Have you ever gone to buy a new appliance or piece of furniture and immediately picked out the cheapest option? While sometimes buying the cheapest option can work out, many times it ends up costing more money.
For instance, buying the cheapest option may mean you end up paying more in the future. This could be something as simple as buying a pair of winter boots that you’ll have to replace within a year. Or buying a cheap car that only lasts a year.
A lot of cheaper items won’t last as long mostly because they’re poorly made and not designed for long term use. Buying cheap $1 sandals aren’t going to last you as long as spending a bit more money on quality sandals. For instance, let’s say $1 sandals last one month. $20 would only have to last 20 months before they become the cheaper option. Not too mention throwaway sandals are a pain to keep buying and that amount of waste is bad for the planet.
The following are six reasons why buying cheap often ends up costing more:
1. Hefty Repair Bills
Additionally, sometimes the cheapest options are also the most expensive to repair. Often cheap appliances mean hard to find parts. Repair people may also not like working on them. Worst of all, the item may not be quality enough to deserve all the money it needs in repairs. Hello, scrap yard.
Poor quality items are generally the type of items you have to replace or repair constantly. While sometimes buying generic can pay off or doesn’t make a huge difference, sometimes buying those $3 t-shirts means you have to replace them every few weeks because they literally fall apart. You can’t really repair a t-shirt.
2. Inevitable Replacement Costs
On the other hand, opting to replace an item instead of repair it also costs money. For example, you could pay $100 for a pair of shoes that last three years or pay $20 for shoes you have to replace every three months. In most cases, the amount you pay to replace a cheap item vastly outweighs the amount you would have paid if you had initially bought a quality item.
If you don’t plan to use an item all that often, buying a cheaper product might work out in your favor. After all, why pay a lot of money for something you’ll never use? But if you do plan to use it all the time, you should consider spending more money to buy something built to last. You don’t want to buy a dishwasher you expect to use every other day only to have it stop working after a year because you bought the cheaper model. Sometimes you need to think about the long-term.
3. Additional Costs Down the Road
There are also additional side costs that sometimes come with cheaper items. For instance, sometimes generic or off-brand items use their own special screws or extensions, meaning you have to buy their accessories instead. Paying additional costs for a cheaper item might mean spending the same amount you would have paid for a higher quality item without the strange side costs.
4. Choosing Quantity Over Quality
In some cases, it’s definitely better to buy quantity over quality. But for many cases, it’s much better to choose quality over quantity. Buying a couple pairs of pants for work at $20 a pair might seem like a great steal but you won’t be thinking that when they start to fray or wear thin after only a few wears. Sometimes it’s better to buy those $60 work pants that you can wear over and over again.
Suggested reading: 8 Ways to Make Your Shoes Last Longer
5. Buying Items You Don’t Need Just Because They’re Cheap
A lot of people are easily swayed by sale signs or seemingly great prices. They often end up buying items they don’t need. Don’t let the cheap price of an item fool you. If you don’t need it or know you won’t use it, don’t waste the money.
6. Lack of Warranty
Cheaper items often don’t come with warranties. If they do, the warranties aren’t usually that great. Quality products often come with warranties that last for at least a year, if not longer. So if that cheap appliance you bought breaks after two months, you might be stuck throwing it out. But if you had bought an appliance that was a bit better, you might be able to redeem a warranty even if a couple years have passed.