The Ultimate Test to Know if Something is Worth Buying

Updated: September 21, 2022

Buyer’s remorse is the feeling of regret you have after buying something, especially if it’s an expensive item.

It can be that sense of fear that you made a wrong choice, that you should have bought another model or another brand. Or guilt overspending on something you don’t really need, that you should have not bought it at all.

Sometimes, it’s anger towards yourself because you let someone talk you into buying, that you should have just walked away from that persistent salesman.

We all experience buyer’s remorse. It’s a normal feeling. And there are times when the purchase is actually a good decision and not a wasteful buy.

But how do you know if it’s the former or the latter? How do you know if something is really worth buying? Ask yourself these questions before making a purchase, and you’ll know the answer.



Do I need it or do I just want it?
Necessities come first. If it’s just something nice to have, then rethink your purchase.

Do I like the item or just the price?
Remember that if you bought something worth P1,000 for only P600, then you did not actually save P400. You really just spent P600.

Can I wait before buying it?
Give yourself a couple of weeks to a month before buying a non-essential item. Oftentimes, you’ll change your mind and won’t want the item anymore.


Is there a cheaper alternative?
This is important to ask, especially if you’re buying electronics and household accessories. If you want to brew your own coffee, consider a coffee maker or coffee press first before that espresso machine.

Am I going to use this regularly?
Last year, a friend bought a tent for a mountain hiking trip despite my offer that he could just borrow mine. He recently confessed that he hasn’t used it ever since that trip.

Can I borrow it from someone?
I don’t own any power tools despite my love for do-it-yourself home projects. Why? Because my father owns several that he doesn’t regularly use, so I just borrow them.


Can I afford it?
If you can’t pay in cash, then rethink the purchase, especially if it’s an unnecessary item. For big-ticket items such as a house or a car, make sure that your budget can cover the loan payments.

Will it go on sale soon?
Ask the sales staff if an item will go on sale. You’ll be surprised how honest most of them will be. Sometimes, they’d even hold the item for you until the date.

Is it available for less somewhere else?
If you plan to buy something pricey, then check several stores to compare prices. Outlet boutiques, thrift shops, and online stores could be selling it at a cheaper price.


What do others think about the item?
Check online reviews, and ask your friends and social network for opinion regarding the item. This tip especially applies to gadgets and appliances.

Do I already own something similar?
Unless what you have is already obsolete, not enough, or efficient anymore, or you’re willing to sell or trade the old one, then buying a similar item is wasteful.

Will it last me a long time?
More than the brand or the style, I consider function and durability as the most important factors that will convince me to buy something.

In Summary

Everything we buy falls into two categories: needs and wants. Of course, buying what you need should be a priority, then save up and make room in your budget for the things that you want.

There’s no need to be meticulous when it comes to small purchases, but always try getting the best value for your money.

Consider your reasons, its purpose, your budget, and the item’s quality before buying something. If it passes the questions above, then it’s definitely worth buying.

What to do next: Click here to start your financial journey with IMG Wealth Academy


  1. Excellent way to look at a potential purchase. In a previous post, I wrote about my guilty pleasure of purchasing high quality classic style clothing for my beautiful bride. While it is true she really does not need more, I am looking to the future as these items may well last her a lifetime. I get to see her happiness now but she will have a potential lifetime collection of great clothing at deep bargain prices. All items came from on-line sellers and a few local ukay ukay shops. No way we would ever pay almost $2,000.00 USD for a single designer dress. Because of my wife’s astute shopping habits she has several closets full and we likely did not spend more than the price of one or two of these items at regular retail. Again, just my guilty pleasure of seeing my gorgeous wife happy and well dressed. All the bills are up to date, business is doing well and our charitable giving increases every year so I allow myself this small sin.

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