Tuesday, June 5, 2012
Do you have a clothing budget?
Why have a clothing budget? *Clothing is a necessity just like shelter and food. Tell me, can anyone leave their house with no clothing? I don't know about you but personal budgeting should include clothing therefore I think that it is very important not to overlook this catergory when starting to organize your finances.
*It helps us to decide which item we really need and lacking in our wardrobe versus what is in trend. It also limits our impulse buying because of "we gotta stick to our budget" thinking. For example if you think that an original price $750 designer shoes was mark down at 50% off was a steal, in reality it is not. Depending on your clothing budget it is not a steal because it might be almost 50% of your clothing budget for that month. Also think about this, what is the cost per wear? The decision is still yours if buying that designer pair of shoes justifies the purchase and I say you go girl ! I think a part of being a well dressed person is being a savvy and smart shopper. Do you agree?
*It relieves guilt. If you stick with your clothing budget, there is no need to hide shopping bags under the bed, or trunk of your cars or shoe boxes under the couch before your husband or significant other finds it. Admit it at some point in your life you are guilty of these (wink wink) !
*It creates a peace at home. Since you are not hiding all your shopping trips, online purchases or Ebay's , then having a set budget is a great way to bring peace and understanding at home. Besides any purchases you made are mutually agreed upon because it is part of the "clothing budget" so no need to be asked the question - "nice top, looks new, when did you buy that?
Setting a clothing budget *Income - Most financial planners would tell you between 4 to 6% of your take home pay. This gives you a clear idea of how much budget will be set aside for clothing. And as I have mention earlier - clothing is a necessity ! We all need it !
*Job - Your job is a good factor in determining how much money needs to set aside for clothing allowance. For example if you work requires you to wear uniform then you will only set aside a smaller amout for clothing allowence. But if you work in a law firm or in a fashion magazine, a larger amount of clothing budget is needed since you require clothing that of higher quality.
*Shopping Habits - Are you the type who shop a lot, once or twice a year and so on? I think if you often shop, you need a monthly shopping budget and stick with it. It is hard but it will help you in the end. If you are the type who only shop once or twice a year in bulk purchases then i suggest that a clothing budget just for that purchase is applicable.
*Family - Remember that the clothing budget is not only for yourself but the clothing budget is for the whole family. If you are single the clothing budget only applies to you.
*Future goals - Do you have a financial budget because you are dreaming of owning your dream house, be financially independent one day, go on a cruise, to Hawaii, paying off a credit card, student loans, etc etc ? If all of the factors that I enumerated list one or more of them, these also affects your clothing budget as well.
Stick with your budget
*I don't know about you but based on my experience, I tend to over buy at times. My eyes are a lot bigger than my pocketbook. I would buy stuff on an impulse or because it's on SALE that later on I would not even used and will be forgotten. I make it a point now after a shopping trip or online shopping to ask myself, how many ways I can wear it? Is it a need or a want? What is the cost per wear? etc etc. You get my point.
*Writing down your purchases I think is an excellent way to track down your monthly spending. It will help you track down if you stay within your budget for the month or over spend.
*If you did not spend all your clothing budget for this month, it is ok to carry over. It means you have more to spend next month. Even if you have a clothing budget it does'nt mean you have to spend it all.
*Take a moment and ask your self which of these purchases I need now and which one's can wait till next month or later. With this in mind, you can have a general idea of what to get and what not to. Check your closet maybe you have the same item already and maybe you just forgotten.
For those of you that are entering the over spending territory, having a clothing budget will tremendously track down your purchasing habits and keep you to stick with it. Also making you aware that every dime you spend needs to be worth it so I think you will ended up buying clothing of good quality which in turn can last and last in your closet for years to come. Having a budget makes you a savvy shopper, better dresser , saves you money and time and most of all peace of mind ! What are your thoughts? Please share. And as always thank you for stopping by and let me know if you are starting this journey or already have started or you don't need to? This is a new territory for me and I must admit it is not gonna be easy, it is tricky but will try my very best...