Monday, July 23, 2007

Ways That we Tend to Overspend

What triggers overspending? How do we avoid all these ways of spending more then we intended? I think the number one way is to plan ahead for situations you think you might overspend.

First, the number one way that people overspend is when they are bored. When you’re bored one option that comes to mind is shopping. “I’m bored; why not go buy something to take away my boredom.”
  • Plan ahead> Before you get bored think of alternatives to shopping. Keep a running list of things to do instead that are cheap or free that you enjoy doing.

Second, people overspend when they are around friends. No matter what the case may be when we’re around friends having a good time money is no longer an object. You just basically get swept up in the commotions and fun of things that you don’t even think twice about how much something costs. You just swipe your card or hand over a couple bills.

  • Plan ahead> When you know you're going to be around friends bring cash only. Leave your c.c. at home to avoid those temptations of "unconscious swiping." Also, before hanging out with friends plan ahead what you'll be doing. Think about cheaper alternatives then an expensive night out.

Third, we overspend on gift giving. When shopping for a gift it's hard to stay on a budgeted amount because what if you can’t think of anything in that price range? Most often then not we overspend because we found the perfect gift that just happens to be a little more. Plus, our friends and family are worth it. Birthdays and holidays only come once a year so why not splurge a little.

  • Plan ahead> Shop for gifts throughout the year. If not physically, do it on paper. Keep a list of friends and families birthdays and other occasions that you have coming up that you'll be buying a gift for. Write down ideas as you come across them. This way you are not stuck at the last minute trying to think of what to get and end up overspending.

Fourth, I’m starving and there is no food in sight. Take me to the nearest restaurant fast! Overspend.

  • Plan ahead> A real life saver can be to have snacks in your car. When you're running errands and doing other things that require a lot of hurried thinking you will get hungry fast. Always bring a snack even if you think you won't get hungry. You can also plan your route ahead of time to make it home around the times you get hungry.

Firth, we overspend when we don’t use cash. This has been said many of times that it’s harder to hand over your hard earn cash then to swipe a piece of plastic.

  • Plan ahead> Pretty self explanatory. Try to carry cash on you when you're buying something. You can also keep a list of things you need when going out so you stick to it.

Sixth, not planning ahead causes overspending as well. Just a small example: when you have to run out to the liquor store to buy milk after it runs out you'll probably pay a higher price because you didn't buy it at the grocery store.

  • Plan ahead> I think this one sums up a lot of our overspending. Most of the time try to plan ahead. I know that won't always be the case so be prepared for some days when you just didn't think ahead about the things you need.

There are probably thousands of more ways that we overspend. What ways do you overspend or see others overspending? How would you overcome that temptation?


Moneymonk said...

I have to admit, I have been a victim of all of the reasons listed above.

I can now say, I learned my lesson. Sometimes, you have to make mistakes in order to learn about money.

Mare said...

Wow those are some great tips! I've done all of them and now finally I realized I can't live like that.

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scrapydapy said...

It is like a mirror. I see a lot of tips to implement.

Bizmind said...

That is why, when I am bored, I will not go outside. I will just sit in front of my computer and play games or read new informations and foruming. :)

Anonymous said...

nice post. thanks.

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Henry said...

People tend to overspend when impulse buying (which we're all victims of!). My tip would be to shop around and look for voucher codes / discount codes from popular voucher code sites online. Sometimes you can use online vouchers in-store.

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Success Is said...

I am still guilty of being apart of some of these overspending crimes but not to the point of detriment anymore. I have implemented several precautionary safety nets that have allowed me to avoid being among the majority of these statistics.

Wonder-Mama said...

Thanks for sharing this sound advice. :-)

Sarah Hill said...

I need to follow more of these tips! One thing that I am good about is waiting until Black Friday to buy most of my Christmas Presents. I saved over $300 last year doing that. Usually I check a couple weeks before and map out the stores I'm going to hit. I love it!

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