It’s an awful feeling when you look at your bank account, only to discover there’s a lot less money than you thought there was. Or worse, you’re out making a purchase, and your card gets rejected for lack of funds.
“I swear I have money in there,” you say, but it doesn’t change the fact that you’re broke. The question is, where did your money go? Many people find themselves facing this question month after month.
While it’s tempting to just forget about it, the better decision is to dig into your finances and actually see what you’re spending your money on. Here are a few of the more common causes of subtle money loss and budget leaks.
Though services like Netflix and Hulu are relatively new, subscriptions have been bleeding money from people for a long time. It used to be magazines and CD clubs. Today, you have your streaming platforms, apps, software, gaming systems, and more all taking subscription fees from your account every month.
While $5-10 a month might not sound like much, it adds up very quickly when compounded.
You should already know this, but going out to eat or ordering takeout/delivery costs more than buying groceries and making your own food. Depending on where you’re going, it can cost a lot more. Additionally, more food is often wasted when eating at a restaurant than cooking at home and placing leftovers in Tupperware.
If you don’t have money, don’t go out to eat. It’s really as simple as that.
Single Serve Items
An individually packaged item might offer instant, convenient satisfaction, but it comes at a cost. Whether it’s a bottle of soda, a singular candy bar, or something else, it costs a lot more to buy an individual item than it does to buy them all together.
If you like to have a snack on the go, or you know you’ll want a canned/bottled beverage later, buy in bulk and plan ahead. Take something with you rather than swinging by the gas station.
We’ll admit, there are situations where brand names are simply better. But there are plenty of times when the off-brand variant is identical. If you’re buying brand name everything, consider switching to the store brand. The savings can be massive.
Late Charges and Fees
Are you waiting past the due date to pay for bills, loans, etc.? Then you’re probably paying late fees. Late fees are usually pretty small, but much like subscriptions, they can add up to surprisingly large amounts over time.
Coffee and Alcohol
Some people like to go grab coffee. Some like to grab a drink. And many like to do both, depending on the situation. Specialty coffee drinks can get pretty pricey. Craft beers and mixed drinks cost even more. While it’s a great way to meet up with people and have some good conversation, it can also drain your finances quickly.
Be responsible when deciding whether or not to go out. Even if you meet up with people at a public place, you don’t always have to get something.
Stopping Money Loss
Creating a budget and keeping yourself from wasting money isn’t easy, especially when you’re trying to do it alone. Thankfully, you don’t have to. With a certified financial advisor by your side, you can develop simple financial strategies and create achievable goals that will put you in much healthier financial standings.
Though having a financial advisor might seem like another expense, it’s more accurately viewed as an investment in yourself. If you’re ready to meet with a CFP in Springfield, Ohio, KB&P Partners is here for you.