Are these sneaky expenses blowing a hole in your budget?
If you aren’t meeting your financial goals, do you know why? There are a number of expenses that people tend not to track that can funnel your money away discretely. Do any of these sneaky expenses apply to you?
Supporting charity is great, but make sure that you plan out your donations and track them as well. Preferably make donations that are tax deductible, so it’s a win-win. Avoid “topping” with a donation at the cash register or putting cash in a collection jar unless you budget for it.
Bank fees and the ATM
One of the biggest money wasters around are bank and ATM withdrawal fees. Plan to take cash out at your own bank branch to avoid those extra ATM fees. Speak with your banker about getting the best deals with your bank accounts to avoid fees.
If your barista knows you by name, you may be spending a great deal on coffee. Consider brewing it at home and bringing it out with you. You’ll save a lot of money.
Not reading the fine print
Did you sign up for a credit card or other service because of a promotional sale or interest rate special? Has it expired? Not reading the fine print may mean that you are paying full price for something that you think is discounted. Always read the fine print.
Monthly subscriptions/memberships for things you don’t use
Do you have online music or movie subscriptions? How about a gym membership? Do you use it? Make a deal with yourself. Only pay for things that you are going to use and budget for them in detail.
You probably budget for holiday gifts, but what about for the rest of the year? If you’ve got school-aged kids, buying gifts is a major expense because of multiple class birthday parties. Stock up on good, age-appropriate gifts when they are on sale.