Save More by Spending More, What?

Ever wonder if you can truly save more by spending more money? The answer is simple yes. This post describes the ways that people can save more by spending more. These are ways that many people tend to tag as expensive but fail to realize the fact that the collective future savings of these will far outweigh their current costs.

How many people have told you that in order for you to save more you need to spend less? I bet the answer is a lot of people. I have to agree that the statement makes complete sense. In an ideal world, the less money you spend, the more money you can put towards your savings.

On the other hand, how many have told you to spend more so you can save more? You can probably count with your fingers the number of people who have told you that.

There are cases when spending less can cost you more in the long run. For example, buying disposable utensils constantly over a number of years will cost more collectively than making a one-time buy of a set of stainless utensils. In addition, purchasing brake pads for cars from time to time will cost you more collectively over time than purchasing brake pads with a lifetime warranty.

Save More by Spending More

Having said this, there are ways that you can adopt to save more by simply spending more. Some are quick and easy to do but some may require more patience and willingness.

1. Use credit cards more often

Gone are the days when credit cards were just cards that you used to only make purchases. Nowadays, many credit cards come with rewards in the forms of cash back, airline points, and bonus. The more you use your credit cards, the more rewards you get.

This doesn’t mean that you should spend more than what you can afford. The concept behind using credit cards more often is simple and straightforward. Instead of paying bills or making purchases by cash or debit cards, use your credit cards and pay off the balance when they are due. In this case, you are just substituting credit cards over cash or debit cards as a payment method.

In 2015, I earned around $150 in cash back using my American Express Blue Cash for buying groceries and $200 from Capital One QuickSilver for paying all my bills (excluding groceries). That’s $350 free money.

“Save more by spending more” key takeaway: Your credit cards can be your best friend if you use them wisely and responsibly. Use them to pay your bills and for purchases but don’t go over what you can afford. If you do, then, the fees you’ll get charged will far exceed the rewards you’ll get from these cards.

2. Buy more healthy food

Let’s face the reality, that is, there are probably more junk, pre-packaged and pre-processed foods than healthy foods in the market. Almost all the grocery stores and supermarkets, the ones that I have gone to, have less dedicated spaces for produce and healthy foods. I can’t blame them because a lot of people (unknowingly) choose to eat unhealthy foods for many reasons such as convenience, taste, and price.

Many people believe that these kinds of foods are cheaper and that healthy foods are way too expensive. But this is not always the case according to a study published by the US Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service. The study states that the expensiveness of healthy foods depends on how you measure the price. The study found that foods that are low in calories (i.e. fruits and vegetables) appear to have higher prices when such prices are measured by calories. On the other hand, less healthy foods such as those with added sugar and high saturated fat cost lower when measured by calories.

Aside from the cost itself, you also need to worry about the effects of these foods to your body. You may be saving a lot of money now because you are purchasing low-priced junk, pre-packaged and pre-processed foods but they do take a toll in your health. Sooner or later, your unhealthy choices of foods will catch up to you by negatively affecting your health and will cause you more in medical expenses.

“Save more by spending more” key takeaway: You may be spending a lot more in healthy foods but you will save more in the long run in the form of less medical expenses due to not consuming unhealthy foods. The savings may not be immediate, but the savings will add little by little.

3. Educate yourself more

It is a known fact that college graduates earn more money in their lifetime that those who have high school diploma. According to National Center for Education Statistics, bachelor’s degree holders earned 63% more than high school graduates in 2013. If you want to earn more so that you can save a lot more money, then, you should educate yourself by going to college and obtaining a degree. You may be spending more money now in the forms of college tuition and fees but you are more likely to get a better paying job once you have completed your college education.

For example, lawyers are some of the highest paid professionals in today’s job market. They make way more money that those employed in fast food restaurants (i.e. cashiers and servers). If you want to be a lawyer, you need to go through a process. You can’t practice law if you don’t go to law school and pass the bar exam. You can’t go to law school if you don’t finish your college. On the other hand, you only need a high school diploma to work in a fast food restaurant but your pay will never be as high as a practicing attorney. I’m just throwing this out as an example to prove my point.

“Save more by spending more” key takeaway: You are likely to earn more money if you finish college, assuming that you finish a degree that can land you a good paying job and/or you are responsible enough to pay your student loans. Of course, there are always exceptions to the rule of “better pay by educating yourself more”, one of which is if you get a degree that has few job opportunities (e.g. degrees in drama and recreation/leisure studies).


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4. Spend more on healthy lifestyle

Eating health foods can only do so much for your body. To keep your body active and healthy, you need to adopt and keep a healthy lifestyle. It’s so easy to succumb into excessive drinking, smoking, partying, and doing other activities when you are surrounded by swarms of people who engage in these activities. Remember that anything excessive is unhealthy.

You need to proactively exercise to keep your body active and build your strength and stamina. You may want to take vitamins and other supplements and visit the gym for exercising. If you do find the gym membership expensive, you can always go to the park and do some running and exercising and work on chores in your house.

“Save more by spending more” key takeaway: Bottom line is healthy eating plus healthy lifestyle equals healthy living and good health, which means less cost in medical expenses and more money to your pocket. The healthier you get, the better you will feel about your body and mind.   

5. Spend more for lifetime warranty

If you happen to purchase any kind of item that you think you’ll need for a very long time and there is an option to purchase a lifetime warranty, then, it may be in your best interest to you purchase that option. It’s your product protection just in case the product breaks. Lifetime warranty (subject to exclusions, restrictions, and requirements) allows to get your product repaired or replaced at little to no cost to you.

I remember that my brother-in-law would always buy lifetime warranties for his hardware tools. I personally saw the benefits of having these warranties. He would always go to Lowes and/or Home Depot or call the manufacturers to get the products replaced. He didn’t have to buy the products again because of those warranties.

The cost may be a little bit more than what you plan on paying. But remember the potential cost you would incur if you decide to buy the same product or similar product with the same functionalities over and over again because you don’t have warranty on it. You may think that you are saving money because you are buying it at a cheaper price than buying it together with the warranty but it may not be the case.

“Save more by spending more” key takeaway: Always ask the merchants if they have lifetime warranties for products that you are buying. Whether these warranties are for car parts or furniture in the house, I believe that it’s always worth spending more on lifetime warranty if you are going to use the products forever or for a very long time.

6. Spend more on energy-efficient appliances

For those who bought their houses with outdated kitchen appliances, it’s probably best to replace the appliances with energy-efficient ones not solely for aesthetic purposes. Yes, you may be looking at shelling out a few thousands of dollars on microwave, refrigerators, and oven. But think about the future savings in utility costs these appliances will provide you.

Of course, not all energy-efficient appliances are expensive but they do still cost a few hundreds of dollars. Here are some of the ways that you can apply to get the appliances at lower prices:

  1. Wait for the holidays to get better deals or discounts.
  2. Search for rebates for energy-efficient appliances.
  3. If you are in the military or are a retired military, present your military ID card to get 10% discount at Lowes.
  4. Buy appliances as a set to get more discounts than buying them individually.
  5. Buy floor models so you can get a bit of discount, provided that the models are the last ones in the stores’ stock and the merchants are willing to sell them.
  6. If you find lower prices for the appliances you purchased within a given time period, contact the credit card company and ask for reimbursement for the difference between the amount you paid on your purchases and the new lower prices of those products. Some credit cards do offer this benefit and they call it price or purchase protection.

“Save more by spending more” key takeaways: Energy-efficient appliances can save you money in the form of lower utility cost. The immediate impact in your utility bill may be small but if you compute the savings for an extended period, you may find that it’s worth investing in these appliances. In addition, if you ever plan on selling your house, new appliances can help increase the value of your house. It’s just a side note worth introducing. 

Conclusion:

The next time people tell you to spend less to save more, always remember that there are exceptions to the rule. Just because the common school of thought when it comes to savings is to spend less you can save more doesn’t mean that such statement is set to stone. Are you now convinced that, sometimes, you can save more by spending more?


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13 Comments

  1. Distilled Dollar March 16, 2016
    • Allan Liwanag March 16, 2016
  2. Tim March 16, 2016
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  3. Aliyyah @RichAndHappyBlog March 16, 2016
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  5. Nurse on Fire March 19, 2016
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    • Allan Liwanag May 28, 2016