Never pay full price
Why should you? Never pay full price!
With the exception of either “emergency” things like repairs, or “bare essentials” like fuel or commodities like perishable food – there is no reason to pay more than you should. Never pay full price for anything!
Always shop sales, clearances or end of season events
Everyone should be asking – “wait a minute – maybe I should always wait for these blockbuster events to buy anything like this!”
Why don’t all of us do that? To postpone a purchase until a known “mega sale” comes?
Is it urgency? Hardly ever.
Is it instant gratification? Sometimes.
Is it marketing manipulation? Usually.
Paying less is EASY
Here are some tips to help you save money and purchase prudently:
- Always buy stuff like clothing at “end of the season,” or off “clearance racks.” Yeah, it may not be the pick of the litter – but you’ll ALWAYS find perfectly good things at often a quarter of the price you would have paid three months prior. “Buy for next year” is my motto. Takes a little effort – but what is wrong with that?
- Big purchases like appliances or furniture – always WAIT until big sales come around. Major holidays like Christmas (now re-phrased to “Black Friday”), or other events like 4th of July, etc. However, be prudent – because many of the brands trick customers with lesser quality products with different part numbers, etc. It’s a big sham. If you’re in the market for a reputable high-end product – always ask the sales people if (and when) they have any kind of price reduction. Awareness helps a ton.
- Car purchases. You really never should buy new. Unless you’re leasing. But if you plan on owning – a certified pre-owned is always WAY LESS out of pocket – and often with a warranty. Higher-end brands and models will yield the best results overall (ride quality, resale value, enjoyment, etc.)
- Food. Shopping at a supermarket is like a casino. So many choices, so many winners and losers. It’s a tough nut to crack because FRESH food is limiting in terms of the window of consumption opportunity. But that does not mean you cannot still plan ahead – especially with long shelf-life products like canned goods (tomatoes ring a bell with us) and other essentials like condiments – even stuff like butter – which can be frozen. Try to stock up on those types of things when you see crazy deals that offer 50% or more savings. Coupons help – and most places have doubling (up to 99 cents).
- Bulk discounts (sometimes) – Only buy in bulk if you can guarantee usage. Food is one place (especially if you can freeze or otherwise preserve). This also works if you can summon friends for a potential group buy. Fill a real need – not a superficial desire – and you’ll be just fine.
- Online price check – if you absolutely need something today – then be a prudent shopper online as well. Don’t just shop your favorites (like Amazon). Use browser plugins like Honey – which will SCOUR the web for you. You’ll often find lower prices, promotions, etc. that you never knew about – even if you thought you were a savvy shopper. Some doo-hickey I bought this past summer (some kind of radio) was $99 on Amazon. Using that Honey plugin – I got it for $29 bucks. It was a manufacturer promotion I would have never found out about. We’ve saved hundreds using that plugin (or extension whatever you want to call it).
- Coupon sites – If Honey doesn’t score you deals – you can also check places like Retailmenot and others. While I’m a bit suspicious regarding the potential “collusion” between retailers and BIG coupon sites like that – they still save you bucks from time to time. Always check places like Retailmenot before heading out to a store. You never know if there’s a printable coupon you can use that can help shave a few points off your purchase price.
- Booze – (also bulk discounts), sales, etc. – Beer, wine, and spirits should always be purchased at a discount. Some folks are more picky – but it’s not hard. Buying in volume is always recommended for regular drinkers. A six pack costs more than a case. A bottle costs more than a case. You can often save 20% when buying in bulk. Sometimes sales remove these discounts – but keep that in mind depending on your preferred beverage choice. (And if you can’t stomach the cost – team up with friends!)
But never buy more – especially if there is no need
We just listed a few off the top of our heads. But there are circumstances where retailers “trick” people into buying things they don’t need to attain some kind of level or “victory discount.”
Don’t fall for those.
They employ psychological tactics to get you to buy more. Tricks across the board. “Buy a whole kitchen ensemble and get a free toaster!” Dumb fucks across the country fall for that shit.
Unless the deal is ridiculously good (i.e., shows you a net savings of at least 35% or more), then do not even consider it. Especially if the “net bottom line” reduction in your bank account was more than you originally intended. Trickery works on many levels. Maintain a clear mind and strong resolve. Don’t let people dangle juicy carrots in front of you. Smack that shit to the ground or walk the hell out.
And NEVER buy “the latest” thing!
Unless your career or well-being DEPENDS on being “cutting edge,” then there is absolutely NO NEED to buy “the latest and greatest” anything. Akin to buying a pre-owned car or “last year’s style” of clothing – most often it is not “make or break.”
The latest thing ALWAYS costs top tier.
They hype stuff up (especially cell phones and technology) to get lemmings to pay the LARGEST PROFIT MARGIN for the manufacturer. Most often it pays for their marketing expenses ahead of their “R&D” (that’s “research and development” for the lamen).
Yeah, having the “best” does come with some minor rewards. But remember, as my friend Mokokoma once said:
“Your iPhone 6 was once considered the best. Before the iPhone 7 came out.”
(I should add, terrible companies like Apple thrive on planned obsolescence. They deliberately design future operating systems to render previous devices unusable. It’s part of their master plan – as innocent (i.e., “Oh, the hardware is just underpowered…”) as it may seem. They are playing you like a fiddle.)
Making it your life mission to reduce your dependency on the “latest and greatest” would be one of your greatest personal achievements EVER. Try it. And then DO NOT BRAG TO FRIENDS. Keep it to yourself. Said no one ever in 2016.
Re-calibrating your wallet
I’ll briefly say it’s the (mainstream) media (MSM) and social networks that cause people to compete “with the collective Jonses” much of the time. Fantastic things are being peddled every step of the way.
But taking a nice, personal “reset” is a healthy thing to do.
Differentiating “wants” and “needs” is a mature step to take.
Going into debt for “wants” only to struggle with “needs” later on sucks ass.
So never go into debt. Pay cash (or debit) for everything you need. That solves most of the problems right away. Your wants will naturally take the back seat.
Power companies don’t care that you bought a $900 leather jacket because it was 10% off. They’ll just tell you that jacket better keep you warm when your apartment is 14 degrees later next month.
Taking a personal inventory on what is truly important in your life is a big step for many of you to take.
It might even help to actually write it down on a physical piece of paper with an ink pen. If you using a budgeting “app,” just jump into a river. Please. And since I’m not referring to a specific individual – I’m not going to apologize or preface with a disclaimer. If you cannot understand sarcastic verbiage – then it is not my responsibility. I cannot – by law – be charged with causing a suicide attempt. Just not going to happen.
Anyway – 1,400 words is too much for 99% of the population. So if you made it this far – thanks. And enjoy more money in your wallet for 2017! Let’s see what this next President Trump (if he survives) can accomplish in this crazy world. My bet is minimal for the average Joe – but I’m rooting for good things.