penny wise pound foolish
Also found in: Acronyms.
penny-wise and pound-foolish
So concerned with saving money in any way possible that one fails to allocate money to things that will ultimately force one to spend more (due to lack of quality, proper maintenance, etc.). I know you don't want to pay for this expensive course of treatment, but when ignoring your health lands you in the hospital and you have to miss work, you'll see that you were penny-wise and pound-foolish.
See also: and
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
penny ˌwise (and) pound ˈfoolishused to say that somebody is very careful about small matters but much less sensible about larger, more important things: When it comes to a used car, don’t be penny wise and pound foolish. Spend the money to have the vehicle checked out.
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017