Broker Check

Curbing Your Spending Appetite

| April 23, 2018

Have you ever taken an inventory of your things and suddenly realized that you might have a "spending problem"???  It's easy to let items slip into our homes, lives, etc. that we don't really even like, much less need.  But we tell ourselves, "It's such a good deal that I just cannot pass it up."  Or maybe it's, "I might need this later on and it's on sale, so I better snatch it up while I can."  In all reality, we don't need but a few items to survive.  Food, water, shelter and maybe a few more.  Everything else is just extra... fluff... icing on the cake.  But that icing on the cake can come at a pretty penny.  If you feel like you might need to curb your spending appetite, follow these tips:

1). Wait at least 24 hours before making a purchase.

If you are making a sizable purchase, say over $50 or $100, try to sleep on it.  So many times I thought I wanted an item.  I put it in my online cart and left it there.  A week or so later I'd go back to that website to find it was still in my cart.  And I didn't even remember that it was there.  Think about how much money I've saved myself by just sleeping on it.  I obviously didn't need or want the item, so that impulse buy would have more than likely been a huge waste of my hard earned money. 

2). If the purchase is over $100, consult with someone else beforehand.  

Unless I'm at the grocery store, I typically don't spend more than $100 before consulting with my husband.  Our finances are combined, so whatever I spend affects him as well.  Sometimes we think we "need" something; however, after talking it over with somebody else, we quickly realize it was simply a "want".  Not married?  That's fine.  Find a parent, friend, significant other or financial adviser that can steer you in the right direction and give you some perspective before you spend (or possible even waste) a large sum of money.         

3). Unsubscribe from marketing emails.  

I find myself suddenly needing a new rug for our bathroom, 2 pairs of new tennis shoes and a pretty little sundress just moments after I check my email.  Why is that?  I'll tell you why!  It's because I checked my email that had TONS of marketing emails.  "DON'T MISS OUT!"  "These deals won't last long!"  "2 Day Sale!"  I suddenly go from not really wanting anything to NEEDING everything.  Funny how that happens isn't it?  There's a very quick solution to the problem though.  Just unsubscribe from those emails or request to only receive them once a month.  

4). Take a break from social media. 

When FB and Instagram came out, there weren't a lot of ads on our feed.  Now it seems that every other "post" is actually a sponsored ad.  Those paid-for posts are really good at triggering impulse buys.  They show you something you like, you click on the link and before you know it, you've not only purchased that cute shirt but also 2 new dresses and a pair of shoes.  Trust me when I say that taking a break, even if it's just for a week or two, from social media will definitely curb your spending appetite!   

With the inventions of the debit card and online shopping, spending money has never been easier.  These days, falling into the trap of thinking that we need more is so very easy.  If you feel like your pocketbook could use a vacation, try these tips out for a month or so and see if it helps.  Do you have any good tips or suggestions for curbing your spending appetite?