If it’s important to you, then it has a solid value

If it’s important to you, then it has a solid value

Recently, I purchased an engagement ring, and no, this article is not my actual proposal. I knew rings were expensive, but this one put a healthy dent in my wallet. I don’t say that to brag, but I am trying to get to a point here. It’s the most I have spent on a singular item in a long time, but I wouldn’t consider it irresponsible because it was important to me.

There’s another part to that last statement, and I would not call it irresponsible because I knew it was coming. Even if it was important to me, spending more money than I had in my bank account on an engagement ring would have been irresponsible for me and for my future marriage. Dave Ramsey talks about how he bought his wife a teeny tiny ring when they were getting married because that’s all he could afford, but these days she is wearing a gigantic rock on her finger.

What are some other things you hear people say? “That is far too expensive” or “you’re wasting your money on that.” It could be fishing gear, workout equipment, souping your car up or makeup. There’s a lot of things I listed that I would consider a waste of money, but everybody is different. I drive a modest Chevy Cruze, so souping it up and making it look better seems like an enormous waste of time and money, but there’s other people that want to do nothing else other than make their car louder, faster or more aesthetic, and that’s perfectly fine. If you are in the financial position to do so and it’s important to you, go ahead and do it.

Like I’ve talked about before, there’s a big difference in cost savings and use cost. For example, say you want to buy a squat rack and weights because you’re tired of driving to the gym and you know you’ll use it very frequently, you have a million options. If you would buy the cheap weights and rack, save a bunch of money but never use it, there was really no point in buying it. On the other hand, say you spend a thousand dollars more on the long-lasting type of equipment and you end up using them every day, was that thousand dollars worth it? From my past experiences, I would say absolutely.

Everyone has things or activities they love doing, and at one point — not so much anymore — I was deeply into running. If a person is running many miles a day, their shoes need to be top of the line. I remember going to a specialty running shop and spending the most I have ever spent on shoes there. The reason I spent so much was because it was not only important to me, but also it was important to my health that I have quality running shoes, or it could lead to injuries down the road.

What I am trying to get across is to spend the money where it’s important and budget or save for it. Don’t listen to others who don’t understand the passion you have for your hobby or what you are trying to get better at. I always advise about seeking the counsel of those older than you, but in this situation I would say it doesn’t always apply. Spending $200 on running shoes doesn’t make sense to some people. Spending an outrageous amount on cooking pans or mixers doesn’t make sense, but if you absolutely love baking and making food, who am I to judge? Follow the passion, within your budget as always.

Update — She said yes!

Holmes County native BJ Yoder is an insurance agent by day and a finance enthusiast by night. This column is for informational purposes only. He can be emailed at benjamin.john.yoder@gmail.com.