Sunday, April 29, 2018

27 Things You Are Probably Wasting Money On

I saw this article (actually slide show) over at the Motley Fool and I am happy to say that while I probably did waste money in every way they list (and then some) in the past, I have been able to reign in my spending quite a bit in recent years.  How does your spending stack up in these categories?

  1. Bank fees.  Fortunately all of our banks are credit unions which charge no fees and one national bank which charges us no fees because they hold our mortgage.
  2. Late fees.  We haven't paid our bills late in years so no late fees in years which is a big money saver (years ago it was a totally different story, I hate to think about how much money we wasted back then in late fees).
  3. Unclaimed 401(k) matches.  None of our jobs have ever offered this sort of account so this is a N/A for us.
  4. Unclaimed tax deductions and credits.  Our taxes are pretty basic these days so no deductions or credits for us.
  5. Credit card interest.  Hubby always pays off his credit card each month.  I am paying down the one credit card I carry a balance on and it has a 0% interest fee for a year (at which time it should be paid off).
  6. Extended warranties.  I never buy the extended warranty on any product.  If the item has really good reviews and at least a one year manufacturer's warranty it usually works just fine for its lifetime.
  7. Airline fees.  We are the cheapest travelers.  We travel off-peak and chose cheap tickets, we only travel with one carry on each, and bring our own food and water when we travel.
  8. New cars.  I did buy a new car a couple years ago because I wanted something that would be dependable for years to come.  I got a 0.9% interest loan and am paying it off as quickly as possible.
  9. Driving too fast.  We don't speed, no tickets (knock on wood), and we don't actually drive much (about 8000 miles a year).
  10. Premium gas.  We use the cheapest gas at the gas station and it seems to work fine.
  11. Brand-name medications.  Fortunately all of the medications we need are free through the military otherwise I would definitely be looking for any way possible to save money on this.
  12. Bottled water.  We only drink bottled water (bought on sale) because the tap water here in Vegas is yuck.  We tried using a Brita filter but it didn't seem to make the water taste much better.
  13. Food you don't eat.  We have been really good about just buying what we need, cooking at home as much as possible, and eating all leftovers so I don't think we waste much money on this.
  14. Flavored beverages.  We buy these occasionally but don't drink them on a daily basis.  I'm a big fan of seltzer water which is healthier and cheaper than soda.
  15. Dining out.  We have cut way back on this for health reasons and when we do dine out it is free with hubby's poker comps.
  16. Convenience foods.  We do buy bagged and cut vegetables occasionally but we only buy these at the 99 cent store so this is often cheaper than buying the same vegetables at a regular grocery store.
  17. Fancy coffee.  This is my downfall!  I love fancy coffee frapuccinos (I try to use coupons and get discount drink cards, etc).
  18. Dry cleaning.  We haven't used dry cleaning in years.  When I quit working all of my business suits went to the thrift store.  No dry clean-only clothes means no dry cleaning bills.
  19. Unnecessary laundry products.  We use basic laundry soap, cold water, and no dryer sheets.
  20. Paper towels.  People who come to visit are always surprised that our paper towels on the roll are tiny.  We buy the ones already preforated in half and then cut the towels in half right down the middle which means each time we pull off a paper towel it comes off as a quarter sheet!
  21. Phantom electricity.  I have a habit of unplugging anything we aren't using.
  22. Lottery tickets.  There are no lottery tickets to buy in Las Vegas so this is a non-starter.  Hubby has a small allowance for playing poker here, however.
  23. Cable TV.  We have basic cable since it was cheaper to get a basic cable/internet package than it was just to have basic internet.
  24. Phone service.  We haven't had a home phone in years and our cell phone plan is pretty good (three lines for $100, one of which we gave to one of the kids).
  25. Unused memberships.  I just went through our list of memberships a couple days ago and got rid of ones that we don't use much.
  26. Unclaimed rebates.  I immediately claim any rebate we are entitled to.
  27. Impulse buying.  We don't shop much other than for food so this has the added bonus of nothing to buy on impulse!

1 comment:

  1. I had one late fee last month when I was very ill, the first late fee in years. I do drink Dasani water when out and about and refill them with tap water. That's it for things on the list. I acquired one roll of paper towels this last year. So, that is 25 in my plus column. Good list.