In my opinion that is. I realize that list such as these are highly subjective.
For instance, something that one person doesn’t need and therefore shouldn’t pay for – such as a smart phone – is something that another person depends upon for their income or some such. I certainly don’t need a smart phone, but I know people who do. Which leads me to thing number one that you should *never* pay for:
- Cell phones. When you sign a contract with a service provider, there are plenty of adequate phone options available for free. Mine was free and I’ve been very happy with it. (it even survived going for a swim :/)
- Newspapers. The reason for this is pretty obvious. However, some folks get the paper for the coupon inserts which is great. Personally, I don’t use enough of the coupons to justify the expense.
- Water. Pay over a dollar a bottle for something I could get virtually for free at home? Uh, no thanks! That’s what reusable bottles are for.
- Coin rolling. If you have kids, rolling coins is a great way to keep them busy for a while. Just sayin’
- Packing boxes. Check the dumpsters behind stores. Some retailers, like Wally world and Dollar General send their boxes back to be re-used, but thee are plenty of others who don’t. For me, the jackpot was the dumpsters behind a strip mall.
- DVD rentals. You can often find codes for free movie rentals from Red Box and Block Buster boxes. When free DVD rentals aren’t an option, we usually just read.
- Banking services (checking/savings account, ATM). If a bank doesn’t offer these for free, move on the next bank.
- Music. As you can see, I’m not a fan of paying for entertainment. Pandora is free as well as other Internet based customizable “radio” stations. Amazon.com also has a free daily free music download.
- Refrigerated cookie dough. Firstly, it’s filled with preservatives and other nasty things. Secondly, half the fun of making cookies is mixing up the dough. Also, you can mix up a Kant batch and freeze what you don’t bake right away. I must warn you though, frozen cookie dough is a very tempting snack.
- Baking mixes. Especially those expensive gluten-free varieties. Making your own pancake/biscuit/bread mix is very easy. Most of the time personally, I find it’s not worth the extra room in my cupboard, and just make thing from scratch on the spot. Seriously, you only have to reach for a a few extra ingredients.
- Kale. For me, it’s a no excuses kind of vegetable because it pretty much grows itself. Throw a few seeds out and grow your own kale.
- “organic” vegetables from the grocery store. Official rules for being certified organic state that if organic methods fail, go ahead and use pesticides. So you don’t know if what you’re paying extra for is really any different than the non-organic alternative. You’re much better off getting to know your local farmers.
- Pets. I have no need of a pricey dog or cat. There are plenty of free-to-good-home listings everywhere you look. My favorite dog growing up was a boxer/Rottweiler mix. Very sweet dog. Very free dog.
- Cologne. Because really guys, it’s very rare that cologne actually smells good.
- What would you add?