Join us this week for a frank discussion about the things we wish we hadn't bought—and the stuff we wish we had spent moreon.
Welcome back to #RichGirlRoundup, Money with Katie's weekly segment where Katie and MWK's Executive Producer, Henah, answer your burning money questions. Each month, we'll put out a call for questions on the MWK Instagram (@moneywithkatie). New episodes every week.
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Katie:Welcome back, Rich Girls and Boys, to the Rich Girl Roundup weekly discussion ofThe Money with Katie Show. I'm your host, Katie Gatti Tassin, and every Monday, Henah and I are gonna break down an interesting money topic. Before we do, here's a quick message from our sponsors.
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Katie:I am actually pretty pumped about today's question, which is, “What are some purchases that you regret spending money on, or others that you wish you had spent more money on?”
Henah:I like this question.
Katie:I'm actually really curious to know what you think about this.
Henah:Which one should we start with—things we regret?
Katie:Yeah, tell me what you regret.
Henah:Okay. I think probably the biggest one is trying to keep up with fads. I think that I, in my twenties especially, I would try out different fashion or accessory or skincare, makeup recs.
Katie:You were finding yourself.
Henah:Well, not even that but just trying to stay fashionable…
Henah:Stay trendy. And they were popular at the time but they either didn't have any longevity or didn't look right on me or didn't work on me, and it just felt like a big old waste of money. But that was kind of the big one. And then this isn't a regret as much as I wish I had kind of gone into it with eyes wide open, is the cost of pets.
Henah:Because I mean, I love my pets. I don't regret spending money on them, but I think we spend several thousand dollars per year on just the basics to keep them alive. And you know, they're little homewreckers. They don't do anything. They just lounge, you know…
Henah:I'm kidding. But I sometimes think about how much more money we would've had if we hadn't had three pets.
Katie:I could not agree more. I think that, well, dogs especially, I haven't had any (knock on wood) expensive experiences with old Sammy yet.
Henah:Simba, we had to spend almost a thousand dollars in dental work for him that insurance didn't cover.
Henah:And Callie, our other cat, we had to spend money on X, Y, Z medications, and Rosie, our rescue—we love, I love Rosie; she's the love of my life. But it's expensive to feed and insure a 60-pound dog, which I'm sure you deal with.
Katie:Also health insurance for animals, like hashtag #Ihateithere.
Henah:Hashtag #IwishIdidn'thavetodothat. I don't necessarily regret it, but I think I wish I had gone into it with a little bit more like okay, you have three pets. It's not just a one and done. What about you?
Katie:That's a good one. As I was thinking through this, I was having a hard time thinking of any specific…which I guess is a good thing. I was having a hard time thinking of any meaningful things that I really regret spending money on. 'Cause similarly to you, I was like, yeah, I feel like I have that bad habit of buying new makeup or skincare because I'll see the bottle in the store and have visions of myself being five times more beautiful and being like, “This is the cleanser that's going to change everything.” And then you take it home and you use it three times and you're like, okay, yeah, it's the same. So I do have the graveyard of unused skincare and makeup products under my counter that I regret. The thing that did come up, though, that is kind of in the same vein is, I don't regret buying any of the expensive shoes that I've treated myself with in the last year.
Henah:The Chanel dad shoes.
Katie:Oh, my Chanel dad shoes. But I did feel a little bit like, all right, I've been taken for a ride. Like I played myself, because every single one of them gives me blisters. I'll have bleeding feet and be like, I can't believe I spent so much money to be this uncomfortable. So I don't regret it 'cause they're really cute, still. And it was a fun experience to treat myself getting these fancy shoes. But yeah, it was a little bit of a, oh, haha, the $2 Birkenstocks you bought at a garage sale are so comfortable, and the zillion-dollar Chanel sandals make you wanna die.
Henah:I have plantar fasciitis, which means I can't just buy whatever shoes. So literally one of the ones that I said I wish I spent more money on is good shoes.
Katie:Oh, there you go. Well, don't spend too much, 'cause there's a bell curve here. It comes back around.
Henah:It comes back down. I think the other regret…this isn't a regret money-wise, but I really regret not trusting my own gut when it comes to what I should buy. So for example, right? I went to this wine store; there was one I was excited about and then I made the stupid mistake of asking the woman, “Which one do you recommend?” And she referenced me to this one wine and I brought it home and I hated it. And I was like, why don't I just trust myself and not…I think I should…I know what's best for me. And I often will regret asking other people for their validation or recommendation.
Katie:I love that. That's such a good larger than money takeaway, too, of trusting that you know what's best for yourself. What a good one. Kudos to you.
Katie:I have a weird regret, but it's not something I bought. It's something I didn't buy.
Katie:Which is, I had a lease on an Acura RDX and I loved this car. It's like a…
Henah:It's a nice car.
Katie:…small SUV, and I turned it back in at the end of the lease because they wanted, I think, $23,000 to buy it out. Buy out the lease.
Henah:How much had you already paid?
Katie:Oh man, that's a good question. It was a three-year lease and the lease payment every month was like $300. So let's see, quick math. $300 times 36: $10,800. Yeah. So you've got some solid sunk costs there. They wanted $23,000 to buy out. It was 2017. It was a great car. And I set a very strict limit for myself of $20,000. I don't remember why that was the number I landed on for how much I was gonna let myself spend on my next car. But I ended up buying a different car that I just sold a year later during the pandemic, 'cause I no longer needed a car. And I was like, I'm not gonna pay for this anymore. But now we're moving somewhere that I think I am gonna need a vehicle to get around, and I'm in the market for one again. And guess what? You can't find the exact same 2017 Acura RDX used, twice as many miles, for less than $28,000. It literally appreciated. So not that I could have told the future back then, but I just think it was a little shortsighted of me where on the surface, it looks like a good financial choice because you're like, oh, you're setting a boundary and you're not gonna spend more than a number that feels reasonable to you. But like $10 to $15 grand had already gone toward the lease. So I was getting technically a bargain, but I was just very narrow-minded and at the time I did not see it that way. So I kind of, again, played myself. That's the thing.
Henah:Katie Plays Herselfis the new series we're gonna do. What about things you wish you invested in more? I have a couple but I wanna hear someone who thinks about money 80 hours a week probably. What do you wish you had spent more money on?
Katie:Okay, I have a very hot take about travel spending, because I think especially when you're young and you want to travel, it's very tempting to try to cut all the corners that you can, like book the cheapest flight no matter what time it's at.
Henah:This was mine too.
Katie:Oh really? Or book the cheapest hotel. So this one time we went to Grand Cayman and I really wanted to go there, but I wanted to spend as little as possible, and there was this place that was a really good redemption value for points. So I was all excited about my points redemption. Well then, we get there and surprise, surprise, it's like three miles from the beach and we did not have a rental car, so we had to bike to the beach. And so they were these falling-apart bikes with half-flat tires. So two days into the trip, we had to figure out the bus schedule to take a bus to the rental car place to get a rental. It ate up an entire afternoon and it was all because I did not wanna just spend a little bit more money to stay at a hotel that was just on the beach that we were going to try to go to. So I think that in that instance, obviously sometimes money really is that tight, that if you're gonna take a trip, you have to do it super cheaply and sometimes that's okay with you. But I think when you're just trying to scrimp for the sake of spending as little as possible, spending on flights that are at good times and staying in hotels that are in really good locations or in rooms that are nice, it's gonna magnify the value of the trip.
Henah:I a hundred percent agree, 'cause I had done a lot of budget travel in my early twenties and for example, I went on a safari in South Africa and it was like three days budget. It was nice, it was lovely. But then for our honeymoon, we went on a new safari in Kenya and it was like a luxury vendor. And now I feel so spoiled 'cause I'm like, I can't go back. Just the quality of your experience goes up exponentially when things are figured out for you; you're not having to figure things out at the last minute. You're not trying to scrimp and save on every little thing. So I definitely agree on that one.
I would say also probably for our wedding, wedding photography was the one thing that I am so glad we invested in. So what we did when we first got engaged is we said, okay, we know obviously we're gonna have a budget, 'cause we're not the queen. And we wrote down all the different top vendors that you usually have for weddings, like the DJ and the cake and the food, whatever. And then we individually ranked the list from one to seven in order of our importance of investing in them. And the photographer, for both my husband and me, was number one. And so we ended up investing more than we probably would've spent otherwise. And we got a videographer that we didn't really invest in 'cause we're not video people, but the photos that we got from that are the best memories, the most valuable keepsake that we have now.
Henah:So that felt like a really worthwhile investment. I'm also hoping to invest more now in the future, now that I'm in my thirties, and this is so embarrassing, but I'm sorry, but having a really good vacuum is a game-changer.
Katie:You're speaking my language. I have been on the expensive vacuum train for years.
Henah:Yeah. I mean we got gifted a Shark one and unfortunately I cannot go back. I was thinking of that, like the space heater that I use every single day. Like good skincare products that are actually gonna make a difference. And for like self-maintenance…I think I should just pay for the waxes instead of trying to do them at home and save money and whatever.
Or like a quality wardrobe I'm actually excited about. Chelsea Fagan, we've talked about her. She has a great fashion sense and I'm like, oh, if I could leave my house looking like that every day, you know, A plus. But I don't actually do anything about it.
Katie:Harry Styles would come knocking, finally?
Henah:I mean I wish, every minute of the day.
Katie:This is reminding me of my own personal hot take around, everyone should invest in the quality of their sleep, because this is one that…it blows my mind that people will sleep on an uncomfortable mattress or not have blackout shades, or…
Henah:I mean, you spend a third of your life, hopefully, sleeping.
Katie:That's my point. It's crazy. And the quality of your sleep impacts every other aspect. Your serotonin…you will literally feel like a different person if you don't sleep well. So we have invested, probably, I would say we're top 1% sleep spenders. We had the Eight Sleep that changes temperatures.
Katie:The mattress pad, the blackout shades, the humidifier, we have the Oura rings that track the sleep. We now have fancy Purple sheets and…Purple the brand, not purple the color. And I mean anything that is gonna improve sleep, I'm like, throw it in the cart.
Henah:Can I add a little story here for our listeners?
Henah:So Katie and I had a little off-site meeting in New York where we both flew in and I said, okay, well, I'm from around there; I'll figure out a hotel we can stay at. And she said “Look, I don't care where it is as long as I can sleep and it's not loud.” And I said okay, got it.
Katie:Guys, hotels in New York suck. They suck. Every hotel I've ever…but Henah found, the one that you found, what was that hotel called, 'cause I actually could sleep.
Henah:The Walker in Greenwich Village.
Katie:It was dark, it was cold. There was no club next door. And I have had the worst luck…
Henah:On the second morning you came down, you were like “Good job. This is why I keep you around, 'cause you've actually found a place where I can sleep.” So I believe you that you are a 1% sleep spender.
Katie:I am. That's how I know I've finally perfected it, is that now hotel sleep sucks by comparison. And I'm telling you guys, you gotta invest in good sleep. This is, I will die on this hill.
Henah:I agree. Good quality ingredients, I think, is a big one. So like spices, good salt and pepper.
Katie:What about like good cheeses?
Henah:I put that on my list, too, where I was like the fancy wines, the good cheeses; they just make such a difference. So yeah. I fear we're getting a little too away from the topic, but…
Katie:It's like a personal finance show. We're like, these are all the things youshouldspend money on. But hey, you know what, we can bring this thing home. What it all comes down to, I think, is finding things where you are getting a disproportionate benefit for the dollar amount spent. And I think all of these things kind of fall into that category. And you could argue that there are ways that it becomes, in the long run, less expensive. Like you mentioned clothing; okay, you're investing in good pieces, you're buying them less frequently. You're investing in better food; well, you're probably not going out to restaurants as much now where you're gonna pay a 30% markup on everything. You're gonna sleep better, you're gonna be better at your job. I can justify this shit all day long, so I'm good to go.
Henah:So Katie will be gifting me an Eight Sleep mattress for my birthday.
Katie:I really probably should. I feel like I need to give these to everybody.
Henah:I'll take one if you're giving it out.
Katie:Everyone I love gets an Eight Sleep mattress topper.
Henah:You're like Oprah: “You get an Eight Sleep, you get an Eight Sleep.” You're not a sponsor, but you should be. Yeah, we could add this one here. But I do think it comes down to joy. To me, what are the benefits you're getting out of what you're spending?
Katie:Bingo bango. All right. Thanks for listening to this week's Rich Girl Roundup. We will see you on Wednesday.