How To Untangle Yourself From Big Buys You Regret

Remember the time you bought that replica Batmobile in a moment of idiotic whimsy and then you were like, oh, crap, shouldn’t have done that? Good news! There are ways to slip out of big ticket items, although we’re not sure about Batmobiles.

SmartMoney details a few ways you can back out of major purchases like cars or vacations, for those itchy moments of buyer’s remorse.

Big-ticket retail goods: Stores like Wal-Mart and Target accept returns for up to 90 days, but make sure you read up on restocking fees, which could total up to 25%.

Buying with credit card: Many cards have return protection, which offers a refund of up to $250 on purchases made within 90 days on items the retailer won’t take back. However it must be in brand-new, working condition and there is usually a limit on the dollar amount per yer you can claim.

Cars: As soon as you put your foot to the gas pedal and drive away, there aren’t a huge variety of options. Returns are usually only okay if the car is a lemon. Otherwise, sell or lease the vehicle to someone else if you can. The lesson here is — you’ll lose money on a vehicle because once it’s yours, it starts to depreciate in value.

Plane tickets: If you’ve opted for a cheap deal online, your ticket is less likely to be refundable. Some big carriers will let you use that ticket toward another flight, plus a $150 change fee for domestic or $250 for international flights. Unless you’re on Southwest, which has no change fee, yay!

Cruises: If you cancel far enough in advance, it could cost you nothing. Or if you get a bit closer, you might just lose your deposit.

Hotels: Many places let you cancel up to 24 hours before your reservation, but make sure to check out the policy when you book a room.

For more on how to step away from big purchases, check out the rest of the list at SmartMoney.com.

How to Back Out of a Big-Ticket Purchase [SmartMoney]