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Time to Replace Worn Out Items


Something I’ve noticed lately is that most of the clothes I own are from late high school and early college (fall 2006… 7 years ago). I tend to put off buying something new, especially if it’s a “want” and not a “need,” as long as I can. With transitioning to a single income and welcoming a new baby this coming January, we’ve realized that now is the time to set some savings aside and renew truly outdated items. I was a little surprised at how quickly we came up with a lengthy list of things we could renew and how the estimated cost added up just as quickly.

I’d share all the details in order to justify the items we need to renew, but instead I’ll just leave you with a summary: Pinky toes peeping through the mesh of my running shoes, years of thighs rubbing together creating hole-y pants, overly worn paper-thin shirts, a once-fluffy down comforter that now looks like two sheets sewn together, and a hair straightener that only stays on when I hold it at a certain angle and don’t leave it plugged in for more than 3 minutes. When we move back home we also plan to replace the 30-year old deck to prevent a bug issue (not with anything fancy since we plan to rent the condo down the road). We got rid of a hand-me-down couch/pull out bed and purchased a $750 like-new sectional off Craigslist and will be purchasing a deep freezer too so I can stock up on freezer meals and ridiculous savings from our wholesale produce market.

We always look for deals when possible through Craigslist, Groupon, or holiday sales events. Assuming we can get good deals on the list above, we decided to set aside $2,500 now (a big chunk toward the deck) so we don’t have to figure out where to get the money from later when we go down to a single income. I’m a planner by nature and I prefer to plan ahead than get a surprise financial punch in the face.

Are there items you need to replace that are nearing the end of their days? Some may fall under the “we need” category and some under the “we want” category. Whether it’s balding car tires, dirty air filters, a dryer that takes over an hour to do the job, or a couple pairs of hole-y clothes, it’s helpful to take inventory on these items to ensure you’ll have the money to fund replacements instead of putting it on the credit card to hopefully pay off later.

What items are due for a replacement in your home? How are you budgeting for them?

This has been a guest post from Jessica. She is a Registered Dietitian and shares practical, useful tips on food, fitness, and finance. Be sure to subscribe to her blog, Budget For Health.



My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.


  1. Wow! You really are good when it comes to saving on clothing expenses. The longest shirt that I have now is just 4 years old maybe because we normally do our shopping every a couple of years and I’ve already donated most of my clothes back then.

    • I’m not sure if it’s a girl thing but I have a hard time parting with favorite shirts so those end up being the ones that are paper thin and holes appear! That’s wise to donate so you don’t end up with a fuller closet.

  2. We seem to be in the minority here. I still have a polo shirt and a couple of other tops (granted some have progressed to being gardening or painting tops)that I wear, from being pregnant 25 years ago!
    My daughter was an incredibly large 2 year old and we were given some tshirts by my friend. My daughter (having slimmed down considerably) was still wearing them at age 12 as crop tops. It helped that all the logos etc on the tops were considered cool to wear by then.
    Also I have a memory box of clothes from when I was a teenager and my daughter continually raids it, last summer she was wearing some of my halter neck tops from when I was 18.
    Can anyone beat these?

    • Ha! I’ve worn a pair of my mom’s leggings with the stirrup straps for a themed new year’s party. I do have some old shirts from sports as a kid (15 years ago!) I’d say you have some of us beat though 😉

  3. Most of my clothes are 5-10 years old, I even have a fall/spring Polo jacket from 2000 that I wear. If it’s not broke, why fix it!

    • Agreed! In my case I’d say my shirts and jeans are technically wearable it probably not appropriate anymore haha. It helps having a budget for clothes so we don’t have spontaneous purchases adding up.

  4. I wear clothes until they go into the rag box. Most are 10-15 years old, although I still have some good blue shirts from my stint in the Air Force 35 years ago. And they still fit me.

    • If the clothes are still in good condition why throw them out? Plus having clothes that old that still fit shows that you’ve stayed in shape after all these years!

  5. Our washing machine will need to eventually be replaced but we should be able to handle it out of our monthly cash flow. We will eventually need to save for new cars as well.

    • As long as you plan ahead then a new washer shouldn’t be a big scare to your budget. The amount to save for a new (newer, new-ish) car can vary greatly depending what you want so that’s wise to start saving well before you need to make the purchase.

  6. We keep a separate fund for long term savings for things like routine replacement / upgrades, vacations, home repair, etc. All the things that you need money for, but aren’t necessarily an emergency, and we’re not saving for elsewhere (e.g. kid’s college fund).

    • That would be a good idea, especially if you foresee necessary replacements coming up over the next few years. That may be the case for us depending how well out washer & dryer hold up.

  7. I haven’t really checked if there are any items that needs to be changed. But what I will do for sure is make money out of the things I want to dispose. It won’t be a lot for sure but it can be a good start.

    • That’s also a good plan. We did the same a few months ago and made a couple hundred from getting rid of old college textbooks!

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