Let’s talk about buying an iPhone for $1,000. Tim Cook, Apple’s chief executive, once compared this eye-popping price tag to buying a cup of coffee a day over a year. No big deal, right?
But financial advisers see this differently. By some estimates, an investment of $1,000 in a retirement account today would balloon to about $17,000 in 30 years.
In other words, $700 to $1,000 — the price range of modern smartphones — is a big purchase. Fewer than half of American adults have enough savings set aside to cover three months of emergency expenses, according to the Pew Research Center. Yet one in five people surveyed by the financial website WalletHub thought a new phone was worth going into debt for.