People Share What They Think Is Expensive, but Is Only Owned by Poor People

©Unsplash,Sharon McCutcheon

Why do people who don’t have a lot of money buy expensive things?

For status? To show off? To make themselves feel better?

Who really knows…I think every person is different and probably does it for different reasons.

People on AskReddit were asked the following question:

“What is something that is expensive, but only owned by poor people?”

Here are some interesting responses…

1. Cars are pricey.

“I remember I had an old Chevy truck that cost so much to maintain and keep fuel in that I couldn’t afford to save for another car.

I literally kept me broke until I eventually joined the military and could afford a different vehicle.”

2. Doesn’t always work that way.

“Rent-to-own. Spoiler: you never quite own it.

Places like Aaron’s just make me mad. It seems like you’re getting a good deal, but you aren’t. You’re paying like twice as much for an item.”

3. It’s better to buy in bulk.

“Single items of things that should be bought in bulk. Like single rolls of toilet paper.

Barely scraping by paycheck to paycheck means buying bulk is sometimes impossible.”

4. It adds up.


The poor don’t own the machines. But they pay a lot more overall to do laundry at laundromats.”

5. Food deserts.

“In food deserts, things like meat and fresh vegetables are sometimes actually more expensive than the boxed stuff.

That’s when you look at total yield of food stuff that will fill your stomach over time.”

6. This is true.

“A lot of kids.

The poor are often very fruitful.

I have 6 siblings. I am the only one to have gone to college and graduate. I can’t remember a time when any of my family hasn’t lived off food stamps :/ “

7. Fancy cars.

“The amount of privates in the army who have just enough money to pay for their 30% interest 2018 ford mustangs, but not enough money to buy literally anything else is pretty ridiculous.”

8. In the long run…

“Just paying rent.

Where I live mortgage is waaaaaaaaaay cheaper then getting a house but they dont give me a mortgage because I dont earn enough… so I have to keep renting expensive places making it take even longer for me to save up.

And in my situation getting a better paying job is difficult… I swear this world is made for the rich and middle class. Poor people are straight up fucked in every way possible…”

9. Is it worth it?

“Lottery tickets.

Sure not individually but over time it must get expensive.”

10. You do see this a lot…


They’re not cheap, but somehow they’re inked from head to toe.”

11. A mystery to me.

“Designer handbags covered in the brand logo.

Louie Vuitton Louie Vuitton Louie Vuitton Louie Vuitton Louie Vuitton Louie Vuitton.”

12. Bling bling.

“Bling, for the most part.

Yeah celebrities sometimes like to show off a bunch of bling but the rich people I’ve known don’t aggressively flaunt their wealth.”

13. Showing off.

“Designer belts.

Dudes will pay $300 to hold up their pants but can’t afford linens for their mattress that’s on the floor without a box spring.”

14. A bad habit.

“As somebody who works at a gas station, Newport cigarettes.
Seriously. It’s almost only ever poor people who buy them, and they’re one of the most expensive cigarette brands we carry.
Edit: For those asking how I know they’re poor, it’s something you eventually pick up on after working at a gas station for a while. It’s hard to describe, but it’s subtle. It’s usually their mannerisms.”

15. The shoe game.


Not exclusively owned by poor people but everyone in my “2 family one bedroom apartment neighborhood” is obsessed with who owns the most expensive Jordans as if it’s a status symbol.”

16. Two things…

“Starbucks and nice shoes.

In the Philippines some folks might earn equivalent of $5 a day, but they’ll get their Starbucks and nice shoes to give the impression they aren’t as poor as they are. They will take great care of that Starbucks cup, so they can re-use it.”

17. Branded items.

“Really expensive branded items that look horrible and have high price tags just because of the label like yeezes and other crap like that like someone with money and common sense wouldn’t spend money on or wear.”

18. In my neck of the woods.

“I’ve noticed a lot of the poor around the US do a lot of expensive things. At least in my neck of the woods…they smoke, drive gas guzzlers, have many animals, drink excessive alcohol, many do drugs, go to “pain management clinics,” etc.

Obviously a lot of these people I know have lots of debt, rent a home or apartment, make ridiculous payments on the unecofriendly vehicles they drive, but have the latest cell phones, tennis shoes (or whatever you call them where you’re from,) designer bags (ok mostly knockoff….but you’re trying to look the part!), fake fingernails, dyed hair…..I could go on…but I won’t.”

19. That sucks.

“Paying for public transportation to get to work.

I live in Portland. It costs me $100 a month just to get to work.”

20. A great point.

“Poverty itself.

It can be mind-bogglingly expensive to be poor. Everything gets put off until it becomes catastrophic.”

What did you think of those answers?

Are they on-point, or do you think the folks offering up these opinions are wrong?

Tell us what you think in the comments, we’d love to hear from you!