Almost 40% of Impulse Purchases Are Made in This Surprising Place

A woman wearing pajamas sitting on her bed making a phone call with twinkling Christmas lights hanging on the wall behind her.

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You’ll never guess where most people make their impulse purchases.


Important points

  • Impulse buying is common and can take a toll on your budget.
  • Many impulse purchases are made in a place you wouldn’t expect.
  • Shopping in bed can hurt your finances.

Impulse spending can be a real detriment to your financial security. Buying items you don’t plan on can wreak havoc on your budget and make it harder to reach your goals. In some cases, buying unexpected items can even lead to credit card debt.

That’s why it’s so important to understand when and how impulse spending occurs, so you can take steps to avoid it and shop more wisely. That doesn’t mean cutting all the fun out of your life or never spending anything you enjoy — but it does mean cutting out the random purchases that cost you and that you often end up regretting.

While many people assume that these types of purchases happen while walking through stores, the reality is that there is one very common place where spontaneous spending is made that could come as a big surprise.

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This is a prime location for impulse purchases

According to a SlickDeals.net survey, a shocking percentage of impulse buying happens in bed. In fact, purchases made in bed account for 37% of all total spontaneous spending. And for those who shop online, the rate of unexpected purchases made in bed is even higher. A total of 70% of survey respondents who shop online said they were more likely to spend money impulsively when they were in bed and using their phone.

Whether this happens because people are tired and their self-control is slipping, or because clicking on a phone in bed somehow doesn’t feel like real spending, this can be problematic. The SlickDeals survey found that the average person spends an estimated $314 on impulse purchases each month. That’s nearly $4,000 a year that’s used to buy random stuff — much of which is picked out when you’re laying around in your bed.

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How can you stop impulse buying in bed?

With so many impulse purchases being made while using your phone in bed, the solution to cutting spending seems simple. Just stop scrolling online shopping websites on your phone once you’ve gone to your bedroom. Not only can this be good for your wallet, but it can also be a lot healthier for you overall, as the blue light from phones can affect your ability to fall asleep and get a good night’s rest.

If you don’t want to leave your phone in another room when you go to bed, there are still steps you can take to curb your impulse spending while you lay down for the night. For example, you might want to make a simple rule that if you see something you like at night, wait until morning to buy it. There’s nothing to lose by just waiting a few extra hours as you can still purchase the item if you want it. But chances are, by daylight you’ll change your mind.

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These simple behavior changes can make a world of difference between spending your money wisely or not, especially since such a large amount of impulse spending takes place in the bedroom. Try them out and see if it makes a difference in your ability to stay on budget.

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