Beware of Duplication
Don’t always buy the same thing. We all have areas of weakness when it comes to spending. It could be baskets, dinnerware, books, black jackets, kaftans, shoes. Pinpoint the key areas where you impulse buy, which leads to clutter. Break the pattern now. Buying one for now, and one for later: good in theory, bad in practice. It’s false economy. Fashions change. Break your pattern now.
Never Impulse Buy
Wait before buying. Return in half an hour, tomorrow or next week. It gives you time to cool down from the initial excitement of spotting a shiny new thing. Avoiding bad buys far outweighs the instant gratification of impulse buying.
Shop with a list
This seems like a no-brainer, but so often I run to the store with a mental list, not a written list. Funny thing about mental lists, they’re very easy to add to, aren’t they? As the Everyday Minimalist points out, “One of the best things you can do to stay on your spending diet is to shop with a list… if it isn’t on the list, don’t get it”. Amen.
Reward yourself with experiences instead of things
Instead of buying things as a pick-me-up, try treating yourself through experiences, like visiting someplace new, a walk, a swim, or reading a new book (from the library!), a great conversation.
Think before you buy
Frame each buy with a few quick questions. •Who can I borrow this from or share this with? •What do I already have that is like this item? •Where will I store this item? •When will I have time to use it and maintain it? •Why do I need this item?
Beware Occasion Shopping
People go haywire when they shop for clothes, furniture or homewares for a big event. The danger is that you think more about the occasion than about what suits you. Far better to know what’s already in your wardrobe that makes you look like a star. And rearrange what’s in your house – we don’t lack things, we lack imagination.
Don’t Slump Shop
You’re out of sorts, you think that buying something will make you feel better, you find yourself with a bunch of new fringed and beaded cushions that look like something out of a bordello. Forget shopping to make yourself happy. The latest whiz-bang sofa or couture curtains won’t make up for a lost love.
Avoid Shopping with Someone Else
It pollutes your tastes and you can’t concentrate. Don’t even think about shopping with children. Hunt alone.
No matter how cheap, if you don’t like it and won’t use it, it’s no bargain. Even when you buy things on sale, you are still spending money.
Holidays can be a fantastic way to get the beautiful and unusual, but it’s easy to go wrong-footed in a city that isn’t your own. Don’t get carried away by a short-lived enthusiasm.
Don’t buy more than you need.