Do you like to shop? If shopping is something that you enjoy doing, you need to make sure you have a little bit of restraint – as well as the financial ability to avoid spending outside of your means. Thankfully, all it takes is a little bit of practice and you can become a savvy shopper in no time at all.
- Know the Difference Between Wanting and Needing
In order to be a savvy shopper, you must have a profound understanding of the difference between the words want and need. While many people may use them interchangeably, they are not anywhere close to the same thing. Sometimes you want things that you need and need things that you want, but this isn’t always the case.
When you go shopping, always ask yourself whether you really need something before placing it in your shopping cart. What you’ll often discover is that you simply want it. You can save yourself a lot of money and avoid poor decisions by only buying things you need.
- Make a List and Check it Twice
When it comes to something like grocery shopping, where you may be purchasing dozens of items at once, it’s a bad idea to go in without a list. A list keeps you honest and tells you what can and cannot be purchased. If the list ceases to exist, suddenly you’re left grabbing whatever looks appetizing.
On a related note, you should never go grocery shopping hungry. When you’re hungry, you throw things in your cart that you otherwise wouldn’t get – simply because you senses are heightened.
- Look for Clearance Items
Sometimes you have to pay full price for an item, but this isn’t always the case. If you’re buying something that you want (not need), take a patient approach and be willing to wait a few days or weeks before making the purchase. Many websites offer clearance deals on select items and you can save a considerable amount by waiting for deals.
- Only Pay in Cash
While credit cards serve a purpose and can provide you with rewards points and discounts, it’s a risky habit to purchase items on credit. It can create long-term issues and eventually lead to massive debt.
That’s why we suggest always paying in cash (or with a debit card) whenever possible. This way, you’re only spending what you already have. When paying in cash, it’s impossible to rack up debt. If you don’t have the money, you can’t buy the item. That’s how it should be.
- Never Shop Out of Boredom
“I’ve found that when I don’t have a lot going on in my life, I tend to shop more. I find myself taking a trip to the mall or perusing e-commerce websites,” says Debbie Roes, a self-proclaimed recovery shopaholic. “Shopping provides a sense of excitement which may be missing in a person’s life.”
Sound familiar? A lot of people shop out of boredom and don’t even realize what they’re doing. The issue is that boredom shopping typically leads to buyer’s remorse and wasted money. Find a solution – such as a hobby – to avoid this drain on your bank account.
Keep More of Your Hard Earned Money
If you want to be a savvy shopper, you have to start picturing it as a challenge. Either you win or the company you’re shopping from wins. By heeding the advice in this article and practicing a little bit of restraint, you can keep more of your hard earned money and still get the items you need.
That’s what you call getting the best of both worlds!
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