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Save Money When You are Shopping

Written By: admin on April 12, 2009 No Comment

Saving money relates not only to those moments when we deprive ourselves of a reward or when we don’t want to indulge in something in order to save money to buy something in the future. Saving money also relates to those moments when we are shopping for something with the goal of making a purchase. There are many opportunities to save at exactly those moments in which you are deciding on the purchase, especially if you are going to spend lot of money (for instance buying a new car) for a single item. You can make many mistakes and set the course of your financial future if you make wrong decisions shopping. How can you avoid those mistakes?

When you compare prices of different products or services you have to be very careful. There is one trick which can help you. Prepare a table in which you can input various components relating to the products you are considering and then rate each category. Each product or service can be evaluated using this method. For instance, if you need to buy corn flakes, you can start by calculating price per weight unit of two products, then take into account other factors like flavor (how much do you like it), calorie intake (if you are trying to lose weight you will prefer those corn flakes which are lighter in calories) and whichever other quality is important to you. Rate each using school grades, adjust it by ponder (which tells you how much something is important to you) and you have a tool that can help you.

The example relates to buying a coat

1) How much you like each coat (ponder for importance of this is 6)

first coat gets grade 10
second coat gets grade 7

2) Do you have something to wear it with (ponder for importance is 8 )

first coat – 2
second coat – 9

3) Quality and durability of coats (ponder for importance is 9)

first coat – 2
second coat – 8

4) Price (ponder for importance is 10)

first coat – 8
second coat – 4

So, you really like first coat, it would kind of not really go with anything else in your wardrobe (maybe you will need to buy a new purse to go with that coat or something similar), it’s quality is really low but it’s price is also really low. Second coat you like, but not as much as the first coat you are considering, you can easily combine it with the rest of your wardrobe, it is of very high quality, but it is quite expensive.

Important thing to mention that as much as affordability goes, don’t even consider buying something that you just simply can’t afford. If you have 100 dollars in bank account there is no point in considering which type of Mercedes you can buy!

How do we proceed from here:

For first coat we have
1) grade 10* ponder 6 = 60
2) 2 * 8 = 16
3) 2 * 9 = 18
4) 8 * 10 = 80
Total 174 points

For second coat we have
1) grade 7 * ponder 6 = 42
2) 9 * 8 = 72
3) 8 * 9 = 72
4) 4 * 10 = 40
Total 226

So, when you analyze it like that you will discover that the second coat is the best choice factoring everything into account. This is just an example and not an universal solution. You have to develop your own system and rate your own preferences. Everyone can have a unique system and everyone has some other preferences. The overall score will show you which product is more favorable to you. Maybe you will not do the same thing for every yoghurt you buy, we make all small decisions instinctively, but this is just to show you that you need a system for all large purchases and you need to make a decision in which you will be confident.

Being frugal is also a preference, and maybe you will chose to make a decision solely on the price, either because you can’t afford anything in the higher price range or you are saving to meet other priorities that are more important to you. Whichever system works better for you, it will be just fine! Just don’t go and buy anything you see without thinking about it!

When you are shopping make certain that you factored in all relating costs. Something that is cheaper can have some hidden costs which are not obvious at first.

Compare prices in different stores and use internet as much as you can. Frugal shopper can find many great deals online and will not hesitate to use every coupon or sale opportunity that he will find while browsing for great deals. But even if something is called a deal, it is not necessarily a deal.

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