Quitting smoking now can save your life and also repair your financial health
Feb 3, 2012, 10:22 a.m.
Everybody knows that quitting smoking can greatly extend your life. And it's no secret that there are certain serious health risks associated with smoking that can make your life miserable if it doesn't wind up killing you -- things like lung cancer, emphysema, heart disease, and to a far lesser extent, prematurely aging skin. But did you ever stop to consider what eliminating the cost of cigarettes from your budget might do for your financial health?
Just the Butts
Quitting smoking has gone from just a smart health move to a savvy financial one, especially in light of the ever increasing cost of cigarettes and the equally increasing cost of living. Considering that single packs today are in the neighborhood of $8, removing that expense from your budget if you're a two-pack-a-dayer could conceivably save you as much as $5840 in a single year.
But it's not just the cigarettes themselves that you'll be saving money on by quitting smoking -- there's also plenty of other paraphernalia that comes with the territory of being a committed smoker, which includes things like lighters, lighter fluid, breath fresheners so you don't scare off the opposite sex, increased costs of home cleaning, and all those impromptu trips to the corner store in the middle of the night that cost you gas and wear and tear on your car.
The Lesser Known Cost of Cigarettes
Not yet convinced that you'll be able to fund an extra vacation or two just by kicking that nasty habit? Consider these much lesser known albeit financially impactful cost of smoking cigarettes, then ask yourself how much better off you'd be if you quit.
Smokers pay a much, much higher rate for health insurance because they're higher risk. In many cases, being a smoker might make it impossible to obtain health coverage.
Life insurance coverage is another concern, and one that you might not even qualify for if you're a smoker. If you do, however, your premiums may be twice the amount of a non-smoker in your same age and weight category.
As a smoker, you're likely to make more frequent doctor visits. It's a fact that non-smokers on average get sick less frequently than smokers do.
A smoked-in home has far lower resale value than one that doesn't smell like a gargantuan ashtray, and cracking windows rarely keeps that all-pervading, unmistakable scent from being absorbed by the walls, wood and carpet
Home insurance providers charge more to smokers because of the increased risk of fire.
Auto insurance companies have also been known to charge more for coverage when they know their customer is a smoker, due to the fact that smoking while driving equals a distraction on a par with talking on the phone or texting. Even if you could prove that you don't smoke while driving, insurance companies view smokers as having an elevated propensity for risky behavior, and charge more based on that.
When you take into consideration all of these factors, you're no longer talking about a small chunk of change, but a substantial amount of money. In today's economy, wouldn't you rather eliminate one health risk while fortifying your future against financial uncertainty?
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