Sometimes we all give in to temptation. Whether it is that new HD television, Apple product or very adorable handbag, the impulse buy will strike us and later on make us wonder where that extra cash went. Or, perhaps, you are trying to save money for a larger purchase in the near future or want to start a savings account–Whatever the purpose, learn how to avoid impulse buying.
1. Keep cash on you – and only cash.
One of the best ways to overcome impulse buying is to leave behind your credit cards at home and only keep a certain amount of cash in your wallet. You are literally limited in what you spend on, which keeps you on track with a budget.
2. Keep a budget record.
Speaking of budgets, keeping tabs of your daily spending might just put in perspective of how much money you’re wasting on impulse or useless purchases. Websites such as Mint can help you, for free, to keep track of your money and finances.
3. Ask yourself some questions.
While those new pair of shoes or video-game looks very enticing, ask yourself something: Do I really need it? Think in the long-term on this one. Do you really need that item right now, or can you wait later on when you don’t have to worry about paying bills first?
4. Make goals.
We all get the buying itch, or vie for a product that is a must-have. However, instead of buying as soon as possible and worrying about your finances afterward, make the said product a goal. Allot some money for that product (or products) and keep on track with it.
5. Set up a “spending” account.
Have an account that is specifically for spending on extra things and only withdrawal cash from it, to keep in line with the first tip provided and to avoid any overdraft fees and other such nastiness. Only keep so much in the account, too. Perhaps try adding $50.00 or so to the account every two weeks, to make sure that your entire paycheck is not being dumped into the account.
6. Keep a checklist of necessities.
Have you paid your bills? Or the rent? Have you bought your groceries, or other housing needs? Keep a checklist of everything that you have paid off, all the way down to gas money. Figure out how much you have for spending and use that sparingly–It’s always best to save some money for rainy days, you know. Again, there are websites that can help you.
7. Be strict with yourself.
Though this is probably not very well-played by impulse shoppers, everyone must practice responsibility and be strict with themselves financially. You don’t really need that item to be happy, regardless of what you might tell yourself. There will always be something else to want and vie for.
Learn to control those spending habits and impulse buying will become nothing more than a fling of the past. Material objects, contrary to popular belief, cannot make you happy forever. Also check out this article about starting an emergency fund!
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