I mull over purchases for months before I make them and research most of the products I buy thoroughly. But I’ve still made some financial mistakes and have bought a few things over the past couple years that I regret.
Here are the top 3 purchases that have given me the most buyer’s remorse and the lessons I’ve learned from wasting my money on them.
High-End Memory Foam Mattress
I have chronic pain and fatigue, so I need a comfortable mattress to be able to get a good night’s sleep. After months of research, I decided to purchase a high-end memory foam mattress for $5,000.
It was very hard for me to part with that much money, but I saw it as an investment in my health that would last for years to come. But unfortunately, price isn’t always an indicator of quality. Just 5 years after I purchased it, I discovered that black mold was growing all over the underside of the mattress.
As soon as I threw it away and got a different mattress, I started feeling better. I had more energy and less chest pain, so I believe the mold was affecting my health.
After doing more research, I’ve learned that this is a common problem with memory foam mattresses. It can even happen with regular mattresses too because they have a layer of foam in them, which is susceptible to mold growth.
Because this could happen again, I’m definitely not going to invest in another expensive mattress.
A good night’s sleep is important, but it isn’t worth spending thousands on a mattress if you have to throw it away a few years later. So from now on, I’m sticking with cheaper options.
Another major purchase I regret is my car. Even though I live in an area with a lot of snow, I decided to purchase a used Ford Fiesta with two-wheel drive instead of four-wheel drive because it was cheaper.
Although it would probably be a great car for someone in a warmer climate, it doesn’t really meet my needs. It’s gotten stuck in the snow and has had to be towed away on several occasions. At this point, getting a car with four-wheel drive probably would’ve been less expensive.
I’ve learned that while it’s great to save money, you shouldn’t skimp on the essentials. Buying a cheap car may seem like a good deal now, but you’ll probably spend much more on future repairs than you’ll save.
Another purchase I regret is my luxury handbag.
I purchased a faux leather handbag from Stella McCartney for $400 when it was on sale. Considering it retails for about $1,000, I got a pretty good deal. But I still regret spending that much money on a purse that I just don’t use.
Everything I need to take with me when I leave the house fits in my coat pockets, so I only reach for my purse a few times a year. While it’s been great to take on trips when I need to carry extra stuff, I probably could’ve gotten an inexpensive backpack to serve the same purpose.
Although I regret wasting my money, these purchases have taught me a lot about what I value and will impact my spending habits going forward.
In the future, I plan to find a middle ground with everything I buy. I’m not going to choose the most expensive option, which often isn’t worth it. But I’m not going to skimp on quality just to save a few bucks, especially when it comes to essential purchases like cars.
Vicky Monroe is a freelance personal finance and lifestyle writer. When she’s not busy writing about her favorite money saving hacks or tinkering with her budget spreadsheets, she likes to travel, garden, and cook healthy vegetarian meals.