Strategy to Curb Impulse Buying

When people find themselves mired in credit card debt, one of the culprits is often the result of buying things on impulse even when you know that you cannot afford the item. It is far too easy to simply pull out that piece of plastic and buy that new big screen TV or designer purse that is on sale.

If you find yourself falling into the trap of using your credit cards to make impulse purchases, the following strategy may work wonders for your finances. Instead of using the credit card to buy the item that day, write down the name of the item, the store where you found it and the price.

Now that you have that information, review your budget and determine how much you can save each month towards the purchase of the desired item. Once you have set aside enough money to cover the cost of the item, return to the store and make your purchase.

You may be wondering how this strategy will be of any benefit to your finances. Well, one key benefit is that you will avoid any possible finance charges on your credit card. Often times people make purchases on their credit card when they cannot afford the item, which results in paying much more in the long run due to the finance charges.

Another benefit, and this is really the big one, is that by the time you have adjusted your budget and worked hard enough to save the cash for the desired item you will realize you do not really want it all that bad. Amazing, isn’t it? When you first saw the item in the store, it took all of your effort to walk away and not purchase it immediately.

Now that you have the cash, how can you possibly not be as excited about buying it? Usually it is the influence of that impulse decision that makes you feel you absolutely must have the item right that second. By delaying the gratification, you come to the realization that the particular item really does not mean all that much to you and the money can be better spent on other things.

Will you always refrain from buying the item? Nope. Once you have saved the money to purchase the item, if you return to the store and still feel as compelled to make the purchase then by all means make the purchase. By taking the time to save the money, you can actually afford to make the purchase and not worry about paying for it months later as you would with a credit card.

Do you find yourself making impulse purchases? Try this strategy out and come back to let us know how it worked out for you.

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2 Responses

  1. Gaida says:

    Impulse buying or ‘instant gratification’ is one of the reasons our younger generation are in so much debt at such an early age. Hopefully they will come to their senses before they are drowing in debt.

    • mnc says:

      Absolutely! Stores make a good deal of money on impulse buying and credit cards make it very easy for people to fall into the trap of making purchases that they cannot afford.

      Unfortunately it is not only the younger generations that deal with this problem.

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