How to Justify that Have-to-have-it Purchase

oberdorf_justify_purchaseWe’ve all been there… don’t pretend like you haven’t. You’re shopping in the mall and you suddenly see a gorgeous pair of Steve Madden pumps that you instantly fall in love with. Then you look at the price– $130. Uh-oh.

It seems wrong to spend that much money on shoes, but you really want them. You probably have an angel on one shoulder telling you it’s unnecessary to spend that much money on shoes when you could donate the money to a charity. On the other hand, a devil is on your other shoulder whispering to just get the shoes because they’re perfect. What do you do now?

Here’s a list of questions to ask yourself before you spend your whole paycheck in one fell swoop.

1. Is it on sale?

You shouldn’t feel bad for buying something if it’s discounted! It’s a lower price which makes it that much more desirable for you. Not to mention, it was out on display for a long time and no one else wanted it. As Macklemore says, “One man’s trash, that’s another man’s come-up.”

2. How long have you been eyeing it?

If you’ve wanted to buy it for a long time—like more than just a few hours after seeing it, don’t hold back. It’s not a compulsive buy if you’ve been thinking about it for more than a month. It’s time to whip out the credit card and buy it because you’re not doing yourself or the item any good by just thinking about it.

3. Is it unique?

Let’s say you’re in Italy and you see a beautiful authentic leather jacket and think, “I must have this!” Then definitely get it. There is a story behind it that your friends are going to want to hear about. Plus, they probably don’t have anything like it so they’ll be jealous.

4. Do you truly have the money to spend?

You don’t want to make yourself go broke by using all of your money to buy something you don’t necessarily need. However, if your finances are in order there is no reason you can’t spend some of your extra cash.

5. Honestly, is it worth it?

Going back to the pumps scenario, you probably won’t wear them every weekend so they’ll last you a few years, in return making the $130 investment worthwhile. However, you should probably reevaluate if you plan on spending that much money on something that you’ll only get one use out of, like a bottle of wine.

Photo by Victoria Oberdorf


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