Americans Are Spending Money Like Water

Published On August 26, 2013 | By Hannah Ellsbury | Articles

I found this article and thought the author did great job of putting this into perspective. Hope you enjoy as much as I did!

“I’ve known only one person who could honestly say she needed to buy bottled water, and that was my mother-in-law, Joyce. Joyce raised my wife, the long-suffering Mrs. Your Money, on the northwest side of Tampa, Fla., where the air smells of orange blossoms but the water tastes like fertilizer run-off from the groves.

From driveways to cookware, this vile liquid ruins everything it contacts. The life expectancy of a coffeemaker is less than a year, and six months at best for your toilet’s innards. Meaning that, when it comes to housewares, Tampa spells certain death for both Mr. Coffee and the Ty-D-Bol man.

Slurp and save

For the rest of us, though, nobody needs to spend their money on bottled water. There’s a drinking fountain, water cooler or, heavens forefend, a tap right there. Get a cup. Buy a sports bottle. Learn to bend and slurp.

Nonetheless, Americans — who have some of the cleanest, best drinking water on the planet — spent nearly $12 billion (with a B!) on bottled water last year, according to brokerage ConvergEx Group.

I’ve heard it said that some people spend money like water, but really people, spending money like water ON water is taking the metaphor way too far.

But some consumers are cutting their spending on water to a trickle — and they’re not stopping there. A July Harris Interactive survey finds consumers cutting back on eating out and buying coffee to go, and more are brown-bagging it for lunch. They’re not doing it just to be cheap, either, but so they can afford vacations, cars or just have more money to spend as they wish.

Just subtract water

The lesson here is that if you want to live large, you’ve got to start small. I found exactly the same thing when I cut my family budget by $100 a week for 10 weeks, eliminating a total of $1,000 in monthly spending. Trim your recurring expenses, and you create enough ongoing, repeated savings for the important stuff in life, like a nice trip or a new car. Or, if you live in Tampa, a deluxe reverse osmosis unit.

Skipping your daily dose of Perrier is a good start, but if you don’t do more your savings will only be ankle-deep. If every American quit buying bottled water, it would barely dent our combined $846 billion in credit card and revolving debt. But if you cut your largest monthly bills — housing, transportation and food make up more than 60 percent of all household spending — while also toting your own water, you can make a big difference in your finances and your life.

That’s a pretty good trade for the slight inconvenience of filling a bottle from your sink. Otherwise, you’re just flushing away your money — after all, you don’t buy water, you rent it.”

[via DetriotNews]

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One Response to Americans Are Spending Money Like Water

  1. Jennifer Isenbeck says:

    I just find it funny that I live in Tampa and I constantly preach on using re-useable water containers. Even with our very hard water, there are so many low cost ways to filter water. Just this weekend I replaced all the aerators in my faucets (lots of calcium/phosphate build-up) to 1.5 gpm faucets and I use a Britta filter/pitcher off my kitchen sink (I spend less than $60/year on filters). Stick the pitcher in the refrigerator – my dog and I love the cold water. Further, working on college campuses for the past 7 years, re-fillable bottle stations are quite popular everywhere from the gym/rec center to classroom buildings. Once again, just provide and maintain a filter and no issues! There is no reason to purchase bottled water and encourage the use of petroleum based plastics to hold it and then get thrown away to a landfill. Just a little common sense and a filter!

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