This is a guest post by Dave, who is also looking to retire no later than 45, but unlike Tim has no kids and doesn’t want any. Dave is from Ontario and is working towards his CGA certification.
I recently decided I wanted to play my X-box on my desktop computer in my room. I had previously played all video games downstairs in my living room, but figured for the winter it would be much more comfortable to play in bed (my video game playing time is usually about half an hour before I go to sleep). The cord that would convert it (I know riveting drama right?) cost $50 and tax at Future Shop. I however found one on Amazon for $6, with decent reviews. I bought that one and waited, and waited and waited. Five weeks later, I contacted the seller and was told they couldn’t do anything for another week. After that point I got a refund, then ordered a similar cord (this one for $7.50 from a different seller) and waited another 2 weeks for this one to finally show up.
My point here is that I saved $40 for waiting a few weeks, rather than going to the store right away – I found an alternative. Now, admittedly, I could have saved the entire amount by not playing video games at all, but that’s not the point of my story. There are many instances where a bit of patience can save you money.
When negotiating for a car or a house or any large purchase, having patience is an asset – if you can “out-wait” the seller, you are generally better off than jumping on a first offer.
Not buying things like books, video games or movies new can also save you a bunch of money. I recently bought a video game that is 4 years old that was $60 new and I got it for $10. You can generally find used books for less than half the price of a new one, either online or at a used book store – all you have to do is not be first in line for this stuff in the first place.
Another area where patience could save you some serious money is driving. Over the past year or so I have significantly mellowed while behind the wheel and have noticed significant savings in fuel consumption. My wife and I travel to her parent’s place (about 200 km away) once a month. Just by slowing my drive down from 120 km/hr to 105 km/hr on that long drive saves a lot of fuel (and really, is that half hour really all that important?). So many people are in such a rush, they are wasting money on wear and tear on brakes, higher fuel consumption, and added stress – if they just slowed down a bit, gave themselves the (in most cases) extra 2 minutes they’re going to “make up” by slamming on the gas they could make things easier on themselves and their vehicles.
Do you have patience? Do you wish you did? Where have you saved money in the past from being able to wait?