5 Frugal Things That End Up Costing You More Money
I love finding new ways to save money, from learning how to do things myself or cutting back on unnecessary activities. But sometimes we get ahead of ourselves and only consider the money saved right now, without thinking about the future. Here are 5 frugal things that will end up costing you more money in the long run.
1. Using Store Credit Cards for Discounts
One of my favorite ways to save big bucks at the register is to use a retailer’s credit card to get an extra 10-15% or more off my purchase. But if you don’t pay off the balance right away (or before they start charging you interest), you get charged interest, which can quickly negate any discount you originally received. In addition, make sure to read the fine print and ensure you won’t have to pay an annual fee or any other hidden fees.
2. Not Saving for Retirement
If it comes down to saving for your child’s college, or contributing to your own retirement fund, always choose the latter. Parents and students can always get financial aid, but you can’t walk down to Bank of America and get a retirement loan. Every day that you don’t contribute means you’re earning less interest. Start now to avoid working into your eighties or funding your retirement with credit cards.
3. Skipping the Doctor
You might think that skipping your check-up, physical or dental cleaning might save you some money, and it will for now, but it can end up costing you much more. If you skip regular cleanings, by the time your dentist sees you again you might need a root canal instead of a simple filling. Yearly check-ups with your doctor might catch early warning signs of cancer or other illnesses and ailments that can end up saving you a bundle of money, and possibly your life.
4. Buying Cheap
Don’t get me wrong – the less expensive something is, the better. Inexpensive doesn’t always mean cheap or low quality, but you have to be smart. When buying products that should have a long life like your work wardrobe, car, electronics and tools, it’s worth a little more money for high quality, long-lasting items.
As always, shop around for the best deals and use coupons, promotions and other frugal tips to get the best price.
5. Driving Around to Save 2¢ on Gas
If you are driving out of your way to save a few cents per gallon, you are wasting money. A 2¢ discount on 20 gallons only works out to $0.40, so keep that in mind when you drive around looking for the best deal. Use tools like Gas Buddy to find the best price and work it into your driving routine to get the most out of gas shopping. Use this calculator to find out how many miles you get per dollar.