We all want to reach financial goals, but sometimes it’s easy to get in our own way. Wasting money needlessly can derail your efforts, making it harder to achieve both short and long-term targets. Avoiding these 12 money-wasters will set you apart from the crowd.
It seems odd, but procrastination can cause you to waste money. Have you ever waited to purchase something you need, only to see the price go up when you do eventually make the purchase? That’s wasted money.
Studies show the average adult wastes $52 a day through procrastination. That’s just over $2 an hour. It’s not significant, but it can add up.
Everyone loves a meal out. You avoid spending time in the kitchen, and share time together over a nice meal. Unfortunately, that comes at a cost.
The average American household spends $300 a month dining out. It may be more if you have a larger family. This can be a real drag on a budget. You don’t have to eliminate it entirely. Cut spending in half and you instantly free up cash.
Do you use every subscription you’re paying for? Perhaps you’re not using your Amazon Prime membership. That’s cash you’re setting aflame.
Go through your subscriptions regularly and see which ones you don’t use. Cancel them and put that money to better use. An app like Rocket Money can do the heavy lifting for you and streamline your spending.
Reports show 35 percent of our food supply ends up in landfills. That amounts to nearly $1,500 a year per household, or $125 a month you’re literally throwing in the trash.
You can eliminate much of this by purposeful shopping and eating leftovers. Freezing some food items is another way to extend their lifespan and cut down on waste.
Paying for Cable
Cable subscriptions are one of the biggest money wasters there are. If you’re paying the average monthly bill of $200+ a month, you’re wasting money.
It’s easier than ever to cut the cord on cable TV and save at least $100 a month. Streaming services have no contracts, and you can get the same live sports and popular TV shows for a fraction of the cost.
Buying Coffee Everyday
Saying to stop buying coffee on the go is an easy target. However, if you’re buying coffee everyday you’re easily spending $20-$30 a week.
Keurig machines range from $70 to $170 on Amazon. You could have a new machine in less than two months and reduce your spending. Win-win.
Not Taking Advantage of 401K Matches
Saving for retirement is vital. However, one in four American workers don’t take advantage of 401(k) matches available through their employers.
While it may be challenging, at times, to save, free money is free money.
Purchasing Convenience Foods
Buying pre-prepared salads or fruit can be a great way to save time. Unfortunately, that time savings can come at a significant cost.
Reports indicate a bagged salad, for example, is four times the cost of making it on your own. If you opt for pre-cut or prepared items often, the expense can add up.
Paying Bank Fees
Why should you pay a bank to hold your money, when they’re lending it out to earn interest? Unfortunately, too many banks still charge monthly maintenance fees.
Reports indicate the average American pays $15 a month in banking fees each month. That may not seem like a lot, but if you don’t have a lot in your account it really eats at it. Find a bank that doesn’t charge maintenance fees and have more of your money work for you.
Having an Expensive Phone Plan
Like cable, you no longer need to pay through the nose for an expensive cell phone contract. The average American spends $115 a month for cell phone service.
That’s wasting money. Thanks to prepaid phone plans, you can get unlimited data for as low as $30 a month, and no contract.
High-interest credit card debt can be suffocating. Interest is a key component of that. For example, if you have $25,000 in debt and are being charged 20 percent in interest, that’s $5,000 in interest a year.
It is possible to pay off debt. Create a plan, and work to knock it down.
Meal and grocery delivery is convenient, but you pay for benefit. The average American household spends over $650 a year, just on the fees for food delivery.
Taking advantage of promotions, and reducing the frequency of delivery are the best ways to avoid wasting money.
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