If the day can't start until you've had your morning jolt, or you won't make it through the afternoon without a caffeinated pick-me-up, you're in the majority. Approximately 57% of Americans drink coffee every day, between three and four cups on average. In fact, coffee is the second most valuable commodity in the world, after petroleum, and the largest food import in the United States. So what is that hot cup of joe costing you?
Homemade Coffee Costs
For those that make coffee at home, the first cost to consider is a coffee maker. The cost of a drip coffee maker ranges from $25-$200. If you prefer espresso, a machine can run anywhere from $200 to more than $1000. (Setting up a few good habits today can lead to a lifetime of financial well-being. Read Six Months To A Better Budget.)
From there, you'll need to buy milk (about $4 per gallon), cream (about $5 per pint), sugar ($2 per pound) and the actual coffee itself. If you are buying the coffee from the grocery store, you'll probably be paying about $4 per pound; if you get it from a cafe, you'll pay closer to $10 per pound on average. Each pound of coffee will yield roughly 3.2 gallons of liquid coffee.
Our example coffee was purchased at a cafe, is 12 oz. and will have one ounce of cream and 15 grams of sugar in it (the average North American puts two teaspoons of sugar in a six-ounce cup). That means each cup of coffee is costing about 42 cents (32 cents of cream + six cents of sugar + four cents of coffee) without considering the cost of water, electricity or the labor to make it. For the average drinker who consumes 3.5 cups per day, that means $1.47 daily. (To learn more about daily saving, read Top 5 Budget Questions Answered.)
Homemade Espresso Costs
For the espresso drinkers, the grocery costs are the same, but expect to pay between $10 and $20 per pound. Each pound yields about 22 shots. Our example coffee will be a 12 oz latte with 10 grams of sugar, two shots and 10 ounces of milk. That makes the price tag $1.71 (31 cents of milk + four cents of sugar + $1.36 of shots) with the daily cost being $5.99 (again, excluding some costs).
But what if you don't make coffee at home? Here's where it gets really pricey. A 12-oz cup of drip coffee will cost between $1 and $2. Assuming $1.50, that makes it a $5.25 per-day habit. Picking that latte up instead of making it? You're looking at about $4 per drink, or $14 per day. And that doesn't even include the gas to get to the coffee shop.
|Drink||$ Per Drink||$ Per Day (3.5 cups)||$ Per Month (30 days)||$ Per Year (12 months)|
|Drip Coffee at Home||0.42||1.47||44.10||529.20|
|Espresso at Home||1.71||5.99||179.70||2156.40|
|Drip Coffee Purchased||1.50||5.25||157.50||1890|
Coffee Adds Up
Whether you're making the coffee at home or buying it, the costs can really add up. When you add in espresso-based drinks, your java costs can skyrocket. At a cost of over $5000 per year, you might want to rethink that drink. (Learn more about saving money in The Beauty Of Budgeting.)