Why buying cheap can turn out expensive

With the high cost of living these days, it’s tempting always to choose the cheapest options to stretch your budget. A street vendor might offer phone chargers at the traffic light at a much lower price than the store does. Why not take advantage of the ‘bargain’? If a water pipe bursts at home, why call a professional plumber, when you can call your friend who knows his way around DIY and won’t charge you a cent? That’s being smart with your money, right? Wrong.

You should always be careful with your finances and look for ways to save, but sometimes buying the cheapest option is not the best choice. A lot of cheap goods are poorly made, and break or wear out quickly, so you’ll have to replace them more often.

A service provider like a mechanic or electrician who charges very low prices might be doing so because they’re not properly qualified, or because the shoddy quality of their work doesn’t bring them much repeat business. Properly qualified professionals whose services are always in demand may charge more, but it’s worth the extra expense to get a job done properly the first time – especially as a reputable contractor will guarantee their work. Besides, if you hire someone cheap and they botch the job, you’ll still have to hire a more expensive professional to fix the problem.


Frugal versus cheap – what’s the difference?

Buying cheap all the time can be expensive in the long run, because you never get your money’s worth. You’ll always be fixing or replacing things, which is frustrating and costly. Rather do some research and buy the best-quality goods and services you can afford. There’s a difference between being frugal and being cheap.

Learn to live with a budget so you can spend money only on what’s necessary

Being frugal means that you make wise and deliberate buying decisions and can distinguish your wants from your needs. It’s frugal to go without some things to waste less money, while freeing up more cash to save or spend on things you need. If you’re frugal, you’ll be willing to pay more for quality items because you know they will last longer. You’ll compare prices and know exactly what you want when you shop, even if it means waiting for a genuine sale.

On the other hand, someone who is cheap just wants to spend as little money as possible. They’ll buy a fridge, TV or computer that costs thousands of rands, but then not spend R100 on a surge protector to protect those devices from damage caused by lightning strikes or power surges. This person doesn’t think twice about taking part in the fake economy and buying cheap knock-offs of reputable brands. But those knock-offs aren’t made with nearly the same quality of materials or attention to detail as the genuine article, so they’re likely to fall apart or stop working quickly.


Money-saving techniques without being cheap

You can spend responsibly without being cheap. You just need to spend wisely and stick to your financial goals. Saving money through the following techniques is better for your overall well-being.


Be honest about what you need

Learn to cut down on things you don’t need. Don’t spend wantonly because items are cheap. Learn to live with a budget so you can spend money only on what’s necessary.


Treat yourself (within reason)

Avoid being cheap with yourself. Occasionally, treat yourself for the right reasons, such as celebrating accomplishments. Just don’t spend money wildly because it makes you feel good – that can ruin your financial health. It’s all about balance.


Invest in the important things when you can afford to 

Some of the items we buy need to last for several seasons – for example, jerseys, coats, boots, carpets or curtains. Spend more if you can. If good quality costs a lot upfront but will be worth it, wait for a genuine sale.


Don’t be afraid to say no

It’s okay to miss a party or social event if you think it will cost you a lot of money in travel or gifts for the host. Being frugal means eliminating FOMO. You can save money by saying no to some social requests, but you can still do things that make you happy at home.

If you’re looking for great quality in products or services, but you still want to save with discounts or promotional deals, be sure to visit Avo SuperShop.