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We’ve all been there at some point in our lives—spending money on something that seemed like a good idea at the time but later regretting it.
Whether it’s buying a new gadget that you never use or investing in a business venture that doesn’t pan out, money can easily slip through our fingers if we’re not careful.
But what about those times when we watch our friends make the same mistakes and suffer the consequences of their poor choices?
Here are 11 regrettable instances of friends squandering their hard-earned cash.
1. Spending Way Too Much on a Wedding
Weddings can be massive, but they can also be small and intimate.
Unfortunately, people tend to spring for the former.
Those who have friends that don’t have as much money recount how they watched their friends spend exorbitant amounts of it to essentially have their dream wedding.
They then went into that marriage with all the financial stress that immediately puts a relationship in jeopardy.
Moral of the story?
Never spend more than you can afford to, especially if it impacts multiple people’s lives in the process.
2. Purchasing Scratchers
Gambling is inherently addictive.
It’s easy to fall in love with the idea of making a life-changing amount of money in a matter of seconds.
This is even more true if the type of gambling is cheap to engage in and you’ve already had a win or two under your belt.
One type of gambling that many have lost their friends to is scratchers.
Scratchers are easily purchased and fun to play, with some people spending hundreds at a time on them.
Unfortunately, what they often end up with is just a little pocket change to buy more scratches or absolutely nothing at all.
3. Buying Into MLMs
MLMs deliver the promise that you too can make money from the comfort of your own home with minimal effort.
All you have to do to become a millionaire is join the program, buy all the materials, pay monthly fees and sales fees, and so on…
There are many people out there who have had desperate friends buy into these types of business models in the hopes of striking it rich.
What often happened instead was that they ended up going into debt and stocking up on products that they were never actually able to sell.
4. Blowing Money on All the Newest Things
A lot of people want to present themselves as rich, even when they’re not.
Chances are that you may have even had a friend like this.
It can be easy to be in by the allure of wealth, convinced that you have to buy the next big in order to be or appear successful.
Rich people are often smart with their money.
Whether it’s new cars, flashy new technology, or even high-end designer clothes, many talk openly about watching their friends waste money on things they couldn’t afford and end up having to sell them back later.
5. Drug Abuse (And Similar Vices)
Arguably some of the most expensive things to get involved in are those that are inherently addicting.
I already touched upon gambling above, but that’s not the only one.
Friends and ex-friends have spoken out about their friends spending money on things like drugs, alcohol, and even sex workers.
These friends spent thousands of dollars on these types of things because they believed or quite literally did need them frequently.
Of course, when it comes to vices and addictions, people will often do terrible things to feed them.
This is why many of the people sharing these types of experiences are now ex-friends.
6. Buying Hobby Products (and Never Using Them)
Hobbes are fun and exciting.
They give us a break from the mundane lives that we lead at work.
But hobbies are hard work, and they require dedication.
Too many people think they want to do something and invest heavily in it in the beginning, only to abandon it shortly after.
Friends describe other friends buying hobby products like expensive sewing machines, gaming, trading cards, and more without ever making it a priority to follow through on their vision.
That’s a lot of money down the drain for something that you never got the chance to fully explore!
7. Giving It All to Their Significant Others
Marriages naturally result in money being shared.
But those who are in a relationship (especially one that’s fairly recent), should still be spending their money individually and learning how to compromise.
With that in mind, love can be blinding.
A lot of people have watched their friends give all of their money to their significant others in order to make them happy, whether in the form of gifts, paying them outright, or trying to create a better life for them.
While this sometimes works out, those talking about it have rarely ever seen an outcome where the two people stay together forever.
8. Constant Food Delivery
Food delivery apps really boomed, especially during the pandemic.
When you can get anything you want delivered to you at the click of a button, why would you make food yourself?
The unfortunate reality about these apps, however, is that they cost a ton in service fees, tips, and other related fees that drain your wallet rapidly.
Some people have watched their friends use just these apps to feed themselves, only to complain later about how hard they’re struggling financially.
9. Spending Money on NFTs
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) were one of the most recent cryptocurrency solutions spotlighted.
If you were paying attention when it was happening, you were seeing these (often art-based tokens) being sold for thousands or tens of thousands of dollars.
While the concept behind NFTs isn’t bad, the execution certainly was.
Some people sunk a ton of money into these crypto collectibles, only to lose money when the market inevitably crashed and people realized they weren’t really worth much.
Imagine warning a friend about NFTs and being right later!
10. Using a Payday Loan to Get a Tattoo
Getting tattoos isn’t a bad thing.
If you want tattoos, get them!
That being said, there are some people who have chosen tattoos over other things that they should be spending their money on.
Several people have talked about how their friends have taken out payday loans to get tattoos, putting themselves in debt for a little ink.
Of course, that’s not too surprising.
People secure payday loans for all kinds of things they don’t need.
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This thread inspired this article.
I have over 15 years experience in the financial services industry and 20 years investing in the stock market. I have both my undergrad and graduate degrees in Finance, and am FINRA Series 65 licensed and have a Certificate in Financial Planning.
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