Impulse spending will wreck your budget faster than the Ellen selfie went viral at the Academy awards.
Impulse spending (or impulse buying) is an unplanned decision to buy a product or service. Stores are notorious for placing items “just so” to increase your impulse spending.
Fredica knows that she is an impulse buyer. She knows she buys things she doesn’t need, just because it might be on sale or she has a coupon. She’s not alone.
The lure of impulse spending.
Did you know 90 percent of the time you go shopping you end up buying something that wasn’t on your list?
Yes, 90 PERCENT!
A survey showed that impulse buyers waste an average of $200 per month on items they don’t need.
But who can resist the lure of temptations like this: “Buy a bag of chips and get a jar of salsa for free.” Neither items are on your list, but hey, free salsa!
Or this: “Buy three 12 packs of soda for $12 OR one for $5.” NO ONE really “needs” soda. But here in ‘Merica, we do!
Retailers know that 88% of impulse buys are made because something is on sale. And 14% of impulse buys are food items, but something you probably didn’t need in the first place.
Impulse spending creates cluttered houses, busts our budget and packs on the pounds.
Plan to shop.
Retailers, especially grocery stores, rely on consumers to make impulse purchases. That’s why it’s super important to PLAN to shop. In fact, impulse buying increases 23% if the trip itself was unplanned!
Make a list and (this is the important part) STICK TO IT.
Planning to shop and sticking to only the items on your list can reduce impulse spending.
We know it’s hard to control spending. Here’s our favorite ways to take three tips to help:
Give it 48 hours. If you still need that item, you can go back and get it, but only if it is in your budget. Chances are, you won’t.
Calculate how many hours you have to work to buy that item (really only works for larger purchases).
Go on a spending freeze. A spending freeze is where you don’t spend any money for a designated amount of time. Before you freak out and think you can’t do it, even a few days can help. A two-week spending freeze is common, but some people even try a month. Just Google “spending freeze” and you will find plenty of resources to get started.
Controlling your spending is hard, especially when it looks like everyone else is throwing money around like it’s the greatest thing since sliced bread. The ability to purchase things online doesn’t help either. Click, click, done! Congratulations! You just spent $78 on shoes you don’t need.
Take control now. The only person who can change your behavior is you.