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Home Insights & Advice Small and large purchases: Tips for buying

Small and large purchases: Tips for buying

by John Saunders
15th Oct 20 5:07 pm

Before making a new purchase, it makes sense to obtain comprehensive information. This can often save money.

Whether a family or a single household, there are always certain purchases to be made in everyday life that can put a strain on the existing budget. New furniture, an electrical appliance needs to be replaced or a longer vacation is planned. The necessary money is not always available from the start. Nevertheless, there are ways to put such projects into practice.

In our daily life around our home, a wide variety of things ensure a comfortable everyday life. We are only too happy to buy new things and are slowed down by the available budget. Before making new purchases, you should therefore carefully consider whether and how the purchase is possible and whether there are options to save money. We show what you should pay attention to.

What to do if the budget is insufficient

Everyday life always presents challenges that present us with unexpected situations. The washing machine no longer works despite the best care, a new one has to be procured at short notice. But even the long-overdue vacation can exceed the budget actually available. Regardless of whether it is absolutely necessary or a desired luxury – the options should be carefully examined here.

Lend money

One option is to borrow money from friends or relatives on short notice. The big advantage here: There is inevitably no expensive interest and repayment can often be regulated more generously. In your own interest, however, it is advisable to record the most basic points in an individual contract:

  • The names of both parties involved (donors and recipients)
  • Amount of money
  • Clear designation as a loan, credit or loan (different from a gift)
  • Confirmation of receipt of the money
  • Signature of both parties
  • If necessary, information on agreements on repayment (duration, installment amount, possibly interest, etc.)

Money matters in particular are tricky among friends and relatives and require a great deal of mutual trust. Protection through a contract should therefore not be seen as a sign of mistrust. On the contrary, in this way, any problems are simply avoided in the best possible way from the outset.

Use credit

If the inexpensive variant of a private loan is not available, you can inquire at a commercial bank. There are also special options for short-term money requirements:

For example, the overdraft facility could be used for smaller purchases. Here, however, care should be taken to balance the “overdrawn” account as quickly as possible, because the interest on the borrowed money is relatively high. Since there is also no regular deadline for repayment, high additional costs can arise. In order to sensitize consumers to this, banks should inform their customers more comprehensively about the consequences or offer alternatives.

A so-called framework loan, also known as a call-on loan, is often cheaper anyway. This particular form of loan scores with its specific features, which can be particularly advantageous in emergency situations. Similar to the overdraft facility, a certain credit line is set in advance. However, the repayment modalities are also clarified at the same time. Once the contract is signed, the money is available. However, it can be used at a later time as needed. So there is always a certain budget available for unforeseen expenses.

Compare prices

Even if a purchase is to be made without a long lead time, it is worthwhile to compare prices before buying. Whether on the Internet on various portals, when looking at the offer catalogs of several providers or by briefly asking the retailers in question – this can usually save some money.
It is important not only to pay attention to the sales price. There are often decisive differences in additional services, such as an extended warranty, free extras or the shipping conditions for an online purchase.

It is therefore often difficult to compare the individual offers with one another. Then everyone should be briefly clear about which services are individually useful or desired. In some cases, a list of pros and cons for each option can help make the decision easier.

Use actions

In addition to comparing prices, you can also look out for special promotions. Today, discounts are not always announced through advertising, but are often hidden in vouchers or other price reductions. Voucher codes for a wide variety of products or services can be found on the Internet – be it with relevant portals or with the providers themselves:

  • You can often benefit from a price reduction when you register as a customer for the first time.
  • There are always discounts on selected products for special occasions.
  • Vouchers enable a price advantage through free delivery or a free assembly service.
  • A price reduction is granted if several items or product packages are purchased at the same time.
  • Under certain circumstances, you can also ask for a discount directly on site. If the product is cheaper at another retailer, many sellers are happy to give in.

Plan larger purchases

The larger the purchase, the more precisely the project should be planned. Wrong decisions can quickly turn into money here, so it makes sense here to weigh carefully. Whether it’s a major repair, renovation, or buying a new car, there are a variety of things to consider when making such investments.

A new heating system initially costs a lot of money, but in the long run it can help to reduce running costs considerably. The same goes for a new car. In addition to the actual purchase price, long-term maintenance costs should also be included in the decision for such purchases. Regular consumption, necessary insurance or possible price developments on the market play a role here.

If the purchase is connected with a service such as assembly, it also makes sense to compare prices for it. For this it is usually advisable to obtain offers. The more detailed the desired service is described, the better the offers can then be compared.

As soon as it is clear that something specific should be purchased, larger investments can begin to think about the financing. Whether you save money yourself or whether financing is an option then depends on the individual conditions.

Create an emergency budget

For certain unforeseen situations, it is always an advantage to be able to fall back on a nest egg. Even with a small income, everyone should try to put some money aside. Various approaches have proven to be particularly effective here:

  • If there is any remaining credit left in the account at the end of the month, this can be transferred to a separate savings account. There is no lack of money for regular expenses in the next month and this means that savings can be made for emergencies.
  • Regularly a predetermined amount can be made by standing order to savings hiking. So the nest egg grows automatically.
  • If money is saved in a call money account, a few interest incomes can even improve the budget. With this form of savings, the money is still available at short notice.
  • Depending on the possibilities, change can be regularly put aside from your wallet. This can be coins or small denominations. It is important to put the money away in such a way that something cannot be stolen at every opportunity.

If you want to fulfill a certain wish with a purchase, it is usually easier to save when the goal is clear in mind. Then it is usually easier to put some money aside on a regular basis.

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