I am a big believer of spending money on things that make you happy. My entertainment budget is not very big, because my “fun” happens to be reading, writing, and spending time with family. Luckily, none of these hobbies tend to cost very much. However, if going out to eat with friends or going on all-inclusive vacations is your thing, I’m not one to judge. It’s fair game if you aren’t going into debt over it and if you are still able to put money aside for emergencies, retirement, and to meet your goals.
There are certain luxuries, however, that that just aren’t worth your hard earned money. Most of the time, they are more work than they are worth, or they cost more than most people think above and beyond the initial cash outlay.
Growing up, we always had a hot tub. We just happened to live in a suburb that had a lot of them, and as we moved from one house to another, they just all happened to have a hot tub.
I’m sure the previous owners had the best intentions when installing the hot tub, but we hardly ever used ours, and our neighbors never used theirs, either. It cost a lot to run every month when heating it, and the chemicals and cleaning of it took more time than we spent actually enjoying it.
Pre-Made Meals (All The Time)
I most certainly enjoy an already made meal every once in awhile. Sometimes, cooking seems like an insurmountable task – especially on a Friday evening after work. However, the spending money on meals that are already made for you is not usually worth it.
These meals, whether they are take-out meals or ones from the grocery store, are usually high in calories, fat, and sodium, and low in nutrition.
Sure, sometimes it’s okay to have a take-out meal or fast food meal to save your sanity, but eating out more often than not is a luxury that ends up costing more in the long run.
High End Cars
I know that this will make all of you luxury car lovers turn over in your graves, however, luxury cars are most definitely a waste of cash. They are purely a status symbol, and they limit you, as well. You wouldn’t drive a luxury vehicle to your parent’s house at Christmas for four hours in the snow. You wouldn’t want to take a luxury car to a routine Sunday grocery shopping trip.
Luxury cars don’t typically last longer than a regular car, and the parts and labour to repair them (not to mention the cost of insurance) make luxury cars a waste of money and effort.
The Latest Gadgets
I sit here, typing this on the newest generation of MacBook Pro, with an iPhone 5 next to me on the coffee table. I understand gadget hype. However, this is the first laptop that I have purchased in six years. I bought this laptop because my old laptop was not meeting my needs any longer. My iPhone 5 is my first upgrade since my iPhone 3, which was purchased almost four years ago. My newest phone was free as I was due for an upgrade.
Having the latest gadgets is exciting for a split second. Then you get over it. Upgrading every time Apple comes out with a new iDevice, or there’s a new gadget, is an unnecessary luxury that won’t benefit you. Upgrade your technology when it’s necessary, not when your tech company of choice comes out with a new product. New technology is a huge budget eater even if you only purchase it based upon need; it becomes unaffordable when you are buying every upgrade.
We all fall victim to buying into unnecessary luxuries. Which ones do you pay for?