How to Stop Spending Money on Impulse Purchases | Expert Guide


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Have you ever made a purchase and regretted it later because it wasn’t worth it? Yeah, who hasn’t been through this? To help you in these moments, we have provided some tips on how to stop spending money on impulse purchases. Furthermore, shopping often does not pose any risk or problem of any kind. It is a vital activity to exist and get the necessary goods for the day today.

However, the conflict comes up when some emotional circumstance encourages the person to fall into consumerism. Due to specific reasons, you may experience a behavioral disorder that leads to being abusive when making purchases and spending money. This is a fact that you can accentuate on specific dates. 

This includes those that arrive in this last stage of the year. Days are coming when people increase their impulse purchases due to celebrations such as Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Christmas.

Impulse purchases: What they are and How to Detect Them

How to Stop Spending Money on Impulse Purchases

Impulsive purchases are those that are made automatically or almost unconsciously due to an emotional impulse from the person. They occur when one feels an irrepressible desire to purchase a specific product and buy it for no logical reason. These types of purchases occur with items of a reduced price. Toys and items based on hobbies are also part of it.

Currently, impulse purchases have increased due to the possibility of making purchases online. In addition, many e-commerce portals and the high number of communications have created a panorama of advertising saturation. Consequently, users have more freedom to choose what they want, how they want it, where they want it, and when they want to receive it. This new context has created needs that did not exist before and is based on the desire for things that people do not need vitally. That is, they due to consumerism.

How to Stop Spending Money on Impulse Purchases

How to Stop Spending Money on Impulse Purchases

Some vital tips in this regard include:

Go shopping with the right company.

If your friends are your friends, it is because you have many things in common. If one of those things is buying stuff that neither of you can afford, don’t go shopping together. Already, we know that it sounds like advice from parents worried about your bad company, but when you consider buying those expensive shoes, you need a friend who says NO, not one who is already looking for the same model in their size. Someone has to put a note of sanity.

Wait a while!

If you’re holding the product or it’s in your cart, and you haven’t decided whether to take it or not, even wondering if you need it, it’s time to exercise the rule of time.

This tip for you to control the impulse in purchases is simple. If you’re not sure what to bring, it can be an unnecessary expense. This is the time to wait a little longer. In other words, leave the product behind and wait a few days. We recommend 30. This period will serve to make sure that you need or not to buy what you wanted.

People report that when they wait for that time, the chances of buying on impulse decrease, and after making the purchase, it would become regret. So, how about not taking something and thinking that that money saved can be used for something more meaningful and brings you more pleasure and utility?

Beware of ease

Beware of ease! This tip is essential for training your brain. Promotions and ease of payment tend to captivate you and induce you to spend. To control impulse purchases, keep in mind that installments are a small part of the snowball that can upset your monthly budget. So try to stay away from promotions if you don’t need them.

And remember, despite helping you a lot when shopping, the sellers are also there to “push” the product. 

Beware of emotions

Some people discount their emotions on food, drink and, no different, on shopping. For this reason, try to balance emotions and expenses. A sadness, anger, or anxiety can trigger the impulse.

Try to seek help at these times. Keep your card, and don’t even withdraw money. We know how difficult it is to have various feelings, especially when they are unpleasant. Don’t let this phase get worse when the bills arrive or you realize that already in the middle of the month, there is no money in the account.

Be cautious with your credit card.

Several times, you will hear people saying that credit cards can be a great ally. It can also help you with your everyday purchases or even with the facilities it provides.

But sometimes, depending on how you use it, it can become a drag – which leads you to blame it for spending slips. A study shows that people who use charge cards at fast-food restaurants spend on average 50 percent more than people who pay with cash.

According to consulting and research, firms use user interface engineering to create an easy-to-use interface that interacts with users to provide a purchase. This is often done through design, user feedback, and interactive elements.

Impulse buys account for almost 40 percent of all the money spent on e-commerce sites. E-commerce sites are often used by people who are not able to purchase something without working with the user interface first.

To stay on the plane of tips to control the impulse in purchases, try to have harmony between your card and budget. That’s it:

  • Know what you spend monthly;
  • Make a few installments;
  • Avoid interest;
  • Before splitting a purchase, add the amount of the installments to your monthly expenses;
  • If you can, pay in a single installment and ask for a discount for it.

Remember that your card helps you organize your expenses, concentrates your purchases in one place, and even replaces the money, generating more security for you.

If you have to take it, consider promotions.

Do you believe that your purchase is not on impulse and you need to take the product or service? So how about waiting for a good promotion?

We know that there are dates in the trade with offers that are worth it. Black Friday, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Christmas, among others, are good times to guarantee a lower price and make it worth the investment.

Promotions can offer more than 50% discount, making you have more savings and still take it guilt-free. Because you’ve waited and are sure, you need a specific product or service.

Search and compare

To save most of the time, research and compare prices before closing the deal. On the internet, you have specialized websites for this. They look in different stores for the desired product and show the lowest price. Anyone who constantly researches well before knows that the difference can be huge. Therefore, if you think that the purchase is necessary, compare some stores and find the best deal before taking it.

Make lists

A good tip on how to stop spending money on impulse purchases is to make lists before shopping. With a list, you know what to bring. As a result, you go straight to where you need to go, without having to skimp on other things, at the risk of triggering your shopping impulse.

Both at a supermarket and those shopping you do on a boardwalk, take the list. If you found things that are not listed, they are at serious risk of being unnecessary. How about using your cell phone to help you control your shopping impulse? Make a list on the device itself, with a “checklist” created in the notebook. Then, you don’t forget to take the paper, and you have better control, to mark the prices and what you can spend.

Create a budget

Creating a budget for purchases avoids unforeseen expenses, in addition to planning your money. You can separate what you should spend with essentials and minors. What is essential is what you cannot get out of your monthly budget. Then, you can use a small part for the “others” that appear.

The cool thing is to leave little money for unplanned purchases. With a tight budget for this type of expense, the decision to take it or not is more rigid.

Make use of Family Planning. 

With family planning, you avoid spending what was planned for something else. Instead, call your family in for a chat and start organizing the money. It’s also best to separate your fixed and variable expenses.

As the name suggests, fixed expenses are those bills that repeat every month, and you cannot cut. This includes water, electricity, telephone, internet, rent, school, etc. Variable expenses are those that you can save or even cut, such as clothing, leisure, supermarkets, cinema, etc.

Variable expenses are essential for the family’s well-being. But, these expenses should not be priorities, besides being activities that you can use as savings. For example, if your family tends to go to the movies every weekend, cut it down to just two a month.

Save and invest your money.

Finally, the last strategy for controlling impulse buying is saving money and investing it in something you want. Start small, for example, saving $183 a month. But think if you invest that $183 every month, after ten years, you’d have over $39,000 at an 11% rate of return. For investing there are some rules to follow.

On the other hand, overspending stands as a significant barrier to achieving vital financial goals, such as saving 10% of your gross income for retirement, as well as setting up a 3-month emergency cash cushion.

People often put their total income toward living expenses, and they also number their saved money in terms of discretionary spending. The idea behind this breakdown is that it is more likely when you can save 50% of your total income that you will have enough funds left over to live comfortably. Many people follow the 50-30-20 breakdown because they believe that it will help them achieve their goals.

With this, you will easily earn your present-day rewards. If your finance is in order, you’re meeting that 20% savings outset too.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do I impulsively spend money?

You may impulsively spend money due to the following reasons:

  • Availability of cash
  • Your mood per time, 
  • Proximity to a POS terminal/ATM facility
  • Price discounts
  • Availability of time 
  • Proximity to a store 

In addition to these, according to a poll in 2019, “the way some parents handled money” and “the state of [their] household when growing up” were the primary reasons people gave about why they handle money the way they do.

Why is impulse buying bad?

Impulse buying is terrible because it can lead to committing many buying errors.

What are my spending triggers?

Your spending triggers may include:

  • Social pressure
  • Stress
  • A need to please others
  • Special holidays and events 
  • An emotional event
  • Social media
  • Credit cards
  • Retailer tactics

What is it called when you spend too much money?

When you spend too much money, it’s called Monomania. This is a Greek word that entails: onions, which means “for sale,” and mania, which means “insanity.”

How do you help someone who spends too much money?

You can do this in the following ways:

  • Offer to aid them in reviewing their income and expenses
  • Avoid lecturing them if they aren’t listening to you
  • Avoid giving them cash

Is overspending a sign of ADHD?

Many people with ADHD usually find it to resist overspending.

Is compulsive buying a disorder?

Compulsive buying is a disorder. It is commonly known as a Compulsive buying disorder (CBD). 

What is an example of impulse buying?

An example of impulse buying entails purchasing a product on the spur of the moment. Here, one may suddenly buy products he/ she doesn’t need at the moment. This may include cars, chocolate, a scarf, a pair of shoes, etc.

How can you avoid impulse buying online?

You can avoid impulse buying online through the following tips:

  • Go shopping with the right company. 
  • Beware of emotions
  • Be cautious with your credit card
  • Search and compare
  • Save and invest your money

Learn More: Best Investing Apps

What are the disadvantages of impulse buying?

Some disadvantages of impulse buying include:

  • Dissatisfaction or mental stress
  • Buying mistakes
  • Bankruptcy


In conclusion, a survey recently shows that almost 60% of consumers make purchases on impulse. Over 90% of Americans say they’ve once done it and let’s be honest; the other 10% are probably in denial. But even at grocery stores, nearly 60 percent of all purchases are impulse purchases, according to a study by faculty at the University of California and the University of Wisconsin.

A novelty or mega discount can fill your eyes and give that itch in hand to buy. You must know how frustrating it is to reach the end of the month with the bill in the red because you overspent. Thus, it’s best to organize yourself with the tips on how to stop spending money on impulse purchases highlighted above.

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