Today’s society seems bent on instant gratification. When you want something, you want it now. You want to pay the absolute lowest price, save the most possible money, and get what you want immediately.
Having reached this point, the world probably needs to take a minute to listen to the older generation.
For example, look around your home. What do you have that you can one day leave to your children and grandchildren that will be of any value? Chances are, nothing … unless you have something left to you by your parents or grandparents of value.
Sometimes the right-here, right-now, look-how-much-I-saved approach is fine; and sometimes it’s the biggest imaginable waste of money.
Focus on quality rather than quantity
Take a look in your grandmother’s closet. Chances are good you won’t see dozens, if not hundreds, of pairs of shoes and handbags she’s purchased over the years. More likely her closet has a handful of high-end handbags designed by designers you only wish you could afford.
Here’s the big news: You can afford those things. Rather than buying a dozen handbags or 20 pairs of shoes each year to keep up with changing trends or replace the cheaply made items you are so proud to have saved so much money on, buy quality.
When you purchase quality items, you obtain things you’ll use for years to come rather than just a few months before the item is in need of replacement because of subpar quality.
Your grandparents knew this; that’s why your grandmother carries a Louis Vuitton handbag that looks just as good today as when she purchased it in 1960. They have furniture that looks just as good now as it did when you were a child 30 years ago.
How spending more saves more
It might sound counterintuitive, but spending more saves more. Think of it this way. When you bought or built your first home, you likely rushed out to the nearest supercenter and bought a box of the cheapest silverware they had.
You thought, “Look! I have a 24-piece box of silverware and I only spent $40!” and patted yourself on the back for your savvy money skills. But you’ll replace that silverware set a dozen times or more in the coming years because the cheap material will tarnish or break or bend.
If you spend a few hundred dollars, however, you’ll buy silverware designed to last a lifetime — the kind that increases in value and becomes the type of item you pass down from generation to generation. You pay more upfront, but spend less in the long run on replacements.
Money-savvy people who are concerned about their finances know that sometimes you have to spend more to save more. Timeless, elegant items cost much more right now, but they cost less over time. It’s one of the smartest money-saving tips around.