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Don’t get caught in the vicious cycle of wasteful spending and forget your larger financial goals as a mother. Remember you have children to take care of, a kitchen to run, and a future to save for. You can’t expect your spouse to shoulder all responsibilities, can you? There are one too many signs which, if heeded, can save you from wasting a lot of money. These are some dangerous money traps you should steer clear of.
How Not To Get Caught in a Financial Catch
1. The ‘Free’ Trap
Do not ever buy into the “best things in life are free” statement. When sellers want to trap you, they entice you with free deals. Offers like “issue your credit card for free” and “buy x car and get the last three installments for free” sound familiar, don’t they? While these freebies seem great at first, this is a smart money trap. The seller understands how consumers do not ever take the pain of reading between the lines of these sale pitches. This free service in time becomes a paid service, without you ever realising until you see surprising deductions in your bank account or start getting pesky calls asking you to clear your dues. You should smartly stay away from such free offers, except maybe free cookie hand-outs for your child.
2. The ‘Upselling’ Trap
Have you ever been to a store where the sales guy urges you to also try a red dress that matches with the red heels you’re planning to buy? Did you succumb to his smooth talk and ended up buying both the red dress and the red heels? Well, you’re not alone. Becoming a victim of upselling is common. This money trap can leave you in a daze with stuff you may not need, thus eating into the money you may have set aside for family or personal needs. Your savings for the month could come to nought because of this. To avoid this, ensure to make a list of essential things before shopping and give little importance to sales talk. This will help dissuade you from buying anything extra.
3. The Sale Trap
Who doesn’t like a good sale? The thought of getting something for you or your family for half the price is awesome. While we salivate over discounted goods, shopping during sales also leads to unnecessary buying and at times even hoarding. Remember, just because you see the word “sale,” doesn’t mean you need another black dress and your child needs another set of building blocks. Of course, as a mom, denying your child something may sound cruel. However, in the long run, you’ll be able to see the futility of such impulsive and emotional buying. If you do not have the willpower to stop shopping, leaving your wallet at home should work. Do not fall for sales tags and promotions. This is one of the most common money traps to avoid.
4. The Market Trap
You enter a supermarket with a list in hand. You take a cool stroll through the aisle with the cart. You strike the diapers and the granola off the list. You spot a box of chocolate cookies your little bundle may enjoy and a shampoo that promises lustrous hair in two weeks. You drop these in the cart too. You get back, and realise that the 6 things you went to buy became 12 things, and now cost you more than you’d bargained for. Sounds familiar? Supermarkets are created to make shopping a soothing experience. They push you into submission to spend more than you normally would. Stick to your guns and buy only what you need.
5. The App Trap
Addicted to Candy Crush? Well, chances are that you could fall into the ‘freemium’ trap. Most game app developers entice you to play their games. What happens when you run out of lives and need to progress immediately? You usually fall for the ‘pay’ option to move ahead in the game. Each time you waste money on a game, it fills the pockets of the developers. The next time you are waiting to pick your kid up from school, read a book rather than getting lured into the money trap spun by game developers.
These money traps are potentially dangerous as they make you mindlessly shop and in return impact your savings. How to avoid money traps then? Stay committed to the cause of saving money. Remind yourself of more important things such as investing in health care funds for your kids and house maintenance. When you have your priorities right as a mother and wife, these landmines can be safely ignored.