General Question

imrainmaker's avatar

How do you differentiate necessity vs luxury?

Asked by imrainmaker (8365points) April 1st, 2017

Necessity for one person might be luxury for another depending on income levels. So what would you call something as necessity and luxury?

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10 Answers

Sneki95's avatar

Necessity = what I need to function.
Luxury = what I need to feel nice.

It’s entirely subjective.

jca's avatar

For me, house that I live in without adult roommates, car that is reliable, food, heat, clothes that I feel decent in (fit, appearance, cleanliness), are necessities. Unfortunately, cell phone and internet service are necessities. With the job I do, getting my hair done is a necessity.

TV is a luxury which I could do without if I had to. Travel is a luxury but I am a frugal traveler and can do it on a budget. It’s not really a necessity but it is important to me, and also as the mother of a young child, it’s making memories and learning experiences.

For all of my shopping (food, clothes,etc.) I am frugal when I have to be.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

For me, it’s fairly simple. The question to ask is, “Is it a ‘need’ or a ‘want’?” The ‘needs’ take top priority.

If looking for an example, the SO bought a house a few years ago. At first, renovating was just a ‘want’ due to it being dated. When the pipes started leaking, it became a necessity. Fortunately, enough money was saved up to address the issues and convert it into a room we now love.

cazzie's avatar

I want a car like I have had all of my adult life. Before, in other countries I lived in, it was a need. Now it is a luxury. I don’t get to drive or own a car or work in my chosen field.

jca's avatar

@cazzie: Your job doesn’t allow you to own a car? Or did you mean “I cannot afford a car with the job I have now?”

cazzie's avatar

Nope I can’t afford a car here and nor is my drivers licence recognised.

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

Food, shelter, clothing and the tools that enable me to sell my time in order to maintain those things. Beyond that, everything else is luxury.

rojo's avatar

What do you call those things between necessities and luxuries?

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

There aren’t any in my world.

There are only necessities to live and luxuries. Knowing the difference and what little you actually need to survive, is very important. We collect luxuries as we go through life and it complicates our lives to no end.

Take a look in the average American suburban garage. You will find every kind of appliance and toy known to man—from jet skis to old bread makers to god knows what—to the point where there is no room for the car. Much of this is paid for on credit cards at high interest. Eventually it is all thrown away, donated, or sold at a lawn sale for pennies. But the principal and interest on the credit still exists and continues to accumulate. And this causes stress, causes both partners to work when one would be more useful at home raising the children, causes people to work longer hours and disassociates them from their families and communities.

When comes time to get serious and simplify your life, you need to know what is necessary and what is not. Things get real simple after that.

linguaphile's avatar

Necessity = respect
Luxury = attention

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