Money-Saving Tips for Shopaholics
Shopping addiction can get in the way of your money-saving efforts. Whether you’re an emotional spender who buys stuff when distressed or a bargain seeker who just can’t pass on a good buy, compulsive shopping and overspending can wreak havoc on your finances.
Aside from being unable to save money, you may also find yourself with a negative bank account balance and debts from credit cards and loans, creating a bad credit history that negatively affects your borrowing power and keeps you from getting a car loan and other types of financing in the future.
Although it can be challenging, it’s not impossible to save when you’re a shopaholic. All you need are some discipline and a few tricks to make it work.
1. Know what triggers your compulsion to shop.
The first step to managing your shopping addiction is identifying its triggers. Three of the most common triggers of splurging and compulsive shopping are emotions, discounts and exposure to temptation.
Do you have the strong urge to shop when you’re upset or are you easily attracted by bargains? If you can identify your triggers, you can easily avoid them. For instance, you can choose not to drop by the mall during a mall-wide sale or divert your attention to sports or other recreational activities when you’re stressed or depressed. This way, you won’t be tempted to buy things impulsively.
2. Use debit and credit cards responsibly.
Do not depend entirely on your plastic when buying products and paying for services. Although using a credit card to pay bills can help build your credit score, maxing it out and having high balances can lead to a poor bank statement, which hurts your future loan approval chances.
Using actual money to pay bills will keep your splurges under control. Paying with cash and seeing it depletes as you make your payment helps you become more conscious of your spending.
3. Shop with frugal companions.
Frugal friends or loved ones can keep you in check and help you decide whether something is a smart buy or not. Although their penny-pinching nature will likely keep you from buying anything exciting, you don’t have to heed their advice altogether. Simply hear out their opinions, weigh things up carefully, then come to reasonable conclusions on your own. Most of the time, they will successfully keep you from making unnecessary purchases.
4. Make a shopping list.
Make a handwritten list of the items that you need to buy before going to the department or grocery store. Alternatively, you can use mobile apps to create your shopping list. Listing keeps you focused, saves time and energy and steers you away from splurging.
Aside from preventing you from impulse buying and helping you save, there are other great reasons to make a shopping list. These include helping you lose weight, improving your memory and making you feel good.
5. Spend more time keeping your wardrobe upkeep.
Cut the time you spend strolling and buying stuff at the mall and allocate that time to primping your clumsy wardrobe. Do a general wardrobe audit, take the clothes that need minor repairs to the repair shop and send the dirty ones to the laundry shop. Spending more time to keep your wardrobe upkeep inspires you to reinvent outfits without having to buy anything new. Remember that being a fashionista is not the equivalent of a shopaholic.
You don’t have to restrict yourself from buying stuff. After all, shopping is an inevitable part of daily life. However, unneccessary spending can turn into an expensive compulsion. If you tame your urge to splurge, you'll have more money for saving and investing.
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