How much is your junk worth?

<Continue from last post>

You may say, ‘Well, that’s a really small expenditure, this book that you are talking about.  It doesn’t make a big difference.’  I guess looking just at the one instance, you are kind of correct.  But, extend this thought process to all your purchasing decisions over your entire life.  I guarantee you, it makes a big difference.  A $25 book, not bought, and instead invested for 35 years @ 7% = $267.  Still not impressed?  I guess you are right, $267 isn’t all that big of a deal, when you are talking about retirement money.  BUT, (#1) – make one $25 ‘not buying’ decision like this every week during those 35 years.  Now you have $180,000.  Now some of you are starting to get it, and you are thinking:  ‘$25/week, that’s not a problem.  I could also:  

  • (#2) – Cut my own hair ($2.30/week) – (Assuming a $20 cut every 2 months.  It’s not hard, my 9 year old daughter cuts mine!)
  • (#3) – Get rid of my expensive wireless plan ($13.85/week) – (Assuming reducing your bill $60/month)
  • (#4) – Cut cable TV ($13.85/week) – (Assuming eliminating your $60/month bill)
  • (#5) – Quit eating out so much ($20/week).’  (Note:  I have even made my own sushi!)

Now, you have $539,000 in 35 years.  Some of you have momentum now, and you are thinking ‘I’m not done yet, what if I:’

  • (#6) – Save on utilities:  Installed LED bulbs (free from my power company), insulated my attic and installed low flow showerheads and faucets ($23/week).  (I know, there are some costs here, but they are quickly paid for, and I am trying to keep the math simple)
  • (#7) – Biked to work, and sold the car ($70/week) – (Don’t forget there is:  cost to purchase, insurance, registration, maintenance/repairs, and gasoline!  This $300/month would probably be low for you, you would probably save more!)

Now, after 7 simple changes, you have $1,208,000 in 35 years.  You are investing $728/month.  This is a lot of money, but it’s exactly the amount you saved following the 7 steps above.  I am sure many of you are assuming that making some of these 7 changes would go against the whole point of the previous post, and make your life worse.  Nope.  I have been doing these things for 3 years now (better late than never).  My life is not worse, my day to day life is actually better (For example:  my wife get’s to eat sushi, this makes her happy!) and I have ~$28,000 invested I would not have.

Let me repeat this:  My life is not only better, I have $28,000 saved too!  3 years.

How much is your junk worth?  Drop one $25 purchase every week, and 35 years later you have $180,000.

Make some small changes, the future you will thank the present you!

One Thought to “How much is your junk worth?”

  1. I am a huge fan of cutting out the needless expenses. Especially if you don’t value the things above. My wife and I have been doing an audit of our expenses to ensure that we are truly happy spending money on the things that we are and for the most part we really are in most areas. But we still have a long ways to go!!!

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