Posted by Dave on November 6, 2012
This is a guest post by Dave, who is also looking to retire no later than 45, but unlike Tim has no kids and doesn’t want any. Dave is from Ontario and is working towards his CGA certification.
Over the Thanksgiving long weekend, I went on a road trip with my wife, dad and stepmother to Virginia. There was no real point to the trip, other than going somewhere we’d never been. After a couple thousand kilometers of driving, we saw some amazing views along the Skyline Drive at Shenandoah National Park (I felt like I was rally car racing). Thanks to the GPS directions, we also got to see a lot of the Apalachian foothills, where we saw some really interesting small towns on the way home. Along the way, we had some interesting conversations (20 hours in the car does that) – one of these conversations focused on my distaste of my waffle maker.
My wife and I bought a waffle maker a few years ago, for the 2 or 3 times per year that we had waffles (and real maple syrup which is the only way to go). In our haste to buy a waffle maker, we went with the cheapest one we could find. The problem with purchases like this is that my buyer’s remorse is going to last forever because the waffle maker won’t break and it doesn’t make sense to buy a new one….so we’re stuck with a waffle maker that just makes “okay” waffles (if that isn’t a real problem, I just don’t know what is).
Similarly, a few months ago I was looking for a circular saw. I was talking over two saws with the sales guy and he said that I could save 40% buying the cheaper one, but I would probably regret my purchase every time I used it because it definitely feels like it cost 40% less.
In retirement, the benefit of having bought higher quality goods along the way, whether it’s tools or furniture or other stuff I’ve collected means less need for buying these kind of things. Additionally, a quick (non-scientific) review of Kijiji shows the stuff that I’ve bought so far, has a fairly good resale value, if people pay anywhere near what the stuff is listed at.
My savings rate is fairly high, meaning I don’t have a ton of money to spend and still stay on course to meet my retirement goals. I have tried to make sure I am spending it more efficiently, and buying less crappy waffle makers and more good saws.
Have you ever bought a “waffle maker” item and regretted it? Would you just trade it in, give it away, or throw it out to replace it (one of these would probably be smarter than scowling at an unwanted waffle maker when I find it buried in the back of a cupboard).