If you want to save more money, get rid of expenses, and pay off your debt earlier, you may need to update your budget. Look again at the expenses that might undermine your budget. Your living expenses will slowly increase year over year, making your budget difficult to manage.
Is your expenditure greater than your income? Feel that you are not saving enough? Do you want to start actively paying down your debts?
If so, it’s time to carefully review your budget. There may be some expenses that keep you from reaching your financial goals. We’ve rounded up some of the most common (and most expensive) pop-up fees and tips on how to prepare for them so they won’t let you out of the game.
Most common (and most expensive) pop-up fees
Paying for multiple subscription services that you aren’t using
This should seem simple, but if you don’t take the time to check your bank account in detail, you may not realize how much you are spending on subscription services that you don’t use. For example, do you have Netflix, Hulu, Cable, and Amazon Movies?
If so, is there something you don’t use much and you can trim? You may find that you can save between $10 – $50 by unsubscribing this service.
Other subscription services can include unused gym memberships, unlimited car wash packages, Stitch Fix (you can reduce the frequency at any time), and more. Take a moment to review your bank statement to see items you pay for each month that you might not be using.
Choose Not to Record EVERY Expense
I can’t emphasize enough how important it is to keep track of all of your expenses. You can do this in a variety of methods, such as with a financial workbook or an online tool or program, but it’s crucial to know where your money is going.
It may appear simpler to simply check the bank account and stop spending when the money runs out, but what if there are still two weeks left in the month and no groceries in the fridge? It’s happened to us before, and I know for a fact that it was because we didn’t keep track of our expenses.
Not to mention the fact that we always ended up with one payment that went through after we ran out of money, causing a whole other set of problems.
Not Making Grocery Lists and Meal Plan
Meal plans and groceries list can determine the budget. If you don’t have a meal plan, then you won’t buy what you need, which may lead you to buy more food at the grocery store because you don’t have a list, and then eating out when you have “nothing to eat” at home.
This is a dangerous game, especially when you are trying to save money, pay off debts, or just live a more financially responsible life.
If you don’t have time to plan meals, it can still be helpful to develop a “must-have items” list for future visits to the grocery store. After making this list, you will not need to do this again, just add or delete items as needed. You can stick it on the refrigerator or keep it on your phone for easy reference.
These ” must-have items” are foods that you and your family need at any time. They can be specific foods for breakfast, snacks, or basic kitchen needs.
Making Frequent Grocery Store Visit
Similar to no longer making plans in advance for food, frequent grocery shop trips can wreck any budget. let’s consider it for a moment.
Say you head out to the grocery store on Sunday to do your weekly purchasing. maybe you even took the grocery list and stuck to it, however, you spent the quantity of cash budgeted for that week’s groceries.
Then, on Wednesday, your spouse heads to the grocery store because you want an onion for that evening’s meal. He comes home with two bottles of wine, a candy bar, lots of brownies, and some other items just in case. Unexpectedly, you’ve doubled your grocery invoice for the week, simply due to the fact you didn’t plan.
Credit Card Interest
The lender gets a lot of interest from credit card interest, that’s for sure! Even if you repay every month, high interest rates can cause you heavy losses.
The point is that when you pay your credit card bill, you usually have a balance for the next month. Then every time you use your card, you just add more to your balance. Every month, you will eventually pay interest for this, which is an avoidable expense!
The best option is to make a plan to reduce your credit card debt or cancel it altogether. But at the same time, there are options. For example, you can consider switching to a 0% balance transfer card, which usually costs very low. This gives you some time to pay off your debt.
Bank Account Fees
Bank fees and interest are rarely considered in the budget plan, but this is a big mistake! Expensive bank account fees will add up quickly, which may exceed your budget.
The bank made a lot of money from overdraft and interest fees and late fees. Yet another area where they make money (which many people forget) is monthly account fees. Many people have already paid for bills they don’t know about.
Unless you are using the benefits that come with a paid account and are worth your money, you should consider switching to a free account. Otherwise, you are spending unnecessarily!
RELATED POST: 9 Hidden Fees You’re Probably Paying Without Knowing
Shopping can jeopardize your financial health. How many times do you go to the mall just to have a look and then go home with a new shirt, pants, or a new pair of shoes? Impulse purchases are budget disruptors because they are unplanned expenses.
This means that you typically have to borrow money for other purposes to pay for your impulse purchases. Impulse purchases are very useful for retailers like Macy`s, Best Buy, and Nordstrom but very bad for consumers.
You can easily spend $100 or more per month on items you never plan to buy. The important thing is to be rational and spend money on more valuable things!