When you're shopping, it can be tempting to save as much money as possible. After all,
who doesn't love the thrill of a great deal?
But sometimes, the phrase "buy cheap, buy twice" really does ring true. While it can be
beneficial to save where possible, some items are worth investing in. So before you set
out to update your wardrobe or refresh your home furnishings, take some time to think
about which items are worth splurging on and where you should look for savings. Your
budget will thank you.
Clothing and accessories
Denim: If you're the kind of person who lives in your favorite, perfectly broken-in pair of
jeans, you'll want to invest in a quality pair. It's better to spend $100 to $200 on jeans
that will last you years to come rather than $30 on a pair you'll have to replace every
Shoes: Think about how much time you spend on your feet. Be kind to them by
spending the money on sturdy shoes that fit properly. When the heel finally does wear
down or the sole begins to separate, you can have your shoes repaired rather than shell
out more money for another cheap pair.
Staple pieces: There's nothing like a timeless blazer or little black dress that's been
tailored to perfection. These types of staple wardrobe items last through the trends and
are worth investing in.
Basics: When it comes to wardrobe basics (such as t-shirts, loungewear, and socks)
it's not a great idea to stretch your budget. There's not much difference between a
designer t-shirt and one from the discount department store. Plus, these items tend to
wear out quickly anyway.
Trendy items: Those tie dye joggers or acid wash jeans may only be in fashion through
the end of the season. If you like to keep up with the trends, it's not worth spending a lot
on items that will go out of style in a few months.
Mattress: Between sleeping, trying to get to sleep, relaxing, reading, and watching TV,
many people spend a lot of time in bed. In fact, a recent survey of U.S. adults found that
they spend nearly half their time1
lying in bed. That's why it's so important to spend top
dollar on a supportive mattress that will get ample use and can last you up to a decade.
Sofa: You don't have to be a couch potato to benefit from a high-quality sofa. Whether
you have a large family, frequent guests, or pets who like to curl up on the couch, it
pays to spend a bit more to ensure this staple piece of furniture can hold up while
keeping everyone comfy.
Bedding: Though you should budget for a top-tier mattress, it's easy to find quality
sheets, comforters, and pillows on sale at department stores or from discount retailers.
Wood furniture: Tables, nightstands, and other wood furniture isn't worth spending a
fortune on. You can find functional, stylish pieces from second hand stores, and even
spruce them up with a bit of stain or chalk paint if you're in the mood to DIY. If you want
to buy new, shop the sales and aim for furniture that is primarily wood and not plywood
the actual wood will last a lot longer.
Headphones: Audiophiles will appreciate the difference in sound quality a nice pair of
headphones offers. Whether you're looking for noise-cancelling, wireless, or sport headphones, save up for the higher end model.
Tablet: Many off-brand tablets have flooded the market in recent years to compete with
the major players in tech. But these versions don't always offer the same level of
functionality, speed, or durability. Go ahead and treat yourself to a high-quality version.
Television: When it comes to choosing a TV, it's usually about size and resolution. You
could spring for the latest trend, such as a curved screen or advanced smart options,
but in reality, your expensive TV will be obsolete in six months anyway. Most of the
major electronics brands offer quality budget options and you can often snag a good
deal if you have some patience to comparison shop and wait for a sale.
Smart home assistants: When it comes to the world of Siri, Alexa, and Google, there
are a ton of expensive gadgets you can buy. However, if you want a straightforward setup, there are plenty of budget-friendly options.
Dishwasher: Scrimping on a dishwasher might make you feel like you're saving money,
but extra time spent over the sink rewashing dishes isn't only annoying it's less efficient
and more costly in the long run.
Coffeemaker: If you're a real coffee snob, you may be better off investing in a quality
coffee grinder and French press or pour-over brewing system or even a nice espresso
machine if it's within your budget. And this investment comes with bonus savings when
you end up spending less at the coffee shop.
Toaster: Your morning bagel doesn't need any fancy equipment to get nice and toasty.
Don't worry about spending a lot on a toaster even a low-end model should last you a
Microwave: If you're going to be zapping your dinner, you're not expecting gourmet
results. Any microwave that fits your budget will get the job done.
Important disclosure information
This content is general in nature and does not constitute legal, tax, accounting, financial or investment advice. You are encouraged to consult with competent legal, tax, accounting, financial or investment professionals based on your specific circumstances. We do not make any warranties as to accuracy or completeness of this information, do not endorse any third-party companies, products, or services described here, and take no liability for your use of this information.
Tyler Schmall, "We spend nearly half of our lifetime lying around in bed," NY Post, published March 21,
2019, accessed October 15, 2020.
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