5 Questions to ask before buying anything
Impulse spending is something that even the strongest of us battle with at times. Next time the urge to spend money strikes, here are 5 questions to ask before buying anything.
1. Do you really want it?
We have all purchased something in the past that we later regretted, and usually that’s because we rush into a purchase without stopping and thinking whether we in fact really do want it. Next time you are about to buy something, put it back on the shelf, step away and give yourself 24 hours to think about it. You might wake up the next morning and realise you don’t want the item after all, and you will have saved yourself some cash.
You might on the other hand wake up and decide that you just need to own that item. Either head back to the shop (if the item is no longer there, take it as a sign that you didn’t need it after all), access if you could instead postpone the purchase to another time, in effect delaying the spending to another day, or check out the remaining 4 tips below.
2. Is it cheaper elsewhere?
Before I buy anything major I always, without fail research it. First of all, you want to do a Google search to find out other peoples opinions of the item you want to buy. You should be able to work out pretty quickly if it’s going to be a quality item, or it’s going to be faulty or break within a week of purchasing. Once you are happy with the reviews, do another search to determine the best price. You might be able to purchase the item at a reduced price elsewhere, or you may even find a great deal online. If you do go for the online option, check the shipping costs first to make sure they don’t wipe out any savings. Of course if the item is a large purchase, don’t be afraid to ask for a discount in store!
3. Is the item going to make your life better?
It’s so easy to be sucked into the idea that owning that new items is going to change your life, after all that is the whole point of advertising. But have you ever brought something home just to realise it doesn’t change your life one bit once the initial thrill of the purchase has worn off? If it is going to change your life for the better in some way then absolutely go ahead and make the purchase, but if it’s just going to be yet another item that sits in the cupboard collecting dust, save your money for another day.
4. Do you have the space for it?
This applies to everything, from big items to groceries. It’s too easy to get caught up in the moment when you spy a whole heap of meat going out at an 80% discount, but before you start loading up your trolley, ask yourself if you actually have the room to store it. If you only have a tiny freezer that is already packed to the brim, it’s just going to be a wasted purchase. It’s never a bargain if you can’t actually use it.
5. Could I borrow it from someone?
If you only need to use an item once or twice, what’s the point in buying it when you could just as easily borrow it. I do this with books and movies all of the time; instead of going out and buying a book brand new, I just reserve it at my local library. Not only does this save significant amount of money, but it also reduces the amount of clutter around my house.
If you are struggling to borrow the exact item you need, the next best thing would be to source the item second hand. Online sites such as Gumtree and Facebook buy and sell groups in your local area are fantastic for this; you can often even post a wanted request in local Facebook groups.