Author Topic: Best $100 you've ever spent?  (Read 8164 times)

Financial Ascensionist

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Best $100 you've ever spent?
« on: July 29, 2016, 10:04:54 AM »
I have a "improve quality of life" fund and I usually have obvious things to spent this money on based on the things that suck the most in my life, but now I find myself without anything obvious that I need to fix and I suspect that I have hit a local maximum.  In order to broaden my horizon and start looking at things that are off my radar, I open it to the wisdom of this forum. 

What's the best $100 that you have ever spent?

PhysicianOnFIRE

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2016, 11:14:34 AM »
My Republic Wireless phone. Most months' bills are $12 to $15 now. It pays for itself quickly.

Same with Ooma box. My wife in particular likes having a home phone. After the initial $100 outlay, our monthly phone bill is under $5.

There might be cheaper and better ways to do either, but I've been quite happy with both for years.

Best,
-PoF

Rural

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2016, 11:31:31 AM »
Recently? Instantpot, though I got it for $70 on the Amazon Black Friday sale.

lunahsol

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2016, 11:34:08 AM »
About 15 years ago,when I barely had anything, I used my emergency $100 to pay the pet deposit at the apartment so I could keep a stray kitty I found on the street. 

1967mama

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2016, 11:49:01 AM »
Ditto on the Instant Pot! Made beans and rice in 28 minutes last night ... from dried beans and uncooked brown rice. I don't understand HOW it works, but it works!

retiringearly

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #5 on: July 29, 2016, 11:51:12 AM »
The first thing that popped in to my mind is my Philips Sonicare toothbrush.  It really works much better than a regular toothbrush.  I have never regretted buying it.

lbmustache

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #6 on: July 29, 2016, 12:05:37 PM »
The first thing that popped in to my mind is my Philips Sonicare toothbrush.  It really works much better than a regular toothbrush.  I have never regretted buying it.

Yes, I have an Oral B electric brush and that was definitely money well spent.

Some others:
- LED lights
- A good quality fan (probably doesn't matter if you have A/C, I don't)

tyort1

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #7 on: July 29, 2016, 12:21:38 PM »
A bit more than $100, but the Vitamix blender.  Replaced my unhealthy coffee with cream morning habit with green smoothies.  This small change made several large improvements in my life - I got off caffeine completely, so I sleep better.  I kicked dairy to the curb since it made my all phlegmy, and I am able to get the one thing into my diet that I hate - leafy greens.  Spinach and kale plus half a banana, a couple raw eggs and the triple berry frozen berries from Costco and I can actually get some leafy greens without hating every bite. 

Also we make milkshakes at home now instead of going out to the overpriced ice cream shops.  My daughter loves being involved in the shake creation process.

Gondolin

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #8 on: July 29, 2016, 12:45:30 PM »
+1 to electric toothbrushes and a good blender (or any high quality high use kitchen item)

Otherwise, noise cancelling headphones are great. Got mine as on Amazon return sale for <$70. Makes it so easy to sleep on planes and ignore co-workers!

swick

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #9 on: July 29, 2016, 01:42:56 PM »
Slightly more than 100, but my most recent purchase that I would definitely say fits into quality of life improvement is my fitbit Alta. In about a month I've gone from basically sedentary to averaging 15-20 K steps a day, 1-2 hours of exercise a day, drinking tons more water. Apparently, I have to be able to see and track progress for it to be real and motivating for me. It has been pretty much painless.

Lots of side benefits too like discovering dancing around like mad in your kitchen while cleaning not only gives you an aerobic workout but is a great way to knock out a bunch of cleaning without feeling like the slightest bit of work!

Peony

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #10 on: July 29, 2016, 02:24:37 PM »
YNAB4 (the software version, not the web-based). Cost me $60 and price of adding some memory to my laptop in order to be able to run it. It was a complete mind shift for me, the single most effective tool I have found for building wealth.

GuitarBrian

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #11 on: July 29, 2016, 02:33:24 PM »
Best $100. I was in Mexico, ended up well south of the border, without a visa.

Ended up paying a $100 fine to get my passport back.

The Money Monk

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #12 on: July 29, 2016, 02:52:52 PM »
I don't know about the single best thing, but here are a few products off the top of my head that are as good as I hoped or better, and I use them all the time:

Kratom - The only thing I have found that cures my restless leg syndrome. Precious sleep! http://www.happyhippoherbals.com/starter-pack?tracking=5502597cdf312

Minimalist wallet (I have the "Anson Calder" brand I got from cheaper from their kickstarter - http://ansoncalder.com/products/wallet?variant=6087945347

Galco Ankle light holster - http://amzn.to/2a5S7ak - I am not big and wear clothing that actually fits, in a warm weather climate, so I was having trouble finding a concealed carry holster that I could comfortably wear and wasn't visible. This one has been working great for my Ruger LCP

Laser Printer - http://amzn.to/2aAXxJE - I Sell on ebay and spending the extra to get a laser printer that uses toner instead of an inkjet that uses cartridges has made a huge difference. Faster printing, cheaper per page, lasts way longer - just better in every way. Well worth the higher upfront cost.



Kwill

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #13 on: July 29, 2016, 03:07:51 PM »
I don't know exactly how much these cost, but some of the things that came to mind were test registration fees and application fees (multiple adding up) that allowed me to take life in a different direction.

My used bicycle was about $100, and that was well worth it.

Laserjet3051

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #14 on: July 29, 2016, 03:25:37 PM »
Buying 2 tickets, for my daughter and self to see Steve Vai in concert, front row. Best $100 investment EVER

she, as well as I will never forget that experience.

SaskyStache

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #15 on: July 29, 2016, 07:36:16 PM »
Condoms*





This is not in an anti kids statement, but crunching the data in my head keeps leading me to this as far as entertainment, safety and frugalness. Timing is a thing.

*It wasn't all at once.

Also the Ipod nano (slightly over $100) and Bose headphones are also close contenders.

2Birds1Stone

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #16 on: July 29, 2016, 08:17:57 PM »
Condoms*

I will second that with lube, sexy outfits, birth control, and ......oh wait, bye bye $100+

TomTX

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #17 on: July 29, 2016, 08:40:44 PM »
Condoms*

I will second that with lube, sexy outfits, birth control, and ......oh wait, bye bye $100+

Not compatible with condoms, but coconut oil is great lube and $100 buys a LOT of coconut oil at Costco.

Financial Ascensionist

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #18 on: July 29, 2016, 08:47:29 PM »
I had something durable in mind and I was surprised to see concerts come up many times, but thinking about it, it makes total sense.  I will start shopping now.  What's your favourite site to see which bands are coming to town?

Oldsmobile

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #19 on: July 29, 2016, 09:15:34 PM »
I bought a tow dolly for $100 around 1998, and it's saved me LOTS of money on towing bills.  (For those of you who don't know, imagine a short trailer that has ramps on it; you put the front wheels of a car on it, strap it down, and you can tow a car.) 

 I've also used it to haul junkers to the scrapyard and make money with it.   
It's been useful for some friends and family as well.

It's paid for itself many times over, and I plan to keep it.

csprof

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #20 on: July 29, 2016, 09:30:35 PM »
I had something durable in mind and I was surprised to see concerts come up many times, but thinking about it, it makes total sense.  I will start shopping now.  What's your favourite site to see which bands are coming to town?

What have you always been interested in learning, and can you find a class on it for <= $100?  Cooking?  Rock climbing?  Crochet? :)

horsepoor

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #21 on: July 29, 2016, 10:28:04 PM »
College applications.

The Instant Pot came to mind too, and then reading through the responses, I thought of my tile saw, which has seriously earned its keep, and the dolly we bought at CostCo before moving into this house. 

MoonLiteNite

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #22 on: July 30, 2016, 05:13:18 AM »
A few select video games...
Every 4 or so years i buy one or two new video games for less than 100$
And i generally get over 600 hours of time out of them :)

So my vote goes to sid meier's civilization V. been playing this game for 4 years, and have bought one other game that was like 2.99$ hahah

retiringearly

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #23 on: July 30, 2016, 11:45:42 AM »
Ditto on the Instant Pot! Made beans and rice in 28 minutes last night ... from dried beans and uncooked brown rice. I don't understand HOW it works, but it works!
OK, I am very interested.  What do you put in the pot?  Just rice, beans & water?  Or is it more complicated than that?  I am a single guy that does not like to cook, so any help is appreciated.

mozar

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #24 on: July 30, 2016, 12:32:26 PM »
My cordless drill.

dandypandys

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #25 on: July 30, 2016, 12:52:09 PM »
YNAB4 (the software version, not the web-based). Cost me $60 and price of adding some memory to my laptop in order to be able to run it. It was a complete mind shift for me, the single most effective tool I have found for building wealth.

I am interested in this, but already use mint and personal capital aps. Do you think it is really needed? I have the Mint budget working pretty well for me so far?

Mine are def the Sonicare too, but now also the Waterpik-- as I hate flossing but this makes it fun.

MrsPB

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #26 on: July 30, 2016, 03:33:26 PM »
My DH bought a pair of Stihl ear defenders with a radio in them. Makes mowing the lawn/trimming way more enjoyable while protecting your hearing, so long as you don't crank the volume too high, that is!

1967mama

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #27 on: August 03, 2016, 04:22:20 PM »
Ditto on the Instant Pot! Made beans and rice in 28 minutes last night ... from dried beans and uncooked brown rice. I don't understand HOW it works, but it works!
OK, I am very interested.  What do you put in the pot?  Just rice, beans & water?  Or is it more complicated than that?  I am a single guy that does not like to cook, so any help is appreciated.

I put the pot on top of the stove. You just plug it in. Here is the recipe I used:

    2 cups uncooked brown rice
    1 cup uncooked dry beans
    5 cups water
    1 6 oz can of tomato paste (or 1 8 oz can tomato sauce with slightly less water)
    1 tsp garlic
    2 tsp onion powder
    2 tsp chili powder
    1 tsp sea salt (optional)


    Dump all of the ingredients into your pressure cooker and stir once or twice.
    Close the lid and cook on manual for 28 minutes.
    Once done, allow the pressure to come down and open carefully. If you are in a hurry you can do a quick release.

I really liked the dish -- simple, in a comfort food kind of way. I made a note to up the spices and add garlic, onion and celery bits next time. I really did marvel at the quickness of it! Never would think to start beans and rice at 4pm for my family. Normally, I would do the beans the day before in the crockpot. Then do the rice in a rice cooker. Super cool that it was all in one pot. There are some great recipes out there online. I found a cookbook online that they have at my public library too, called Hip Pressure Cooking .

ohsnap

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #28 on: August 03, 2016, 04:31:30 PM »
Global Entry.   It was $100 but my credit card reimbursed me so I don't know if I should count it!  It was definitely worth $100 though.  I have saved hours and hours in security lines for domestic travel (it gives you Precheck clearance), plus time savings in the immigration line when returning from overseas.  I'm sure in the 5 years that it's valid I will have saved close to 50 hours of line-standing. 

Exhale

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #29 on: August 03, 2016, 04:42:09 PM »
Hands down it'd be a good quality knife. All I need it two (one larger kitchen and one small paring).

Also great:
- Vitamix
- InstantPot
- Electric toothbrush

esq

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #30 on: August 03, 2016, 08:58:31 PM »
I always gotta jump in on the praises of Sonicare....I'm sensing a pattern here.

Seriously, once your teeth are gone, they're gone.  Same for your gums.

But the Instapot has my curiosity piqued.  How lovely not to have to load the slow cooker when you have to be out the door at 6 a.m.

1967mama

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #31 on: August 03, 2016, 10:29:57 PM »
Other things I've done in the Instant Pot, so far (just got it on Amazon Prime Day):

- a whole chicken (a big one) in under 40 minutes
- chicken stock with the bones - best stock I've ever made, and I've been making stock for over 15 years

It was a little scary at the start, and I read the manual at least 3 times. I pulled up a stool to watch it cook, just to make sure everything was right. I'm sure over time I will relax about it!

The time factor - you do have to add in a bit of time for the pressure to build up at the beginning and release at the end.

limeandpepper

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #32 on: August 04, 2016, 12:10:56 AM »
I veer more towards traditional toothbrushes, but my partner likes his electric toothbrush. I'm intrigued by this Sonicare product that's been mentioned a few times so far in this thread.

As for me...

Full-day jeep safari in Nepal, 2014. Just me and my partner, a driver, and two guides. Can't remember if it was charged per person or a flat cost for the one jeep, but anyway it came to around $200 with tips, so my share was about $100. Amazing experience, would do it again if I go back to that part of the world. Our guides were friendly, spoke good English, had a keen eyesight for spotting wildlife, and were knowledgeable about the different species we encountered. They also seemed just as excited as we were to see the animals, even though one might think that they are used to it, and I love that!

Vibram Five Fingers. I have two pairs and actually got them for quite a bit less than $100 per pair (once on eBay and another time with a Groupon deal), but whatever. Thought I was never going to walk long distances again without suffering due to bunions, even in shoes that regular people would find comfortable. I saw a podiatrist and had expensive custom orthotics done, and they helped, but I think my VFFs are even better (and cheaper, too). At one point just walking >30 minutes around the neighbourhood would end up in pain, then I got my VFFs and I started walking everywhere again and I felt like I had my life back. I even wore them trekking in Nepal, several hours a day for several days straight, no problems! Bought in 2013, no need for replacement yet but when the day comes, it would totally be worth it to purchase again.

I also really like my Sunbeam stick blender, though again I'm not sure if it counts - I think the full price would have been $100, but technically I didn't spend $100 on it because it was purchased for about half that on special, and in fact I didn't spend any money on it at all as it was bought for me as a gift. I make smoothies with it all the time, occasionally soups, and it's so easy to clean. Got it in 2012.

esq

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #33 on: August 04, 2016, 09:04:55 AM »
Other things I've done in the Instant Pot, so far (just got it on Amazon Prime Day):

- a whole chicken (a big one) in under 40 minutes
- chicken stock with the bones - best stock I've ever made, and I've been making stock for over 15 years

It was a little scary at the start, and I read the manual at least 3 times. I pulled up a stool to watch it cook, just to make sure everything was right. I'm sure over time I will relax about it!

The time factor - you do have to add in a bit of time for the pressure to build up at the beginning and release at the end.

That made me LOL.  Hopefully you've never tried this with a crockpot! :D :D :D

retiringearly

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #34 on: August 04, 2016, 11:09:52 AM »
Global Entry.   It was $100 but my credit card reimbursed me so I don't know if I should count it!  It was definitely worth $100 though.  I have saved hours and hours in security lines for domestic travel (it gives you Precheck clearance), plus time savings in the immigration line when returning from overseas.  I'm sure in the 5 years that it's valid I will have saved close to 50 hours of line-standing.
Agreed.  TSA PreCheck has been glorious for me.   I have only used Global Entry a few times but it has really helped as well.

I am trying to find out when my PreCheck expires since it is only good for 5 years.  I am not entirely sure when I initially signed up.  I have no idea how to determine the expiration date.

PMG

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #35 on: August 04, 2016, 12:00:27 PM »
OP. You don't have to spend the money.  ;) It is ok to not want or need anything at this point in time.

1967mama

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #36 on: August 04, 2016, 12:29:35 PM »
Other things I've done in the Instant Pot, so far (just got it on Amazon Prime Day):

- a whole chicken (a big one) in under 40 minutes
- chicken stock with the bones - best stock I've ever made, and I've been making stock for over 15 years

It was a little scary at the start, and I read the manual at least 3 times. I pulled up a stool to watch it cook, just to make sure everything was right. I'm sure over time I will relax about it!

The time factor - you do have to add in a bit of time for the pressure to build up at the beginning and release at the end.

That made me LOL.  Hopefully you've never tried this with a crockpot! :D :D :D


Hahahahaha!

ariapluscat

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #37 on: August 04, 2016, 02:00:59 PM »
About 15 years ago,when I barely had anything, I used my emergency $100 to pay the pet deposit at the apartment so I could keep a stray kitty I found on the street.

Omg this is so sweet. I would agree that cat fund and cat toy fund are my fave fundings

FIKristen

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #38 on: August 04, 2016, 04:47:58 PM »
One way ticket for my broke ex. 


Choices

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #39 on: August 04, 2016, 06:05:11 PM »
National Parks annual pass (only $80) for an epic roadtrip.

Melisande

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #40 on: August 05, 2016, 07:28:33 AM »
Well, I spend almost $100 every month on top-of-the line probiotics, but they are totally worth it. This is the only effective way I've found to keep quality-of-life destroying and potentially deadly intestinal issues at bay. I'm willing to drop a lot on effective health care.

misshathaway

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #41 on: August 05, 2016, 09:12:05 AM »
External monitor for laptop and swivel stand. More real estate for computer use and swivels to sitting area for streaming TV watching.

SwordGuy

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #42 on: August 05, 2016, 09:42:59 AM »
Don't have a "best $100" story.

But the best $50 I ever spent was on my wedding.

catccc

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #43 on: August 05, 2016, 12:14:58 PM »
YNAB4 (the software version, not the web-based). Cost me $60 and price of adding some memory to my laptop in order to be able to run it. It was a complete mind shift for me, the single most effective tool I have found for building wealth.

I am interested in this, but already use mint and personal capital aps. Do you think it is really needed? I have the Mint budget working pretty well for me so far?


There are threads on this elsewhere for more info, but YNAB is pretty different in that it is a lot more forward thinking, IMO.  Mint and personal cap are better as look back tools.  I love YNAB, but really hate the new SaaS model!

celticblue

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #44 on: August 05, 2016, 01:28:28 PM »
Best 100 dollars would be on a nutribullet blender that I use everyday and is the best way to get my 5 veggies a day

Another great buy was a knife sharpener for less than 10 bucks. Kitchen work is so much better with sharp knives and buying new ones is a waste

gggggg

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Re: Best $100 you've ever spent?
« Reply #45 on: August 05, 2016, 01:45:45 PM »
My best ROI on $100, is probably a bunch of personal finance/investing books (yes I use the library as much as possible too).