How a $3.85 Drink At Starbucks Affects Your Bottom Line.

So, you are a Starbucks junkie. You cannot stop yourself from getting that latte or mocha every morning. Maybe some shocking figures will help you? Ok, let’s get started:

Let’s say you buy just one, ONE latte a week. Every Monday. Let’s say in your Starbucks the cost is $3.85. Doesn’t sound like much, does it? About $15 dollars a month, thats pocket change! But what if you invested just that $3.85 every Monday instead?

$3.85 invested every week into an interest bearing account (say 5%) over 20 years turns into about $6,876.

Wow, pretty cool. But still, you are not willing to give it up.

Over 30 years, that $3.85 every week adds up to about $13,933. Wow, it doubled in just 10 more years time!

Now, lets say you have a real problem with Starbucks. A few times a week, you stop in and get your drink. How about 3 times a week?

$3.85 X 3 times a week = $11.55 per week. Still, not too much money, about $45 per month.

But what if you invested that $11.55 every week instead?

In the course of 20 years, that $11.55 per week in a 5% savings account would add up to about $20,630. Over 30 years? About $41,801…it doubled again!

Just in case you are wondering, the main point is not a cup of Starbucks coffee and how much it can cost you over time. It’s the little things you have to think of…Starbucks here, donut there, Snickers bar here, new T-shirt you didn’t need there…One more math equation and you can rest…

Let’s say you spend about $25 a week on random crap..whatever that may be. $25 invested every week, at 5%, comes out to about $44,653 in 20 years. See how that works? If putting away only $25 per week adds up to that much, imagine what putting away $50 per week or $75 per week or more comes out to. (psst – $75 a week, or $300 a month for 20 years comes out to about $125,000.)

It’s the little things….think before you buy, it might affect your long term bottom line. But still, sometimes take the time to buy a cup of coffee. Again, its the little things that make life worth living as well!

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Comments (11)

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  1. Kelly says:

    I am amazed at how much money I dither away each year. Until I added up the numbers, I didn’t realize the trade off I was making.

  2. TJP says:

    Good point about unnecessary purchases because they can really stall your long-term gains.

    I’ve found that carrying a bagged lunch to work saves around $20-$25 bucks per week.

  3. david says:

    I agree TJP…when I started doing that (before I started working from home) I was amazed at how much I saved by making my lunches at home. It’s scary how much you can spend per year by eating out at lunch time and how many people do it!

  4. […] David presents How a $3.85 drink at Starbucks affects your bottom line. posted at My Two Dollars. […]

  5. Super Saver says:


    This post is highlighted as my Festival of Frugality #54 pick. It’s amazing how small amounts and long times lead to big amounts in the future.

  6. moneymonk says:

    You sound like David Bach in the Automatic Millionaire!

    I do get the point. Most people find it’s useless to save $25 a week. They feel it will take too long and they will not see a big amount. But it’s when you save that $25 and forget about it and you check you account about 6 months later and see $600+ dollars. You think WOW!

    People seem to have the money but not the patience to acquire wealth. Some people don’t want to wait for their money to grow.
    Therefore, we have more spenders than savers. It all boils down to having patience.:)

  7. Lisa says:

    I too have come to realize how much money I was wasting on “crap”. I would buy lunch at Panera, or Burger King, and I would visit the 7-11 daily and spend at least $5.00 not really understanding just how much money I was throwing away!

    Once I started to track the money, I started to pack my lunch and bring soda from home. It is amazing how much money I am able to stash away!

  8. […] Lisa on How a $3.85 drink at Starbucks affects your bottom line. […]

  9. […] How a $3.85 drink at Starbucks affects your bottom line […]

  10. […] Losing Weight Can Bulk Up Your Savings. By david I came across an article this morning that discussed the weight factor in how much money you spend/save. Turns out that losing weight can save you a ton of money, sometimes in places that you wouldn’t even think of. A few weeks ago I wrote a post called How a $3.85 drink at Starbucks affects your bottom line. that talked about how much buying Starbucks can cost you over time. I didn’t even take into account the health/weight issues that went along with this idea. But the post I read from Smart Money did, and this is what they had to say about how losing weight can fatten your wallet: Latte Factor: $783 “Consider the costs of that unhealthy habit,” says Barbara O’Neill, co-author of “Small Steps to Health and Wealth,” a financial and weight management series produced by Rutgers Cooperative Extension. Sugary snacks aren’t just padding your waistline “” they’re also depleting your wallet. Swap out that 16-ounce Starbucks Cinnamon Dolce Latte ($4.40, 340 calories) for the same size black coffee ($1.89, and a mere 10 calories) every workday, and you’ll save $653 a year. […]

  11. […] Cut vacation spending by $1,000 a year: $122,000 Interesting but I am not buying it. This is assuming you take a $1,000 plus vacation every year. It would be a lot easier to cut out the Starbucks like I previously mentioned; at least that is something most people do buy. So many people don’t even take vacation, never mind several at $1000 a pop. […]