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It's worth paying more for these 7 things

Money Talks News logo Money Talks News 3/19/2019 Maryalene LaPonsie
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During the lean, early years of my marriage, saving pennies was a necessity. However, as my spouse and I got older and our financial situation improved, I continued to pay as little as possible for anything and everything.

I could afford more, but I just didn’t want to spend more.

However, my shopping philosophy eventually began to shift. After years of being surrounded by poorly made stuff that never worked as I had hoped, I decided that just because something is cheap, it isn’t necessarily a good value.

Some of you may be saying “duh,” but it took me a while to accept that simple truth.

Now, I value quality over price, especially for certain items. Following are seven things that are often worth the higher cost.

1. High-quality tools

a hand holding a cup: Man holding tools© allstars / Shutterstock.com Man holding tools

Whether we’re talking about power tools or kitchen tools, you want the best items you can afford if you’ll be using them regularly.

Thin pots and dull knives will have you running to the takeout line rather than cooking at home. Anemic power drills and flimsy hand tools will leave you cursing and make your weekend projects all that more of a chore.

If you need an item for a one-time use, you can probably get by with a cheaper version, although renting might make even more sense in some cases.

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2. A vehicle that goes beyond the basics

a man driving a car© Goran Bogicevic / Shutterstock.com

Remember the Yugo? There was a reason it was so cheap. Low-end cars come with low-end parts. They are uncomfortable to drive and may end up needing multiple repairs before dying prematurely.

Rather than buying the cheapest vehicle possible, look for one with a reputation for reliability and safety. It will likely last you longer and need fewer repairs.

You’ll spend more on a better car, but it doesn’t have to put you in the poorhouse. Because cars tend to hold up for many more miles than they used to — with a fair number of top models likely to last for at least 200,000 miles — go ahead and find a used car that combines quality and a slightly lower price.

So, think “affordable,” not “bargain basement.”

Related: Stop Overpaying for These 10 Everyday Items

3. Services from competent professionals

Mechanic repairing car© Troels Graugaard/Getty Images Mechanic repairing car

It would really stink to pay someone to do your taxes and then find out he or she filed the paperwork all wrong. And yet, that’s the sort of thing that happens when you go the cheap route for professional services.

From financial advisers to auto mechanics, you want to spend extra to get someone who knows what they’re doing. It could cost more upfront but will save money in the long run. You’ll also save yourself the aggravation and stress from scrambling to clean up the mess created by a cut-rate professional.

4. The best house you can afford

a person standing in a room© Monkey Business Images / Shutterstock.com

Like cheap cars, some inexpensive houses may cut corners on quality. You get new construction but with paper-thin walls and chintzy cabinets. They may be expensive to heat and uncomfortable to live in.

You could buy an older house — one with fantastic bones — in hopes of saving money. However, the low price could be because it’s in a neighborhood plagued by crime, traffic or some other undesirable element. Again, going cheap in this case could make for a bad living environment. Plus, your house will be a lousy investment if no one wants to buy it from you because of the neighborhood.

Instead of seeking out the cheapest house possible, buy the best house you can afford — considering both the structure and the location.

5. A lifetime of memories

© Angela Waye / Shutterstock.com

Don’t overlook the importance of sometimes splurging on memorable experiences.

After my husband’s death at age 37, I began questioning the wisdom of waiting to enjoy life. It seems like we often want to put off the good life until we have a little more money, or until the kids get older, or until the stars align and angels sing.

I’m not recommending that people who are deeply in debt jet off on a world tour or spend two weeks in Hawaii. There are lots of ways to keep your expenditures in check while on a family adventure. And if your budget will allow a weekend at the beach or even just a day at the zoo, it can be money well-spent.

6. Clothes that will last

a woman standing in a room© racorn / Shutterstock.com

Clothing is what first made me rethink my “cheaper is better” philosophy of spending. My closet was (and still largely is) filled with hand-me-downs. The price was unbeatable, but nothing fit right and I often felt frumpy and self-conscious.

The same happened with my kids’ clothes. We would load up at the bag sale at the thrift store, but many of those bargain items wouldn’t last the season.

While I haven’t sworn off thrift store shopping, I’m much more particular about the brands I buy.

As with the other items on this list, paying more doesn’t necessarily mean buying the most expensive item available. You’ll need to find the sweet spot at the intersection of price and quality.

For example, I’ve discovered a $50 pair of jeans is infinitely better than a $20 pair of jeans. However, the difference between the $50 pair and one costing $75 isn’t that great.

7. A mattress for a good night’s sleep

a woman lying on a bed posing for the camera© leungchopan / Shutterstock.com

Life is so much better when you’re well-rested, but it’s hard to sleep when your mattress is thin or lumpy or uncomfortably stiff.

Find the best mattress to support your back and sleeping style and buy it, even if it costs a little more. Again, I’m not saying you have to buy the most expensive one. I’m only saying you should be willing to pay more to get what you need rather than settling for less.

Those are seven things we think you should pay more to have. What’s on your list? Leave a comment below or share with us on our Facebook page.

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