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5 Steps to Take Before Making a Large Purchase

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5 Steps to Take Before Making a Large Purchase

Bitten by the gotta-have-it bug? It could be a stationary bike that’s caught your eye, or maybe you want to spring for a new entertainment system. Before you go ahead with the purchase, though, it’s wise to take a step back and follow these steps.

Step 1: Wait it out

Often, a want can seem like a must-have, but that urgency fades when you wait it out. Take a break for a few days before finalizing a big purchase to see if you really want it. For an extra-large purchase, you can wait a full week, or even a month. After some time has passed, you may find that you don’t want the item after all.

Step 2: Consider your emotions

Before going ahead with your purchase, take a moment to identify the emotions driving the decision. Is this purchase being used as a means to fix a troubled relationship? Or maybe you’re going through a hard time and you’re using this purchase to help numb the pain. Be honest with yourself and take note of what’s really driving the purchase. Is it really in your best interest?

Step 3: Review your upcoming expenses 

What large expenses are you anticipating in the near future? Even if you have the cash in your account to cover this purchase, you may need that money soon for an upcoming expense. Don’t spend money today that you’ll need tomorrow.

Step 4: Find the cheapest source for this item

If you’ve decided you want to go ahead with the purchase, there are still ways to save money. In today’s online world of commerce, comparison-shopping is as easy as a few clicks. You can use price comparison apps and websites to find the best price and retailers for the product you're looking to buy.

Step 5: Choose your payment method carefully

Cash can be your go-to choice if you have the funds on hand now. A low-interest credit card may offer purchase protection, just make sure you can meet your monthly payments. Another option is to use a buy now, pay later program, which you'll need to have at least 25% of the purchase price saved. And, same as having a credit card, you'll want to make sure you can afford to pay off the rest of the purchase price of your item in fixed installments.

If you'd like to explore getting a County Federal Visa Card, call us at 408-282-0700 to discuss your options.

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