‘What is a lay-by or a layaway?’, you might ask.
Well, it’s best to demonstrate it this way: You go in a store and find something you like. You try it on and it fits perfectly. You would like to buy it but don’t have enough money in your wallet or ATM card. You either don’t have a credit card or you do have but don’t want to pay extra fees. You then go to the counter and request for this item to be placed on lay-by or layaway. This means if the seller accepts, a 20% or 30% deposit must be given on that day for that item to be placed in reserve, and pay it off within the set period stated in the receipt before getting the item.
The term “lay-by” is used here in New Zealand and Australia, while “layaway” is used in other countries.
The lay-by or layaway terms may vary where you live. Here in New Zealand, the period where you’re given the chance to pay it off varies from three weeks to two months. The deposit percentage also varies, so it’s best to check the terms and conditions in the store where you buy any item. Also, ask about any administration or cancellation fees that may apply.
This is a very good option for those who have set budgets, no credit cards, whether or not you’re careful about where your money is spent as there are no additional fees for putting the items in reserve.
I have to admit, I love shopping when I can and putting an item on lay-by can be addictive at times. But this also helps me budget my finances as I would know which amount is spent on what item. Where I come from, there’s no layaway or lay-by option in any store there. It would be a good opportunity for any retail store to offer it, as it can really help.