Beware: Money-Saving Hacks That Could Backfire Big Time

Find out what money-saving advice you’ve been given doesn’t work – and might actually be costing you more than they save.

Not All Advice is Created Equal

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If your goal is to save as much money as possible, you’ve probably read tons of advice on how to do so. Tips to living a more frugal life are everywhere. But some of that advice is better left unread.

The Habits That Can Hurt

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As it turns out, some so-called money-saving habits can actually cost you. Sometimes, it comes down to the fact that your time is worth more than the money you might be saving.

Other times, you may need to face investing in something more costly in order to save money in the long run. 

How to Save Time and Money

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There are some tips that simply don’t work for much of anything except wasting your time. Here are five traps to avoid.

“Tip” #1: Save Money By Purchasing the Cheapest Option

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While it may save you a few dollars in the short term, buying the lowest-cost version of whatever it is that you need might actually be more expensive.

The cheapest pair of work boots is not going to last as long as a pair that is of higher quality.

Our Advice: Look for Long-Term Savings

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While it might be tempting to save money today by getting a cheap pair of boots, consider the fact that you’ll have to replace them much sooner than you would have to replace the better-quality ones. 

The End Result

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In the end, you’ll spend less on boots because you won’t have as many replacements.

“Tip” #2: Only Go to the Doctor in an Emergency

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“But I’m perfectly healthy!” You might think so, but routine checkups save lives – your doctor may be able to catch something early, saving you trouble (and larger medical bills) down the line.

Our Advice: Make Time for Regular Appointments

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Think of your body like a vehicle – it needs regular maintenance to prevent a breakdown. Making time and budgeting money for regular checkups is an important part of prioritizing your health.

The End Result

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Spending a few dollars now on your co-pay might just save you thousands on a hospital bill someday.

“Tip” #3: Run Your Car Until It Can’t Run Anymore

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Speaking of cars, have you had an oil change lately? Some people think that skipping out on standard maintenance is going to save them money. But that’s simply not true.

Our Advice: Take Care of Your Car So She’ll Take Care of You

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It’s much cheaper to get new tires when your old ones have run their course than it is to repair your entire car because a tire blew out on the interstate.

Not to mention, it’s dangerous to drive a vehicle that hasn’t been properly cared for!

The End Result

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Your vehicle will be safer and easier to drive if you perform regular maintenance.

“Tip” #4: Buy Everything in Bulk to Spend Less Over Time

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This tip is a little tricky because sometimes, buying in bulk is a good idea. Things like toilet paper and paper towels don’t expire, and you’re always going to need them, so there’s no harm in buying those in bulk.

But buying lots of perishable items in bulk could end up costing you money if you don’t use everything.

Our Advice: Only Stock Up On What You Know You’ll Use

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Don’t be afraid to grab a few extras when you know for sure you’ll use them, but try not to overload your cart with items that might expire before you get to them. Then you will have wasted money and just end up having to buy them again.

The End Result

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You’ll save money by buying only what you need, and you won’t have stacks of food taking up valuable space in your home!

“Tip” #5: Cut Every Coupon You See and Use Them All

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A certain television show got people a little riled up about couponing. Sure, you can find some great deals, but do you really need 52 sticks of deodorant for $7? The hours that people spend pouring over sales papers and online ads can add up, begging the question of how much your time is actually worth.

Our Advice: Take Advantage of Savings that Apply to Your Needs

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Try sticking to coupons for things that are already on your shopping list. Save your time and effort for methods that will save you money long-term instead of ones that will make you buy lots of things you don’t need.

The End Result

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Reducing waste, eliminating stress, and learning the value of your time are all great motivators to avoid extreme couponing. 

The Final Straw

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Your spending habits are important, but making sure that you aren’t overdoing it on the budgeting side is critical. The goal is to save money, not drive yourself crazy.

Focus on long-term savings over pinching pennies, and your wallet (and friends and family) will thank you.

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The post Beware: Money-Saving Hacks That Could Backfire Big Time first appeared on Thrift My Life.

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The content of this article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute or replace professional financial advice.