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10 Money Wasters

Expensive or not, think twice before spending your hard-earned dollars on these items

Buyer's Remorse

En español | A while back on my Facebook page, I posted this question: “What are some things you’ve purchased that you’ve later most regretted?” I was overwhelmed by people who were more than willing to come clean about their greatest spending regrets. How many of these look familiar to you?

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Handbags

The consensus among the women who responded on Facebook was that a new handbag offers the allure of promising to make you more stylish and more organized. “Purses! And I’m talking expensive ones, too!” Melissa Moore posted. “I’m almost done getting rid of most of them!”

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Used Books

Even non-book lovers can easily get carried away at yard sales and thrift stores where stacks of used books are often sold for next to nothing. If you read them — that’s terrific. But if you take them home and put them on a shelf until you need to have a yard sale — not so much.

Caro/Alamy

'Home Party' Products

So a friend or family member invites you to a party at her home, with the express purpose of trying to get you to buy something she’s selling (makeup, candles or jewelry). Do yourself — and her — a favor and say you’re not interested or tell a little white lie and say you’re not available.

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Season Event Tickets

Buying season tickets to sporting events or concert series seems like a great idea, because they’re a good value and you’ll be inspired to attend. But many of my Facebook friends say their season tickets go unused, making them a not-so-wise purchase in hindsight.

Ella Clifton Noble/Alamy

Things to Get You Organized

Patricia Butler's spending regret was buying special containers and other devices to help her declutter. “By the time I get them all home, I've run out of energy. And rather than helping me organize and contain all the clutter, all these purchases just become part of the problem,” she said.

Don Nichols

Kids' Toys

Whether it’s specialized sports equipment or a trendy toy that quickly loses its novelty, oftentimes kids wind up moving on to something new. One Facebook friend said battery-powered toys tend to lose their appeal the fastest. “If the toy does all the work, there’s no need for imagination.”

Alamy

Tattoos

Whether it’s the name of an ex-lover or an artful design that doesn’t look so cool now that your skin is sagging, think twice — or 10 times — before getting a tattoo. Buyer’s remorse is why laser tattoo removal is such a rapidly growing business.

Jeffrey Coolidge/Getty Images

Anything-of-the-Month Clubs

Once or even a few times a year, a favorite treat is, well, a treat. But knowing that the next piece of cheese, bottle of wine or piece of sexy lingerie is arriving in the mail can quickly turn a turn-on into a turnoff. Every so often, treat yourself … and not necessarily on the first day of every month.

Food Collection/Alamy

Specialized Kitchen Appliances

Pasta makers, bread machines, panini presses — you name it. My Facebook friend Renee Bruce loved to make quesadillas and then her husband bought her a quesadilla maker for Christmas. “He drove all over trying to find one and spent TOO MUCH money on it, and it rarely gets used.”

Alamy

Loans to Family, Friends

OK, so it’s technically “lending” money rather than “spending” money. But when someone stiffs you on a personal loan, that money is spent. As the American author Bryant H. McGill said, “Never expect a loan to a friend to be paid back if you want to keep that friend.”

Valentyn Volkov/Alamy

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