Great Savings 35 – Wait To Buy


Sometimes the things we see create a real need we wish to satisfy.

The clothes are cute, but they aren’t on the list. Will you buy them anyway?

Imagine you walk into a store. You see the coolest new 3D TV or a killer pair of heels. You fall instantly in love and pull out your wallet. Or you walk into the grocery store and see an amazing cake in the bakery section. It’s not on your list, but it’s your favorite fudge chocolate and screams, “Eat me!”


Are you ever lured in by the unexpected as you walk down the aisles? Not only is there an excellent chance the answer is yes, the stores design the flow of traffic and create incredible displays to tempt us into buying on impulse. Here’s how to fight back.


Some things scream buy me because they're so cool.

Sometimes the latest gadget seems so much better than the last one. We have to have it!

Our emotions rule our actions if we let them. We key off certain sights, sounds and fragrances. We’re tempted by things that reek sex appeal. The stores know this, because marketing experts have spent untold millions studying everything that makes shoppers tick. They have us nailed. They know how to lure us into their web and then keep us there so we buy more than we intend, more often than we can afford.


Burning a hole in my pocket.

Is that money burning a hole in your pocket. Sometimes the urge to spend becomes irresistible.

Honestly, have you ever come home from the store, looked at what you bought and wondered why you bought it in the first place? Don’t feel bad. It’s far more common than you might expect.


This is really nothing less than a battle to see who ends up holding your money. And the best way to fight back is go in prepared.



Embrace The 24-7-1 Rule Today


Embrace the 24-7-1 rule and wait to buy.To get a handle of unnecessary spending and take control of your budget embrace the 24-7-1 rule. Make it your mantra. The 24-7-1 rule is an excellent weapon to have in your arsenal as you step into a store. It refers to how much time to wait before buying. The numbers refer to time, as in 24 hours, 7 days or 1 month, depending on what you plan to buy (and how much money is involved).


Start With A List: When shopping for anything always work from a list. If it’s not on the list, don’t buy it. Period!


Embrace the 24-7-1 rule.24 Hours: When buying groceries, toiletries or other small items and you find an item that’s not on your list, wait 24 hours to see if it’s something you really need. If it is, then add it to your list for your next shopping trip. If it isn’t, you just saved some of your hard-earned cash.


Do you really want it or is it just an impulse?7 Days: If you’re shopping for clothes or smaller household items and run across items not on the list, don’t just wait a 24 hours, wait a full week. If it’s important enough, you can always go back later.


If you still want it after a month, you must really want it.1 Month: For all large purchases, like furniture, appliances, televisions, cars, boats, etc. put the item on your 1 month list. If you remember you want it after a month has passed, you’ll know whether you were serious in the first place.


Jackson says spend me.

Many things we see appeal to our senses so we have an instant desire to own them. These items make great “impulse” buys.

Taking the time to rid ourselves of the emotional energy around buying a particular item is the key for deciding how important it is in the scheme of life.


Letting go of a pent up urge to buy is almost impossible to do in the moment. Our natural tendency is to succumb to the power of a craving and buy what attracts us with nary a thought to the consequences. However, when a must-have item is no longer in sight, it loses its power over us. It’s like we’re no longer under the spell.


This is the beauty of the 24-7-1 rule: By setting a strict limit on when we can buy we give ourselves a “mandatory” cooling off period and bring the power of reason back into the equation. Strictly adhering to the 24-7-1 rule could literally save tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars over the years. Don’t believe it? Then try out the following action item.


Action Item: The next time you go shopping take a list and work from it. As you wander through the store, note how many times you’re tempted to buy something not on your list. For all those items that tempted you, check the price and write it down. When you exit the store, add up the total. Even if you bought a fraction of the items that tempted you, or it was something small and inexpensive, just imagine spending that much “extra” every time you go shopping over the weeks, months and years ahead. It adds up big time!


For more ideas to help you decide whether now is the best time to buy, read our tips: “Spending Consciously To Build Wealth” and “Cash Is King.”


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