With Black Friday just around the corner, it’s important for you to exercise caution and self-discipline when managing your money. Here’s how:
You can avoid getting into financial distress over Black Friday by doing the following:
• Plan your budget and be honest with yourself on what you can afford.
• Do your research ahead of time – you need to know exactly what you want to buy and determine the price of those goods upfront. Buy only what you need and not because something is on sale.
• Don’t use debt to buy non-essential or luxury goods. You should also remember that credit incurs interest.
• If you’re tapping into your long-term savings or emergency saving funds, this also suggests that you may not afford to be spending on Black Friday.
Sometimes, we are lured by the excitement, appealing marketing and are tempted to buy goods simply because we are told that the prices have been reduced. However, it’s important to understand whether there has been any substantial reduction in the price of the item you wish to buy. The easiest way to determine if there has been a decrease is to track the price over a period of time. Do not be tempted to spend excessively, and if you have a list of what you want to buy and a budget, stick to it. In these tough economic times, we need to be more prudent and stricter about our spending habits. Just because something is labelled cheaper on Black Friday doesn’t always mean that you must buy it.
Words: Dhashni Naidoo, programme manager at FNB consumer education