A little or a latte: turning coffee savings into a car

iced_coffeeOn July 4th, I was with my wife and daughter in New York City and we walked by the Gansevoort Market, a trendy food hall in the Meatpacking District. Being a hot afternoon, my daughter found some delicious gelato and my wife wanted an iced coffee. I found Champions Coffee and they had a cold brew iced coffee so I ordered one. They don't show any prices so I was shocked when the cashier told me it was $5. But it's New York, so I handed over the $5 and went on my way. Anyway I had recently heard great things about cold brew coffee so I was curious to give it a try. I normally drink my coffee with milk but the cold brew was smoother and less bitter so I enjoyed it in its purest form.

Home Brew vs Starbucks

While Starbucks isn't often swayed by craft-brew trends, it has jumped into the cold-brewed coffee trend. After testing it in a few stores, it has already rolled it out nationwide. Why would Starbucks go full force into cold brew? It's simple: big profits. A grande (medium) cup of Starbucks will cost $3.35. This is almost a dollar more than their previous "regular" iced coffee. It doesn't cost Starbucks more money to brew, it just takes more time -- in a cold brew, you have to let the grounds steep in water for 12 hours.

I am not a regular customer at Starbucks so I decided to go with the home brew method. I bought a Hario Water Brew Coffee Pot from Amazon for $16 but you can use a French press as well. Then I got a bag of course ground coffee from the grocery store for $10. At night, I put the grounds into the coffee pot and in the morning I have a perfectly brewed coffee ready waiting. It produces around 5-6 cups depending how much ice you put in your cup -- coffee shops give you way too much ice. By my measure, it probably costs me 25 cents per cup, a whopping $3 savings versus Starbucks.

Turning coffee savings into a car

Most people don't realize that the small things that you spend your money on daily can add up to big money. Saving just a few dollars a day for your future can make a difference between accumulating wealth and living paycheck to paycheck.

If you save $3 daily like in my home brew vs Starbucks, you save $1,095 per year. If you can grow your assets at 10% for 20 years, you will have accumulated $68,988! If you grow that for 40 years, it will be worth $533,103!!!

So start saving your money today. Making your cold brew coffee yourself is very easy and tastes great. In a few years, you will be heading down the highway in your self-driving Tesla sipping on your home brewed iced coffee...

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About the Author: Chris Wang

Chris Wang

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