27 Money-Saving Tips That Don’t Work For Everyone

Recently, we shared some money-saving tips that aren’t as one-size-fits-all as people think, and in the comments, members of the BuzzFeed Community chimed in with even more money advice that doesn’t work for them. Here’s what they had to say:

1. “A lot of grocery saving tips just don’t work when you’re single and live alone. Sometimes the economy of scale just isn’t in your favor. For instance, at least in the US, buying a whole watermelon means dealing with at the very least five to eight pounds of melon. I physically cannot eat it all before it goes bad. So even when watermelon is very cheap to buy whole, I buy it pre-cut because it’s in an amount I can actually get through before it goes bad.”

27 Money-Saving Tips That Don't Work For Everyone
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2. “One of my favorites was when a friend tried telling me to shop the sales at Harris Teeter and Publix to save money. Buy two get three free 12-packs at Harris Teeter are literally the same price as buying five from Piggly Wiggly. Like, what the fuck am I saving? Everything else is higher than other stores. Like, dude, you really are a special kind of stupid.”


3. “None of those financial experts live on the same planet as the average citizen. Their lists of cuts always start off with, ‘Cut your daily latte and brown-bag your lunch instead of going to a restaurant.’ The average middle class person can’t afford those things to start with!!!! On the flip side: people have raised their eyebrows because I have an iPhone (got it free with points and signing a new contract), manicured nails (polish is sold in dollar stores, idiot) and wearing designer clothes (purchased at consignment and vintage stores) so ‘you must not be hurting THAT much’ on disability. MORONS.”


4. “Those cash binders. Just when you think putting that $20 in one envelope a month will help save you money, you end up needing to take it back out for an emergency. Every month, I go into this mindset of, ‘I’m gonna hoard cash and not spend a penny.’ But I end up needing things like food and household supplies. By the time that I buy toilet paper, tissues, cat food, litter, laundry detergent, trash bags, and cleaning supplies, I’ve already spent $100. A few times, I’ve completely ran out of food, and bam theres another $100 gone out of my next payday. Don’t even get me started on when an appliance randomly breaks down and you have to replace it. Saving money is easier said than done.”

27 Money-Saving Tips That Don't Work For Everyone
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5. “When I was a kid, my parents got the idea of planting a vegetable garden in our backyard to save money on food. After three or four months they discovered that was definitely not the case. I remember clearly my dad saying, ‘Don’t do it expecting to save any money.’ He also said that the time and aggravation alone wasn’t worth it even if you did save money because with the relatively small garden they had, any savings would be small as well.”


6. “It’s unreasonable and ridiculous to expect people to not buy a cup of coffee or go to the movies ever. To never eat out or buy new tech. It’s not the person’s fault they don’t have money, it’s our BS capitalist society that exploits workers and squeezes every bit of energy out of someone while paying the least amount possible. It’s BS to expect people not to find little pleasures and splurge. If we paid workers livable wages, this advice would be a whole lot less necessary.”


7. “A lot of these ‘tips’ don’t account for the cost of your time. It takes time to search for coupons and deals, time and gas to go to multiple (or even one) store to shop. It takes time to meal prep, and clean up after meal prep. Everyone’s values of how to spend their time are different, and it may be worth the extra monetary cost to save some time.”

money saving tips
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8. “Do NOT try and save money when it comes to hygiene and beauty products. It’s a lot better to spend some extra money on buying decent-quality hair products and skincare/makeup than spend your savings on a doctor’s visit because the knock-off facial cleanser gave you a rash or that cheap mascara gave you an infection. Your face and skin are too delicate to go cheap on. It’s so easy to get breakouts and severe infections via makeup and beauty products.”


9. “I always hear shop at thrift stores! Local thrift stores around here are so pricey especially the kids ones. $8 for a used shirt for a 4-year-old when I can get a brand new one for $5.”


10. “People who evangelize about line-drying the laundry must sit in a lawn chair with a shotgun until it’s dry, because I have not once gone outside to retrieve the washing without finding it covered in bird shit.”

money saving tips
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11. “‘Pay yourself first.’ With what? If I don’t pay my bills it’s going to cost me a lot more in the long run. Also, side hustles in general. I can barely physically handle my job and enough of a social life to not develop mental illness on top of physical disability. No, I cannot find time for more work. Besides, we should all be making enough money working 40 hours a week.”


12. “‘You don’t need name brand shoes,’ told to me by relatives who have calluses, bunions, thick toenails… basically every foot problem to ever exist.”


13. “Shopping at the dollar store (well, $1.25 store now). I did try this but because the quality of the products are not as great as name brands (or the name brand items only come in travel size,) I end up going back more regularly than I would at a regular grocery store.”

money saving tips
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14. “Upcycling and DIYing everything is good in theory but when you end up buying $100 in supplies and end up with a mediocre result, maybe it was better just to spend that money at Ikea.”


15. “Oh man, you guys should see the advice in the mandatory post-bankruptcy lessons. This thing literally said to go on vacations in the off-season, and it quite literally mentioned ski trips and beach trips as things to do in the off season. Good luck going on a ski trip in the summer! Also maybe if you’ve been going on ski trips every year you should’ve stopped doing that before you decided to file for bankruptcy to see how much that saved you?? (and personally I’ve been on a ‘vacation’ twice since 2015 anyway).”

“Also had a ton of the really out of touch advice like you should sell all of your cars and just take public transportation (which is difficult or impossible in some places). I can’t remember everything it said, but basically it felt like it had been written in 2005 and not updated once since then. One of the pieces of advice was to switch to having only one landline in your home???”


16. “‘Generic brands taste just as good as the name brands.’ Trust me — they don’t. Our nearly full boxes of generic breakfast cereal and cookies got thrown away too many times to count.”

bowl of cereal
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17. “So much money saving advice is ableist. My disability is minor and I still have days where I can’t walk everywhere or do without delivery. An added expense for an able-bodied person is a necessity for someone with a disability.”


18. “I can’t just ‘get a second job’ either. I need one job where I sit down. I shouldn’t be punished with poverty because of it.”


19. “I had someone tell me that I’m essentially a fool for having a phone I make payments on. While I’m sure this guy had no problem with money considering the pictures of vehicles and toys he had. It’s always the people who aren’t living paycheck to paycheck giving savings advice.”

woman holding a smartphone and a credit card
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20. “Just saw an argument between two folks where one of them absolutely could not wrap his head around the idea that most people who work for McDonalds don’t have 15% of their paycheck left over at the end of the week to invest in their company’s discount share buying scheme, let alone that 15% being big enough to give them millions in return on investment. Some people are unshakably invested in the idea that anyone who is financially struggling must be lazy and stupid.”


21. “It’s not that ‘buy less Starbucks/coffee’ is BAD advice, per se, but we are at the point where it’s just… extremely lazy, go-to advice that’s given out almost on autopilot. (Also, just HOW MANY people out there are broke because of their coffee habit? This is a serious question. A lot of people complain about the ‘ditch the Starbucks’ advice and there is always someone who says that it’s useful for *someone*. Out of all of the people I’m friends with and/or work with, spanning countless generations, I can think of *one* couple who could use this advice. Is this really that widespread of an issue outside of my circles?)”


22. “I had a friend who would unplug everything in her apartment at the end of the day. I’m not sure that really saves a whole lot of money in a one bedroom apartment.”

woman unplugging an appliance
Maskot / Getty Images/Maskot


23. “I stopped using coupons years ago when I had to begin scratch cooking again. You don’t see coupons for flour, sugar, oil, butter, cheese, meats, vegetables, etc. Most coupons are for convenience type foods or other similar items. So, if you have food sensitivities, food allergies, a special diet, etc., coupons are useless.”


24. “Meal planning. I live alone and I don’t want to eat the same thing day after day. I used to freeze the leftovers but then it got freezer burn before I remember it’s there and I waste so much produce trying to eat healthy while also meal prepping. For me, it works so much better to burn through the freezer and pantry staples that I bought when I had good intentions and then just get stuff for no more than a few days from the store. I have a grocery two miles from me and I waste so much less food by buying just what I need for a few days. And I don’t get bored with my food. I’ve seriously saved so much money by not buying in bulk.”


Read Also7% Interest on a savings account? Here’s What You Need To Explore

25. “Everyone told me not to get a credit card when I was young, and credit card companies were constantly sending me applications. I also read the fine print, and it made no sense to me to agree to (this is your APR but we can change it to any amount at any time for no reason at all). I have always been responsible and saved up for everything. Now, I can’t get a loan anywhere without a co-signer because I don’t have debt. It makes no sense.”

person paying for their coffee order with a credit card
Tara Moore / Getty Images


26. “Don’t cheap out on the important things just to try to save money. I had to get my brakes fixed earlier this week and heard several people say that their buddy tried to fix something or they took their car somewhere cheaper first. You’ll end up paying more to fix that cheap mistake.”


27. “I don’t understand why someone will drive down the road for gas that’s legit two cents cheaper. I use the same chain of stations and use their perks card. I get rewards for various things. Sometimes I can get upwards of 70 cents off a gallon. I drive a hybrid so I don’t fill up much.”


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Do you have a least-favorite money tip? Tell me why in the comments!

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