Great advice Jason.... It would have saved me tons of dough when I was starting out as well all those years ago in 1989. It's also advice I can say I have evolved into using. I have two films that I use for nearly all my work Fuji Neopan-400 and Fuji ACROS. These films manage 95% of the work I do. Other films I use on rare occasions are TMY-II, and HP-5+. I stuck with the fuji because they deliver very high quality, and have the benefit of being over 1/3rd cheaper than Ilford or Kodak films!! I also have pretty much settled on two developers for those films also. Pyrocat HD for my Neopan-400 film, and Diafine for the ACROS. I am getting consistent results, and that's the main driver for me is consistency, and the same look and feel to the images they make. Paper is another area where I have gone all over the map and back. At this point, I am settled on Foma 123 Variant velvet matt as it's such a wonderful paper and works very well with my subject matter of late. It tones well, has good quality, and is also decently priced.
Now that ADOX has re-introduced the old Agfa MCC111 paper, I may try that in the future, but I am liking matt papers more and more so may not go down that path. Like Thomas has said, having a cohesive body of work that has the same paper base, and color goes a long way to helping you form a style, and also helps with potential gallery representation. Flailing around from one emulsion to the next will not get you very far, and can make bodies of work look disconnected.
Narrowing your focus down to a few materials and knowing them inside out is the best way to proceed and something I truly wish I had done earlier in my photographic journey. YMMV.