Impulse Buying

How many times have you bought something you had not intended to buy? This must have happened fairly recent as well. If you are guilty of this, know that you are not alone. A joint study by faculty of University of Wisconsin and University of California shows that nearly 60% of purchases at regular grocery stores are unplanned or impulse purchases.

There is also a pattern that suggests supersizing impulse purchases happen when you are shopping at malls and big stores where there are great deals all over the place. This is all good until you go home and realize you just lost your savings money on impulse buying.

So before you end up broke or worse, in need of a bank loan to cover debt from overbuying, here are some ways to curb your tendency to purchase things out of impulse.

The golden rule: have a shopping list and stick to it. This also works with adding a set waiting period before purchasing anything outside of the shopping list. Following the waiting period that you have set for yourself will make you consider longer whether you actually need to purchase an item or you are just acting on impulse.

You can speak for yourself, but in most cases, items that are purchased out of impulse usually don’t live up to the hype of actually buying them. To avoid this, discipline yourself by not giving in to impulse buying.

Sometimes, we already have what we need at home. The only difference is they are left unused for a long time that they are forgotten. One way to avoid buying things you do not need is to clean old items that are still potentially useful. Not only does this help you save money. It also minimizes waste products from your home.

Studies have shown that people who pay with cash tend to be more careful with making purchases compared to people who pay using credit cards. Psychologically, credit cards provide the illusion of unlimited money. Compared to having actual cash wherein you can see it actually runs out.

Aside from this, using cash to pay for expenses also helps minimize the chances of you acquiring debt. Do not forget that credit card is money you don’t have yet. In other words, you are incurring debt each time you use it.

Another bane for people who are trying to save in the 21st century is online shopping. Fast and convenient, you can easily browse through products within the comforts of your home. When you are feeling relaxed and money seems to be the least of your worries, online shopping can lure you into thinking you have worked hard enough and purchasing as many items as you can is worth the hard work.

According to a study from User Interface Engineering, impulse purchases account for more than 40% of the money spent on e-commerce web sites. If you really have to purchase online, be more specific with your search. For example, if you need to buy a washing machine, look for it using the words washing machine instead of browsing through the “home appliances” results.

There is no better way to explain this since it is what it is. We are made to believe we need more to serve the capitalist agenda. The good news is, you can put your money into a good investment or a savings account instead. Prioritize saving over shopping and it will benefit you in the long run.