Sunday, August 6, 2017

Does "doing it yourself" save money?

This might come as a surprise to you, but, I haven't actually done my own laundry in about four years.  You see, I'm all about saving money.  I take back cans for a return on the deposit.  I pick up change from the sidewalk.  I used coupons when they come my way, but I also recognize that there are situations where doing something myself isn't really saving me money.  Sometimes, In fact, it's actually cheaper to pay for a person or service to take care of something for you.  This takes me back to my laundry.  It actually provides a perfect example of what I'm talking about.

Let me explain.  I live in a New York City apartment building that does not have a laundry facility in
it.  In order to do my laundry, I have to bundle it up and take it down the street to a laundromat.  Then, I have to sit there for two hours washing, drying, and folding.  I have to spend money on each of the machines, not to mention detergent, etc.  Then, you factor in the two hours I spend sitting there actually doing my laundry.  Two hours of my time alone is worth $90.  After factoring in the money for machines and supplies, this is well over $100.  Pretty expensive load of laundry, huh?  When I drop it off at the place on the corner, they charge me about $30 (depending on weight, so more in winter, less in summer).  The only time I have to spend is dropping it off, and picking it up the next day.  Dropping it off seems to be about $70 cheaper so far.  Furthermore, I'd likely be doing a side-gig for 3 hours on most Saturdays, which is my typical laundry day.  I make $135 during that three hours and it's pensionable, meaning those dollars will factor into a pension that will keep paying me even more money in my retirement, so this $135 Saturday earning is worth a lot more than that.  If I was doing my laundry on Saturday morning, I would not be in my side gig, and not earning the $135+..  So, if I combine the time and money saved (the $70 from before) with the money I can also earn instead, this is more than $200.  Doing my own laundry would actually cost me more than $200 per week!  Sounds crazy right?

While I am not hiring out every task that needs to be done in my life, I have learned to evaluate whether or not hiring the task out is financially advantageous.  Lucky for me, it turns out that doing the dreaded laundry isn't really worth my time, so for now, I will just keep dropping it off!

Is there anything in your life that you have found is actually more advantageous to hire out as opposed to doing yourself?

No comments:

Post a Comment