Five of the Worst Ways to Save Money

by Tracy · 74 comments

Saving money is great, but not if it is at the expense of your long term financial future and well being. As much as possible you have to consider the long term effects of your decisions on yourself and those around you. Otherwise, you might find yourself paying a hefty price for your “savings”. But what do I mean? Here are five of the worst ways to save money.

1. Neglecting Your Health

Poor health can not only lead to high medical bills, but it can also cut careers short and leave us unable to care for our families. While there is no possible way to prevent every single illness or accident, regular checkups and a healthy lifestyle can go a long way towards improving our odds of staying fit and active for decades.

Unfortunately, in the USA, if you are without health and dental insurance, getting regular, high quality preventative care can be out of reach. If this is the situation for you, be proactive and look for community resources that can help you get the care you need. In many areas dialing 2-1-1 can get you free assistance in finding these resources. Don’t wait for an emergency to find out about what help is available for you.

Do your research and find ways to eat a healthy diet and exercise on a budget. While a ramen noodle diet might get you through a financial crisis, the ultimate price is far too high if you keep it up long term.

2. Always Buying “Cheap”

I think most people understand that always going with the cheapest option without considering quality is a mistake. Not only does it cost more in the long run, but you can wind up cheating yourself out of things that you might really enjoy.

This hit home for me a few weeks ago when I bought tickets to a musical for myself and two of my boys and went for the cheapest seats. I didn’t do it because I couldn’t afford better ones, but because I felt I shouldn’t spend that much. I spent the entire show wishing I’d spent $50 extra for a better view and felt closer to the action.

Bargain hunting is great, but remember it’s about getting the best value, not about spending the absolute least amount you can.

David Note: Same thing with brand names, as Vered mentioned last week!

3. Neglecting Maintenance/Upkeep

I understand the temptation to forgo or put off maintenance on homes and vehicles, especially when there doesn’t seem to be a problem. I don’t know about you, but even when I plan and save, it always seems to pop up when I’ve got more fun ideas for what to do with my money!

Still, I suck it up and get that transmission fluid changed when my manufacturer recommends it be done and spring for the annual HVAC cleaning and check-up.  You can look for ways to do it yourself and save money, but don’t ignore it all together and hope for the best. In some cases, neglecting maintenance can put your safety at risk, not just your bank balance.

4. Cheating Others

We’ve all got our own lines when it comes to taking advantage of deals and driving a hard bargain. I can see how certain terms and restrictions can be open to interpretation and how one person idea of a smart business decision can be another person’s idea of taking total advantage.

However deliberately circumventing the rules and lying are never okay and doing it is just as bad as shoplifting.  My rule of thumb is if I wouldn’t happily admit to my mother what I did to save money; I shouldn’t be doing it at all.

5. Never Giving

We all have times in our lives where we can’t afford to give and might even have to receive. The problem comes when you never, ever feel like you have enough to share and be generous. Holding on too tightly to what you have doesn’t make you feel more secure, it makes you feel more anxious.

When you can, allow yourself the joy of giving with an open heart to somebody who could use it. Be smart about how, what and when you give, but do look for ways to incorporate generosity in your life.

And if you’re in a position where you need help, know that there is no shame in needing a hand and to make the most of the generosity that you’ve been given.

Do you agree that these are bad ways to save money? What’s the most penny smart, pound foolish thing you’ve observed?

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{ 74 comments… read them below or add one }

Sustainable PF March 14, 2011 at 6:46 am

I would add something like “saving your money in places you are not ethically comfortable with”.

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guest in ca March 14, 2011 at 8:53 am

I agree on cheap seats for concerts or other performances. Unless we know the venue, we go with at least a mid-priced seat. Some smaller auditoriums have no bad seats, but most places do. We’ve found we usually prefer a front row (or near as we can get) in the first balcony instead of ground level.

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Emily March 14, 2011 at 9:16 am

I’ve heard Joel Salatin quoted as saying, “If you think eating organic is expensive, try getting cancer.”

When I was in my 20s, although I was learning to eat better I didn’t bother to see any kind of health care practitioner, do any cleanses, or anything that I perceived as expensive. Although I’m not in horrible health now, at 41, I recently discovered I have a lot of underlying issues that could have been taken care of if I hadn’t been so cheap, and it’s taking a lot of time, discipline, cleansing and supplementation to get my body back on track.

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MoneyNing March 14, 2011 at 9:25 am

Great to hear that you are back on track. Having good health is really priceless.

Never mind just the cost of insurance or medical bills, but who wants to feel miserable all day because you are sick?

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Chris in MT March 22, 2011 at 4:47 pm

“Better to pay the grocer than the doctor”

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dave May 11, 2011 at 7:44 am

When a doctor (M.D.) tells me to “cleanse” I will think about it.

Show me a study that proves eating organic reduces cancer risk

“Organic” is a luxury of the rich. We are heading to a world population of 9 billion and organic farming would mean starvation

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SaneCommentFinally June 8, 2011 at 11:31 am

Glad to hear at least someone is reasonably sane. No such study exists and I am sure someone is trying to fabricate one for you. This is very similar to the times I have seen my garbage “people” (I can’t say garbage men anymore) throwing recycle bins in the trash along with the main trash cans. Made me so proud of separating and watching them re-combine the materials. :)

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jack August 12, 2011 at 10:05 am

Or simply believes everything Penn and Teller tells them.

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Gringa June 14, 2012 at 10:56 am

Organic doesn’t mean that the food is grown without pesticides; it means that it is grown with organic pesticides. These pesticides are less effective than the engineered ones, and therefore have to be applied more often and in greater quantities. That’s one reason why the food is so expensive. My aunt and uncle have a farm, and they opened my eyes to these facts when they considered going organic. It really helps put things in perspective. Most fruits and vegetables can be peeled, greatly reducing your pesticide exposure overall. Peeling it is a lot cheaper than buying organic, and more effective at avoiding pesticides too.

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Ginger March 14, 2011 at 10:23 am

Number three is why I do not like buying too much, even if you can afford it, can you afford the upkeep and the replacement? If not, you cannot afford it. People get used to having whatever they have and don’t want to go back. For example, when we moved to buffalo from Ca we did not have a tv, now we do, however, if it breaks I know would want to replace it where before I did not care about having tv. I have gotten used to having it.

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The Marketeer March 14, 2011 at 12:28 pm

Great article. Neglecting ones health is foolish, even if it just eating poorly.

Cheating others is simply unacceptable. My blog, The Weekly Marketeer, focuses on investing, and morality is a big topic in that world. When one of us decides to act dishonestly, not only does it hurt that person, it hurts the entire community as a whole. We should be stwards of financial honesty and moral business standards. Sadly, many of us choose not to follow that line of thought.

Many, many more do follow that line of thought, however, including yours truly.

Cheers. The Marketeer.

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Bargaineering March 14, 2011 at 2:30 pm

#3 should be #1, it’s something that people do all too often. You think you save money by not getting an oil change in your car but you end up using old oil and it damages the internals of your engine. Penny wise, pound foolish.

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Ramona Iftode March 14, 2011 at 2:47 pm

I’d say most of them are of great importance. Just going for the cheap solution or forgetting to be “human” is not always giving us the best results.

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lorraine lau March 14, 2011 at 3:39 pm

Unless you can buy high-end buy cheap the products are all the same made cheap not to last.

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Matt April 14, 2011 at 2:25 pm

As an engineer that has worked in the consumer electronics and medical industries…your statement is patently false.

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Pete @ CashBlogged March 14, 2011 at 6:59 pm

I could not agree more with #2, the amount of stuff I have bought in the past that has just ended up falling apart or failing has all been cheap. A recent example has been a Dell PC… never again.

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Tom March 23, 2011 at 12:04 pm

And I have Dells from 05/06 still going strong, and a high end Mac that crapped out after 2 years.

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Dennis July 27, 2011 at 8:59 am

I had a Dell that lasted for 3 1/2 years and died. Motherboard fried… I bought a Mac afterwards, 4 years later it is just as fast as when I bought it. Sometimes, we get a bad batch. My wife bought a top on the line HP and it died 20 days after buying it. It isn’t necessarily the brand thats bad, sometimes even the robots mess up.

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Christina March 15, 2011 at 10:24 am

I believe in Biblical basis as far as spending money. I pay my tithes and offerings everytime I get money. God always provides for me after that if I am short. Now I don’t go blowing money foolishly expecting God to bail me out, be He helps me when I need it. For example the gas in my car seems to last longer and I travel about a total of 75 miles each day and sometimes around 150. He keeps me from getting sick and needing to go to the doctor. There are so many other ways but I’ll just stick to these two.

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Dai March 19, 2011 at 9:53 am

Christina, I am so glad you shared this. My husband and I made this commitment a few years ago, and I agree with you that God takes care of our needs. Because we are faithful to give back to Him that which is His and then some, He has been faithful in caring for our needs as well. We are by no means rich, but our day to day needs are met despite being down to one income due to the current economy. Keep the faith, Christina.

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woody May 19, 2011 at 6:47 am

If God is not about money,why does he want you paying tithes? do you pay it to a church and how does the church use it?

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Karen August 9, 2011 at 8:54 am

Tithing is not only about church…. It’s about being generous in all parts of your life…

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Leia August 18, 2011 at 10:21 am

Tithing is about obedience, not about money. The cattle on a thousand hills are the Lord’s; He doesn’t need my 700 bucks a month. I return tithes and offerings as an act of gratitude and obedience.

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Randy Addison March 16, 2011 at 4:58 pm

I have had enough of buying cheap. I was really into cheap things but what happened is that I always buy the same new cheap thing because it is already worn up. So, quality really is more important than the price.

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MB March 17, 2011 at 8:27 am

I like to donate to food pantries. When I shop for groceries, I will pick up one or two extra non-perishable items and put them into a “food pantry” box. I don’t notice the little extra money spent each week, and I always have something to place in the monthly donation cart at my church. I am starting to do the same thing with personal hygiene items that are donated to a homeless shelter.

I buy things on sale, but never donate anything I wouldn’t use myself. For example, I try to live a healthy lifestyle and don’t eat high-sodium, high fat prepared foods. I try to donate basics like rice, beans, whole wheat pastas, oatmeal, and low-sodium canned vegetables and fruits packed in juice.

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8sml March 23, 2011 at 12:11 pm

I used to do this too, then decided that instead I would annually donate the money I would have spent on a can a week to the food bank. They can use the funds where they’re needed, be that for food or gas for their delivery trucks.

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dave May 11, 2011 at 7:46 am

Right on — the poor do not need your RAmen Noodles

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Martha June 2, 2011 at 4:21 am

At least MB is doing something rather than just criticizing.
Anyway, giving food lessons the chance of embezzlement.

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Joe Lee March 18, 2011 at 10:33 pm

Good overall article. Even if I can hardly see the performance I don’t complain, because to me if it is a “sold-out” event, I am happy that at least I was able to get tickets of some sort. But my main question and concern is how do you save money when you are a combat veteran living on a limited means of income and you rate below the poverty level.

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Dai March 19, 2011 at 10:07 am

Joe Lee, this is a very good question. I’m a reservist and lost my full time civilian employment a few years ago with the downturn in the economy. Fortunately, my spouse still has employment. Prior to our being married, I had to seriously look at what was essential and what was frivolous with what little funds I had through unemployment. Cutting out the non-essentials allowed my family to survive. Further, because you are a combat vet, you need to pursue VA benefits. The process is lengthy and aggravating, but sticking with it will help you. If anything, you’ll have access to covered medical care, and that is a savings, right? They offer other services as well. For example, if you are a recent combat vet, then you may have funds you may tap for attending college. Depending on when you were in combat and how long in combat, you may have temporary housing coverage as part of the college costs. If you were disabled as a result of military duty and depending on the level of disability, college might be completely covered for you to learn a new skill to re-enter the work force. Contact the VA today, and talk to a representative about your options.

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Edwin @ Save The Bills March 19, 2011 at 1:19 am

I completely agree with the health one. I can get a pack of beef patties for $0.25/patty or healthier veggie patties for $0.95/patty. It’s a huge price difference but I figure I’m saving the cost of a future open heart bypass surgery.

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Penny Pincher March 24, 2011 at 11:17 am

@Edwin, Make your own vegie patties. Just cook yourself up some lentils or mung beans, throw them in a food processor with rice or bread crumbs from day old bread or bagels, a carrot, an onion, spices, maybe some salsa, and an egg if you eat eggs (helps it hold together). If you are a vegan you can use a little chickpea flour instead of an egg. (it’s called “Gram” flour sometimes, they sell it in Indian groceries). Then make that into patties. Cheap. Also, you can put sprouts in there for even more nutrition. The trick is not to grind it up too much. Put the onion in last or it will liquefy.

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dave May 11, 2011 at 7:48 am

Or you can eat real meat in moderate fashion and other protein sources like fish and beans more often — veggie burgers are like someone p—ing on your back and calling it rain

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SaneCommentFinally June 8, 2011 at 11:33 am

Or at least “brown hail!”

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Jerry March 19, 2011 at 2:48 pm

I was glad to see that neglecting your health was #1. Your good health is insurance for a satisfying life. If you don’t have it, it can lead to many more problems than just a lack of money.

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expense March 21, 2011 at 9:20 am

One should not sacrifice is health just to save money. Buying cheap not quality goods is also a waste of money.

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Layla March 21, 2011 at 11:07 am

Definitely need to take care of your health. And especially do not neglect your dental health. More and more they’re finding that the state of your dental health correlates to your heart health. It can also contribute to diabetes and other diseases. Plus, it’s expensive as all get out if you have to play “catch up” and get things fixed, just like anything else. I’m making sure as much as I can that I don’t end up on all the medications my parents’ have to take. That is eating into their retirement funds like you wouldn’t believe. And they do have good insurance.

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Bobbi March 23, 2011 at 10:20 am

Saving money by buying quality instead of buying the cheapest option is something I totally agree with, but I recently learned from a repair person about an interesting exception regarding washing machines: a manufacturer’s low-, mid-, and high-priced washing machines all have the exact same motorized parts, the only differences are the display panels and controls, e.g. the number of different cycles on the dials, how fancy the electronic displays are, etc. So we bought the lowest-priced front loader made by a reputable brand, because seriously, who needs or uses a dozen different wash cycle options? Our washer has the same “guts” as the higher-end models, and we typically just keep our loads on cold water, short cycle anyway. Usually, I’m willing to spend more in the short term to save in the long term, but I love it when I don’t have to.

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Susie March 23, 2011 at 3:34 pm

Use consumer reports. Make sure you don’t confuse high price with high quality. They are quite often not the same. This is often hard information to find.

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Coinneach March 25, 2011 at 5:32 pm

Re quality vs price: consider this (probably badly paraphrased) snipped from Pratchett’s “Night Watch”:
“Vimes earned $38 per month as Captain of the Watch. He bought $10 boots, which were sort of OK for a season or two until the cardboard gave out, then leaked like hell. A *good* pair of boots cost $50, but they lasted for ten years. The thing was, a man who could only afford $10 boots would have spent twice as much on boots in the same time *and would still have wet feet*.”

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Will August 13, 2011 at 4:22 pm

Coinneach – And your point is?

Vines earned $38.00 per month during the season. It does not say how long the season is, so lets say the season is 3 – 4 months. Which would be realistic.

So, at the most, this Captain would make $152.00 per season of 4 months work.

Were he to spend $50.00 on a pair of boots, that would leave him $102.00 to last him and I presume his family until the next season, which would be another 8 months away.

Vines did not make enough money to purchase a $50.00 pair of boots, regardless how long they lasted.

Captain Vines did have $10.00 in which to purchase a pair of cheap boots which would last one or two seasons before needing to spend another $10.00 on another cheap pair of boots.

However, during this time, Captain Vines at least had boots to wear and although they were cheap the boots were obviously better than going barefoot.

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Paula March 26, 2011 at 11:15 pm

I watched a close family member be penny-wise, pound-foolish:
He got a free medical flight that was physically draining for him (and hastened death??) instead of paying for a more comfortable, easier ride on a regular airline. Broke my heart to see it..

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Runner 41 March 27, 2011 at 1:51 pm

I agree with some of what you said but what has worked for me is: Don’t smoke, don’t drink, don’t have pets, don’t donate to anything, don’t eat meat. Do eat mostly rice, beans, potatoes, pasta, & skim milk. And RUN, RUN, RUN. You will be healthy & rich, like me.

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leslie April 25, 2011 at 8:27 am

yuck. “don’t donate to anything?” i hope you enjoy being “healthy and rich.” congratulations. you missed the entire point of life, but enjoy your running and counting your money…

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random surfer May 16, 2011 at 9:45 am

I agree with Leslie, never donating only makes you greedy, not wise.

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Runner also May 26, 2011 at 7:54 am

…. apparently it also makes him “wealthy” too.

And for the poster who said, “enjoy being healthy and rich… you missed the entire point of life”… Uh…excuse me….that is the goal of 99% of the people on Earth – to be healthy and rich. Why do people invest in stock markets, 401k plans, go to college, demand health and dental insurance, save money, buy bonds, etc… if their intent is to be poor and unhealthy? YOU are the one who needs a reality check if you think the point is NOT seeking good health and financial security.

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nakedscrumhalf July 10, 2011 at 6:22 pm

While the person who chooses to never have a pet and never to donate to anything is not likely the kind of person most of us want to be around. As such, they are likely to be alone which affords them even greater opportunity to be rich. Finally, an awful lot of emphasis on RUN, RUN, RUN….in reading this I am reminded of Jim Fixx, the author of The Complete Book of Running and largely credited with starting America’s fitness revolution and popularizing the sport of running. He died of a massive heart attack shortly after finishing a run at the age of 52. Ironically…..and Keith Richards is still alive at nearly 70.

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glady July 12, 2011 at 9:25 am

Keith Richards is so ugly, so please put him out of his misery. If I look that bad when I’m 70 please put me out of my misery. It’s everyone’s decision if they wish to donate. I have my favorite donation and honestly can only spare $15.00 every few months sometimes only 3 times a year. But it leaves me with a feeling of i wish i had more to give. I don’t care who gives and who doesn’t. I don’t wish to be rich but being healthy would be great.

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I'mJustSayin' February 12, 2012 at 10:17 am

Donations come in many forms.

How about donating your time instead? I volunteer for the local animal shelter. As a matter of fact, my employer matches one dollar for every volunteer hour I donate (between 100-500 hours a year) if I document the hours in our employer’s Volunteer Match program. This way they get both my time and funding. A true win-win!

Also, when I donate used towels, pet food and other supplies to the shelter, I get a tax write off for the donation.

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Ted April 2, 2011 at 9:51 pm

Most product pricing follows the hockystick rule. Really cheap products are usually poor in quality and reliability. Both improve as the price goes up to a point. Once you pass this point, quality and reliability increase very little but the price goes up a lot as they add bells and whistles. You want to buy products just below the bend in the hockystick. If it is a product you intend to use very infrequently or only once or twice, buy cheap. If you intend to use the product on an ongoing basis, buy close to the bend in the hockystick. That way you will get the best value for your need.

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Balto Paul April 8, 2011 at 12:52 pm

Runner41:

If you haven’t got a dog, then you are a poorer man than I.

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Runner also May 26, 2011 at 8:00 am

Yeah that’s a good point. Dogs make the best people.

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Julian April 10, 2011 at 4:27 pm

My problem is ; I am too giving.. and of course gambling to try to get it back doesn’t help the matter of saving money…..

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Dejah April 11, 2011 at 12:19 pm

My brother neglected his health out of laziness and lack of money. Now, he is not just poor, at the age of 44, he is dead.

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ahmed zahmed June 16, 2011 at 8:51 am

Sorry for your loss, but consider this: Your brother is in a much better place where he no longer need worry about health or money. He is now “rich” in every real sense of the word.

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I'mJustSayin' February 12, 2012 at 10:27 am

My older brother too neglects his health. His work requires a lot of lifting and moving of cargo, so his health is important to his continued employment. Unfortunately, at 50 he has hardly any teeth left. A deep scratch on his leg a few years back resulted in serious complications, where he was at risk of loosing his leg. (He was trying to “score” some antibiotics at our mother’s funeral). Then this Thanksgiving he was hospitalized with pneumonia when he refused to see a Dr. and get treatment. The only good that came out of it was he gave up smoking. One can argue he may not have good insurance, but I know his employer provides basic insurance.

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talia April 12, 2011 at 1:31 pm

Runner 41 – You don’t have a dog? What a sad solution forsaving money. Never opening your home to a pet in need which is such a kind thing to do. And studies show having pets makes you healthier and happier. I am sure you RUN, RUN, RUN in very expensive shoes though. I understand your reluctance to donate given all the scam charities. It is shocking when you discover what small amount of your charitable giving actually goes to the cause you think you are supporting vs. what goes to the high salaries of the people who work for the charity. Seems to be more about them than the cause they claim to support. I think enough of my tax dollars have gone to support lazy, irresponsible people who just want to live off other people for no other reasons than they feel entitled.

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Xan June 2, 2011 at 4:36 am

I agree with you about the donating part. But so what if Runner 41 doesn’t want to have a pet. Maybe he’s allergic to pets hair. And better than him just showing off how kind he is by having a dog but not looking after it properly, and then the pet would suffer.

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Jay Delgado April 14, 2011 at 11:49 am

Cheating, lying and deceiving others: absolutely the worst way(s) to ‘save’ money.

I love your comment: “if I don’t feel comfortable telling my Mom how I saved money, I probably shouldn’t be doing it.”

Great, just great.

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Will August 13, 2011 at 4:47 pm

I can relate directly with this

My mother passed away in March 2010.

During the cleaning of my Mothers house, my sister and her husband stole what amounted to 90% of my inheritance. This was a large collection of antique jewelry, approx $2,000,000 worth.

My Mothers Will reads that all assets are to divided equally 50/50 between my sister and I.

Minutes before my sister and her husband stealing this jewelry, 2 large shopping bags of nothing but Edwardian and Victorian 18kt Gold pieces with diamonds and gems in abundance, with date stamps, jeweler marks, etc, they were telling me how much they loved me.

When they saw that Motherload of Jewelry, all “Love” went out the window and something called GREED came in along with EVIL.

Now, I rely on Social Security.

My sister and her husband are multimillionaires.

Trust in no one!

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I'mJustSayin' February 12, 2012 at 10:47 am

Will, this is so sad.

My father passed 12/24/11 and this coming weekend my 11 sibs and I will meet at our parent’s home to choose lots on the personal tangible household items in the estate. The executor of the estate (not a family member) is overseeing all aspects of the estate, sale of the home, distribution of multi-million dollar holding, etc.

I fully trusted my 6 local siblings to accurately inventory the house contents in my absence. I was given the option of being there to participate in the inventory, but I live 2000 miles away.

They sent us all a very comprehensive 580 page color catalog to view before we meet, so we could all assess in advance our personal preferences for selection.

Per my father’s will, each of us will pick a number 1 – 12 and take turns choosing one item, or lot of items if grouped together in the catalog(e.g., matching lamps). Value of the items vary greatly, but the best item will likely go to the first numbers chosen. This was the only fair way my father and his lawyer saw fit to handle the personal tangible property.

It’s a shame your sister betrayed both you and your mother.

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Alex Hung April 26, 2011 at 5:19 am

I believe this post offers five valuable tips to anyone who is saving money by neglecting significant aspects of life. Thanks a lot for the mention.

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Ego Nemo May 4, 2011 at 7:41 am

I’d add:

BUYING ‘MAGIC BEANS’

There are plenty of folks out there who would gladly relieve you of any extra cash you might have.
And often these con-men and -women use saving money as their pitch. How many times have we heard the line, “And it actually saves you money…”
Obvious cons that employ this ‘spend a little-save a lot’ tactic are easily spotted after you’ve given them your money. But here’s how you can tell right away — They offer a short cut they claim is not available to, they appeal to your perceived biases and/or they claim what they’re offering is being suppressed by the government or the marketplace.

Examples of obvious cons include:

* The sort of health remedies for which there is factual basis of support for their claims.

* Most food that is labeled ‘organic,’ which a little investigation reveals is not demonstrably different or better than other wholesome (but not labeled organic) produce sold at lower cost.

* Energy-producing gadgets and devices that, upon a little investigation, can only work if the basic laws of physics were repealed.

It natural for a human being to want to feel as if they have stumbled upon a secret, or that they possess a winning strategy that others ignore, or that they have found a way to ‘beat the system.’

Con-men and -women prey upon those petty personal biases. And they get us to think we are saving money (or ourselves) when we spend their money with them.

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Ego Nemo May 4, 2011 at 7:42 am

Should read “The sort of health remedies for which there is NO factual basis of support for their claims.”

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super saver May 5, 2011 at 7:12 am

We save more than 50% and follow all the ideas above. The most important way we save it to minimize participation in the consumer culture. We do not go to malls, shop online or from catalogues or big box stores. We buy only what we have carefully considered we need, buy local, find quality used items to buy, like old/antique furniture, clothes at Goodwill, and quality used cars. We have a classy life style. We travel overseas. We will be paying our house off, sending our kids to private colleges and retiring by age 55 on 1.5 FTE middle class salary. It is a joke that there needs to be a tax cut for those making $300K and above. I can’t inagine any senario in which that much cash could be needed. The rich have taken our manufacturing jobs overseas and now have gutted our service economy. That is the reasal tragedy of lack of savings — greed.

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random surfer May 16, 2011 at 9:39 am

I’m surprised nobody mentioned going green. It doesn’t have to be a huge home makeover if you can’t afford one. I save easy cash by turning out lights in empty rooms and making sure all the faucets are off (not leaking). I notice the difference of about $30 on the bill versus when I have been lazy and left lights on or if an un-energy conscious guest has stayed with us. It’s so easy. People who refuse to conserve energy or go green in some small way are throwing savings money out the window.

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dave May 26, 2011 at 11:02 am

The ARTICLE is about the WORST ways to save money

If you think Going Green is a good way to save money — THEN THERE IS NO REASON TO MENTION IT

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ahmed zahmed June 16, 2011 at 8:46 am

Then I guess Random Surfer should have titled is comment “Not Going Green”

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bizoune June 7, 2011 at 11:49 am

I’d rather put my money towards good quality food than a Doctor/ Hospital.

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Milo July 21, 2011 at 8:51 am

While I *personally* agree with points 4 and 5 from a moral standpoint, there is no financial justification for them, and really do not belong on this list.

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ckuplic August 8, 2011 at 6:30 am

I’ll take dogs over kids any day!!!!!!!!!!!

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Charles August 9, 2011 at 7:22 am

If you’re going to have to live with an item for five years or more — a mattress and box spring set, say, a refrigerator, or an automobile — the best policy is to pay as much as you can afford for the sake of quality. Living with cheap decision-making is a special and unrelenting purgatory.

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barb November 19, 2011 at 7:08 am

Many times the produce from local Farmer’s Markets are very close to organic. It takes lots of time and expensive legal paper work to be able to sell as ORGANIC. Most local growers will easily share what they have done as far as fertilizers and pesticides around their products.

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barb November 19, 2011 at 7:19 am

Buying cheap usually means buying from China (expensive comes from China too, I know :( ) . When I can’t find US made, I try very hard to buy from a resale shop, auction or whatever you want to call pre-used items. I tell myself that at least I’m not adding to the foreign trade issues that way. And- I’m saving $

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