We all have a bad habit or two. Sometimes though, those bad habits can really cost us. Whether you’re a smoker or try to keep up with your neighbors, these habits can get expensive. Let’s take a closer look at expensive habits you should break.
Shopping as Entertainment
We all know that shopping can be fun. But when shopping is used as a form of entertainment, things can get expensive. Look for new ways to stay entertained. It’s a big world out there. Look for something that is free or inexpensive to do, and fill up your time in other ways.
Smoking, and even vaping, can be really expensive. A pack of cigarettes can cost anywhere from $5 to over $14 per pack, depending on where you live. If you’re a pack a day person, that cost can be as much as $5,000 per year. Many insurance companies will pay for the supplies to help you quit smoking (plus you might even get a discount on your health insurance premiums for quitting!).
Are you the type to often forget to pay your credit card bills on time or even your utilities? This can cost you a lot of money. Let’s say you have four credit cards that you never pay on time. That’s $140 a month (late fee of $35 each) or $1,680 a year. Wouldn’t you rather take a vacation? Set up reminders on your phone so that you pay your bills on time. Better yet, set up auto pay.
Most people enjoy convenience. Whether it’s picking up a gallon of milk at the gas station or going to get your car washed, this convenience costs you. Put in the little bit of work to do it yourself. The more you DIY, the more money you’ll have.
Keeping Up with the Joneses
The neighbors just upgraded to an in ground pool. Your family needs a better pool, right? Wrong. Your family needs what they need. Your family doesn’t need whatever the neighbors have just bought just so you can have what they have. This cycle can cost you so much money.
Work on being content with what you already have, so you don't feel the need to constantly get more and more stuff. It's not necessary, and it's a waste of money.
Do you buy a lot of groceries and then end up eating out? Stop it. You’re wasting thousands of dollars each year. While buying groceries is less expensive, if it doesn’t work for your family to cook at home, stop wasting the money.
Also, if you buy too much food and it ends up going bad before you can use it all, you can try these hacks to keep your food fresh longer. You can also periodically do an eat-from-the-pantry challenge to make sure that you use all the food that you have stored around your house.
Spending Too Much on a New Hobby
Last, but not least, it can be fun to take up a new hobby. However, you don’t want to invest a lot of money in the beginning. Buy used equipment (or even borrow some from a friend) and see if you actually like the hobby before investing a lot of money. Plus, you can slowly build up your supplies for your hobby rather than going out and buying everything all at once. With knowledge, you may learn that you don't actually need all the things and can just pick and choose what's necessary.
If you’re always wondering where your money went, chances are you have an expensive habit or two. Make some changes in your life so that you have more money left over at the end of each month.