The Latte Factor Re-Visited

David Bach made headlines by basically going around and telling people how much richer they could be by demonstrating what he called the latte factor. It basically shows that if you cut out an expensive daily trip to Starbucks (latte and a muffin) you could take that $5 and put it into the market instead – and you would accelerate your retirment (or become an automatic millionaire).

Take away my lattes? …from my dead cold hands!

Here’s my solution (as alluded to recently):

Nespresso Essenza Espresso Maker and Aeroccino Milk Frother: $299 CAD

Less $100 credit for espresso pods: -$100 (special promotion)

2 Electrically Heated Travel mugs (Car adapter and USB adapter) – keeps the drinks at 150 degrees farenheit: on special for $14.99 from Circuit City.

Equals total cost of $213.99 + tax for “capital outlay”.

Cost of pods (including shipping) = $0.60 per drink

Cost of milk (approximation) = $0.10 per drink

Equals total cost of drink of $0.70.

Since a Starbucks latte is $3 (for a tall), I save $2.30 per drink 5 times per week (yeah, more like 10). That means I pay off the machine with the savings after about 19 weeks (8.5 weeks). At that point, I’m starting to realize real savings even over and above regular coffee from Tim’s!

Oh, and the quality of the lattes is actually just as good (if not better) than Starbucks.

Preet Banerjee
Preet Banerjee
...is an independent consultant to the financial services industry and a personal finance commentator. You can learn more about Preet at his personal website and you can click here to follow him on Twitter.
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Showing 7 comments
  • 45free

    Hey Preet…I think I can one up you on the machine. A couple days before christmas, Home Outfitters sent me an e-mail saying that the Nespresso Le Cube bundle (with the frother) was $100 off selling for $329. I also got the $100 coupon for pods. Since I put it on my Bay card, they gave me another 20% off (another $65.80). The day I went in, they were having a special promotion where for every $X dollars (I think it was $60) you spent you received a $20 instore shopping card – total $80 in cards. The catch, you had to spend $20 to use $20 and do it before Jan 15. So we hit the store boxing day, bought a really nice sheet set for our bed for about $90 (half off) and got a $300 comforter for free (with the gift cards) as it was 75% off. I will note that we needed new sheets and a comforter so were going to spend that money anyway.

    On the Nespresso…a few months back I read a review in a Canadian magazine (Canadian Business I think) that did a review of espresso machines and ranked the Nespresso Romeo (the only Nespresso they reviewed) the best, beating out a number of the old school manual very pricey models. I concur…fabulous brew.

    A very tasty latte cheers to you!!!

  • Cory

    Latte cutbacks was my new years resolution…so I did the same thing. I actually like my latte’s better than Starbucks!

  • Preet

    @ 45free – oh wow! Now that’s a score! Cheers right back at ya… :)

    @ Cory – I never said anything about cutbacks… ;)

  • moneygardener

    Good job! I envy your system and applaud your courage. I grind my own beans at home but still ocassionally fork over $4 for a skinny vanilla bean latte from SBUX.

  • Preet

    @ Moneygardener – thanks! A funny side-effect is that when out for a coffee with some friends the other night, both Fiona and I mentioned how poorly the local coffee joint’s lattes were compared to our “home brew”. :)

  • Kevin

    Well, I certainly can testify to the quality of the nespresso, I bought my girlfriend a D90 of ebay for about 60% of list.

    Keep in mind that by having the machine nearby you will end up having more lattes in a day, reducing your savings.

    Regardless of the version, I would recommend buying the automatic model of it where it shuts off after a predetermined amount – which you can set. The manual version requires you to standby and have a sense of timing.

    As well, my D90 was kitted out with a frothing attachment. It delivered a more traditional steamed-froth than the Aeroccino, but it was a pain to clean and the parts were easy to misplace. The performance of the steamer attachment deteriorates over time.

    We ended up with a first-generation of the Aeroccino which worked fine until it didn’t (about a year after.) Nespresso gave us no hassles in returning it and replaced it with a second-generation version. (Larger capacity, can immerse in water, and added a cold-froth option for iced cappuccinos.)

    The coffee only comes from Nespresso which has internet and telephone orders (and a few retail boutiques) and there is a minimum order – I think ten boxes.

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