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My Want List

July 14, 2014

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my-want-listThere are several different tactics and ways to help avoid buying unnecessary things, aka “wants” or even “impulse purchases”. Since I’m trying to get out of debt and simultaneously unclutter my life, I really have to avoid these things like the plague.

I’ve tried a few different strategies, like the one’s that EM from Journey to Saving talked about here, to help myself avoid the temptation of shopping for and buying these unnecessary things. Yes, I still give in occasionally, as is evident in my shopping report back in early May, but for the most part I’m doing much better about NOT shopping and spending money. (Just FYI, I will be giving an updated shopping tally report soon.)

As EM suggested, I’ve unsubscribed from email and physical mailings from my favorite stores, I avoid my favorite stores at all costs, I don’t shop online anymore unless absolutely necessary, and I usually only go to Walmart once a month to get household necessities and I avoid going down any aisles that I don’t need to go down.

Another tip I have tried is to make the want list. I’ve started making a list of everything that I want with a date next to it.

I make myself wait at least 30 days before deciding whether or not to purchase anything from the want list. This keeps my shopping for wants down and also helps me plan ahead for any purchases I may go ahead and make. If I decide not to purchase it, sometimes I leave it on the list if it’s still something that I want and other times I discover that I no longer want that item and thus it gets removed from the want list.

Here is my current want list:

Have you ever tried the want list tactic? How has it worked out for you? What’s on your want list?

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If you are looking to save money and still get the things you want, you should check out this method!

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28 responses to “My Want List

  1. I guess I should have a want list. But really the only thing on mine would be a house. I went to Walmart the other day to get some things I needed and somehow managed to have a couple extra things in my cart that were not on my list. When I got home I let my extra purchases sit there and then decided on Saturday that I didn’t need them and I took them back. I was pretty proud of myself.

    1. That’s awesome Spunky! I’m so glad you actually returned the items. Many times people think they will return them but never actually get around to doing it!

    1. Oh! I do need to add new workout shoes to my list. I like to get my new ones to have “on hand” for when my old ones need replaced. I know it sounds silly, but I have to get them when I can get them since I live in such a small town. I have to take advantage of getting things all at once while out of town, or order online.

  2. I tried want lists when I actually had things I wanted (like a new phone). I had trained myself to “sleep” on want decisions, and thanks to my formidably poor memory, I always forgot about them. I guess I could say that I want a few computer pieces, but the yearning comes and goes (goes more often than comes), so there’s that. I’m not the best against impulse purchases though; if there’s something I want bad enough and it’s there for the buying, it’s hard to say no. Good thing it only happens once a blue moon.

    1. I’m glad it only happens to you occasionally. My want list is forever changing and growing then receeding. I keep away from impulse purchases most of the time because of the want list.

    1. Brian, I’m glad you like the idea. How old are your kids? I think it could even work for kids as young as 5-6 (depending on the maturity of the child of course). Good luck and be sure to let me know how it goes. 🙂

    1. That’s exactly why I’ve created a list. It’s not as much of a “splurge” if it’s planned, right? 🙂

  3. I’m glad you’ve made so much progress! A want list is a good idea. Like Catherine said, just think about which purchases are the most important to you right now. Hm, honestly, I don’t think I have anything I want right now. I’m pretty content! Hopefully that lasts the rest of the year, as my boyfriend has a few items on his want list, haha.

  4. I try to avoid shopping or being in places like Target when I’m really tired, hungry or upset – since all of those are times when my crazy brain thinks nail polish, lip gloss or a new top might help. Or 12 candy bars… nothing good comes of it.

    1. Those are great tips Mel! I too am an emotional shopper. I actually avoid Walmart completely during “that time of the month” due to my emotions being whacko! I usually end up loading up with chocolate and other junk food otherwise.

  5. I use this, too. I usually put everything on my Amazon wish list and then purge it as I go back. I just did a huge purge, and was shocked at some of the things I had listed on there….and glad I didn’t buy them! Left is a poster, a scratch-off map, a ludicrously expensive but awesome looking sink (date: when we finally become homeowners…maybe….the price is ludicrous after all,) and a bunch of super cute but stupidly expensive clothes for my kids. (We do mostly consignment and hand me downs for them right now.)

    1. I’m glad you did a huge purge! It’s funny some of the things we “want” but then we find out later that we didn’t want or need them afterall.

    1. Oh, i’m the total opposite, but it’s mostly because I live in such a small town that when I go online there are so many more choices than there are in store here.

  6. I do the “do you want it or do you need it” when buying things. The other day I bought a salad spinner because I got tired of wasting paper towels and drying off lettuce. I’m eating a lot of salad and fresh veggies from my garden. I can say I got it for $5 dollars after using points from doing surveys. 🙂

    1. Well, that sounds like a pretty good use of it then. As long as you use it regularly and you only spent $5 on it I think it’s fine. Plus, you are saving on not buying paper towels!

  7. There is a great Andy Stanley quote I had in my old purse “I want, is better than I owe” We don’t have credit cards but I would “borrow” from next week’s phone bill for this week’s want. I also read about using two highlighters and going through your bank statement one color is purchases you’re happy or grateful for and one is a color that doesn’t make you happy like debt or impulse buys you regret later, it can give you a visual if you’re really using your money to improve your Life and happiness. I wouldn’t do my whole statement just impulse buys and I would add up at the end of the month – it’s an eye opener

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