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Scottish consumers spend small fortunes on regretful purchases

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Scottish consumers spend small fortunes on regretful purchases

Keeping Up Appearances: A third of Scots have admitted to spying on their neighbours…

Two thirds of Scottish households believe it’s important to keep up appearances when compared to others on the street while 33% of Scots have admitted to spying on their neighbours.

Consumer psychologist, Dr Cathrine Jansson-Boyd:

“Naturally people compare themselves to others, in particular to those close to them. Hence, they tend to keep a close eye on the people around them – what they wear, what gadgets they have and even what changes they make to their house. If others have something that is particularly appealing, that they either don’t have or that is better than what they have, a ‘want’ to get the same or something better kicks in. If they don’t, they may end up feeling second-rate. It is like a subconscious game of keeping up with the Joneses.”

Recent research reveals the effects of neighbourhood rivalry on purchasing habits. The COVID-19 pandemic brought with it very few benefits, yet people’s relationships with their neighbours was one positive, with more than a third of Scots (38%) claiming that it brought them closer together as a result.

Whilst the same can’t be said for everyone, with 11% of the Scottish nation having confessed to not even knowing the names of their neighbours, how many of our interactions are just about keeping up appearances?

Commissioned by an electricals and appliance brand the survey showcased the habits of neighbours across the UK and revealed just how nosey we are as a nation. The findings revealed that almost two-thirds of Scottish households (64%) believe it’s important to keep up appearances when comparing themselves to others on the street.

Consumer psychologist, Dr Cathrine Jansson-Boyd:

“At a time when finances are tough for people, this may be causing havoc to your wallet. Thus, it is key to shop with your head – stylish looking items that can make the neighbour green with envy, do not have to be the most expensive ones.”

Mowing the lawn (14%), travelling to the same destination (12%) and buying a new car (10%) topped the charts when it came to the nation responding to their neighbours’ actions.

It’s therefore no surprise that almost half the UK (47%) are curtain twitchers and consider themselves to be a nosey neighbour, with those in Scotland falling just behind (40%). 33% of Scots have even taken it that one step further and admitted to spying on their neighbours. Whilst more than two thirds of people trust recommendations from people on their street, it seems like most would be better keeping their recommendations to themselves, with almost a third (31%) admitting to getting jealous when their neighbours go a step above and purchases something better than what they have.

In fact, 32% of the nation admit to having spent money to keep up with their neighbour, only to go on and regret their purchase. For an estimated 4+ million consumers this has come at quite a substantial cost, having spent more than £10,000 on rash or regretful purchases.

The research was conducted as part of Hisense’s Choose Smarter campaign, which encourages consumers to make considered purchases and get their hands on the latest, premium technology, without the premium price tag.

Arun Bhatoye, Head of Marketing at Hisense UK:

“We’ve all been guilty of having a peek at what the neighbours are up to or buying – whether it’s a new car that they’ve just forked out for, or we’ve nipped round and seen their latest bit of tech. But with Christmas gifts and January sales purchases, those subtle brags or new purchases are bound to be talk of the town, and it’s important that people don’t get carried away, spending a fortune for things they don’t need to. It’s important that people ensure they’re making smart choices and getting the most for their money – less might just be more!”

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