I just buy stuff that I need for crafting. Ore, ingots, jewels, ingredients, soul gems.... Then when they have a lot of money I sell everything. I normally clean them out and get some valuable things so I can make more things to sell other places.
And Speech isn't completely useless. My second character's whole purpose is to make money by crafting. I spend all my time smiting, mining, smelting, brewing, enchanting and selling. The only combat skill I have is Archery. And that only levels up because I hunt for animals to get leather. It's very entertaining to play a passivist. I do plan on 'making the pilgrimage' when I have a house and wife and awesome armor/weapons.