Tag Archives: how to shop smart

The Smart Spend: Choosing The Right Options When You’re Making a Large Purchase

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Making a large purchase is always a daunting process. Even when you have a strong idea of what you’d like to buy, most people will feel some degree of stress when they’re considering where best to place their spending. Thankfully, there are loads of online tools that can help you to overcome challenges like this one. To give you an idea of where to start, this post will be exploring a smart process to go through whenever you’re buying an expensive product.

Gathering Your Options

The first stage in this process is going to involve gathering up all the options you must weigh. Creating a spreadsheet with links, prices, and the name of each product will take a little bit of time, but will make it much easier for you to compare them later on. It can be tricky to find all of the available options when you’re looking for products, but you can usually overcome this by looking at blog posts and other content that reviews and compares items. Alongside this, if you’re really struggling, you could also ask on forums and other online communities for advice or alternatives to the options you’ve already listed. Get all options on your spreadsheet.

Reviews & Information

Once you have a list of the most promising options available, it is time to start looking at specific reviews for each. For example, if you were looking for a diamond ring to propose to your other half, you could try this Ritani review to give yourself an idea of the quality of the products from this brand. You should do this for each of the items on your list.

Collecting the right information at this stage will also be key. As you look at the features of the items on your list, you will quickly develop an idea of what you’re looking for, and this will enable you to create another list. This list will comprise of features that are essential and those that you can live without, setting the stage for the next step in the buying process.

The Comparison

With an idea of how well-reviewed a product is and a list of the most crucial features, it should be nice and easy to assess and compare it with your alternatives. By rearranging your list to prioritize those that have the most essential features, you will be able to see which ones best meet your needs. Of course, you’ll also have to think about the price you’re paying, but this should make it nice and easy to isolate the option that will give you the best value you for money. This is much easier than just looking at a bunch of sales pages online and hoping you pick right.

With all of this in mind, you should be feeling ready to take on the challenge of choosing the right options when you’re making a large purchase. It’s all too easy to fall into the trap of making mistakes as you go through this process, and a lot of people find themselves buying the wrong items when they don’t assess the market well enough. What tips would you add?

50 Ways To Save Money (With Minimal Effort)

Some of my most popular blog posts on Finding Delight are all about How To Ball On A BudgetAnd why not? Everyone would love a little help in this department. Which is why sharing ways I personally save money (with minimal effort) is something I’m happy to do!

As the holiday season approaches, saving that extra bit of cash for all the costs that go along with the time of year becomes a necessity. Presents and parties and vacations…OH MY!

With the impending holiday expenses in mind, I put together a few of my favorite money saving ideas. Pick and choose a few of these simple lifestyle changes to implement and you’ll be well on your way to a nice little monetary stockpile. However you choose to spend (EGGNOG FOR EVERYONE!)…well, that’s up to you!

 

Shopping

Check second-hand stores first.
If that doesn’t pan out, hit the clearance racks.
Check the weekly circulars for the best deals.
Shop your pantry before shopping the store.
Make a weekly grocery list and stick to it.
Shop the periphery of the grocery store.
Don’t be afraid of the generic brand.
Sign up for rewards programs and do your homework about the benefits.
Buy seasonal items during their off-season.

Food

Pack your meals for work and school.
Always have a water bottle on hand for free hydration.
Brew your coffee at home and learn to make your indulgent Starbucks order.
Buy from the bulk bins so you’re not paying extra for packaging.
Batch cook big meals in your crock-pot.
Get into the habit of meal planning.
Find a cookbook you love and cook your way through it.

Appearance

Give yourself at-home manicures.
Color/straighten/curl your own hair. Or let it go natural.
Create a fitness plan that doesn’t involve a gym or costly classes.
Set up a seasonal capsule wardrobe.
Make your own beauty products.

Travel

Stay at an Airbnb.
Stock your kitchen-away-from-home so you can prepare meals instead of eating out.
Give yourself a daily allowance (in cash) while you’re away so you don’t go overboard.
Bring along all your lingering gift cards to treat yo’self.

Entertainment

Bust your boredom. 
Cancel cable and pick a streaming service instead.
Cancel print subscriptions and subscribe to a few email newsletters instead.
Make a list of cheap date night ideas you think sound fun and cycle through.
Host a game night for your friends.
Get your books from the library.
Go out for brunch or coffee or happy hour cocktails instead of dinner.
Start an articles club.

DIY

Consider making gifts instead of buying.
Dollar Tree is a great place to pick up cheap craft supplies.
Learn to mix your favorite cocktails.
Create your own cleaning products.
Check for tutorials online before paying someone else to do your home improvement projects.

Utilities

Call your cell phone/internet/utility provider and ask for a cheaper rate.
Turn off the lights when you leave the house (or the room for that matter).
Don’t go crazy with your thermostat.
Carpool with your colleagues.
Make payments on time.

Savings

Kick it old school with a penny bank for your loose change.
Automate your payments and savings plan where possible.
Keep a spending diary.
Read budget blogs for free financial information and resources.
Challenge yourself to a no-spend day once a week or a no-spend weekend once a month.
Look through your bank statement for any recurring costs and consider canceling whatever they’re attached to.
Research any discounts you may be afforded through your work/school/memberships.

What lifestyle changes have YOU implemented to save money? Let me know in the comments below! xoxo