Is the cash in your wallet always mysteriously disappearing? Maybe you need to get a grip on your spending habits. Here are 8 things you’re probably wasting your money on:
1. Specialty Drinks – That latte or cappuccino habit can add up. Give up the expensive coffees for a regular coffee (a “plain” coffee is under $2) and save a few dollars every day. Better yet, brew your own at home.
2. DVD’s & CD’s – Sure, unwrapping that great new movie or getting the latest CD from your favorite artist is exciting, but you can buy used and save lots of money. Or just rent the DVD’s or purchase select tunes you like from iTunes.
3. Using the Washer & Dryer Daily – Tossing just a few things in the washing machine and dryer every day? You’re “washing” water, energy and money right down the drain. Save on energy by running the washing machine only when it’s full. Go for a cold-water wash, and line-dry for optimal savings.
4. Take-Out Lunches – If you spend even $10 a day on a lunch because you don’t brown-bag it, that’s $50 a week, and $200 a month. Can’t discipline yourself to make lunch every day? Cut back a few dollars by bringing your own drink or buying a less expensive item from the menu.
5. Clothes You Don’t Need – That second pair of jeans, that second pair of strappy sandals… we’ve all been tempted to buy just one more item that’s nearly identical to something we already have in our closets. Three words: Don’t do it!
6. Gas – You can do something to improve your fuel economy. Slow down a bit where possible, keep the heavy stuff out of the back of your car and open the windows instead of using the A/C.
7. Brand-Name Groceries – Your beloved brand of cheese, cereal or can of soup likely does not taste exactly the same as a less expensive version. Fair enough. But there are some things you can probably scrimp on without noticing the difference, like mustard or ketchup, sugar, vinegar, flour, salt and other basics.
8. Convenience Store Purchases – Gum. Tabloid magazines. Bags of chips. Cookies. If you’re dropping $20 a week at your corner store, consider cutting back on the impulse purchases and planning better through the week so that you don’t need that last-minute milk jug.