Curbing Impulse Purchases
We know that spending hard-earned dollars is just a little too easy. The fact is, consumer credit card debt is on the rise and approaching $1 trillion in 20211--after a dip in 2020. According to a survey2 by BMO Harris Bank, impulse spending by Americans that “worsen their financial situation” is on the rise.
Having a plan in mind to ensure healthy spending is crucial for long-term success--here are a few ideas.
Goal-based budgeting3 can help you stay on track. This strategy can be a great place to start if you find yourself overspending and want to employ an aggressive plan to stop the overspending dead in its tracks--remember to be specific.
Zero-based budgeting4 can help on a monthly basis and light a fire under you to ensure your dollars end up in the right place.
Curbing emotional spending5 and understanding its triggers, like stress or avoidance, can help with perseverance while achieving goals. Filling an emotional void with frivolous spending on unnecessary goods and services may feel good in the immediate term; but have a “hangover effect” later -- especially when the credit card bills come due.
Give yourself 24 hours6 to think about the purchase - by abandoning your shopping cart or turning off your phone. This additional time can give your rational side some time to process the pros and cons of the potential purchase.
For some, retail therapy7 exists and can create feelings of relief, even if it is just for a minute. Life changes such as a new job, stresses of marriage or divorce, or just relaxation and escape from one’s present reality can all trigger unnecessary spending sprees.
Let’s take this opportunity to mention the historical returns8 of the U.S. stock market. What is more important to you--a shiny new thing now or stability and security later? We know it can be challenging to fend off what we want at the moment--and here is a good writeup9 about just that.
Please feel free to reach out to us if we can be of assistance. 269-324-0080
1 Credit Card Debt Rising Again Amid the Pandemic (investopedia.com)
2 BMO Survey Shows Consumers' Financial Confidence is up, Along with Increased Impulse and Excessive Spending - Sep 8, 2021 (bmoharris.com)
3 What is Goal-Based Budgeting? : Financial Stress
4 Zero-Based Budgeting (ZBB) Definition (investopedia.com)
5 To Curb Emotional Spending, You Need to Understand It - Brave Saver
6 6 Ways to Stop Impulse Buying | Real Simple
7 Why "Retail Therapy" Works | Psychology Today
8 The Historical Performance Of Stocks And Bonds – Forbes Advisor
9 Two-Sided Coin: Save for the Future or Live for Today? - The Simple Dollar