My entire financial outlook is planned around ways to save money and maximize my budget. Although some people dread it, I get a thrill from finding a good deal. Knowing that I saved money or found similar, off-brand products for much lower prices is exciting. But, even a thrift queen like myself knows the value of investing in quality items for greater long-term savings. There is a difference between being cheap and being frugal. However, sometimes it can be tough to tell when you are approaching that limit. For those toeing this line, here are 15+ purchases you should never cheap out on.
15 Purchases You Should Never Buy Cheap
While I still look for discounts, I know some things have no substitutes. When it comes to things that ensure a higher level of safety and general well-being, I’m willing to spend more. Not only will they last you longer, but investing in better quality products will save you money in the long run. I could go on all day about the purchases you should never cheap out on. Instead, I have tried to short-list the items that have had the biggest impact on my budget and my lifestyle.
Several years ago, I made a lifestyle change. Although I enjoy processed snacks and fried foods, I noticed the impact on my health. My doctors started talking to me about the long-term effects of a poor diet. So, I cut out all the junk food and began preparing my meals with fresh ingredients. Unfortunately, buying healthy food is more expensive. However, I will gladly do it to add years to my life.
Another purchase you should never cheap out on is insurance. While tempting to pay the lowest premiums, inadequate coverage could leave you buried in debt. You don’t need the most expensive insurance plan out there, but you should have one that meets your needs. Your healthcare will change over the years. Therefore, you should reassess your insurance policies at different points in your life and adjust as necessary.
I’ve learned the hard way that you should never skimp on your accommodations. If you look for the cheapest rentals or hotels, you’ll probably end up in the worst parts of town, living in a building with safety hazards, or dealing with management who neglects basic maintenance. Your safety should be a top priority. Rather than risk my well-being, I’ll pay a little more for better accommodations.
Cars are one of the most expensive purchases you will ever make. You don’t have to spend a fortune on a new car, but don’t choose a car on price alone. Cheap cars usually have major issues that will cost thousands of dollars. It’s better to invest in something reliable than to get stuck with a lemon.
5. Shoes and Clothing
Your wardrobe is another place where you shouldn’t cut corners. Cheap clothes wear out faster. Therefore, you’ll have to replace items more frequently which costs more in the long run. Instead of relying on the clearance rack, I prefer to invest in well-made items that will withstand the test of time.
If you need corrective lenses, don’t gamble on cheap deals. Although the online deals look great, the size of the frames and prescription may not match those from your optometrist. Furthermore, not all retailers are reputable and sell products without warranties. Don’t let sites selling substandard frames rob you blind.
Having a quality mattress impacts your life in ways you may not even realize. Not only does it give you better quality sleep, but it can reduce back pain, joint pain, insomnia, drowsiness, and snoring. Getting enough rest means you start each day with enough energy to accomplish your tasks. Better sleep equates to better physical and mental health.
This is one purchase that could change the course of your entire life. Choosing novelty condoms or trusting the shelf life of vending machines in bathrooms isn’t wise. Many are designed for stimulation, not pregnancy and disease prevention. When they fail, it could lead to a costly mistake and a responsibility you aren’t prepared to take on.
Tires are another of the purchases that you should never cheap out on. A good set of tires should last you 50,000+ miles. However, better quality tires also improve your gas mileage and save you at the pump. More importantly, though, your safety depends on them. There are no guarantees when you buy discount or used tires.
Although tempting when living on a budget, don’t steal wifi from strangers. You put yourself at risk when you use open networks. Stealing wifi exposes you to hackers and malware. Getting a phone plan with unlimited data offers far more protection. But, be aware that a phone plan with low data limits could cost you more in overage charges. If your job or life depends on communication, pick the plan that suits your lifestyle.
On a similar note, if it’s a device or appliance that you use every day, you want something that will be a reliable workhorse. You don’t need the latest models. But, you should have devices that will last you for the long haul. Refurbished or second-hand items could cost you more in repairs.
During home renovation projects, don’t skimp on low-quality paint. You may save a few bucks at checkout. But, you’ll have to use more paint to achieve the same coverage. And, it’s more prone to chipping and peeling. Invest in premium paint that will last long.
13. Cleaning Products
Dollar store cleaning items are some of the worst things you can buy. They are often watered down or so cheap that don’t last a single-use. So, you’ll have to use more to get the job done. Cheap products that underperform also won’t get things as clean as you think. There are more effective, low-cost cleaning supplies you can make at home.
14. Toilet Paper
One of my biggest pet peeves is single-ply toilet paper. Not only is it ineffective, but it’s just gross. The cheaper options have fewer fibers and are less absorbent, which often leave lint behind. You’ll have to use more to clean up the mess it leaves behind than you would if you bought the more expensive brand.
15. Professional Services
Finally, some of the most important purchases you should never cheap out on are professional services. Most people can’t afford the top-tier providers, but you don’t want to settle on someone who does substandard work. Just because they are cheap doesn’t make them the best option. You may have to pay someone to redo the work that you originally hired out. If you pay for cut-rate services, you’ll get what you pay for.
- 3 Times Going Cheap Ends Up More Expensive
- Why Hiring a Professional Saves You More Than Cheap DIYs
- Buy it Nice, or Buy it Twice: Save Money by not Going Cheap
Come back to what you love! Dollardig.com is the most reliable cash-back site on the web. Just sign up, click, shop, and get full cashback!
Jenny Smedra is an avid world traveler, ESL teacher, former archaeologist, and freelance writer. Choosing a life abroad had strengthened her commitment to finding ways to bring people together across language and cultural barriers. While most of her time is dedicated to either working with children, she also enjoys good friends, good food, and new adventures.