Know Your Needs Vs. Your Wants


Basic Needs

These are the things we need to survive:
  • Shelter (the roof over your head… whether you own it, rent it, or live with a relative or friend).  This also needs to include taxes, utilities (electricity, water, and sewer) and basic repairs.  TV and telephone are optional… believe it or not!
  • Food… the basics for survival. Cookies and sweets optional!
  • Clothing, to protect you from outside elements.  This can be second-hand, not just designer.
  • Books and supplies for school.


Other Essential Needs

Although some of these items might be put off for a short period of time, eventually we need these things too: doctors, dentists, eye glasses etc.




Once our needs are met, options kick in.  You need to prioritize, figure out what’s most important.  How would you prioritize athletic activities or events, music or dance lessons, camp, fun trips?  Then there’s just cool stuff—clothing, CDs, iPod’s, concert tickets.

Make a budget.  How much can you afford to spend?  Do you need everything now, or can you buy something later?  Determine, where can you get the best deal for these items?  See  Shopping Choices - Stores & Catalogs.  Can you swap or sell CDs, computer games, a bike?  If you don’t have enough money, find ways to earn money see Paid Jobs section.  Learn how to save to buy something at a later time by putting small amounts of money aside each week.  Or maybe, you want to save it and buy something really big later on.  Or wait until you really, really want something.