You can learn a lot about people by their spending habits. What they spend their money on will tell a lot. However, sometimes it’s more revealing what people won’t spend their money on. Based on thousands of answers across the internet, here are 20 things most people say you should never buy, even if you have money.
20 Things You Should Never Buy Even If You Have the Money
1. Designer Baby Clothes
Items with designer labels can cost hundreds of dollars. Therefore, buying designer baby clothes doesn’t make much sense since they will outgrow them in a few months. Some may argue that it is worth investing in quality clothing. But if you can only use the item for a few months, then you are wasting your money.
2. High-Fashion Couture
Although I do own some name-brand clothing, high-fashion couture is an entirely different animal. Not only is it expensive, but it’s often uncomfortable, impractical, and overpriced. You can still find trendy, high-quality items for a fraction of the cost. Finding well-made items that you can wear again and again are better for your wallet and long-term savings plan.
They say diamonds are a girl’s best friend. But these days, I would prefer to find cheaper, ethically sourced alternatives that are much more affordable. Not only are they just as beautiful, but most people can’t tell the difference without closer inspection. Save yourself the money and put it to use somewhere else in your budget.
4. Oversized Mansions
Many people have the hope of owning a nice home. But, there is a difference between a large home and an oversized mansion. Who needs 20 bedrooms or a 24-car garage? And, can you imagine how much it would cost to maintain a residence that big? Most of us would prefer something that is more liveable and less of a budgetary strain.
5. High-end Sports Cars
For some people, a high-end sports car is the ultimate sign of success. However, you could spend a million dollars for a new Ferrari or Lamborgini just to have it depreciate as soon as you drive it off the lot. Market research shows that these cars lose 10% of their value in the first month and 20% in the first year. Furthermore, they are expensive to maintain and repair. While some may be planning to buy their dream car, there are more practical and financially beneficial ways you could enjoy this kind of money.
Yachts and mega-yachts are another status symbol of the ultra-rich. Unless you are living on one, they are usually another wasteful expenditure that rarely gets used. Like luxury sports cars, they are costly to maintain and serve no practical purpose.
7. Edible Gold
You may have heard of this fad because it’s so hard to believe. But sometimes fact is stranger than fiction. Indeed, some restaurants feature dishes made with edible gold. But at $15,000 a pound, it hardly seems worth the price. No matter how delectable the dish is, no food is worth its weight in gold.
8. Exotic Pets
You will see many of the rich and famous with exotic pets. Unfortunately, these animals are often the result of poaching or have come from facilities that don’t properly care for their animals. Some only breed them for profit while others are guilty of mistreating the animals in their care. Therefore, exotic pets are among the things you should never buy since your money could be supporting their illegal and inhumane activities.
9. Lavish Weddings
Your wedding is one of the most important days of your life. However, the days of going overboard may be over. A lavish wedding is a huge and unnecessary expense, especially when a couple is just starting their life together. Instead of starting in debt, the money could be better spent on a down payment for a house or other assets that could make them more financially stable.
10. Overpriced Alcohol
Some people invest in fine wine or expensive alcohol. Certain bottles can bring good returns in time. However, most alcohol over $60 has diminishing returns. So if you’re buying for personal consumption, why not pay less for something that tastes just as good?
A timeshare may be perfect for family getaways. But, what do you do when you can’t use it during your specified time? And how long will it take to find a buyer when the time comes? Most owners would tell you to skip the headache because timeshares are one of those things you should never buy. It may be wiser to opt for a hotel or vacation rental instead.
12. Extended Warranties
Purchasing an extended warranty may seem smart in theory. However, they usually come with a high price tag and won’t always cover everything that could go wrong. Since most of us will never use them anyway, you may as well skip the extended warranty and bypass another cost that rarely offers any return.
Be honest…when was the last time you watched a DVD? Although many of us used to have them, nowadays most people watch movies through their streaming services. And even if you can’t find what you’re looking for, you can purchase one-time rentals to stream. It may be worthwhile to keep your favorites, but giving up DVDs could save you money and storage space.
14. New Tech on the Release Date
Many loyal customers line up to be the first to have the latest tech. But in reality, the new releases are usually overpriced and under-tested technology. And, it will probably be upgraded and available at a reduced price within a year. So, it may be a better financial move to wait for the improved features or buy older tech on the new release dates.
15. Greeting Cards
With graduation and wedding season coming up, it’s time to stock up on greeting cards. But, I’m always taken aback when I get to the register and find out they are $5 each. To save money, I either buy them in bulk or look for deals at the dollar store. And better yet, making them yourself or sending an e-card is free. So, why waste money on things you should never buy when there are cheaper and more personal options available?
16. Premium Gas
Gearheads and mechanics may disagree, but you don’t need to spend more for premium gas. Your car manual may recommend premium gas. But, the average car will still run efficiently on regular gas without damaging the engine.
17. Bottled Water
Some of my friends and family members buy bottled water for convenience. I’ve also had others tell me that bottled mineral water is better for your health. However, studies show that 64% of bottled water is just regular tap water. Using a filter or reusable bottle is not only cheaper, but also better for the environment.
18. Name-brand Pharmaceuticals
Unfortunately, this may not be an option for some medications. But when there are alternatives, name-brand pharmaceuticals are one of the things you should never buy. This can save you a ton of money if you have regular prescriptions to fill. However, you will likely find the best deals with over-the-counter medicines. If you aren’t sure, you can always ask your pharmacist to guarantee you are buying the equivalent product.
19. Specialized Kitchen Gadgets
If you spend a lot of time in the kitchen, you should invest in a quality set of knives and cookware. You may even have some handy gadgets that make food prep easier. But items from the houseware catalogs and specialty stores aren’t worth your money. Unless it is something you will use regularly, these gadgets are another expense you don’t need.
20. Cardboard Boxes
People used to pay for cardboard boxes when they needed to ship something or move. But thanks to Amazon, most of us now have an overabundance of boxes. Instead of spending your money when you need more, track down free boxes from local supermarkets, recycling centers, or other stores in your area.
What do you think are things that you should never buy even if you have money? Share your thoughts below!
- 3 Ways to Psych Yourself Into Being More Frugal
- 7 Unhealthy Signs of Obsession with Money
- Seven Ways You’re Wasting Money (And Don’t Even Realize It)
Jenny Smedra is an avid world traveler, ESL teacher, former archaeologist, and freelance writer. Choosing a life abroad had strengthened her commitment to finding ways to bring people together across language and cultural barriers. While most of her time is dedicated to either working with children, she also enjoys good friends, good food, and new adventures.