Financial decisions cause us an inordinate amount of stress. From small financial worries – like how to budget for day-to-day expenses – to large financial worries – like when and how to invest – can be stressful enough to send us into a tailspin. It doesn’t help, of course, that there are so many options and possibilities out there. With financially-minded technology it feels like there’s a new product, service, or bank to consider every day. This can add to the stress we’re already feeling and cause us to do one of two things:
- Shut down completely. If we’re feeling overwhelmed, we may come to a standstill. This isn’t helpful because we won’t be able to make an effective decision that meets our financial needs or solves our problems. We might lose money, pay too much in fees or interest if we refuse to change banks or services, you name it!
- Make a snap-judgement decision – that’s wrong for us and our situation. We’ve all made poor financial decisions in the past and it’s never fun. If you make a judgement call without knowing all the information, or based on bad information, you could truly cause yourself financial harm.
Obviously nobody wants to make bad financial decisions, or to not decide at all, but these things happen. They happen a lot more often when we’re overwhelmed or stressed out.
What makes a bad decision “bad”?
A bad money decision doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s truly bad. It might not just be the best decision for you. If you make a call that either loses money or doesn’t make you as much money (or save you as much money) as another decision could have, it’s probably a “bad” decision. You want to be living your best financial life, not walking the line between mediocre and great.
Several things come into play when you discuss making a poor financial decision. Often it has nothing to do with the intelligence of the individual. Usually it’s a result of many other factors. Here are a few things that play into your bad financial decision making:
- You’re emotionally invested.
- You feel like you’re making the right decision because someone you know made a similar decision.
- You’re choosing to work with a company, brand, or financial institution you’ve worked with in the past without researching their services.
- You went with the company that advertised to you.
- You didn’t do enough research.
- You did too much research and became overwhelmed – leading to a rapid-fire judgement call.
These are just a few of the reasons you might make a bad financial decision – or even just a decision that wasn’t the best fit for you. This may leave you feeling even more overwhelmed then before. “How am I going to make the right decisions if literally everything I do will somehow get in my way?” you might be asking. Luckily, there is a way around several of these human errors when it comes to money decisions: doing the research ahead of time on impartial comparison sites.
How do I do my research the right way?
This is a common fear. You’re always going to run the risk of over-researching different products, services, or companies and end up committing to the wrong one – or, the wrong one for you. But comparison websites really do help.
Their value comes, in large part, from their ability to remain unbiased. The reviewers on the website you’re looking at likely don’t have an emotional connection to the products, services, and companies they’re reviewing. And they don’t have an emotional connection to your unique financial dilemma – they don’t even know you!
This gives them the ability to provide excellent, thorough, documented research that compares different services, products, and companies. As you wade through this research there will be a temptation to discredit it. That’s fair, and you should look at several review and comparison sites before making a final decision. However, the truth of the matter is that very few reputable comparison and review websites provide you with faulty information. Their sole goal and purpose is to empower you to make the right decision – regardless of how you may feel.
Take the guess work out of decision making – and save money.
Comparison and review sites help you take the guesswork out of research. They give you the cold, hard facts and help guide you towards an answer that solves your financial problems. More importantly, they’ll empower you to work with new companies, try new products, and experience new financial services that can legitimately save you money. You’ll either decrease your spending or find ways to grow your wealth – and that should always be the goal when making a scary financial decision. Comparison and review websites can help get you there.