AMP research has found that 69 per cent of Australians regret impulse buys.
The new study reveals that more than two-thirds (69 per cent) of Aussies suffer from 'post-purchase blues' - the feeling of regret, worry or remorse after purchasing a product or service.
With a record $50bn1 expected to be spent this Christmas, the research suggests more and more Aussies could be singing the blues this Christmas as overspending, impulse purchases and a lack of budgeting create a perfect storm.
According to AMP's research:
- More than half of Aussies (56% per cent) have no idea how much they spent on Christmas presents last year.
- Almost three quarters (71 per cent) of Aussies admit to spending more than they can afford.
- An overwhelming 88 per cent admit to making impulse purchases, with fashion (51 per cent) and electronics (32 per cent) topping the list of most common impulse purchases.
"More than half of us feel excited when we make an impulse purchase. But the initial euphoria seems short-lived for most as 70 per cent of people regret their purchases" - Michael Christofides
Michael Christofides, Director of Retail Solutions at AMP Bank, says the findings provide just another good reason why we should all look to be more engaged with our finances.
"Christmas is about gift giving and celebration and it's very easy to get caught up in the moment," says Mr Christofides. "We might see an item that would make the perfect gift for a friend or family member that's a little bit over our budget but make the purchase anyway.
"More than half of us feel excited when we make an impulse purchase. But the initial euphoria seems short-lived for most as 70 per cent of people regret their purchases.
"With over half of Australians not knowing how much they spent on Christmas gifts last year, our impulse habits are setting us on course for more overspending again this silly season."
Who are the main sufferers?
While an alarming number of Aussies will come to regret their Christmas purchases once they check their bank balance, it's the younger demographic that is likely to be truly remorseful this Christmas, with 87 per cent of 18-24 year olds experiencing the post-purchase blues.
Women are also more likely to suffer from post purchase blues than men, with 79 per cent experiencing regret following a purchase, compared to 60 per cent of men.
How to cure the post-purchase blues?
The simple answer is better money management. AMP Bank's Mr Christofides believes we need to get better at being aware of our impulse habits and how they impact our budgets.
"The good news is that there's a range of technologies out there to help Australians take control of their finances. Our recently launched Bett3r smart bank account, is a good example of what's possible. It proactively and automatically moves your money between pay, save and spend accounts, helping you better manage your money and know what's safe to spend so you can avoid impulse spending and suffering from post-purchase blues!"
For more information go to https://www.amp.com.au/personal/banking/products/amp-bett3r-account
AMP commissioned Pure Profile to conduct a survey amongst 1,000 Australians
1. Based on Australian Retail Association data, November 2017.