Will 2024 be the no-spend year for us all?



01 Jan 2024 07:00am
Photo for illustration purposes only. - 123RF
Photo for illustration purposes only. - 123RF

WITH the existence of e-commerce platforms, we have to admit that some of us have been recklessly spending more on unnecessary items than we need to.

By we, I mean me...I might have a borderline shopping addiction, but I’m sure that you can relate.

Recently, my algorithm on YouTube and TikTok has been showing me videos relating to a ‘no-spend year’ for 2024, which has intrigued me.

The ‘no-spend’ concept is where users are pledging to reduce their spending habits and focus on saving money this year, with the main idea being to develop solid financial habits and reduce consumeris

Now, among the key aspects of the no-spend approach include:

  1. No-spend January: This challenge encourages participants to avoid unnecessary spending for the entire month of January, focusing on saving money and setting financial goals.
  2. Intentional purchases: Instead of impulsive spending, the no-spend movement promotes making conscious decisions about what to buy and what to avoid
  3. High-yield savings accounts: To maximise the benefits of the no-spend approach, participants are advised to open a high-yield savings account to store their unused money and put it to work.
  4. Budgeting strategies: Some users share their budgeting strategies and plans for a "no-buy year" on social media platforms, inspiring others to cut back on spending and focus on their financial goals.

To start a no-spend year, first of all we need to understand the concept as it involves a commitment to not spending money on unnecessary items for an entire year such as non-essential spending like take-out food, clothing, and decorations.

Aside from that, it is important to set clear rules. It means that you will need to determine what constitutes a necessity for you, and no, you can’t copy someone else as one person’s necessities may differ from others based on their lifestyle and profession.

Another important thing is to start small, hence a no-spend January could be the kickstart to ease ourselves into the challenge and allow us to adjust to the new spending habit gradually. Once you’re all good, you can commit to a full year!

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More things that could help? Share your goals with friends or family to help hold yourself accountable as having a support system can provide encouragement and help you stay on track.

More importantly, understand your reasons for taking on the no-spend challenge. More savings, reduce consumerism? Reflect on your why.

Also, remember that Jan 1 2024 will also mark the start of the imposition of the sales tax on low-value goods (LVG tax) in Malaysia.

A little recap on the LVG tax, it is a 10 per cent sales tax that will be imposed by a registered seller on all goods (with certain exceptions) priced at RM500 or less, which are sold online and brought into Malaysia via land, sea or air.

If previously we purchased goods from e-commerce platforms from other neighbouring countries due to their lower price, this year we will need to add another 10 per cent to the price and see if it is still worth it.

Hence, could this LVG tax be among the signal that we need to spend less and start saving more?

It could be. After all, we are the generation of overconsumption and debt especially with the excessive scrollings that could tempt us into buying items as well as buy now pay later scheme that kept trapping us to get more stuffs?

I personally think that 2024 can be a reset for our spending habit. It will not be a walk in the park, but together we can try. Will you join me?