Frugal IdeasJobs & Money

Some Impulse Purchases Are Good

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By Andrea


I realize that it might seem strange to put “impulse purchase” and “good” in the same sentence, but this statement is true.

Just today, an impulse purchase I made about 2 years ago paid off.



Back in my eBay Seller days, I would purchase just about anything on clearance — especially if I knew the market for that item and thought it would sell.

One day, my local Eckerd’s drug store had a clearance on fashion earrings.  They were selling for just $1 a pair. (They originally sold for $10 apiece.)  In a crazed impulse, I purchased all of the earrings in the store.

This was around the time when a lot of sellers left eBay due to yet another price change.  So, when I quit selling on eBay, I had a basket full of earrings, some purses, and a few other clothing accessories left over.  Unfortunately, in yet another case of forgotten clutter, I forgot about those items.

After a recent basement cleaning however, these items were re-discovered and organized.  Today, my kids had to go to a last-minute birthday party, and frankly, I did not want to purchase a gift.  I normally give my kids a $20 allowance for birthday parties, but with little notice and a tight budget, I wasn’t feeling too giving.

Suddenly I remembered the stash in the basement!  I sent my daughter downstairs to shop.  She came up with an attractive purse, and 2 pairs of earrings in an attractive Asian gift box.  Looking at the cost of what I originally paid for these items ($4), I saved a total of $16 and still provided a very nice gift.

My advice: If you are an impulse buyer, try to gear your bad habit toward good purchases.  Good purchases would be anything you would buy on a regular basis that is on clearance like toiletries, school stationary, and underclothes.  Trinkets and gift type items are also good if they are on sale and you can keep them organized in a gift trunk or closet to give out for Christmas and Birthdays.