5 Purchases You Shouldn’t Skimp On

When buying these items, it may be best to let price take a back seat. Find out why.
By Ollie Geiger

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In a world packed with options for consumers, when does it make sense to put price aside and buy exactly what you want?

Setting cost aside may seem ridiculous in today’s competitive marketplace. But on certain purchases, getting precisely what you need is the only way to go. While it may not be wise to make extravagant choices when buying the following items, trying too hard to save money on them may be an even bigger mistake.

These are five purchases you shouldn’t skimp on.

Your Mattress

The average person sleeps 7.5 hours per night. The average mattress has a lifespan of more than 10 years.

That means the next time you walk out of your local mattress store, you should be ready to spend more than 27,000 hours atop the thing you’re carrying.

But aren’t all mattresses pretty good nowadays? While the mattress you buy today may be better than your last one, you shouldn’t ignore the cumulative effect that 27,000 hours of anything can have on you.

Even if the mattress you prefer is only 5% more comfortable than a cheaper one, that’s 27,000 hours of 5% more comfort. Would you sacrifice that for a little extra up-front cost?

Your Car

Like mattresses, today’s cars are generally better than their older counterparts. But also like a mattress, your car is an item that will be closely tied to your existence for the time you own it. For this reason, it’s key that you make a list of features you need in your new car before you visit the lot.

Your Vacation

Your Groceries

Given the prominence of coupons and big-box discount stores today, groceries are another realm that appears ripe for saving.
But while there’s much said in the personal finance world about the dangers of going shopping on an empty stomach, doing the opposite isn’t necessarily the cure: Going when you’re not hungry at all – or simply trying too hard to cut back on your grocery bill – can also end up costing you more.
How so? Even though your appetite may not be present when you’re shopping, rest assured it will return. When it does, having a lightly stocked cupboard can lead to you venturing out in search of food – and the options you find there are likely to be more costly and less healthy than the items you would have picked up at the store.
Save yourself time and money by tossing what you really need into your shopping cart instead.

Gifts for Your Spouse

Have the previous purchases seemed like counterintuitive choices? If so, you may be glad to see this exquisitely obvious item on the list.
While you shouldn’t use money as a proxy for love in your relationships, spending less than your partner expects on a gift is likely to send a message that only someone who enjoys sleeping alone on a couch would ever want to send.
Again, this shouldn’t be taken as an excuse for reckless spending – many husbands and wives may find unpaid credit card bills more bothersome than cheap gifts. But when it comes to a choice between two options of slightly different costs, choosing the more expensive one may offer some reasonably priced insurance against marital discord.
About Author
Ollie Geiger is a freelance writer who writes about financial technology and consumer banking.