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Why shortcuts mostly aren’t.

Happy Monday to you fine folks. J.D. here to start another week of great stories about money (and more). Let’s get right to it!

The shortcut is probably the long way. [Raptitude] — “It’s like a gold mine, this secret of actually doing things the recommended way. I highly recommend it. Why didn’t anyone tell me about this?” Great piece. I fall into the same trap as David does. I’m trying not to take shortcuts as I learn art.

The spare change donated at store checkout adds up to millions for charities. [NPR] — “Data suggests that despite being bombarded by such requests, [customers] are giving more each year at cash registers, self-checkouts and online. And it has resulted in a huge boost for charities on the receiving end.” [Personally, I never donate at checkout. Never. Why not? Because I don’t know how the money is actually used and because I don’t want to help megacorporations get tax write-offs.]

Why are (most) sofas so bad? [Dwell] — “I was on the phone, asking for a theoretical quote to reupholster a five-year-old or so midrange sofa, which cost more than $1,000 when new. That task, the upholsterer told me, would run me several times more than the couch was originally worth, and, owing to its construction, it was now worth nowhere near its sale price. The upholsterer proceeded to lecture me, in a helpful, passionate, and sometimes kindly manner, about how sofas made in the past 15 years or so are absolute garbage…”

I have lots of thoughts on that last article.

More and more, Kim and I are shelling out the bucks for QUALITY when we buy stuff. We’re remodeling a bathroom right now, for instance, and we’re paying 3x for our vanity than we would if we just bought the cheapest option. And why are we doing this? Because so many products are shit nowadays.

Same principle applies to clothes and home furnishings and kitchenware, etc. I’m sick of buying something cheap, then having it break nine months down the line so that I just have to buy it again. It’s the Vimes Boots Theory in action. We can afford to pay for quality, so we do it.

Okay, that’s it for today. I’ll see you money nerds again tomorrow.