid and haven’t returned, at least for me. Maybe they found out I’m more than semi-retired.

We have fewer disagreements when it comes to personal finance. I actually don’t think there’s any controversy on most finance topics, cryptocurrencies being the one big exception.

I think as you get older, most people begin to realize that the value of an item to you is more of a priority than the price of the item. No matter how good a deal might be, it’s not a deal if you wont use the item. And those who do not realize this become hoarders.


There was a really cool cover band made up of guys my age that formed right around 2010 and they used to play every 3rd thursday at a bar that was known for their live music and no cover. I would see them there and when they would play free festivals. By 2012, the were so popular, any bar that didn’t charge a decent cover was packed like sardines when they played. I started only going to their shows or festivals that required tickets. That was the moment in my life I realized that you always get what you pay for, even when the good or service is free.


There is a similar addon for Chrome as well.

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Brokerage trades are free almost everywhere, but it’s worth it to me to pay for Interactive Brokers “pro” (was just standard) service where you pay commission to hopefully get better execution and they don’t sell your order flow. Seems worth it to me.


Hoarding is a serious problem. I have a friend who kept an apartment for many years after he bought a house because he could not get rid of the stuff in the apartment. Now the apartment was sold and the landlord wants him to move out. So he has rented an expensive storage unit and he’s paying people to move the stuff from the apartment to the storage unit.

People have different weaknesses. My friend had a long academic career and his weakness is books and old articles.

I have a tendency towards hoarding so I keep a tight rein on the stuff that I buy and accumulate.


For sure. I’m used to their platform and features, and trade so little that the fees don’t matter. Plus free corporate actions.

I can think of a distorted value of free in the miles and points space. Planning a trip around a “free” hotel credit card award night to not waste it.



I recently jumped through some hoops to get Caesars Diamond, not because I want to use it at Caesars properties, but because I want to status match to other places and possibly get free rooms/cruise with the other properties. But there is a good chance I won’t even be able to use them before they expire and/or using them will piss my wife off so much that, yeah, they will be “free” moneywise, but not “free” when it comes to marriage equity.

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Haha. Wish firefox android had this addon, excellent suggestion for the laptop though. I know some people will use archive sites to bypass paywalls, e.g. https://archive.ph/35keH for Bloomberg - Are you a robot?

Or hopping hotels during a trip to use up points in multiple award programs… annoys the travel partner hah

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I hate switching hotels, but sometimes you have to! I avoid it when my partner is traveling with me.

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You’ve got that right. I will be the executor, presuming ability, for a hoarder. She is incredibly sweet, is a millionaire several times over, but cannot stop buying “deals”. You can barely navigate her house, and she refuses admittance to most due to her embarrassment. She knows she has a problem, but cannot help herself.

To give you a further idea of bad it is, she filled up her Porsche with junk, and is now driving a 66 El Dorado because there is more space. It’s very sad, and there have been attempts to “fix” things. She is now so old that everyone has given up … or died.

Presuming that I’m still around, it will be my task to open walls to find silver and gold, go through tons of paper to find CD and stock certs. I anticipate that it will be about a ten to fourteen week job, and have informed her that she shouldn’t die until the fall (not this fall, just any fall). :frowning:


That doesn’t make any sense – she should be driving the Porsche since she could fit more junk in the Eldorado! Unless she’s driving to bring the junk home, I guess.

Of course, hoarding is a mental illness and has very little to do with sense. One thing I’ve noticed is that hoarders personify objects as if they were people or pets.

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Everything is useful in some way, has some sort of value, whether it’s sentimental, or they perceive that someone else could use the object. Broken objects become treasure, because they could be fixed some day when there’s time.

The car starts holding junk because hey, someone threw away a perfectly good chair on the curb, they know someone who might be able to use the chair.

I think it all comes from good intentions, but it becomes very painful to throw things away.