The following is a guest post from Patricia Sanders. Patricia is a regular contributor at wiki.debtcc.com, where she writes about personal finance. You can follow her on Twitter @TweetPatricia_S for her latest articles.
Want or a need – The ultimate deciding factor when it comes to spending
Money – is it a problem solver or a problem creator? Money helps to pay off debts. Likewise, money pushes you towards debts when you don’t use it efficiently. In short, if you’re wise and can manage money like a pro, debts will not invade your life. If you can’t, then be prepared to lead a life where bad debts will be your constant companion.
Honestly speaking, you can lead a stress-free life with less money provided you have healthy spending habits. But how can you have good healthy spending habits?
The answer is short and simple. All you need to do is ask yourself – “Is it a want or a need?” whenever you’re purchasing anything.
Want or a need – The deciding factor
Human beings are greedy. They are never happy. They are never satisfied. They want more and more. Unless you have discovered a treasure box, you have to control your ‘wants’.
Okay. Don’t raise your eyebrows. I know it’s difficult to control your ‘wants’. But think rationally. Unless you’re a millionaire, it’s impossible to fulfill all your ‘wants’. Even millionaires can’t fulfill all their ‘wants’. You have to draw a line between your needs and wants. Rather, you need to focus on your needs than your ‘wants’.
If you can’t, be ready to live in the world of credit card debts, payday loan debts, personal loans, auto loan debts, and so on. And trust me when I tell you that even debt relief programs can’t help you escape from this world if you don’t change your attitude.
Remember these golden lines by heart.
When you spend on your needs and stick with your budget, your financial life blooms.
When you spend on your wants and break your budget, your financial life sucks.
Whenever you’re planning to buy something, ask yourself – “Is it a want or a need?”. If it’s a want, then don’t buy it. But if it’s a need, then think how much you can spend on it. Is it within your budget? If so, then go ahead and make the purchase.
The problem arises when a need becomes a ‘want’. Let me explain you with an example.
You’re planning to buy a car since you need it. But there are different car models available in the market. There are luxury cars, sports cars, small cars, family cars, and so on. If you buy a sports car, then it’s not your need. It’s a want. However, if you buy a small car, then you’re satisfying your need.
The best way to strike a balance between your needs and ‘wants’ is to buy the latest car in the market that fits your budget.
Should you give up all your wants?
It’s not a crime to want nice things in life. But you need to look at the price of the product and your budget before making a purchase. Ask yourself, “is this product worth the price?” Check the quality of the product. Is it good? You work hard to earn your paycheck every month. It would be a wrong financial move to waste money on frivolous things.
Last month, I encountered a strange problem. I found a designer dress in a store. I loved the dress instantly and wanted to buy it. But the price was too high. The quality of the dress was very high. I loved the cut – it was beautiful. I knew instantly that it would highlight my curves gracefully. The material was also soft. I loved the feel of the dress but it’s price was much more than my budget. I couldn’t afford it.
This month, I’m saving money ruthlessly. I have stopped eating out. I’m traveling in a bus. I’m doing everything to reduce my expenses. I’m determined to buy that dress. I will save every bit of money to accomplish my goal. If you can work hard like me, then you too can buy nice stuff. You just need to chalk out a plan. That’s it.
Research, think and question yourself before purchasing any product or item. Don’t make hasty decisions. Learn to control your spending habits to lead an amazing life with your loved ones. Don’t be too much stressed. Just practice some frugal habits.
Shop with a list so that it’s easier for you to avoid unnecessary expenses. I bet there have been many days when you went to the store to buy milk for your family but came out with cheese, chicken, fruits and several other items, which were not on your shopping list. You bought them since they were on sale. When you enter a store with a shopping list, it becomes slightly easier to avoid impulsive purchases.
If you can’t differentiate between your needs and wants, then get help from your family. Talk about your weakness with your family. They can help you.
This post is contributed by Patricia Sanders, a regular contributor at wiki.debtcc.com.Follow me on the social medias: