It’s not uncommon to shell out a significant amount during the holiday season — in fact, the average American is predicted to spend $1,463 this year (versus $1,387 in 2020) on holiday shopping, according to a recent study from Deloitte.
Whether you’ve already started your holiday shopping or typically wait until the last minute, you can help temper some of those impulse buys and head into the new year without derailing your financial goals.
Here are some ways to help keep impulse buys at bay this holiday season:
Make it harder to shop
Thanks to technology, we can now shop 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. This access can sometimes make it difficult to control spending. To help fight any impulse holiday purchases, try setting up a few “obstacles”:
Delete any shopping apps from your phone. As they say, out of sight, out of mind.
Erase credit card information saved in website and app profiles. Not only will this help protect your sensitive information, you’ll be less inclined to buy when required to walk across the room for a wallet.
Even if just temporarily, unsubscribe from promotional retail emails. These can lead to a number of impulse purchases you wouldn’t otherwise make.
Impose a 24-hour wait period
Before making a purchase, allow yourself 24 hours to think it over. Leave the item in your online cart and then walk away from your computer or phone. Ask yourself if this item is something you truly require or if it could put your bigger financial goals in jeopardy.
After 24 hours, if you still need it and can afford it, consider making the purchase. At this point, you’ll have taken the impulse component out of it and hopefully made a thoughtful and informed purchase.
Allow yourself some healthy spending
You can’t expect to never buy anything for fun. As with anything else, if you limit too extremely, you’re likely to set yourself up for failure. Therefore, when planning your holiday purchases, it’s a good idea to allow flexibility for an occasional splurge or “fun” purchase.
Being too restrictive with spending will not only discourage you from following through on your financial goals but also make it easier to revert to unhealthy spending habits. However, allowing a splurge can help feel some of the excitement of impulse buys without any of the financial damage.
Keep the end in mind
Do you have financial goals that you’re trying to accomplish in the long term? Reminding yourself of how important these goals are to your future can help control some of those holiday impulse buys. After all, would you want to derail your dream home purchase because of something you may not truly need?
If you are in the process of accumulating a down payment, setting up a direct deposit to route a part of your paycheck to a savings account could help boost your house fund. If the money isn’t as easily accessible to spend, you’re less likely to make an impulse purchase.
It’s important to stay on track with holiday spending, especially if you’re in the market for a new home in the new year. Reali has different solutions such as Cash Offer to help you buy with confidence. Curious to learn more? Contact us today.