Heartland financial expert gives tips on ‘buy now, pay later’ plans retailers offer

Published: Oct. 8, 2021 at 4:26 PM CDT
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - Many people are used to making payments on a car.

But now consumers are willing to use a payment plan other other purchases.

This is becoming a popular way for you to get the items you want immediately and allow you to pay for them over a longer period of time instead of all at once.

One Heartland professor shares some advice.

”Debt’s not bad by itself, but debt does come with risks,” David Yaskewich said.

Missing a payment is one example of a risk - which could make your purchase cost more than you planned.

That’s according to David Yaskewich, who’s a chairman of the Department of Accounting, Economics, and Finance at Southeast Missouri State.

“There would be some potential costs that someone would face,” he said.

Yaskewich recommends consumers do their research before using a payment plan.

“Some of the sellers might charge interest, there are quite a few companies that are buy now pay later and when there are several companies, each could have their different methods of charging customers who use their app,” he said.

Target, Walmart and Amazon are a few of the retailers that offer the buy now, pay later option to customers.

A couple shoppers have mixed reactions about the installment plans.

“I’ve taught my children and I follow the same rule, that if you can’t afford to pay for it now, then you just shouldn’t get it, you don’t need it so I think doing something like that could get you in a lot of trouble,” Mitzie Cochrane said.

“I would definitely consider it, definitely have to be less forgetful for it, but I would consider it,” Kara Poschhackworth said.

Yaskewich warns not to make impulsive purchases just because you’re paying later.

“One of the concerns is consumers would tend to commit to more payments, have obligations to repay more loans,” Yaskewich said.

If you stay within your budget, he says it could be beneficial.

“Make purchases with your income in mind, and I think consumers might be alright,” he said.

Macy’s and Bed Bath and Beyond also offer buy now, pay later.

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