NEWS COPY – By Gemma Francis
Clothes, a car – and engagement rings are among the purchases Brits have bought but later regretted, a study has found.
A poll of 5,000 adults revealed 51 per cent have dipped into their savings to splurge on an extravagant buy but ended up wishing they hadn’t.
Almost one in 10 even admitted regretting their purchase within minutes of parting with the cash, while another 15 per cent said the guilt kicked in within an hour.
Fast food, home furnishings and even a house are also among the purchases people have later regretted.
The Save the Savings study, by Carphone Warehouse in a bid to help Brits become better savers, also found impulsive purchases are costing the average adult £289 a year.
Spokesman Carl Doran said: “We all have those moments when we see something and really want to buy it.
“But while we might want it at that precise moment, it’s easy to make a purchase – particularly a big one – and start to question whether it was the right decision soon afterwards.
“It’s made even worse if we have had to dip into our hard-earned savings to be able to buy it.”
Researchers found 38 per cent dive into their savings at least once a month to treat themselves, but just 18 per cent put the money back in every time.
One in five even admit their spontaneous spending has led to rows with their partner, with 46 per cent saying this was because they were meant to be saving money.
Others got annoyed because they didn’t agree with their purchase (32%) or said it was too expensive (26%).
Worryingly, the poll also revealed almost one in five adults admit to dipping into their savings while under the influence of alcohol – something 56 per cent later feel guilty about after sobering up.
And it’s no surprise with those drunken spenders parting with an average of £147 a year on alcohol-influenced buys they don’t really need or want.
One respondent admitted to buying 10 plastic flamingos for their garden while another drunkenly paid for a caravan in Spain.
Sixteen per cent of Brits also admitted to having deliveries turn up and having no idea what to expect when they opened the packaging.
The research also suggests attitudes towards impulse spending and buyer’s regret varies depending on where you live, with respondents in Birmingham most likely to make an impulse purchase and worry about the cost later (11%).
But those in Bristol are more likely to think before they buy (69%).
In light of this study, Carphone Warehouse – the home of comparison for a better deal on mobile, TV, broadband and energy contracts – is urging the nation to be extra vigilant prior to rushing into a contract which they might later regret.
Doran added: “At Carphone Warehouse we understand our customers’ specific needs and tailor it to the best offers across a wide range of networks and ways to pay.
“Rather than impulse buying, we encourage our customers to take a considered approach, using our 30 years of expertise and unique comparison tools to ensure customers are getting the best deal, minimising hidden surprises and allowing customers to save their money for the purchases which matter most.”
Carphone Warehouse compares the UK’s leading providers and, in over 950 stores nationwide as well as dedicated comparison tools on their website, matches customers with the best deals for where they live across mobile, broadband, TV as well as energy contracts.
For more information on how you could save up to £687 on your bills through Carphone Warehouse
Among the purchases Brits buy but later regret are:
An engagement ring