Settling for less the use of credit is too often treated with an “all or nothing” mindset. While it’s possible to spend foolishly with credit, it’s also possible to put available credit to great use and invest in your future.
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When to Buy Now/Pay Later
One of the best buy now pay later decisions you can make is to buy something that’s going to make you money. For example, a car loan is a terrific example of something that you’ll make payments on now that can help you increase your income over time. With a car, you can easily get to your job or travel further if the money is better a bit further out. These are one of the options where you can own the items & pay at your convenience.
How to Use Credit Cards
Credit card use is often vilified, but credit cards can get you something for nothing if you use them right. For example, if you’ve got a favourite grocery store, getting their credit card and putting your utility bills on that card can mean you earn free groceries.
To do this well, make sure that you:
- carefully track what you put on this card
- only spend what you can pay off each month
- monitor special offers, such as particular shopping points
Settling for less many cards will offer points for special events or particular purchases. If you need to buy back to school gear, you may get an offer for extra points on children’s clothes but need to activate the discount online. Be ready to track your account on the card website and make the changes necessary to get the best deals.
Short Term Investments that Work
There are many other items which, if bought on credit, can actually save in the long term. For example, if your current furniture is worn but livable, it’s a good idea to save up and pay cash. Settling for less however, if your bed is worn and damaging your health because you can’t sleep, a new mattress can make the rest of your life easier and be worth making payments.
Items that Pay for Themselves
If you need to buy a tool that will make life easier, getting it on credit can be a good choice. For those already working who want to build a side hustle or a second income, simple tools like crockpots or pressure cookers can be the difference between eating well and eating drive-thru. If you’re living on fries and grease because you’re exhausted, invest in your health with a faster cooking tool that will allow you to spend settling for less and eat healthier. These kitchen tools pay for themselves over time.
Purchases that Make Bargains Easier
If you love to bargain hunt, you may be able to expand your saving options by investing in tools that will make it easier to put your bargains to use. If you need a particular piece of furniture, such as a storage trunk but are struggling to find one you can afford, keep an eye out for a second-hand piece that you can refinish.
Clean second-hand wooden furniture with #000 steel wool and rubbing alcohol to remove old grease and wax,settling for less then invest in an orbital sander and use fine paper to rough up the surface before painting the piece. Once you have a sander, you can put it to use on many different projects.
Learn to Coupon
The first investment in couponing is your time. However, once you know the process, you can build a serious stockpile of things that you will be glad to have in your cupboards. With the right couponing style, you can reduce the number of times you have to shop and lessen the temptation to overspend.
You may need to buy a coupon organizer, and you may need to drive a bit further to get to stores that offer double discounts, but this investment will be worth it.
Invest Time in Learning
If you have a side hustle, a family and a full-time job, it can be hard to find the time to take on one more task. However, those with a bit of yard can also learn to save by doing some gardening.
Volunteer at a local botanical garden so you can check out the tools available, meet those with gardening expertise, and even go home with new plant cuttings. Helping another gardener clean out an iris bed means you go home with new tubers. Asking for guidance on tomatoes can mean you get a call on harvest day. Gardeners are generous, so put in the time and learn what you can to save on food and plants for years to come.
Waiting until you have the money saved can be a good decision for things you really want. However, if you need an item that will make it easier to make money, protect your health or make it easier to save dollars over the long term, then buying now and paying for it over time is a great decision.