Thinking Back About The Money I Wasted In 2007.

With only 3 weeks left in the year, I am simultaneously trying to get ready for the holidays, finishing up one of my jobs, make sure I am covered for taxes in 2007, and prepping for what I am going to do with my finances comes January 1. So while trying to think about all these different things, I started wondering what I had wasted money on during this past year…and figured I would share so you could too! (Don’t be shy, none of us know who you are!) I will go first – in no particular order, here are some thing that come to mind that I probably should not have bought or paid for this year:

  • Another year of .Mac service – I can build my own web pages, I have my own backup service, and I don’t sync my computers anymore. So what exactly do I need this for? Who knows, but I paid for it anyway. – $79.95
  • Without noticing, SmugMug charged me for another year of photo storage – even though I have not accessed the account in about 8 months. I forgot I even had an account there, as I use Flickr to store my photos now. So I went ahead and closed the account, but not before they kept my $29.95.
  • Seeing as how I work from home now, I don’t exactly use my cell phone much anymore. When I used to actually go outside for extended periods of time, I used a program called Vindigo in my Treo 650 to find restaurants, gas stations, etc. Well – it’s another one of those automatic renewals that I did not notice in time…costing me another $29.95.
  • Although I did my best to avoid doing so, we bought too much coffee outside out of the house this year. It’s a problem, believe me. Cost: Who the hell knows, but a lot.
  • What the heck did I need another Swiss Army Knife for? Really? I didn’t, not at all. In fact, I have several of them, but this one was on sale! Into the emergency kit it goes, so my wife and I will be armed to the teeth with small knives in case the SHTF! Cost: $25.
  • I bought the most expensive toaster/convection oven ever. I am a firm believer in buying the best you can afford, as hopefully then it will last longer and need less fixing them some cheapo version of something – but sometimes this gets the better of me and cons me into thinking that I need more than I really do. Thus, we have a super-duper toaster oven that toasts 6 pieces of bread at one, can cook pizzas and chickens just the same, and takes up 51% of the kitchen space. Cost: Too frickin much.
  • So this brings me back to you…what did you buy this year that you wish you hadn’t? What did you spend money on that now, looking back, seems like a waste of your hard earned money. Come on, you can share here!

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    Comments (23)

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    1. Haha, this Swiss Army Knife hits a nerve. I love gadgets like that and always drool when I see them. I’ve been wanting to replace my pocket knife for no other good reason than I want a new one. I’ve been strong though and resisted so far!

      As for stuff I’ve bought that was a waste? I can’t think of anything in particular but I know there have been a bunch of things we bought at BJ’s Wholesale that we certainly didn’t need or really use much once bought. I have to be careful in that place!

    2. boomie says:

      I’m canceling my .mac account also. Money wasted $109 (with tax). I’m also thinking of getting rid of my land line, since DH and I have cells-money wasted and hopefully saved next year $900! WOW!

      Also, money wasted-entertaining over the summer-at least $500-600. NEVER AGAIN!

      Big money wasted-going to family functions over summer holiday weekends (like Memorial Day, Labor Day and Columbus Day) THEY saved money. I lost, since I planned to do year-end chores on those long weekends. Messed up my schedule because it took weeks to get the work done (like winterize my boat) and it cost me more in wasted trips, gas and supplies. Money wasted-probably hundreds. I have vowed NEVER to go to these inconvenient family functions ever again. It’s Dec 6th and we have to brave through treacherous, snow & ice driving to finally cover my boat with a tarp! That’s how long it has taken us to come up with the time to do it.

      Don’t get me started!

    3. Pam says:

      Good end-of-the-year retrospective post David.

      As for me, I wasted money on (having a finance SW like quicken or money makes these things easy to identify):

      1) A toaster that I intended to use, but never did. Fortunately, I still have the original box etc. and it is within the return period, so will try to return it. Your post served as a good reminder 🙂 Cost: $25

      2) A brand new bike from REI. And haven’t used it enough to justify the price. But because I bought it with good intentions, and I still have those intentions, I will keep it and continue to use it and perhaps use it more than I do now. Cost: $400

      3) Far too many lattes in coffee shops! I finally found a compromise — 1) a milk frother from Ikea and 2) a coffee mug warmer from Bed Bath and Beyond. With these, I can make latte style coffee at home and they stay nice and hot courtesy mug warmer. After I got these two, I may be had lattes at coffee shops just 2-3 times and those were to meet friends and while traveling.

      4) Laptop harddisk related repair — I knew what the problem was, but had it diagnosed anyway which cost me another $100 🙁 Could have had the whole thing fixed for $50.

      5) Forgetting my camera charger and jacket when I left for vacation. Ended up buying a universal charger and a substitute jacket at the destination. Cost: $100

      6) Other electronic gadjetry that I thought I needed but rarely use: $200

      May be I will be wiser (in addition to being older) next year 🙂

    4. Clare says:

      My biggest expense this year was also a bicycle: $360. And although I went basic with the helmet, pump and cycling gloves, those additional items pushed the overall cost beyond $400.

      Worth it? You bet. Unfortunately, I don’t live in an area where bicycle commuting is practical but I do hit the trails on most weekends. Not only has it expanded my physical activity options but it also eliminated my former choice of weekend entertainment: going out to eat. I don’t think about doing that after a long ride. And in the long run, the added health benefits will save money.

    5. Dave C says:

      When the wife had her 2000 Elantra totalled, we replaced it with a 2006 Tucson. Not as stupid as we could have gone, but considering we have no kids, nothing to haul, and the roads are snowy about 8 days a year (so FWD is sufficient for most), I’m left wondering why I agreed to this. Cost over what a perfectly reliable used econobox could have been had for: $10-$12k. Do I win?

    6. guinness416 says:

      Good topic, David. I’m in! I’ve had some real howlers this year …..

    7. DebtDieter says:

      Where do I start? *lol*

      Gym membership I never used, Quickflix membership I never used, VideoEzy membership I never used, buying books on Ebay I haven’t even read yet…

    8. Debbie M says:

      I’m getting pretty good at not buying stuff I don’t use, although sometimes you just don’t know whether you’re really going to use it until you’ve got it.

      Although, I didn’t realize I already had plenty of black tights when I bought some more recently. And I guessed wrong on what underwear size I would need. Let’s just say that if “large” is too small for me, I don’t know what normal-sized people are wearing. And I still keep buying fruit, hoping I will eat it. And maiming recipes, hoping I will like them (although it turns out that leaving both the egg yolks and the butter out of chocolate pudding totally worked for me!).

      Lately my bigger problem is paying for stuff for other people because I have the cash, or because I’m already on the website getting my own, or for some other reason it’s more convenient to pay. And then we both forget about it. I even have a roommate who has to be reminded every month, right after a paycheck, to pay me his half of the rent.

      When I borrow money, I remember what I owe and pay it back ASAP. But when I lend, I don’t remember. I need to start remembering and to start practicing methods of polite begging to get the money back. All I really have to do is ask for it and I get it, but I hate having to. I need to get over that.

    9. beth says:

      Oh, this is a great question! My biggest waste, hands-down, (and I feel like a dork to admit it) was an outfit for a renaissance fest. I hadn’t even been to one since I was a teenager, yet somehow my excitement at having paid off my credit card translated to spending $125 on something I’ve worn once, and at BEST will wear once per year. stupid, stupid, stupid.

      That’s the only thing I can think of, though, so that’s not bad over the course of a year.

    10. Mandy says:

      Wow this sounds just like what I am doing over at my blog. I have made so many money mistakes- this week I am confessing of my love for bags!

    11. Mrs. Micah says:

      Honestly, my honeymoon. I think we would have been happier just touring DC and living in our apartment. Waaaayyyyy cheaper (and we could have had a couple nice dinners out) and we’re both the sort of people who like to spend evenings at home.

      If you need another Swiss Army Knife, talk to me first. I can get you a deal on a barely used one…mine. (I’ve had it for 11 years and never really used it.)

    12. david says:

      Wow, such great comments everyone! Seems we all throw away some money on grand plans, only to never make them happen…hmmm…

      And Mrs. Micah – no more Swiss Army Knives!

    13. […] My Two Dollars – Thinking Back About The Money I Wasted In 2007. […]

    14. Shay says:

      I brought Scrapbooking stuff about $800 worth it is still sitting in the bags and packagng it come in about 5 months ago…I have been spending about $70.00 per week on coffee and lunch with girlfriends. As I live in the country the petrol is expensive for these lunches as well…I also got into the bad habit of going into town the day I get paid even if I have to go the next day, I would go to the local video shop and buy dvd’s ranging from $9.95 each up to new ones for $34.95

      I am serious this year (comming 08) about debt reduction and I have made a good start this year but need to curb my spending more target to save this year (debt reduction and savings) $5830 give or take a few dollars…..God I feel sick knowing I have spent that much this is the first time I have actually sat down and worked that out.

      Thank you for making me face the truth!

    15. Jacob says:

      About $250 worth of exercise equipment and instructional DVDs which I have not watched. I should just have kept using what I already had instead of look for novelty.

    16. vh says:

      LOL! Here I thought I was the only one!

      Well, here’s one I’ll bet no one can top: Hired an unlicensed contractor to work on a house. Duh!

      He did a great job on the things he did. But after months of waiting for him to finish the job, we finally had to can him and hire someone (licensed & bonded!) to come in and finish work we had paid him for (double-duh!) and complete the project. This guy was given to starting a project, wandering off in the middle of it for a few days or weeks and working somewhere else, then coming back and working a bit on the project he began. Before he would finish one project, he’d start on another, so you were stuck with two unfinished jobs–you hesitate to fire a contractor in the middle of something, because you don’t know for sure you can get someone to finish it.

      When we finally threw him out, after months of waiting on him, a guy recommended my our air conditioning contractor came in with a crew and finished the entire renovation project in two weeks flat. We had budgeted $25,000 for the entire job, which we figured would include a fence & landscaping as well as interior renovations, and we ended up paying $30,000 just for the interior work. If we had gone with the licensed contractor, the interior job probably would have cost us $20,000 or $25,000, but it would have been done right and on time.

    17. David says:

      Isn’t it amazing what we all spend money on? Granted we “think” we are doing the right thing, but when you look back, it doesn’t look as nice…

      Thanks for the comments everyone!

    18. […] presents Thinking Back About The Money I Wasted In 2007. Posted at My Two Dollars. I think we all have a few similar examples, but I don’t care to […]

    19. Hi Damon, I’m from SmugMug. Ouch – so sorry that you feel like you were cheated by us! While our terms of service indicate that accounts auto-renew, we’ll still happily provide you a refund – we don’t want to keep your money at all, if you are not using the service. I tried to credit your account, but too much time has passed. If you write our help desk, http://www.smugmug.com/help/emailreal and put ATTN: Andy in the subject line, we’ll send you a refund check. Don’t forget to include a current mailing address, okay?

      We’d have done this anytime if you’d just asked – we only want subscription fees from people who are using and getting value from our service 🙂

      I hope this helps, and I wish you only the best in the future!


    20. Oops I’m so sorry, David – not Damon 🙂
      I apologize for the typo!

    21. […] david | December 12, 2007 The other day I wrote about different ways I had wasted money in 2007 and how one of the ways was that I was charged for another year of photo storage by […]

    22. […] Two Dollars: Thinking Back on the Money I Wasted in 2007. Yeah… um… I have a few myself. Maybe there is a post in the works. Halloween candy on […]

    23. I’ve been trying to be careful this year but stupid things I bought include:

      1)A shop vac instead of a regular vacume cleaner after my hoover died. The shop vac spews almost as much dust as it picks up. I still have to get a regular vacume for the house.

      2)Also hiring an unlicensed contractor to do work in my house (albeit a supposedly highly recommended handy man) who did a really rotten job and then had the nerve to ask for a reference and got snippy when I said I could not.

      I’m sure there are others, but these two come to mind right away.