How to Waste Money or What Can You Do With The Money?

January 2, 2008 at 2:00 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Research shows that using a good Realtor can save you both time and money. A National Association of Realtors (NAR) study states that homes sold with the use of Realtors fetched a higher price than homes sold without the use of Realtors. 

 Now the question becomes what can you do with extra money that your Realtor made or saved for you.  I can think of a bunch of things. If I listed them all we would be here all day.  On the other hand, I can list some ways that you can waste this extra cash.  Just maybe, this cash can go into your 401(k) plan?

1. Home fitness equipment

Face the facts right now. You’re not going to use it. It doesn’t matter what it is – an ab-flattener, a tummy blaster, a butt-reshaper. You’ll get it delivered by UPS on a Monday, use it for a few minutes each day until Thursday, go out for a celebratory fattening meal on Friday, and never pull it out again until it’s time to ditch it at a yard sale. No matter what the infomercial says, no matter how guilty it makes you feel for sitting on the couch eating chips, put down the phone now. Save yourself the “Three EASY Payments of $39.99!,” strap on a pair of running shoes and hit the pavement. It’s free and will actually DO something for you.

By refraining from buying one of these contraptions a year, you will save a rough estimate of $100.

$100 toward your 401(k) = $100 Total

2. Home Telephone Service

Though land-based telephone service is becoming an ancient relic for twenty-somethings and thirty-somethings, some older folks still deem them as a necessity for some reason. Call it a habit if you wish but it’s one that can and probably should be broken for most people. Many people actually believe that landlines are more secure and more reliable than mobile phone service. While arguments can be made for this, the fact remains that with modern mobile phone pricing and packages, you can have a mobile phone with a tidy sum of minutes for a cost that is comparable to a home line if you shop around (with free national long distance and coverage).

Because you more likely than not already have mobile phone service, by cutting out your phone service at an estimated $35 a month you save $420.

$420 more toward your 401(k) = $520 Total

3. Gambling

It doesn’t relax you and it’s not fun, no matter what you say. Most of all, it’s nothing more than a waste of your money. Many people buy “a lottery ticket or two” every week and then visit a casino when they’re near one. This can be as seldom as once a year or two. So let’s say you’re one of these people and you spend a dollar or two a week on lottery tickets and then another $5 on scratch-offs. Once a year, while visiting friends, you stop in at a casino that’s on the way and allot yourself $500 to spend for the night and no more. Over the course of a year, your gambling total comes to $864 ($2 + $5 = $7 x 52 weeks = $364 + $500).

$864 more toward your 401(k) = $1,384 Total

4. Late Fees on Bills

How many times have you forgotten to pay a bill and shrugged at the late fee you paid? Let’s say you forget to pay an average of once a month that forces you to pay one late fee a month at an average cost of $20. $20 x 12 = $240.

$240 more toward your 401(k) = $1,624 Total

5. Coffee

Let me guess: you’re in too much of a hurry to brew your coffee at home, right? So you think that waiting in line for five minutes to order and another five minutes for the barista to brew your latte saves you time? Please. $4 a day x 240 work days a year (estimated for 4 weeks of vacation, so 48 weeks times 5 days = 240) means that you spend an average of a whopping $960 a year on coffee.

And don’t argue that you would otherwise have to buy coffee from the store and a coffee maker. A good one costs around $200 and 1 lb. of premium coffee costs around $8. If that pound of coffee lasted you two weeks then you would spend $208 on it, plus the $200 for a new coffee maker each year and still pay only $408 a year. Since the previous $960 a year didn’t include weekends and vacation time (which I know you drink premium coffee then, too) what you spend on those days costs $500 (125 remaining days in the year minus the initial 240 and multiplied by $4).

$960 more toward your 401(k) = $2,584

6. Speeding Tickets

Sometimes they just happen. But consider the damage they cause if you get an average of one a year. You get a speeding ticket for $200 and your insurance jumps a conservative $20 a month on average and it just cost you $440.

$440 more toward your 401(k) = $3,024

7. Paying Retail for Clothes

$100 jeans, a $30 t-shirt, and $115 shoes; it all adds up. And it’s so unnecessary. Especially when a little “Googling” reveals dozens of websites that offer deals on designer clothes retailers both online and offline.

If you buy just one article of clothing per week at an average cost of $80 and you passed up the opportunity to save 25% on that article of clothing by not shopping around then you’re spending $1,040 each year unnecessarily. Such a waste.

$1,040 more toward your 401(k) = $4,064

8. Buying that New Car

So you like the new car smell? They sell that in a bottle now. Just spray it in. You don’t want a hand-me-down? Nice cars that are only ~2 years old are usually pretty well-maintained. The most important part of all this is that when you buy a used car, someone else has already paid for the depreciation – which can save you a ton of cash. Additionally, longer car warranties are making that excuse a thing of the past as well. Let’s say you buy a car and, since you bought one that is two years old, you save $80 per month on the payment. This is actually a pretty conservative figure most of the time, but since there are so many variables out there, we’ll just stick with that. Making that discounted payment instead of the new car payment will save you $960 a year. And don’t even get us started on how much you can save if you buy your car outright.

$960 more toward your 401(k) = $5,024

9. Fast Food

#9 will save your waistline as well as your wallet. Even if you save money by grabbing fast food every once in a while most of the time it turns out to be more expensive. And do you really want us to get into the health risks associated with eating that stuff too much? Prepare your food at home. It’s bound to be healthier, it’s cheaper, and it’s even fun when you start to learn what you’re doing.
If you cut just one $5 fast food meal from your week, it would save you $260 a year.

$260 more toward your 401(k) = $5,284

A few more things to consider taking a look at:

  • Cost of going to the movies
  • Cost of premium cable/satellite channels
  • Magazine subscriptions
  • Unused memberships
  • Car pooling
  • Having Nolan make you money and Pilot The Perfect Move

Please share some of your ideas.


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