Money Mondays with Chinkee Tan
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We are in the third installment of our series, 12 Financial Mistakes we do during Christmas. In this post, we will focus on the common purchases we do during this season na questionable if they are really needed or essential. Dito papasok ang konsepto ng WANTS vs NEEDS (luho o pangangailangan).
Identifying a purchase if it is a want or if it is a need is easy. You just need to ask yourself this question:
Can I still live even without this thing?
If your answer is no, then your purchase is definitely a need. Otherwise, it is a want or luho lang. To simplify, a purchase is essential kung pasok ito sa basic needs like:
Food (Pero hindi yung every day milk tea or excessive consumption of handcrafted coffee)
Clothes (Not excessive at pasok sa budget)
Indeed, madali lang to categorize a purchase pero ang mahirap is to have the discipline to stick to only buying the important things. To avoid making financial mistakes this season at para matapos mo ang Pasko na healthy pa ang bank account mo, let’s list down the most common unnecessary purchases Filipino do during the holidays.
Recap from previous weeks’ articles:
Financial mistake 2. No plan for the 13th month pay/bonus
Financial mistake 3. Not prioritizing the needs
Financial mistake 5. Ulirang anak award
Financial mistake 6. Ninang/ninong of the year
Financial mistake 7. Appliances/gadgets
May tradition ba kayo na magpalit ng TV o kaya smartphone every year to keep up with the latest specs? Dati okay na yung HD quality. Ngayon dapat 4K Ultra na. Yung upgraded ang specs na halos makita mo na ang pores ni Cardo Dalisay. Dati okay na yung may front at back cam. Ngayon gusto mo na six na ang cameras ng phone mo.
Hindi naman mali to buy appliances. But you must know which things to invest in. Does it really matter kung nadagdagan ang size ng TV? Does it really matter kung tumingkad ang color ng screen? Does it really matter kung dumami ang cameras ng phone mo?
Baka naman gumagana pa ang appliance or gadget na gusto mong palitan. Baka naman pwedeng ipambayad-utang mo muna ang perang ipambibili mo n’yan. Baka naman pwedeng pangdagdag ipon mo for business.
Remember, these things do not appreciate in value. Meaning, pagkabili mo niyan, lugi ka na agad dahil nabawasan na ang value niya. Hindi mo na ‘yan maibebenta nang same price o kaya mas mataas sa original price. Dahil nagamit mo na, bababa na ang presyo niyan. Tanungin ang sarili kung investment ba talaga ang pagbili niyan.
Isa pang mali sa pag-purchase ng gadget or appliance is the way we purchase it. Madalas, kapag ganitong season, we use credit card or loan plans to take advantage of the bagsak-presyo because of the “Holiday Promo” pakulo ng mga brands. Good news, mura ang gusto mong bilhin. Bad news, you may not have the money for it right now.
Sa ganitong pagkakataon dapat nating i-practice ang delayed gratification. Yes, masaya ka for acquiring that thing. Pero malulungkot ka na lang dahil for the next months ay matatali ka sa pagbabayad ng bagay na ‘yan. Purchasing should add to your happiness, not to your alalahanin.
If you would only delay your purchase until you have saved up enough money to buy it in cash, you will not be enslaved by the monthly bills and the monthly pangungulit of the collectors. If you would only wait a little longer before you purchase hanggang sa sapat na ang pambayad mo, mas mae-enjoy mo ang appliance or gadget na ‘yan dahil you are so free to use it dahil you have paid for it outright.
Financial mistake 8. Fashion / rebonding/rubber shoes
Totoo ang meme na kumakalat sa Facebook. Pag parang dinilaan ng kalabaw ang anit at unat na unat ang buhok ng officemate mo, malamang may 13th month na siya. Nadala n’ya na yun sa salon. Ganun din sa mga lalaki. Christmas is the common time to get new kicks because of the extra fund which is the bonus pay.
Bakit kaya sa salon o kaya sa mall ang diretso nating mga Pilipino whenever we have extra money? Bakit kaya hindi tayo dumidiretso sa bangko?
Matagal nang sakit ng karaniwang Juan ang pagiging one-day millionaire o ubos biyaya syndrome. Madalas na naririning ko na reason for such mindset and behavior is “Buong taon ako naghirap kata-trabaho. I guess I deserve this. I deserve to indulge myself.”
Naging joke na lang sa social media ang pa-rebond at pa-rubber shoes tuwing pasko. Pero kung iisipin, reflection lamang ito ng kawalan natin ng long-term financial goals. Madalas tayong naka-focus sa mga bagay na magbibigay ng panandaliang saya. We would choose to prioritize to make this kind of purchases, rather than allocate our extra fund to those things that would generate us more income.
Just like what we emphasize in this series, there is nothing wrong in these purchases, but it is not wise to prioritize this lalo na kung ‘di pa afford. Let’s restrict ourselves from making unnecessary purchases until we really have the money for it, until hindi nasa-sacrifice ang savings natin, until we can really afford it.
Financial mistake 9. Unplanned travel
Traveling started to boom in the rise of social media, especially Instagram. Parang may dagdag points if you have good travel photos with the hashtag #wanderlust. Again, there is nothing wrong with traveling. Some find it healthy and beneficial for their sanity dahil nga sobrang busy sa buhay. But traveling would be more fun if it is well-planned lalo na in terms of our finances.
It is not wise to travel agad-agad merely because you have received your bonus pay. First, because it is obviously impulsive buying. Second, mas mahal ang travel fare because December or the holidays is a peak season. Third, because it is not an urgent need. Baka pwedeng sa ibang buwan ka na lang mag-travel kung kailan mas mura ang tickets at kung kailan mas kaunti ang tao para solo mo ang tourist spots. And lastly, simply because it is not an endeavor that can give you more income.
You may see traveling as an investment because you may see it as taking care of yourself. But technically, pasok pa rin ang traveling sa luho or leisure. Mabubuhay ka pa naman kahit hindi ka makaapak ng Taiwan, ‘di ba? Life still goes on kahit wala kang photos sa palaces sa South Korea.
Traveling is just one of the things in life na you must do if you can really afford it at hindi yung pipilitin ka lang for IG points or to keep up with the barkada. Remember your long-term financial goals. Traveling will always be there. You can delay it until you have enough fund to freely enjoy it without all the anxiety of paying debt and thinking about what to eat when you come home and continue your normal life.
Yes, having beautiful hair, upgrading wardrobe, and traveling can add value to us especially to our image. However, notice that most of the time, we do this to enhance other’s perspective of us. We may look beautiful and cool to others, pero kamusta ang totoong kalooban natin? How are the aspects of our life that are not seen by the people? How’s the stability of our finances, the responsibilities we have to our families, the brightness of our future?
Always ponder on what is more important. The image we want to project or the stability of our future? It is always about choices. Be wiser this season.
THINK. REFLECT. APPLY.
- Alin mga bagay ang nabili mo noong past Christmas na you now know are unnecessary purchases?
- Which among the mentioned points are you not going to purchase this season?
- How can you remind yourself to always buy essential things and stay away from unnecessary purchases?
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