With high rents and house prices, and inflation outstripping pay increases, our disposable income in the UK is getting stretched and levels of debt are rising at alarming rates. Despite being cash-strapped, we are still buying loads of stuff we don’t really need. Research tells us that a whopping 99% of stuff that makes up what we buy is no longer in use 6 months on.

Buyer’s remorse, changing trends, financial worries and stress from literally cluttered lives mean our possessions actually bring us a lot less joy than we usually think they will. So if we can’t really spare the money and don’t use the majority of stuff shortly after buying it, then why do we buy it? We are 90% more likely to buy a branded item if we have interacted with the brand on social media– 90%! Advertising plays a huge role in what we buy, but do we really want what we see, or are we being influenced into thinking we do?

Do we really need to buy things to get what we need and want, or could we save money, resources and (mental and physical) space by getting them another way?

Many are bucking the consumeristic treadmill and choosing to get things differently. Traditional ownership models are being turned on their heads – people are buying the outcome (being clothed) not a fixed route to it (owning clothes). Why buy multiple pairs of cheap jeans when for the same cost you can hire amazing ones for a year and send them back for repair when you go through the knee? Do we really need a drill that we use once a year when a library of things puts hundreds of tools - and clever people who can show us how to use them – at our disposal?

Could we buy mobility and not a car through a car club license that loans us a Tesla for a mini break away and a Golf for nipping into town?

There will be always be stuff we’ll need to buy. So how to do we make sure that when we do, our choices give us value for money, build a better world and don’t degrade habitats and lives here and around the world?
Somewhere along the way we were told we were consumers and not to care.

It’s time to REINSTATE our rights as citizens….read on.

(See references for data and sources of the trends/stats eluded to)