When it comes to saving money, we are always looking for deals. We use websites to find the lowest price for items and then buy them thinking we are getting a great deal.
Should You Spend More Money Now to Save More Later?
When you find the lowest price are you really getting a good deal? Yes you want to pay the lowest price possible, but are you making some sacrifices in the end by doing this? Could you spend more money and come out in a better financial situation down the road? The answer might surprise you.
Focus on Quality
There are many times we sacrifice quality when looking for the best deal. In my case, this was with mats for the bathroom. When I first bought my house, I headed to Walmart to buy some things I didn’t have, namely, bath mats. I was looking at the various ones and settled on the cheapest one, which was $5.
At the time, I thought I got a great deal. I spent $5 and got what I needed. But a few months later, after washing the mats, I noticed that the rubber backing was shredding off. In the end, I got about 6 months use out of those mats.
Had I spent a little more money, I could have gotten a better quality bath mat which would have lasted me longer. Sure the price was more, but the fact that I didn’t have to buy it again so frequently meant I was saving money in the long run.
This is an important lesson many of us fail to learn – the power of time. We live in the moment, making decisions mostly on price alone. We fail to do the math to see the long term costs or savings.
Using my example from above, buying a new bath mat for $5 every six months was going to cost me $50 over 5 years. But if I bought the higher quality mat for $30, it would last me 5 years easily (and it has). So by spending a little more upfront, $30, I saved $20 overall.
Consider All Your Purchases
The idea of spending more now to save more over the long term applies to everything you buy. This includes some of the deals we see on electronics. Many times, especially during the holidays, the best “deals” are on televisions that will most likely not make it 5 years or more. To get a set that is going to last, your best bet is to pay a little more upfront.
It also extends to clothing. I was guilty of buying the cheapest tee shirts as well a few years ago. To me, $5 was a great deal. But within a year, the shirt started to fall apart. I now buy higher quality and higher priced tee shirts and they have lasted me two years so far. Buying cheap clothes is one of the reasons You Think You’re Saving Money… But You’re Not.
Think about everything you buy; bath mats, televisions and tee shirts are just a few examples. What have you purchased this week?
Take Care Of Your Items
Of course, we also have to talk about care. To get the absolute most life out of the things you buy, you have to take care of them. Clean them regularly and follow the recommended instructions. When you do this, you almost guarantee your items will last a very long time. This is how you make sure you are saving money in the long run.
For example, going back to my bath mat experience, I could have been worse off if I didn’t follow the label on how to care for the mats. If I ignored these instructions, the $30 mat might have only lasted me a couple of years which would mean buying a higher quality item was a waste of my money. But this isn’t reason to simply buy the cheapest option available.
It is a reason to spend a little more on quality and then make sure you take care of it. By doing this, you make certain you spend the least (and can save the most money) over the long term. And that is the key to getting ahead financially – making smart buying decisions and saving the most money.
Find Balance Between Low Price and Quality
The smartest buying decision isn’t always to find the absolute lowest price possible. The smartest decision is to find the lowest price on the best quality item that you need. And you may be surprised at the decent quality of items you can get for just a little more money.
The next time you need something, I encourage you to look into buying better quality items. They may cost you a few dollars more now, but they will help you to save more money down the road by lasting longer.