You may often hear people say that you have to spend money to make money. I tend to see this saying a ton on social media. Still, I also personally know a few business owners who share this philosophy as well.
It always leaves me wondering if there is, in fact, any truth to it. Do you really have to spend money to make money?
In this article, I'll share my thoughts on this question. I'll also share specific examples of just how to do it the right way!
Do you have to spend money to make money?
First, let's answer the question, "Do you have to spend money to make money?". Well, the answer is simple. It really depends on your goal. Let me explain.
10 Smart examples of spending money to make money
With that being said let's go over some examples of when it might make sense to spend money to make money!
1. Taking a course or buying resources to learn more about money management
There are thousands of money management programs, tools, and books to help you learn how to handle your finances. With so much on the market, it's hard to know where to start and what to focus on first. You can waste a lot of time and money only to be where you started in the first place.
However, investing in a course or buying education materials like books can be a smart spend for future gain. To determine what resources to invest in here are some tips:
- Do your research to find products that apply to your situation, along with your current stage in life. It could be books, courses, or financial coaching.
- Don't be afraid to google terms such as "net worth for X age," "money management for divorcees," or even "how to retire a millionaire."
- Leverage the information and take the actionable steps suggested.
Keep in mind, you don't have to spend money. As mentioned, there are a ton of great resources online. Here at Clever Girl Finance, we offer over 30+ completely free courses on personal finance and business!
2. Hiring a financial advisor if you get stuck
There is a wealth of personal finance knowledge online. Still, it may be hard to decipher what information applies to your situation and you might need specific guidance.
One slip up, and you could have the IRS at your door with a request asking for more money. Or a financial investment you thought was a good move could end up being a bust.
A smart way to spend money to make money is by finding a fee-only financial advisor who can help you set up a financial plan for your future. Fee-only financial advisors do not make money off you through commission, so their recommendations put your pocket first, not theirs.
You can research to find one that best fits your needs and your budget. Over the long term, this investment in hiring a financial advisor could earn you tons more money.
3. Buying in bulk
Buying bulk can be expensive when you first start, which may seem counterproductive. No one wants to buy numerous household items and then worry about stocking them in a pantry. However, buying in bulk can save you both time and money if you're smart about it.
The key to saving money is buying items you use and need while ensuring you aren't overspending. Make a list of items you can buy in bulk that won't go bad. For example, household items, toiletries, and non-perishable food items.
Every week, check your local store circular to see what items are on sale and cross-reference your list. If there is an item, buy one or two and then add it to your newly created stockpile.
By creating a stock of items you'll use little by little, you're saving money and space.
4. Investing in quality household items
Investing in quality household items is an indirect way of spending money to make money. This is because once you spend the money, the items last and you don't have to repurchase them. This allows you to put money in the future towards your savings and investment goals!
Cheaply made household items can cost you more in the long run. They are more likely to break, not work as well, or even go out of date.
When it comes to household items, you can save money but still buy quality items. These are pieces that will not only last forever, but you can also sell later on if no longer needed.
Furniture goes on sale around most major federal holidays, and there's always Goodwill and Facebook Marketplace. I saved for three months to buy my dream couch. Six years later, and it's still as lovely as it was when I purchased it. Other furniture I bought in haste? Not so much.
5. Invest in nice clothes
You may be hesitant to buy expensive clothes because of the initial cost. It's hard to stomach spending $100 on a single pair of jeans or *gasp* a pair of shoes. However, what ends up being more expensive is buying fast fashion clothes that fall apart after just a few washes.
Investing in good quality clothes you'll wear every day will last forever, resulting in fewer clothes purchased over time. And fewer clothes can really help you hone in on your personal style. If you keep your clothing in good shape, you may be able to resell them later.
6. Investing in your business
Starting a business can be scary, but it's worth it for so many reasons. For instance, if executed well, there's no cap to your earnings. And you create a new income stream through your business.
You don't have to spend money to make money in a business. There are, after all, many businesses you can start from home at no cost. However, sometimes it might make sense to do so.
For instance, by hiring talent to build your website or design your graphics. Or by paying for your business trademarks and registering your business. You may even need to make the initial investment of buying inventory for your business.
7. Flipping items to make a profit
This is a great money-making skill to have. But it's easy to get caught up with the excitement of buying items to flip them. When it comes to people spending money to make money, flipping items is at the top of the list.
However, it's a lot harder than it looks. Along with purchasing items out of pocket, you'll need to sell them for more than what you paid them for.
To achieve this, you might have to do additional research to know your market. You may also need to fix an item up before it can sell for a profit.
To get started, research trending items in your area and only purchase a couple of things at one time to flip. This way you don't cause yourself financial strain. Make sure you take quality pictures. Finally, don't forget to be in-depth with your description of the item when listing to sell.
8. Redecorating or deep cleaning your house for a roommate or Airbnb
If you have extra room to spare or live in a hot location, setting up your space for an Airbnb is a great way to bring in some extra income.
If renting your room makes you feel a little uneasy, you can put precautions in place. For example, you can place locks on any personal space or install a keyless entry door handle. I have a friend who averages about $500 a month from this house hack and enjoys it.
Keep in mind that setting up your space to be an Airbnb can get costly. This doesn't mean you have to go over the top though. You can search sites like OfferUp or Facebook Marketplace for free furniture or decorative items.
You can also visit discount stores like TJ Maxx to find bedding and luxurious towels without the luxury prices. Finally, utilize the dollar store to find toiletries for guests for a special touch in the bathroom.
9. Getting your car detailed to start a ride-sharing side hustle
The gig economy is a way to allow someone to become an independent contractor without having to go into business for themselves. As an independent contractor, you can work as little or as much as you would like without fully committing to an organization.
If you choose to become a part of the gig economy, make sure your car is in good condition. Get an oil change, inspect all tires and make sure all fluids and filters are up to date. Get a car wash and utilize their vacuum cleaner and the free air freshener. You're ready to go!
10. Starting a blog
Some people think blogging is just a hobby but it can also be very lucrative! More and more people rely on the internet for information. This makes blogging is a great way to reach audiences and give them the information they are looking for.
You don't have to spend a ton of money making money with this venture, but you will need to start with research and find a niche you feel comfortable writing to do it correctly.
You can buy a domain name for less than $10 and then take care of hosting for a small ongoing monthly fee.
You can create a blog with a ready-made template and platform, such as WordPress, and set up a professional-looking website for free.
Spending money to make money can be a good move if done smartly
You can spend money to make money if you do it smartly. Do you have to spend money to make money? No, but sometimes it can be a smart move. Especially when it comes to acquiring long-term investments.
Carefully consider the return on your investment each time you spend your money. Doing this can help you really assess what's worth it and what isn't.