Although the true tightwad saves up money before buying anything, that doesn’t work for everyone all the time. Sometimes, a refrigerator breaks down before we have time to save for a new one, the couch of our dreams goes on sale two months before the bonus check arrives, or a retailer is offering huge loyalty awards for using the store credit card. Financing is a business proposition for retailers. They are in it to make money. That’s fine as long as you what the costs and the benefits are of the transaction. In a good transaction, receive a fair price and the retailer makes a fair profit. In a bad transaction, you pay far more than you think you’re paying, and the retailer makes an excessive profit by misleading you. Want to know more about a the cost of “pay later”? Read the story on our sister site, Living on the Cheap.