When it comes to saving money and managing your finances, there are smart tips out there which offer good advice and then there is also pretty stupid advice as well. A lot of the time this advice is mixed together and it is hard for those who are inexperienced with money to tell the difference. However, listening to stupid money advice is not only pointless but it can actually be harmful.
Here are a few of the stupidest and most ridiculous money management tips which are out there and why you should not follow them.
Investing in Real Estate is Always Easy and Lucrative
There are many TV shows right now that make investing in real estate and flipping houses seem like the easiest money you can make. Yes, it is true that investing in real estate is usually a good proposition because house values tend to go up over time; it is much more difficult to invest in than you might think and going into the market with little knowledge can lead you to make big mistakes.
Real estate investment shouldn’t be seen as a get rich quick scheme it should be regarded as something to approach with a lot of forethought and planning and a long term goal.
Buying Old Calendars (and other pointless things) will Save You Money
Did you know that there was actually an article on a pretty reputable finance website which recommended buying old calendars from previous years with dates that match up to the current year? The cyclical nature of dates means that for 2013 you could buy a calendar from 1935, 1946, 1957, 1963 or 1974 and the Mondays and Tuesdays would match up perfectly with the right dates.
The article recommends this, as you can buy these vintage calendars for a very small amount of money on eBay or at your local thrift shop. However, is going to all this trouble to buy a vintage calendar really worth the few pennies that you save? I think most would say that it isn’t. Also, if calendar costs really are such a huge burden on your budget, you can always get free calendars from your estate agent, dentist and other local businesses as they are commonly used as promotional tools.
This is just one example of many types of pointless “money saving tricks” such as buying fabric and a sewing machine and spending hours to make your own clothes which you could buy for only a few pounds at Primark. The real good advice is to save money where it is practical and makes sense, but not to go to extreme lengths as it simply wastes time.
Getting a Raise Means You Should Upgrade Your Lifestyle
If you suddenly start making more money, your friends will all likely expect you to start spending more money too. Of course, why wouldn’t you? If you can afford to live a high roller lifestyle, why wouldn’t you fit into that mould?
Although it can be tempting to inflate your lifestyle to go along with your earnings, instead why not stop and see the advantages of keeping your spending habits the same while your earnings increase. You might be earning enough to move into a bigger flat and buy a nicer car, but if you do that you will just see your monthly wage disappear as quickly as it did before without any left over. Instead, why not save that extra money for a while so that you can pay off debts, build an emergency fund, start saving for retirement or for a down payment on a house? Now that’s smart thinking!
These are some of the stupidest money tips which have been passed around out there and why following them is not such a wise idea.