How to tell if splurges are “worth it”

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So my recent big purchase, as you know, was on Boxing Day of the Macbook Pro that I semi-impulsively bought online through Future Shop.  Did I get the dreaded Boxing Day Hangover?

No, I think not.  Even though I spent big bucks on the Macbook, I still think it's “worth it”.

So how does one tell if buys are worth it?

Will you get a lot of usage out of it?

When I buy big ticket items such as clothes or shoes, I think to myself, “will I use this? a lot?”  Yes, I DO own a pair (or two) of those $150+ jeans, but those are pretty much the only jeans that I wear.  I wear them all the time because they fit me well.   As I use the item, lets say three times, I divide the total cost $150 by three, so each time cost me $50 to use it.

As you use the item more and more, the ‘cost per use' goes down and the item is worth it- in my books, anyways.

I find that I spend more money on sale items that I'm “iffy” about and they add up and sit in my closet or just sit there, not being put to good use.  That's money wastage, right there.

Do you absolutely love it?

I think if it's something that you are 100% sure you are going to love, then it can be justified.  You must be able to love it a few years down as well!

Does this item go on sale?

To justify a big purchase, you want to make sure you can get it on sale if possible.  If that item rarely goes on sale (in the case of my recent purchase), and you know you will get a lot of usage out of it, then go ahead.  If at splurge-purchase time, the item is on sale, then you will feel better knowing you paid less than the other guy.

Do you need it?

To avoid decreasing your personal savings rate to 0% (or GASP! in the negative territory), one must not splurge regularly on items that are not needed.  I needed a laptop. =)

Okay, so enough about justifying my MacBook Pro purchase… let's digress onto checking it out.

Side-note-Gush about the Macbook Pro:

I'm a PC user, so the switch to a Mac was different.  But a better different, some of the pluses are:

  • Mannn Safari is FAST!
  • The laptop takes like.. a few seconds to load up! (My old one took 10 minutes I swear)
  • It's purdy and good-lookin'
  • It doesn't get warm (you know how laptops heat up and make noise when they're struggling)
  • LOOONG battery life
  • Not having the “please renew your antivirus software” pop-up daily is priceless!

Check out some of this Macbook Pro eye candy:

Apparently, Apple is going to make an announcement of the Apple Tablet.  It's supposed to be hush-hush until the announcement (sometime in the Spring).  I SWEAR I saw someone on the street the other day in Vancouver discussing the tablet… I even saw the box..!  It was small and looked “tablet-like”.  I might have been hallucinating though, maybe there's another Apple product that is out that looks like that.. who knows.   Guess we'll have to wait and see!

How about you?  What is your personal gauge for purchase-worthiness?

Are you guys PC users or mac users?  Do you find one better than the other?

Related Posts:
The Boxing Day Hangover

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Young is a writer and former owner of Young and Thrifty and the main "twitter' behind Young and Thrifty's twitter account. She lives in Vancouver, BC and enjoys long walks on the beach, spending time with her anxious dog, and finding good deals. If you like what you read, consider signing up for email updates.

2 Comments

  1. Steve Zussino on January 11, 2010 at 11:59 am

    My wife has a Mac and she loves it. It is a great screen (24″) and it doubles as our TV (less clutter).

    I like it but the main thing that drives me crazy on it is a lack of a DELETE key.

    For the money you could possibly get a PC for a lot less but having a Mac is part prestige as well (I admit they look great and easy to use – somewhat).



  2. young on January 11, 2010 at 10:34 pm

    24″! It must be the iMac. =) Yes, there screens are awesome. When I first saw an iMac i thought, where’s the hard drive!!??

    Yes, you can get a PC for dirt cheap these days, less tan $500 or so. They are easy to use, but getting used to the little nuances in differences is a little hard (e.g. “command” and C is the same as CTRL + C on a PC).



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