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When It’s Okay to Spend Money

Posted by : Premraj | Posted on : Thursday, May 4, 2017

Break your big budget items to small line items
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A few years ago Cracked.com published an article about the five worst habits people develop when they grow up poor. Among them was the fact that people on strict budgets often make purchasing decisions based on the price of an item at that moment and not how much the item will cost/save over the long term. They were talking about toasters that break every few months, furniture that wears out incredibly quickly, etc–because the well-made stuff costs way more than the instant/quick-fix solutions.

This is a self-perpetuating problem. You buy the cheap thing because it’s all you can afford but then, because you have to keep spending money to replace it, you can’t ever save up for a better and longer lasting option. It isn’t that people stuck in this pattern don’t recognize the problem, it’s that the pattern keeps them trapped.

Don’t worry, this isn’t going to be a post about how sometimes you just have to go without something until you can spend a few thousand dollars on something high-end. Instead, we’re going to talk about the smaller purchases that are worth their slightly more expensive price than the cheaper counterparts you usually choose.

Footwear

Cheap shoes and socks are nobody’s friend. Cheap shoes and socks are breeding grounds for athlete’s foot, fungal infections, whole-body pain, knee issues, and more. It is important that you properly care for your feet and outfit them with gear that promotes good circulation and support. This is particularly true for people who are diabetic, pregnant, or who like athletics. Instead of the cheap ten dollar shoes you can buy at Payless every couple of months, go for the well made Clarks, Nikes, etc. Yes, they’re more expensive but these shoes last for years, not weeks.

And instead of the 12-for-a-buck socks you’ve been grabbing out of the bargain bin, invest in some good compression socks from therafirm.com. Compression socks are great for people who spend a lot of time on their feet, are diabetic, pregnant, and/or runners. You’ll be amazed at how much better you feel when your feet don’t hurt all the time.

Food

First, let’s get something out of the way: when you first start shifting away from the super cheap processed stuff you’ve been eating, real food is going to taste super weird. It might even taste bad. Power through it. Fresh food is better for your health than processed stuff. There are also dozens of different methods you can use to reduce the costs of eating from the produce section and the butcher block (or farmer’s market) instead of the frozen aisle. If you’re skeptical, check out Good and Cheap, a cookbook that is dedicated to helping people on SNAP budgets eat healthfully.

Transportation

Having reliable transportation is incredibly important if you want to be able to hold down a job and take care of your family. If you live in a bigger city you can save money by relying on the public transit system but if you live in the suburbs or a rural area, you’ll want to have a good car. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to buy the latest and newest models. But you shouldn’t be buying the cheapest car you can find either. Take the time and spend the little bit more to find a car that runs well, gets good gas mileage and won’t require a lot of fixing.

This rule holds true for the cyclists out there. The last thing you need is for the cruddy bike you bought for a few bucks at a yard sale to start falling apart when you’re on the way to work. Save up a little bit and buy the bike that will last long and that can take the beating of a regular commute.

These are just three areas in which it is important to spend money. What are some of the expenditures you prioritize over thrift?

Comments : 1 Comment | Category : Planning, Saving Tips | Tags :

One comment on “When It’s Okay to Spend Money

  1. My parents had an expression for this -Penny wise and Pound Foolish.
    Paying for quality is something that is a difficult step to take for a lot of people who have always seen themselves as poor, yet once you do make the decision to by value, not the highest priced necessarily, you experience the benefits as mentioned above.
    I hark back to the ‘good old days’ when things were solidly made and lasted for years or could be repaired. Now we have to move with the times. Mass produced cheap disposable goods drive economies and the throw away consumables dominate and even the big brand names are being copied by fake look-a-likes. My advice is to be careful with shopping, do some research before you shop. Go online and compare prices and quality. Check for genuine bargains and clearances of good quality items especially at sale times. If you have researched things via consumer watch sites and now what to buy, you can approach the sales more confidently because you know make and model and regular price before you step into the store.
    Sites like /camelcamelcamel.com can help you track Amazon prices. There is an extension to Chrome called the camelizer for this purpose.

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