Has someone ever advised you on ways to save money that have become more costly? Or have you ever bought a cheaper version of an item only to have to replace it sooner than expected? According to an online frugal community, these are a few examples of how to avoid unhelpful “frugal” tips.
1. Growing Your Own Food
Although having a garden can be rewarding in numerous ways, it’s not always cheaper. If you like gardening and it’s important to you to have a source of food at home, don’t let us dissuade you.
However, think again if you’re thinking of growing your own food to save money. The right fertilizers, building beds for your fruits and veggies, and other supplies can become quite costly.
2. Buying in Bulk
Depending on the size of your family and what you like to buy, buying in bulk can be wasteful compared to shopping at the grocery store. Make sure you do the math before you have more than you can use of something!
3. Choosing Knock-Off Brands
Some knock-off brands are worth it and often come from the same manufacturer as the original. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. Sometimes, you’ll have to use more of a product to go as far as the name brand, making it not worth the cost savings.
4. Doing Your Own Nails
Some people have the time and patience to learn to do their own nails. In most cases, you’ll spend lots of time, spend way more money on supplies, and end up frustrated. There’s a reason we pay professionals for specific services: they’ve got all the tools and experience.
5. Making Your Cleaning Supplies
Whether you want a more natural solution or are tired of the ever-rising cost of laundry detergent, you may be considering making your products. While this can be an excellent option for some, it can be a pain in the bum and not leave your items as clean as the store-bought choice would.
6. Raising Chickens for the Egg Supply
Despite the recent egg shortage and the cost of eggs skyrocketing, the bright idea of raising chickens may not be a sustainable one. Unless you have plenty of time and space on your hands, the cost of raising chickens is significant and can be pretty costly.
7. Buying a Home vs. Renting
In some cases, buying your own home is the best option. If you know how to fix things yourself, you’ll likely save money in the long run. However, some people find that owning a home isn’t worth it, even with the costs of renting skyrocketing.
Homeownership is often way more expensive due to repairs, maintenance, property taxes, or costs associated with relocating in the future. Of course, this all depends on your future goals, your budget, and how handy you are.
8. Using Apps to Order Food
The convenience of ordering your lunch in an app and picking it up is great. However, the fees associated with doing so are sometimes much higher than you realize. For example, a fast-food restaurant may offer free delivery to entice you, but you may spend $5-20 extra per order in fees.
9. Shopping at Thrift Stores
Thrift stores are a fun place to look around in. Plus, sometimes you can find quite a steal. Unfortunately, items at second-hand stores are more expensive than ever. Sometimes it seems like it’s just as pricy as buying the items new! Make sure you do a bit of research when you’re shopping at thrift stores with the sole purpose of saving money.
10. Paying for Memberships Upfront
Sometimes, paying for a year or two of a membership or subscription is worth the cost savings. If you’re unsure whether you’ll stick to a routine — such as a gym membership or an app subscription- consider going month to month and upgrading.
11. Keeping Electronics and Appliances Forever
You might have been taught to hold onto your appliances until they break apart, but this may cost you in other ways. For example, an old freezer in your garage could raise your electric bill more than you know, like one user who mentioned that their new freezer raised their bill by 90%!
12. Buying Sale Items or Couponing
If you can find coupons for items you had planned on buying or buying regularly, spending time couponing may not be worth it. The purpose of many manufacturers in sending out coupons is to entice you into buying something you didn’t need or purchasing more of it.