Sometimes, it’s best to spend more money on something than you have to — if it can help you save money later.
One thing we savvy consumers all have in common is the fact that we like to save money whenever we can. The problem is defining what “saving” really means. As I’ve noted in previous articles, sometimes you’re better off in the long run if you occasionally spend a little more cash than you’d like.
Consider intangibles like life experience, which you can’t enjoy by sitting at home all the time hoarding cash. And sometimes, it’s just better to hire someone to do something for you, if they can do it cheaper (and better) than you can.
So don’t shoot yourself in the foot just to save a few bucks.
The Quality Argument
Here’s another cogent point: What’s more logical, buying one nice watch that costs $150 and having it last for decades… or buying a shoddy new watch for $15 every year for 20 years?
The answer’s pretty obvious, but the logic can escape you when you look at the price tags and realize you can do other things with that extra $135 the cheap watch won’t cost you today. But the logical thing to do is to save up $150 for that nice watch and take good care of it, so you spend $150 less over 20 years.
It Adds Up
That may not seem like much, but savings are savings… and imagine how much you can save if you multiply this by everything you own, especially if you don’t worry about silly things like fads and fashions. Clothing, shoes, cars, homes, furniture… everything.
One theory holds that many wealthy people stay wealthy because once they buy something, they rarely have to replace it… since they spend the money they must in order to buy top quality in the first place.
Quality merchandise is worth the extra price. Period.
Preventative maintenance is also worth paying for. While a tune-up and a new set of tires for your car may be expensive in the short term, they’re cheaper than a ruined engine or a flat tire fifty miles from nowhere in a rainstorm, aren’t they?
This is easy to lose sight of when you’re worried about how you’re going to cover the costs of all the little things that life throws at you daily. However, it pays to take very good care of everything you own… including your body.
So don’t skimp. Be sure to schedule the regular maintenance that you and your belongings require to stay healthy.
While it’s smart to be careful how you spend your money, and never to waste it, being cheap can cost you more than you save in the long run. You’re more likely to save money if you make an effort to be thoughtfully frugal.