We all have to make large purchases at some point in our lives, and doing so can be difficult. Sometimes it can be stressful to spend so much money, and often we are unsure about whether we are making the right decision. Here are some smart strategies you can use to ensure you make the right decision with your next big purchase.
Make a Checklist of What You Need
It’s always a good idea to make a checklist of exactly what you want when you need to make a large purchase. For example, if you need to buy a new car, rather than head to a salesroom and be persuaded, make sure you think of what you actually need in advance, as well as the things that are desirable but not necessary. That will give you a simple strategy to base your purchase on.
Always Compare the Options
Don’t buy anything without comparing different options first. When buying something expensive, you should take the time to compare different options.
For example, if you are buying a car, this is a major purchase. You may already have your sights set on something like the Chrysler 200, but you should think about your choice very carefully and compare the other options before making a decision.
You may find that there is another item that is more suitable, or that you can get a better item somewhere else for less.
Do You Need It or Want It?
We buy a lot of things because we want them but not because we need them. That is because we often buy based on emotion. If we could only buy based on what we needed, we would all spend a lot less money.
This is less important with minor purchases such as a book that you buy and then don’t read. But when it comes to major purchases, you need to spend time working out whether you really need the item at all, or whether you just want it.
Work Out Whether You Can Really Afford It
The next thing to consider is whether you can afford it. If you really need to buy something, you may have to save up for it. Are you buying it on credit? If so, it may be best to wait until you can afford it.
If it is just something you want rather than need, this could be time to forget about it, otherwise you could find yourself getting into financial difficulties.
Hold Off for a While
Expensive purchases are often made on emotion. You see something and really want it, so you splash out. Try to train yourself to hold off on purchasing decisions, and don’t buy an item until you have thought about it for a few weeks.
Read Up on Customer Reviews
It’s always a good idea to find out what others have said about your chosen item. Online reviews are easy to find and very useful because they can often give you an accurate picture of an item so you can make an informed decision. So look for some reviews and use these to help you make a decision.
Be Sensible with Your Large Purchases
It’s easy to buy things we don’t really need, and to spend a lot of money on large purchases that we base on emotion. Use these strategies next time you want to make a large purchase, and you should be able to take emotion out of the decision-making process.
Sean Robinson had credit cards maxed out and a huge mortgage hanging over his head at one point; then he got made redundant which was the wake-up call he needed. Now a frugal, budgeting, saver, he encourages others to think before they spend.