We’ve all had a case of buyer’s paralysis before, facing down a future purchase with indecision. We’ve bitten our nails and paced back and forth; asked ourselves repeatedly, ‘Should I buy this?’ That simple question is so challenging to answer, especially when “this” comes with a big price tag. A lot of money on the line makes it difficult to see the other side – along with anything that could inform your decision to cross it.

In such moments of buyer’s paralysis, it’s helpful to remind yourself of a few considerations. First, that we don’t always need the things that we want. It’s so easy – and common – to blur the line between these two categories, but stay sharp! Separating wishes from necessities could spare you from a superfluous purchase that you’d later regret.

Now, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t treat yourself from time to time. Even financial experts say that occasional splurging can be fiscally healthy in moderation, but they would also caution you to avoid the kind of shopping sprees that wear on your wallet. That’s why, in addition to necessity, it’s critical to consider the affordability of a purchase, as well.

As you make that consideration, don’t forget the importance of timing. For example, you may find it easier to fund your next expenditure after payday, but it’s tough to absorb the double whammy of a big purchase right before bills are due. Timing can also affect the actual price of what you’re planning to buy through sales, deals, and giveaways.

So, keep an eye out for these cost-cutting opportunities, but ask yourself, ‘How long am I willing to wait?’ Some purchases are more pressing than others, after all, and it’s difficult to stay away until they make the clearance section. In that sort of situation, it’s a good idea to ‘shop around.’

When you look for other buying options on the market, you’re liable to find one for less than what you would have been charged originally. The benefits of a discovery like that are clear, but things do get murky if the alternative turns out to be cheaper in price and quality. That’s when you need to consider your priorities and decide which quality matters more to you.

Experts would remind you that – in the cost/quality ratio – durability is a key factor. At the end of the day, low-quality products usually break more often and must be replaced frequently as a result. This means buying for less could cost you more over a long period of time – though, to be fair, it doesn’t always.

If you’re not sure where the balance of cost and quality lies in your next big purchase, try asking a friend who once bought something similar. The same goes for any questions you have about the item’s necessity, affordability, etc. Without a doubt, such friendly advice will prove itself priceless, because there is no worthier consideration than trusted counsel.

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