Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Make a Wishlist

Here is my latest tip from "The Everything Budgeting Book", and so far I have found it very useful. The author advises to make a wish list of everything you want, from things that are high on the need list to even expensive, impossible "want" things like a Honda Element (However, I just put reasonably affordable "want things" on my list). Then, write down the price, and the urgency of getting this item. Periodically update the list. The idea is that when you make a wish list, it feels like you actually have the items, since they are all stored in a place. As Americans we have this idea that we like to "own" things...that feeling we get when the bag is handed to us after a purchase, even though we can just as easily take that item and throw it in the closet for a year and not even think about it. I have to say, this wish list does work for me. Also, by making a wish list, I realized that there just aren't many things that I actually want to buy (Seriously, I have like 4 things). I like buying clothes, but I do that on the spot, which explains why I can spend so much money on them (I don't make a list of clothes I want). When you have a list of things you wish to buy, you can track how much they cost, and you even could make them like a reward item after reaching a saving goal. That way, when you do buy your item, it feels that much sweeter and worth the purchase...its something you have really thought about. Or, I am actually saving much of this list as Christmas ideas for my family, since I have a hard enough time thinking of items 3 months before Christmas. So, if you are struggling with buying your "wants" rather than your "needs", give the wish list a try, the feelings are very similar to actually having them.

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