5 Time-Consuming Things that Don’t Actually Save Money

By Connie Mei

| Photographs By Rawpixel.com

Everybody loves to find new ways to save. After all, it’s quite thrilling to know you did something productive to save a bit of money, even if the amount is miniscule. And every little bit counts when you’re trying to build your savings. But could your money-saving habits actually be hurting you? The answer is surprisingly yes.

Despite the best intentions, many people are actually doing things all wrong. Yes, certain habits might save you some money, but they can cost you quite a bit of time too. Spending your time to save a few bucks isn’t always worth it. Remember the saying, “Time is money”? Here are five instances when spending extra time doesn’t actually save you money:

Always Buying Used

There are many times when buying used might actually be a good idea. For instance, buying a used car can save you a lot of money. You can find plenty of used cars in like-new condition at a heavily discounted price. On the other hand, many other items should not be bought secondhand. For example, you should never buy used makeup and undergarments, as bacteria can grow on items like these. You also shouldn’t buy used car seats or tires, for safety reasons. So how do you know which items to buy used? You need to research, and that can take a ton of time. It’s a balancing act, but sometimes waiting for a promotion and buying new makes more sense.

Stalking the Sale Section

Who doesn’t love a good sale? Sometimes you walk by and find the best things just sitting in a sale section waiting to be bought. But other times it’s not so easy. When was the last time you spent a day fighting everyone at the store just because you felt the urge to buy something on sale? Do you always gravitate to the sale aisle once you walk into a store, only to spend a considerable amount of time rummaging through a pile of stuff and not find anything useful? Worse, do you end up leaving with one or more items you never really needed? Break the habit. Just because something is on sale doesn’t mean you need to buy it.

DIY Projects

It’s awesome if you have the gift of being handy and crafty, but not everyone is a D-I-Yer. If you’re not comfortable making something on your own, you don’t have to make an attempt unless you find it enjoyable to give the job a try. It’s perfectly okay to buy something at the store even if others can make them by themselves. This is especially true for items you plan on using for a long time, like furniture. In the long run, it might be more worth it for you to spend a little more now. Not only will you save yourself some frustration and time, but your furniture will likely last longer and look better from the beginning.

Not Using a Credit Card

Having an “all cash” system is definitely beneficial for those who can’t control their credit card spending. However, using credit cards to pay can definitely be beneficial too. First, you don’t have to spend extra time counting change. Second, you can get reward points and cash back when using your card, which can be like getting a discount on every purchase. Third, it’s actually easier to track your spending with a card, helping those who are disciplined and willing improve long-term spending habits.

Waiting in Line for a Deal

If you waited in line for Black Friday deals this past Thanksgiving weekend, you weren’t the only one. Thousands of other Americans did, as well. You can definitely score a huge discount during these types of promotions. But is it really worth it? It’s up to you to weigh the pros and cons, but spending hours waiting in line is definitely not time well spent. Plus, most retailers offer huge discounts and promotions at other times of the year. Cyber Monday, anyone? Sometimes you can avoid the lines and save even more. You just have to be on the lookout.

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