Pennies matter more than you know. In the world of personal finance, we often focus on ourselves — our saving, our spending, our investing. It makes perfect sense. It’s what puts the personal in personal finance. Still, how we spend our money has far-reaching consequences that are easy to overlook during a time of year where limited time deals and flash sales fan the flames of consumerism.
How You Want Others to Be Treated
There has been much ado about Walmart in the news over the past year. After years of criticism for employment practices, they are now at the epicenter of the minimum wage movement with a #Fastfor15 fifteen-day fast ending on Black Friday. I have often heard friends lament minimum wage, yet these same friends are the first to stand in line for Black Friday doorbusters at Walmart. Scruples don’t always stand up in the face of sale ads. Regardless of your stance on Walmart, every dollar you spend at any store is a vote in favor of their employment, sourcing, environmental, and animal-cruelty policies. While I may not be the perfect shopper, I try to be mindful of more than just the sale price when making my purchases.
What You Want to Consume More Of
When I worked on slashing my grocery budget to $200 a month, it was easy to put organic foods on the chopping block. I resisted. Not only am I willing to pay a bit more for organic and all-natural foods for dietary reasons, but I also know that the more stores sell these types of items, the more likely they are to continue stocking the items and add more options. What started on a very small scale in most Aldi stores has grown to span almost an entire aisle now that Aldi realizes that shoppers want organic and natural food options. The same is true for Costco, who now outpaces Whole Foods as an organic-food retailer. If more people choose to spend their dollars this way, it should become clear to stores that customers want more healthful options at more affordable prices.
There are many considerations to take into account this holiday season. It’s a given that more than just Santa will be making lists and checking them twice. As you consider your budget, consult sale ads, and make your shopping lists, be mindful of your pennies and the impact they will make.
So Tell Me…How do you make your pennies count? Are there any products or stores that have earned your loyalty?