If there’s something strange in your neighborhood… Who you gonna call?
Have you ever bought something and soon realized it was a HUGE mistake?
You are not alone!
As you know I pride myself on being frugal, on researching anything I am going to purchase, and of course finding the best deal. I am one of those odd people who actually enjoy shopping for used cars. There is nothing like having multiple spreadsheets with a cost comparison analysis done when you walk into a dealership and share with them why their car is overpriced. Whenever my wife and I are considering a large purchase, she knows that it’s going to involve a TON of research and TIME.
We classify anything over the 200-ish dollar limit as a large purchase. There was no science behind this number but we both understood that there are specific purchases that should be discussed before buying them. By coming to this agreement it has helped her and I stay on the same financial page.
But what happens when you do NOT communicate with your spouse about a major purchase? Here is a story of a guy named…. Let’s call him “Eric”, who did what he never should have done and some key lessons learned.
The old mattress
When the complaints about our mattress started rolling in day after day, I knew a major purchase was on the horizon. It is here that I begin to make a series of mistakes…
Mistake Number 1: Started the Research Alone
Guys please don’t take away my “Man Card” for this next statement…
We are not always the smartest.
It’s true! There are times, and I would argue MANY times that getting advice from my wife has actually helped me make a better decision. Her mind is built differently than mine (thank GOD!) and sees the world from a different perspective.
The fact that I attempted to find a mattress without her still blows my mind. I am not one of those people who says “I have no idea what I was thinking…” because I remember exactly what I was thinking.
1) Knight and Shining Armor Syndrome-
I have no idea if knight and shining armor syndrome is real , but its on the internet and so it must be true. I love the “idea” of coming to the rescue of my wife to help solve all of our problems. However what usually happens, as was the case here, I create more problems than I solve.
2) She doesn’t really like researching-
This is true. She hates it. She doesn’t have the same passion I do. But that really isn’t a great reason to not at least let her know that I was thinking about making a major purchase.
Mistake Number 2: Did my Research at Night
Eric What does night have to do with this?!?
Hear me out…
When do all those insanely crazy infomercials play???
Obviously they know something we don’t… (or it’s the cheapest time spot…)
To add to that, when are you SUPER exhausted from working and dealing with a 3 year old???
And did you know sleep exhaustion makes you dumb… FACT.
I believe a combination of exhaustion from chasing a 3 year old around the house plus the time of night seriously impacted my mental capabilities… J
Type “New mattress” into google…
Go ahead. I’ll wait.
Did you notice anything odd?
Well if you aren’t in the market for a mattress, all may seem normal. But what you don’t realize is that the majority of those top ranking mattress brands have NO physical store.
Yup! You buy a mattress sight unseen, untouched, unlaid on…is that even a real word? Basically you are at the mercy of the reviews and their marketing pitch. All those mattresses are made from some sort of foam, gel, and magic memory foam from heaven…
Like all major purchases I treated this research exactly the same. I would find a mattress through google, search BBB for the company, and finally search google for reviews.
What I found was hundreds and hundreds of different reviews of the mattresses on google. They would include videos, testimonials, unboxing, the list goes on. The majority of these reviews included some sort of scale of firmness and of course rating. I was enthralled… in heaven actually. I ate up this “research”. I watched every egg smash test, every wine glass jumping test, everything!
For days and days I read reviews, checked for prices, looked for coupons, and narrowed my search down to just the right few.
An odd thing that I began to notice was more and more my Facebook Feed was becoming FILLED with these mattress ads. I chased rabbits down “clickbait” black holes. I spent more and more time reading about these mattresses until I found the “right” one. After about two weeks of researching I had found a “deal”.
50 bucks off and FREE PILLOWS!
Ghost Mattress you are the WINNER!
I went ahead clicked submit and fell asleep.
The following morning I woke to share the EXCITING news to my wife, who still had NO IDEA about this.
**Gentlemen please, please, please heed my advice: NEVER EVER purchase a mattress without her knowledge**
To summarize the conversation it went something like this:
Me: Guess what???
Me: I bought us a new mattress last night online and it will be delivered by the end of the week!
Her: You did what?!? Why? Can we return it? Is it soft? How do we know we will like it?….
The questions went on for a while…
Me: Well you had mentioned needing a new mattress and sooo… Wait CHECK out this VIDEO!
Shows one of the videos
Her: I don’t like this idea.
And that is why you need to communicate about making any large purchases…
In my head I knew that she would see the light once she laid her head down on this thing. Every review out there commented on the “best” night sleep ever and it being the “perfect” firmness.
The day it arrived was like Christmas! I lugged it into the house and dragged it into the bedroom. These things are HEAVY!
I spent the next 30 minutes or so putting together the foundation. Each passing minute got me more and more excited about what this bed was going to feel like.
FINALLY it was time for the big unboxing.
I brought the entire family into the bedroom as if they were about to witness a miracle.
I pulled the mattress from the box…
Lifted it onto the foundation…
And cut the plastic…
As if it were Frankenstein breathing life for the first time, the mattress expanded, growing and wriggling on the foundation. It took only a few minutes but my little guy was AMAZED!
My wife… not so much.
The first “lay” down test
If you were buying a mattress in a traditional store, you might have laid down on multiple beds before you settled on the right one. The salesman would tell you something like “Lay down for 5 minutes and let your body get adjusted to the bed”.
Buying a mattress online eliminates that opportunity. Once you unbox it is your first opportunity to put your head down and test it out.
After reading all the reviews, I was ecstatic to try this new bed out. As soon as it was fully expanded I sat down and laid down…
A bit firm I thought.
“Michelle are you ready?”
Seconds after she laid down I knew I had made a mistake…
“This thing is hard as a ROCK! And what is that smell???”
Over the next 12 months I made multiple other mistakes. The company wanted to keep our business. I actually have zero complaints with them. They sent us a topper to “soften” it, they offered to replace it with a different model, they even offered a refund…
In the end we accepted the topper which appeased my wife. I on the other hand actually learned to enjoy the mattress so I hated the topper.
Here we are almost 12 months later and I have finally realized that this is NOT the right mattress for us and never was. I have fought the stubbornness and embarrassment of being wrong which would never of happened if I had gotten Michelle’s advice from the start. So maybe a “Ghost” didnt cost me $1,000, maybe it was my ego…
Michelle and I are now in search for the “right” mattress which we are shopping the more traditional way.
Key Lessons Learned
Facebook ads work! Those pesky ads chased me around my newsfeed daily. I clicked them multiple times and watched every single video.
Affiliate marketing works! Now knowing what affiliate marketing is, I realized that ALL of those sites giving reviews, creating videos, etc were getting a piece of the pie.
Lastly, and most important, never ever make a large purchase without getting your spouse involved, regardless of how noble you think you are being.