View Full Version : What Do You Mean When You Say You Don't Have The Funds For a Figure / Toy?

12-09-2009, 11:57 PM
I don't usually have the CASH for the stuff I collect (and really don't need). I think one of the best examples of extraordinary unnecessary spending by me was on the FX Lightsabers (new Dooku and Obi-Wan TPM ones).

$240-plus dollars I really didn't have.

How do you feel about just charging such purchases to credit cards (as you usually need one to order online anyway)?

It seems to work out for me that there will be a dry-spell where I've nothing to buy and I pay off these kinds of purchases (SideShow Star Wars figures too, for another example).

So will you not buy them on credit? Or is your credit maxed-out too?

I don't see it as applicable to the principal "If you don't have money for it, don't buy it." The nature of collecting is that when you DO have money for it, it may not be available or might cost more on the secondary market.

Like I mentioned, it's also collecting's nature to have dry spells where you can pay for what you charge.

This is interesting to me, because for a limited time there are figures like Hrchek Kal Fas, who I want 18 of for dioramas, and I feel I'm best served by picking them up as soon as I can. That's $144 which I can't really say I have lying around. However, I don't know what I'll be spending $144 on in January, February, or maybe even March. I hope the EU wave hits, but remember the TAC when new figures didn't come out in 2007 until May? (True I got some earlier - but the hobby was in for very quiet times for a while back then).

So for me, if I'd ever say "I don't have the funds for it," I'd have to mean I was maxed-out on credit as well.

I might say I don't want to justify the funds for something. I did buy the Clone Wars Y-Wing, but still feel horrified that I charged $70 for that.

So what do you think about all this? What do you mean when you say you can or cannot afford some Star Wars toy or another? (Or the Celebration in Florida even?)

12-10-2009, 12:19 AM
Well, I probably can't afford anything. I'm on student loans and will be for the next two and a half years ($90,000 in the hole!) but I live fairly frugally and buy the figures I want (not really army building the way I would want to. When I was an undergrad I stopped buying figures and it bit me big time when I graduated and tried to buy stuff I had missed on the secondary market, it had all become a good deal more expensive. So now, if I get at least one of every figure I want I figure it's cheaper (with the interest on the loan) than waiting until I graduate and trying to buy them all on eBay. Same goes for vehicles, if the BMF or AT-TE had come out now there's probably no way I could have pulled the trigger and paid for the essentials.

I do have to pass on some cool stuff because of all this, like the CW Y-Wing. The Y-Wing is pretty cool and I wouldn't mind adding it to my collection but as a vehicle that's just CW and fairly expensive, I'm passing. The Target TIE fighter is another example. The way my Targets are stocked this will probably be on sale December 26th but even at a steep discount I'm not going to buy it because money's tight and it just doesn't wow me the way that say the AT-ST did. (and if it takes a few years to see the new cockpit on a film accurate TIE, fine by me, I may be out of school by then!)

12-10-2009, 12:34 AM
I've avoided credit like the plague since my bankruptcy in 2002 and I have no plans whatsoever to get a credit card or a loan for any reason.

So, when I say that I don't have money for a new toy, then it means that, if I buy it, then I will have to skip paying one of my monthly bills (rent, car insurance, cell phone) or do without food for a few days. Of course, I never actually let myself get into that financial position.

Usually when I am running low on funds and there is something new that I want, then I list some older items on Ebay to generate the money to buy the new toy. Of course, the more you do that the more painful each cut gets and I'm at the point now where I'm unwilling to let go of most of my current collection. I've also sold some stuff that I regret getting rid of and I'm actually looking to buy again, which is incredibly frustrating because you will never get that exact item back.

Darth Jax
12-10-2009, 12:36 AM
i never use cash, all purchases go on the credit card. i never carry a balance on the cards, i pay whatever i've charged in full every month. so when i say i don't have funds it means that i've spent as much as i can and still pay off the balance for that month. when hasbro staggers releases, it means i don't have to pass anything up the first time i see it. however, when hasbro goes 6 months without getting stuff out and then dumps 40 figures into the market (at what seems like the same time), then i have to pick and choose what i buy when i find it.

shopping online is an easy way to exceed what i'd like to spend any month, so i only buy exclusives that don't make it to retail that way. everything else i find at retail or do without until a really dry spell hits and then i'll slowly catch up via e-tailer sales

El Chuxter
12-10-2009, 09:26 AM
I've got cards that are paid off and that I pay off each month but could carry a balance on if I wanted to, so, technically speaking, there's not been a Hasbro release I couldn't have bought if I wanted to. For me, saying I don't have the money is probably more accurately stated as "I have already spent more than what I'm comfortable spending on little plastic men this month [usually way less than $75, though, on occasion, as much as $200]" or, more often, "I do not see the value of this toy as being what Hasbro and the retailers wish to charge for it." I still don't have the Target Rancor, for example. I could, if you want to be totally honest, have army-built them (albeit not exactly a huge army) if I wanted. But he's not worth $50, so, in my view, I "don't have" $50 to spare on him. If he were $25, or maybe even $30, it'd be a different story. And, yes, I am more willing to drop $30 on the smaller Dewback (provided any local stores get them in again), simply because I think Dewbacks are cooler than Rancors and it's worth more in my mind despite the smaller size.

12-10-2009, 10:26 AM
Some years ago, when I was single and working three jobs, I would use what money I had left after paying bills, rent, utilities, credit cards, insurance, etc. to fund my collecting. I would also use what little credit I had on my credit cards, say I had a $1,000 limit, and my card had a balance of $975.00, I'd make a payment on the card say for an example $50.00 that would give me about $75 before I hit my limit, I would figure out how much interest I would be charged approximately, say $30 for the next bill, which would leave me about $45 in which I could use to purchase figures with.

When I met my wife, and she moved in with me, I was able to cut my lowest paying job, the one I was bringing in only about $200 a month from. This still left my job at Wal-Mart and my pizza delivery job. Wal-Mart money, the hourly wages from the pizza job plus the money my wife kicks in toward the bills covered most of the expenses. The tip money, plus the delivery fee cash went toward my misc. expenses, and my toy collecting. However having a wife around, it made it hard for me to justify buying a Star Wars figure, without also bringing her a boquet of flowers.

Then after the transplant surgery in February, I decided not to return to the pizza delivery job when I had recovered from the surgery. The bosses there were becoming greedy, and started keeping the hourly wages when a driver would hit 10 deliveries. They figured that the drivers made enough from the tips and delivery fees. It has been a struggle, but I have managed to get by on just working one job, but I have cut my collecting down severely since I have somewhere between $1,800 and $2,000 a month in living expenses, and I'm only bringing home around $730 every two weeks from Wal-Mart, plus $400 a month from my wife. that gets me about $1,860 a month, so you can see I don't have a lot of expendable cash left. I did win a nice amount from the Illinois state lottery, which I used to pay down nearly $3,600 in credit card debt. That has freed up some credit to buy a few items. I also took advantage of cyber Monday at Entertainment Earth to get a couple of deeply discounted items and free shipping. I foresee having to get a part time job after the holidays to keep from sinking back into debt. Also, I will start all over with my medical insurance which I have a $1,200 deductible on. I will have my one year follow up from the surgery to make sure my remaining kidney is functioning properly. The remaining money I have left from the lottery winnings will be used to buy Christmas presents and have some donated toward the Relay for Life effort in June of 2010.

12-10-2009, 10:53 AM
A big part of what I have to consider when buying something is space for me. I intentionaly have a very very very very limited amount of space I can use for my collection. if I want something big I have to sell off something big/and or a lot of smaller things.

Staying on topic with the cost of space for a moment, yet another thing that limits me is that each shelf I have usualy has some kind of theme.

I have:

A small shelf for dark jedi/sith (Full)

A shelf for imperial army building (full)

3 shelves for rebel pilots/vehicles (No room for large vehicles, pleanty of room for droids and pilots though I feel if I add too many more it'll look crowded so that's nearly full)

501st shelf (full)

Work in progress shelf (Where I keep restoration projects of old vintage figures and vehicles I havn't finnished yet) (full)

Shelf for msc. figures (room for one more figure and one more astromech)

Shelf for jawas, there droids, and core characters (Room for one more core character (Leia can't find any version of her at all) and a few more droids and jawas).

Vintage re-packaged figures/originaly packaged figures space on a wall (Nearly full, room for 2 more)

So, before I even pull out my money, I have to account for room and if it'll fit in my collection as part of the cost for me, as I'm litteraly running out of physical room and dont have anywhere to put things. So I'm essentualy limited to rebel pilots (and even then, only ones I think are particularly interesting) Droids, Jawas, Leia, and one (or two if I move the rebel pilot in my msc. figure shelf to one of the rebel pilot shelves) Msc. figure that I happen to realy realy like.

Next is the money. Just the basic price has to be figured in for a basic figure. At about 8 bucks a pop at most locations,(anyone remember when they where 4.50? How about 1?) lets be honest here. These figures are becoming extreamly expensive in my mind for what they are. If the price went up even just 50 cents any time soon I'd suddenly say "That's it" unless I found them loose on ebay for realy cheap, and even then, I'd have to look at my space and see what I can fit/REALY want.

Since I have bills, a house that I am paying for, a kid, and soon will be going to school full time wich means less money for the family, It will be a rare day indeed when I buy more than one figure at a time and more than 2 at 8 bucks now a days, because in order to keep the lights on, go to school, put food on the table, the fact I wont be working while in school, leave little room to mess around with our finances.

Then there's how I'm going to pay for it. Simply put, I use a debt card, cash or check. I NEVER use a credit card to pay for something in my collection. So, I'm more likely to buy my one or two figures for the month at the beginning of the month when money is actualy preaty good (Wife gets paied once a month). If I dont find what I'm looking for, I'm not going to buy it toward the middle of the month or end unless its one I insanely mad crazy amounts am willing to risk huge argument with wife and or divorce over and even then would still get her permission must have.

When I say I dont have the money for a figure I dont have it.

12-10-2009, 04:45 PM
Without going into details of my rather embarrassing financial situation, when I say "I don't have the funds," I mean one of four things depending on the item:

1. I literally don't have any available funds to buy something.
2. I have funds, but they need to go towards essentials.
3. I have funds, but I don't necessarily want to buy right now due to an item I'm waiting to find/be released and if I spend these funds now, I won't be able to get the item I'm waiting for.
4. I could potentially have the funds if I strived for it, but due to the overpricing it's only worth it if the price is mere pocket change to you.

Bel-Cam Jos
12-11-2009, 08:38 PM
I don't usually say "I don't have the funds for them," because I often just pass on the items due to lack of desire. I guess I'm getting older than my younger collect-them-all days. Books and music and cards have kept their desirability, but the action figs and toys have waned.

I virtually always have a credit card in my wallet, and I am very frugal with using it. So the balances (even during holiday times or vacations) are paid off monthly, as I don't go hog wild.

12-11-2009, 10:44 PM
What I mean is that I have more important things at the time to put that money toward like bills; such as the vehicle insurance bill. So I must pass on something I want, but something that is not a "must have" item for my collection.

Bel-Cam Jos
12-12-2009, 09:59 AM
... but something that is not a "must have" item for my collection.For me:

Must Have SW Toys, 1995-2002. :cry: He was preceded in death by younger brother Kenner Toys 1978-1987. :sad:

12-12-2009, 11:57 AM
I've got to take the larger financial picture into consideration before I buy anything. Before I go hunting for the larger purchases like vehicles, I need to know how much money will be lefter over in the month after paying the mortgage, car payment, student loans, etc. Since I haven't been able to locate many new Legacy figures lately and $8 isn't really a big deal, I don't need to think about those to much.

Knowing what Hasbro is releasing over the next few months and the approximate MSRP allows me to determine what I really want and how much I'm going to need to allocate toward my "must have" purchases. After comic-con I was able to figure that I'd need to allocate at least $150 for the Red 2 x-wing, AT-ST, and dewback. My kid wanted the turbo tank, so there's another $100 or so. The y-wing didn't make the cut even though I really liked it, so it's $70 I don't have to worry about it. After I figure out what I'll need to spend I can make the call of using credit or cash. Of course, there's always things like vehicle maintenance, unexpected doctor bills, etc, that can mess up my budget.

12-12-2009, 12:37 PM
I have no problem charging my SW purchases to my credit card. I just try to keep the balance paid off, or try to at least keep it from getting out of hand(around $1000). When I get over that, I start limiting purchases, so thats my "don't have the funds" scenario. I've also got a deal worked out with my brother that we keep tabs on what we buy each other. Since he lives much closer to the Wal-Marts and other stores, if he sees something, he'll usually purchase it for me. If I find something online, than I'll purchase it for him. We've been doing this for quite a few years now and its worked out pretty well.