Procrastination is usually not a good thing. If you delay paying your credit card bill, then you will be hit with a late fee. Many people procrastinate when it comes to retirement saving and they are hurting themselves in the long run. However, there is one case where procrastination is good for your finance. When it comes to buying stuff, procrastination can be your best friend.
As long time readers may know, I get a frugal fatigue attack about once a year in the summer time. This is the overwhelming feeling to buy stuff because you have been frugal for too long. I’m sure everyone has these feelings once in a while. The way to combat overspending is to recognize it and have an intervention plan ready to be implemented. That way, you won’t give in to your impulse to bust out the credit card.
Let’s take a quick look at my last frugal fatigue attack. This was last June and here are the 3 items that I was lusting after.
Mrs. RB40 needed a new laptop because her previous one was 6 years old. I budgeted $500 for this and I got her a relatively nice one for $400 in July. The only problem is that sleep mode doesn’t work correctly. I probably will need to replace the hard drive on this laptop to make it work. A solid state drive would be much nicer anyway. Come on Lenovo…
I was using a pay as you go phone (Tracfone) and it was very cheap, but I needed a smart phone to keep tabs on Retire by 40. I budgeted $250 + $20/month for a Motorola Defy from Republic Wireless. The price gradually dropped down to $99 in December as the Moto X came in to replace it. Luckily, Republic Wireless sent me the Defy to review in September and I actually got to keep it. Yes! Last month, I also reviewed their new phone, the Moto X. It is much nicer, but more expensive at $299. The new plans are more flexible though and I really like the $10/month plan. That plan has unlimited talk and text, but only data service when you’re on WiFi.
Sony RX100 camera
I got tired of lugging around my DSLR. The picture quality is awesome, but it’s just not convenient. I want a portable camera that will give good pictures. The original price was $699 and that was way too high for me. I finally got the RX100 a couple of weeks ago for $450. It was worth the wait. The picture quality is great and I can carry it in my jacket pocket. I really want to take a photography class to improve my skills, but I’m just too busy right now. Perhaps in the summer, I’ll have a bit more free time.
As you can see, procrastination is clearly the way to go when the buying mood strikes. This is especially true for any tech gadgets. A new version comes out every year or two and the price of the current version plummets. Sony introduced the RX100 II late last year at $750 and the price of the original has been dropping ever since. Of course, the latest version is a little better, but the original Sony RX100 was already a great camera. Almost every review I read has been positive and I’m very happy with it so far. The previous version doesn’t necessary become obsolete just because a new one comes out.
Procrastination can be good
Generally procrastination is not good. You don’t want to put things off for too long. However, it can be a good thing when it comes to buying stuff. By waiting a few days, you can reduce impulse buying by a huge amount. A lot of time, you’ll find that you don’t really need that thing you wanted after all. Or by waiting a longer period, you may end up with a great deal on something you will really use. It will give you time to do a more thorough research on the price and quality as well.
Of course, procrastination has a way of creeping into other area. I’ve been meaning to replace our toilets with a more powerful model for a while and it keeps getting put off. Don’t ask… Now, I’m thinking maybe we’ll move and then I don’t have to replace them.
Do you procrastinate when it comes to spending money? What’s your strategy?