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Here’s How Men Spend Their Money

Posted By timparker On 12/22/2011 @ 12:15 pm In Personal Finance | 11 Comments

Women know how to spend money, don’t they? Yes they do but hold on, all of you judging guys. Data shows that the male persuasion is equally skilled at laying out some cash on things that may not be near the top of a skilled money manager’s list of smart purchases. Let’s skip the essentials. Men and women both have to live somewhere, have transportation, and pay for heat but how about after that? Ladies, if you’ve been looking for some ammunition for the next money discussion with your man, keep reading because fellas, this list doesn’t make our lady’s last shopping trip look quite as bad.

Just to apply some icing to this funsquash cake, let’s add another dimension to it. What would happen if we took the money spent and invested for 20 years at 5% interest? Nobody is saying that you can’t do some discretionary spending but it’s easy to forget that spending more now hurts us later in life. Let’s take a look.

Alcohol

Men have twice the yearly bar tab that women have. According to Investopeida, the numbers come out to $552 per year for men and $233 per year for women. Of course one way to cut down on your alcohol expenditures is to drink at home rather than at a bar. There’s also the free refills soft drink option and water which is essentially free.

If you cut $552 per year for 20 years and invested that money, after 20 years you would have $20,600! Of course you aren’t going to go beverage free the rest of your life. Even soft drink purchases will add up but what if you cut that number in half?

Electronics

Men spend an average of $701 per year [3] on audio and visual equipment according to Mint.com. Because the world is becoming more digital the rising amount of expenditure in this area isn’t surprising but the problems is that men don’t want the sensible options compared to their female counterparts. They want all the bells and whistles.

If you saved $701 per year and reinvested it, you would have $26,000 for retirement but once again, what if that expense were cut in half as a realistic goal? At least men spend more on electronics than alcohol.

Dating Sites

Meeting people is easy, right? Surely that phrase is most commonly heard from the dorm living college crowd but for those who have full time jobs and a few years behind them, meeting people isn’t easy at all and because of that, men, twice as often as women, have turned to online dating sites to help. For every one women paying a monthly fee, there are two men. Most of the memberships offer a lower price if you commit to a longer term. EHarmony, for example charges $59.95 for one month and for those willing to admit that it will take them at least a year, monthly rates are as low as $19.95. Let’s go with the six month membership for the sake of our calculation, $29.95. That would be an annual cost of $359.40 if six months ended up not being enough.

$359.40 plugged in to our retirement reality check comes out to $13,431 but let’s admit that this isn’t realistic. If you have an eHarmony membership for 20 years, there may be a problem with your profile but look on the bright side. Being single costs less money than raising children so you would have actually saved far more than $13,431.

Bottom Line

Taking a lighthearted look at male overspending actually paints a picture of a much bigger topic that isn’t gender specific. For those who want to build wealth, how much money are we throwing away on things that have very little lasting value? Saving and saying no to expenditures with little lasting value is how long term wealth is created. There you are, ladies.  You’re welcome!


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[3] $701 per year: http://www.mint.com/blog/uncategorized/boys-gone-shopping-wild/

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