We have all heard the saying, “Pennywise, pound foolish” as well as “It takes money to make money.” Both are important axioms for a reason. Too often, people who call themselves frugal do whatever they can to spend as little money as possible. The trouble with this way of thinking is that you may miss opportunities to save money over years.
If you are willing to spend some money upfront, you can save money for years afterward, which seems like a truly frugal, and sustainable, thing to do.
Don’t believe me? Here are some of our favorite ways to invest money upfront and reap the rewards for years to come:
1. Buy your own modem. Internet companies are clever. They “rent” you a modem for a nominal fee, usually a few dollars a month. What they don’t make clear is that you can buy your own modem. Often the price of a modem can be made back within 10 months based on what you pay as a monthly rental fee. That means every year after that, you are reaping the savings for one relatively small upfront investment.
2. Buy a water softener system. Hard water is not just bad for your skin and hair. The build-up from using hard water can clog pipes and force you to replace them earlier than usual. Invest in a water softener system like Harvey Water Softeners and you will save money by not having to prematurely replace pipes and by not having to run prewash cycles on your dishwasher and washing machine.
3. Buy a fuel efficient vehicle. A fuel efficient vehicle may cost several thousand more when you are buying it. However, if you keep a vehicle for 10 or more years, chances are you will earn back the extra money you paid up front in reduced fuel costs in just a few years. Plus, fuel efficient vehicles tend to hold their resale value more than gas guzzlers.
If you are truly frugal, be willing to spend some money upfront to save money over the course of years. Like many sustainability/green decisions our personal finance dilemmas should also have long term focus.
What is your favourite way to save money over the long run?