We all like to get a good deal, and post holidays offer plenty of opportunities to find them, but what happens when you bring that bargain home? Are feelings of elation replaced with disappointment? Did you get what you wanted, or did you get yourself more trouble?
The start of a new year is the perfect time to hit the refresh button on old shopping habits and ways of thinking that might be preventing you from getting what you really want. There is a simple principle you can use to evaluate any purchase, big or small . . .
The Principle of Wise Stewardship
When it comes to the things we own – our shoes, our cars, our homes – applying the principle of wise stewardship at the time of purchase gives us greater clarity about whether or not we are getting a real deal. To be a steward of our things means to become their keeper. The foundation of a RichLife is built on the idea that the better we take care of what we have, the more we will be given.
But what happens when we have more than what we can take care of?
The more stuff we own, the more our time is required in their care and maintenance. This is why applying the principle of wise stewardship to your purchases begins with a simple question:
Is the price worth the cost?
Is the price you are paying now worth what it will cost you tomorrow? Let’s take a look at this in terms of shoes, cars and houses, and evaluate the three reasons why you might not be getting the deal you thought.
- Reason #1: You bought what was on sale rather than what you needed.
You find a pair of boots 50 percent off, but the only size they have left is a half-size too small. They are so Cuuuute! . . . but they kill your feet. Is the price worth the cost?
- Reason #2: You got a good deal today that you can’t afford tomorrow.
This new car comes with a $3,000 cash-back bonus, but your car payment will go up by $550 a month and that stresses you out. Is the price worth the cost?
- Reason #3: You got more than you can take care of.
They just dropped the price on a house that is bigger than you need, but now you can afford it! Or can you? What about utility bills, repairs and maintenance? Is the price worth the cost?
You won’t be getting what you really want unless you consider what it will cost you later in terms of pain, stress, and time. This is a big-picture approach to living rich, and a principle you can apply to other investments as well. Before saying yes to an opportunity, ask yourself, is the price now worth the cost later?