I understand why everyone loves Black Friday; I really do. And right about now, you’re probably starting to see a lot of promotions for online holiday sales, particularly Amazon’s Black Friday deals. A lot of the questions I get relate to whether the deals are “scams” or not. But I think a better way to look at it is whether you’re spending the money for something you want or something you truly need. Because there are plenty of legitimate deals to be found on Black Friday but spending your hard-earned ca$h on them isn’t always in your best financial interests and doesn’t help you keep your financial freedom.
The Lure of Black Friday
The companies and brands marketing Black Friday deals are good at what they do. Over the years, Black Friday shopping has for many become a “holiday” in its own right. Moms and daughters, BFFs, and entire families have made it a yearly tradition to hit the stores for incredible deals. Of course, Amazon’s Black Friday occurs online, a place where a lot of people will be shopping this year as we face down a pandemic.
Should you shop on Black Friday? Do you need to give up what might be for you a fun tradition? As with all things money related here’s where I stand: it’s about making smart money choices.
$peaking of Deals
Does it make sense spending loads of money on things just because they’re supposedly discounted? How can it not be a good thing to get a TV at 50% off? Here’s the reality: a lot of those stupendous half-price deals are lower-quality versions of popular products. Known in the retail biz as derivatives, these goods are typically made with cheaper materials and parts and for some reason always seem to break down the day after the warranty runs out!
“But, Lisa, what about the savings”, you might ask. It’s true you can sometimes get a great deal on Black Friday, but my advice is to proceed with caution. If you need a new TV, finding a non-derivative one at a great price can be a spectacular Black Friday score. But if you’re buying a $150 microwave you don’t need for $70, you’re not saving $80, you’re wasting it. Make sense?
I’m not here to rain on anyone’s Black Friday parade. If you simply love landing a bargain or two on the year’s biggest shopping day, make a short list of what you want to buy and stick to it! The last thing you want to end up with is a mountain of debt on things you don’t even use six months from now.
Maintain Your Financial Freedom
Here’s the bottom line: if you’re able to recognize the emotions being triggered by all the Black Friday hoopla, you’ll be better equipped to keep your spending within your budget. That way you can have some fun shopping while still saving up most of your money for something you truly need or want. For more advice on how to achieve and maintain financial freedom, schedule a 1-on-1 consultation with me today!