Use the 30-Day rule to help you save more and stop spending frivolously.
Have you ever saw something in a store or online and just had to have it? Something caught your eye and that adrenaline rush started making your heart thump!
You quickly threw it in your cart or hit the “buy button” only to feel buyers remorse after a few minutes pass? Perhaps you even return the item when it arrives which is a hassle and sometimes cost you more money for shipping.
This is where the 30-day rule comes in.
The 30-day rule is a tool to help you decide if you really want or need an item you want to buy. By using the 30-rule you will delay buying and avoid buyers remorse. It also leaves impulse buys as a thing of the past.
According to a Pew study, 46% of Americans spend more than they make. Yes, that is almost half the country.
It is not uncommon to have a spending problem and advertising and celebrities glorify a glitzy lifestyle, leaving many people feeling like they need to keep up.
Not to mention, Americans have a habit of lifestyle creep. This means that if you get a raise, instead of saving it, you spend more on lifestyle and do not necessarily have more money in the bank.
Yet, if you use the 30-day rule, you can do yourself a favor and make a spending decision with a clear mind instead of making an impulse buy. Do you know how to use the 30-day rule? This post will help you out.
What is the 30-day rule?
The 30-day rule is essentially waiting 30 days before you buy something. In best practice, you will determine if it is really needed and if you have the money to buy it during the 30-day period. Instead of using impulse buying and wasting your money, try waiting 30 days before making a big purchase to make sure it is in the budget and something that will make you happy.
Often times, we make purchases in the store thinking we love the item. Yet, later we feel regret and guilt for spending money on something we really didn’t need. By using patience, you can train your brain to stop craving items on impulse and make smarter purchases.
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Why use the 30-day rule?
Here in frugal living land, we have a saying that patience is your friend. Part of being frugal is learning to use discipline with spending.
However, this doesn’t mean never spending anything at all. If you have the money and it is something that will truly make you happy and increase your quality of life, then why not buy it?
The problem is we often don’t think over purchases enough and jump right in without doing our research. Wouldn’t you rather know that you have the money to cover your item? And if you still want it after 30 days, then go ahead and buy it.
Yes, it is true time is money so don’t waste time haggling over a dollar or so. Most of the time you will waste more in gas trying to save $1 on one product.
Yet, take your time when making a bigger purchase. Shop around online and make sure you are getting a fair price. Also, sometimes it pays to buy an item form a well-known store that has a good return policy Incase you change your mind or your financial situation changes.
Also, don’t forget to use Rakuten (formerly ebates) when shopping online to earn money back especially on bigger purchases.
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Examples of using the 30-day rule
30-Day rule example 1:
You are at the store and you see a cute purse. You look at the price tag and it cost $50. You didn’t plan on spending that much, but you love it.
Use the 30-day rule and wait it out. Go home and see if you can find it cheaper online. Wait 30 days and see if you still want it. During this time it may be marked down.
If you still want it and have the money, buy it.
If it is gone, it wasn’t meant to be. You can also search online or check eBay or Poshmark (use code MasMax when signing up to get a $5 coupon.) to find your purse or something similar.
30-Day rule example 2:
You are shopping online and you see a sale on the next version of your phone. You have been wanting to upgrade since the new version came out. Since it is on sale, why not buy it?
This is when you wait!! First, figure out if you really need a new phone. Do you “want” or “need” it or is there something wrong with your old phone? Can you get buy another year with the old version? Second, check. Your bank account. Do you have enough money saved to cover emergencies and bills?
If you have the money and waited for 30-days but still want the phone, go ahead. But if your old phone is fine, keep it another year and save up for a new phone.
The key is to wait and see if you really have that same Desiree to but the item even after waiting for 30-days. Even if you do, do you really have the money to spend?
You can create a budget that allows for some fun spending. As long as you are saving money, go ahead and buy what you have waited 30 days for, as long as the cash is there. Do not put your “want” on a credit card.
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30-day rule conclusion
Just because you see something doesn’t mean you have to buy it on the spot. Avoid buyers remorse and trick your brain into forming good spending habits by delaying your purchase. Wait 30 days and see if you are still fantasizing about this purchase. If so, it may be worth your while to buy if you have the cash.
Take your time and stop feeling guilty about your purchases. By using the 30-day rule you know you have the money in the bank to cover the cost and you got the best price.