Finance professionals will almost always give you the same old advice- be smart with your money and don’t buy what you can’t afford. And so you save up, max out your 401(k) contributions, never have a credit card balance, and more often than not pass on that pair of shoes that are exactly your style but aren’t necessary.

Let’s face it- putting up that amount of money for something you don’t absolutely need can be a difficult feat.  As it turns out, you’re not alone.  According to a national survey in the Journal of Consumer Research 3 years ago, penny-pinchers outnumber spendthrifts three to one.

young woman with shopping and money

However, living in a perpetual state of money-saving and not treating yourself to the benefits of your hard work on occasion can be just as damaging to your happiness as worries over savings can be! So how can you manage to find a happy balance between saving and spending? On this National Splurge Day, we have 4 occasions when splurging is OK!

 

  1. A Good Deal

  • Remember those perfect shoes we mentioned earlier? If you see them go on sale or find a coupon online, go for it, even if it’s a little more than you’d normally spend! This is especially true if you’ve been on the fence about them for a while- the satisfaction of wanting them for months, combined with the savings you scored will make you feel doubly good about the purchase.

  • If something that you buy and use frequently has a bulk deal, go for it! It’s a little more money up front, but the savings in the long run will be worth it.

 

 

  1. An Investment in Your Career

  • That big industry conference that only comes once a year? Go ahead and attend. The knowledge you’ll gain and the connections you can make are priceless.

  • Continual education, whether just taking a class to help you brush up on a skill or going back to school for a higher degree, is always a solid investment in your future.

  • If you’re confident your investment will pay for itself in the form of higher earnings or opportunities, it could be worth the price tag.

 

 

  1. Memorable Occasions

  • Take the financial plunge on opportunities that will strengthen important relationships in your life- a family vacation or a visit back home are great examples.

  • Vacations may use a significant amount of money depending on the location, but the experiences and memories will last a lifetime.

  • Many studies have shown that taking time off work helps to rejuvenate you and will help you come back to work even stronger.

 

 

  1. Things That Will Actually Be Used

  • Be strategic- before you buy anything, think about how often you’ll actually use it. If you buy something pricier but use it daily, or even just a few times a week, compared to buying a cheaper alternative that almost never gets used, the price-per-use of the pricier item will be significantly lower over time.

  • We should all be splurging on products that we constantly use. The higher up-front price generally means better quality, and thus less money spent on repairs or replacements later on. For many of us, this means smartphones, computers, and cars.

  • Strategic splurging on quality products can make your life better, more productive, and save you money in the long run.

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