While shopping can be fun, the consequences might not be so great if you didn’t budget for it. Impulse buying can lead to waste, overspending, and accumulating debt. Below are some ways to help you curb these urges.
A recent slickdeals.net survey found that Americans spend about $450 a month on impulse buys. That adds up to $5,400 per year and about $324,000 over the span of a lifetime. 85% of those surveyed said their impulse buy involved taking advantage of a deal or discount. How guilty are you?
It’s important to be aware of the specific tactics retailers use to entice you. Things like putting out free samples, using the word sale, buy-one-get-one promotions, or even misting vegetables to make them more tempting. Some other advice: keep your priorities straight by sticking to your list. Take a day to think it over, and avoid shopping with other people who encourage you to spend more.
If you’re still having trouble, use apps that will help you track your spending. Mint is a free app that helps you create a budget, manage your bills, and it’ll even send you an alert when you are overspending. Clarity Money is another free app that helps you take control of your finances by cancelling wasteful accounts, getting you better deals, and managing your financial life.
Impulse buying can also prevent you from reaching long-term goals, like buying a house, taking a vacation, or starting a family. Experts suggest keeping your big picture goals front and center. Make it visual and put that reminder someplace where you have to see it regularly.
Contributors to this news report include: Katie Campbell, Producer; Roque Correa, Videographer and Editor.