With 2015 now gone and the clean slate known as 2016 is here, many of us plan to save more money this year than we did last year. In order to be able to put money away money towards retirement, we have to be able to save some of the money we are bringing in. We’ve all done it. Spent more than we wanted to all in an effort to get a great deal. There are a lot of wrong ways to go about “getting a great deal” and here are a few of the popular ones.
1. Buying in bulk.
While buying in bulk can be a cost-effective budgeting strategy, often consumers end up buying more than they need, and paying more for it in the process. If there is a product or service that you use on a routine basis that you can get at a good price, great. But just be careful not to spend more for extra items that don’t fit into your budget or may end up going to waste.
2. Only purchasing discounted items.
While it may look like you’re getting a great deal on a discounted product or service, sometimes you really do get what you pay for. Trying to save money upfront can end up costing you more in the long run. You may end up having to repair a problem that arises, or replace an item that just didn’t last as long as it should have.
3. Spending more for higher quality.
Spending more for quality is something that can cause you to rationalize an expensive purchase. But spending more doesn’t always mean getting more. One of the main reasons “name brand” things are more expensive is because they pay a lot of money to advertise to you. Before deciding to spend more money on a product or service, do your research. Find out if you are in fact paying for higher quality, or if you’re just paying more.
4. Always using that coupon that comes in the mail.
Coupons are a great way to save money, but not if they prompt you to make an unnecessary purchase. Often, retailers send out coupons so consumers go shopping when they otherwise wouldn’t have. You may find yourself spending twice as much as you planned, all because you couldn’t pass up a deal. And buying something you don’t need at a discount is still a waste of money.
5. Buying at a discount now thinking you’ll use it later.
Retailers may promote gift cards that offer to double your money if you pay upfront. This can be a great strategy to save money, but only if you planned on shopping at that retailer in the first place. Otherwise, you may not end up using the card. The next time you purchase a gift card at a great price, make sure it’s at a retailer where you are planning to shop.
I think all of us have made one of these mistakes at one time or another. Make sure you are looking for promotions on things you actually need and planned on buying. Don’t get sucked into making additional, unnecessary purchases in the process. Also, do your research before making any purchases to ensure you pay for the right thing at the right price.
By Jimmy Hancock