This Friday is Black Friday 2019. I am writing to encourage you to rein in the spending and not purchase things you don’t need just to “save” money. Let’s not go broke this Black Friday.
What is Black Friday
Ok, Black Friday needs no introduction. It has been a tradition for a long time now. Black Friday is essentially a day where most stores are having big sales to kick off the Christmas shopping season. Physical stores and online stores alike slash prices to get us suckered into buying things we probably don’t need. I remember when this actually was on Friday after Thanksgiving. Then it changed to Midnight on thanksgiving (technically Friday). Now however it’s actually on Thanksgiving day for most stores.
Some Facts about Black Friday
There are a lot of well known facts about Black Friday. I just wanted to hit a couple that I think are worth mentioning.
- Some electronics are made specifically for Black Friday and they are cheaper versions.
- Black Friday often doesn’t even have the best deals of the year
- Black Friday was a term originally used in the 1800’s to describe stock market crashes
- Over half of Black Friday shoppers regret their purchases after the fact
Lets dive in to these one by one.
1: Be careful of the great “deals” you see. You are spending less but oft times you are getting an inferior product. So are you really saving money.
2: If you are a really savvy shopper and want to save money then you pay attention to deals all throughout the year. The best thing to do is to know what you need ahead of time and have patience and strike when the best deal hits. It is oftentimes not on Black Friday.
3: I found this fascinating. Both uses for the term have been bad for our pocket books. Black Friday can be as bad for our bank accounts as a stock market crash. At least the stock market will likely go back up. The gadget you buy on Black Friday will end up in the trash heap before too long.
4: The Holiday season is upon us and we get the itch to spend money. Most people end up buying things they don’t need and/or things they didn’t plan on buying just because of FOMO (fear of missing out). Don’t get sucked into buying things just to but things. This is how you get into debt, or at least how you can not save as much money as you should.
My History with Back Friday
I have generally been pretty good at not spending more than I earn. I have never really been in debt trouble (except for my student loans). However, I have always liked to buy things with the money I do have. And although spending less than you earn is a great idea, it is far from all that you need to take into account. We should also spend less than we earn minus our bills, minus retirement savings. So I may have been good at not buying things on credit, but I wasn’t good about putting away 20% before I made purchases. This meant black Friday was an exciting day for me. Whether it was in stores or online I was always looking for some good deals. That is until I found the White Coat Investor and the Physician on Fire.
What did I learn from them. I’ll start with the White Coat Investor. I learned rom him that I have to pay all my bills first, then crush my debts, and also save at least 20% for retirement. Only then with the money left over did I feel comfortable looking for Black Friday deals. I know someone might have a broken vacuum and so they look on Black Friday for that. That is different, as it is more of a necessity. I am talking about just buying the latest gadgets and electronics for the fun of it and regretting it later.
What did I learn from the Physician on Fire? Among many things I learned that buying things and gadgets isn’t what makes one happy. I learned I could spend less, and have a more fulfilling life. I used to have to upgrade to the latest and greatest phone every year. Now Iunderstand that the phone I have is just fine. I’d rather save that money and put it towards achieving financial independence. Financial freedom will bring me a lot more happiness that a new gadget will.
My Challenge to you
Unless you really need something and there is a good deal this Black Friday, I challenge you to stay home. Spend the entire Thanksgiving with your family. Spend Friday either at work, or if you have the day off with family, or in the out doors. I promise you that whatever gadget you missed out on buying will still be there and have other deals at a later time. Usually you are not even saving money. Think about it. If you spend $100 on an item instead of $200, you didn’t save $100, you spent $100. Especially if you have student loans, or consumer debts, I challenge you to put your money towards that and maybe spend a little less this Black Friday. This change of mind set has helped me along my path to become Debt free and financially independent and I believe it will for you too.
-Debt Free DDS
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*Nothing on my website is professional or legal advice. I am only sharing information that I have learned and it may or may not be accurate. I am not liable for any problems you may have by following this advice. Please do further research and get professional and/or legal advice about any of these topics. This post likely contains affiliate links. This site could be paid for clicks or purchases made through these links.