How to Enjoy Luxury While Also Being Financially Responsible
Luxury isn’t an altogether bad thing. The problem with it is when luxury items become the norm in your home and drown your finances. There is a careful balancing act you must undertake in order to enjoy some of life’s luxuries while also building strong, healthy finances.
To help adhere to this delicate balance, follow these tips:
- Understand what luxury is.
What is considered luxury in one home may not be luxury in another. Where one family views five-star dining as a luxurious event, another may find dining out at all to be special. Understanding where you are financially and what you view as luxury is the first step to keeping it in check.
- Always look at your budget.
When considering a purchase, look to your budget every time. Don’t even consider a high-end, luxury item until you know for certain you can afford it. If your finances can’t accommodate it, yet your heart is set on the particular item, start saving. Don’t ever overspend in order to make an extravagant purchase.
- Don’t compare luxuries.
Like previously mentioned, what is one person’s luxury may not be another’s. Just because a friend can afford a brand new, high-end sports car doesn’t mean you can. And that’s okay! Understanding that financial responsibility is more important than “keeping up with the Joneses” will help you stay focused when you may be tempted to compare your life to someone else’s.
- Give yourself free luxuries.
Not all luxury has to cost a pretty penny; in fact, many luxuries in life are priceless. For example, time is one of life’s most precious luxuries. Make sure to schedule completely free time for yourself on a regular basis. Don’t fill every single moment with to-dos and activities, because time is the one extravagance you can never get back.
In your free time, do things that make you feel most luxurious, like reading a good book, tinkering with hobbies, and spending deep, meaningful time with friends and family. Time, experiences, and shared moments are some of life’s most simple and precious gifts that often require no money whatsoever.
- Appreciate the luxury you do have.
When you stop noticing the luxuries you do have, you tend to start stock piling more and more of them and before you know it, you’re financially underwater. Learn to appreciate the little things in life that feel luxurious to you like a Saturday spent with a good book or a hike to a beautiful, lovely view.
- Give yourself a monthly allowance.
You’ll begin to feel frustrated with yourself and your finances if you’re always pinching pennies. Set aside a monthly allowance and use it on simple luxuries that you truly enjoy. Maybe it’s going to a special event or pampering yourself. Maybe you put it toward hobbies or begin saving it for an exciting vacation. By doing this, your money becomes more valuable because some of it will be spent on things you enjoy instead of just bills and responsibilities.
- Make luxury swaps.
Consider swapping out constantly used items for higher-end ones when they need to be replaced. For example, if you enjoy cooking but your knives have gone bad, replacing them with high-end ones may not only make you feel luxurious, but could also save you money in the long-run. Typically, luxury items are of higher quality and last longer than their bargain counterparts. Choose options that are “the biggest bang for your buck” when replacing rarely used items in your home to save money.
- Create a luxury space.
Every home should have an area that makes you feel luxurious. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on it or even make a single extravagant purchase. This is simply a spot that makes you feel happy and content. Whether it’s a cheerful bouquet of fresh flowers in the entryway, a room dedicated to your hobbies, or a luscious garden for your green thumb, having a space that speaks to you will help keep the balance in check.
Final thoughts: Luxuries are not always bad. They only become a problem when you don’t keep them in check with your finances. These steps will help you appreciate the luxuries already in your life while remaining financially stable for years to come.