End of financial year is here again and retailers across the nation are enthusiastically embracing the season, with big red discount signs and tempting bargains everywhere you look.
While it’s easy to be caught up in the ‘now or never’ sale mentality, it’s important not to lose sight of the items which are ‘really’ worth buying.
As many of us would know and have probably experienced, compelling sales can create a sense of urgency which can often lead people to make ‘panic purchases’. Despite how discounted an item is, it’s still a cost you may not have factored into the budget and panic purchases are likely to be unplanned and therefore not budgeted for.
Before you commit to a purchase, a good trick is to ask yourself a few quick questions.
- Is this something you were planning on purchasing?
- On a scale of one to 10, how much do you need it?
- In a month’s time, will you still feel the same way about the purchase?
- Does this purchase interfere with achieving a bigger financial goal?
Enticing discounts can also lead to mindless spending – the unplanned, or unnecessary purchases which sneak their way into our transaction history, sometimes without us even realising. Recognising the difference between a ‘need’ and ‘want’ is one of the best ways to avoid mindless spending, but it isn’t always the easiest thing to do. Suncorp’s latest Cost of Living research found one in four people procrastinate about doing this very thing.
Now don’t get me wrong, EOFY sales can deliver great financial benefits. This is the time of year when retailers try to clear as much stock as they can before they close their books on 30 June 2018. So, if you’ve planned to make a specific purchase, chances are you will be able to get it at a discounted price. The trick is to do your research and shop around to ensure you’re getting the best price.
Of course, EOFY is also a great time to do a pulse check on your 2018 financial goals. Are you where you planned to be six months into the year or have you have fallen behind? Now is the time to reflect, reset and refocus and make any required changes to get you back on track.