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25 Unnecessary Wastes of Money You Don't Think About

Shopping when you’re hungry

We are more susceptible to buying stuff we don’t need when we are hungry. The same goes for a leisurely grocery trip. 

Make your shopping trip when you have other errands to do and a limited time to do them. You will be less likely to spend time exploring and picking up items that you did not originally plan to purchase.

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IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

25 Unnecessary Wastes of Money You Don't Think About

25 Unnecessary Wastes of Money You Don't Think About

https://www.lifehack.org/articles/money/25-unnecessary-wastes-money-you-dont-think-about.html

lifehack.org

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Key Ideas

Brand name products

You don’t have to spend money on the big brand names.

Your local grocery or drug store might have a store brand or sell a generic version. In most cases, the ingredients are pretty much identical.

Basic car maintenance

You do not need a professional mechanic to sort out many of the simpler car problems.

There are all sorts of easy and helpful instruction videos available to repair or maintain your car for cheap.

Buying a snack at the gas station

We don’t keep track of all the little snack purchases made on the go.

Get in the habit of bringing plenty of liquids and a snack or two with you whenever you go do errands.

Expiration dates

An expiration date on a food item does not mean it can no longer be consumed. Dried goods, such as cereal, uncooked pasta and dried beans fall into this category. Raw meat or bread can be stored in the freezer for some time.

You can also use online databases to look up the actual shelf-life of certain foods and compare them to what the label says.

Paying for cable

Most streaming services are cheaper than paying for cable or satellite TV and you don’t get stuck with all the extra channels you never watch yet still have to pay for.

Credit/debit cards

Credit or debit cards are convenient, but you don't see your shrinking bank balance with every purchase.  

If you use mobile banking or money management apps while using your card, and it’s working, keep doing your thing. Otherwise, you might want to consider withdrawing a fixed amount of cash for your spending.

A drafty living space

If you pay heating and cooling bills, you might be paying more than you need to due to inadequate insulation. 

Effective insulation can be achieved.

Coupons

Don’t use coupons as an excuse to buy things you normally wouldn’t, even if they only involve small amounts of money.

Stick to coupons for the things you already buy or that are absolutely necessary.

Clothing

Rather buy better quality clothes that have been gently used instead of cheap new clothing.  Cheap clothes break and tear, and then you have to buy more.

If you insist on buying clothing or shoes brand new, find the items you really want and keep an eye open for when they will be on sale.

Health and hygiene habits

Not washing your hands, alcohol and junk food habits, and just not taking proper care of yourself in general, will all come back to bite you.

Weigh the potential medical bills against the temporary inconvenience of adjusting to new habits.

Energy drinks

If you have an energy drink habit due to poor sleep, think of the money your sleep habits are costing you as an extra motivator to change them.

There are a number of health issues that could be causing you to feel drained. Visit your doctor to find out how to fix it.

Grocery trips

Make yourself stick to a grocery budget. Do not allow little trips to the store throughout the week because you ran out of one or two items. 

A routine of more than one grocery store trip per week indicates you’re not properly tracking your grocery consumption.

Buying different cleaning products

You generally don’t need to buy a specific and often pricey product for every different surface in your home. 

There are recipes for DIY all-purpose cleaners on the cheap side as well as homemade cleaning products for specific surfaces.

Pre-cut or individually-packed

Individually packaged food, in general, is more expensive than making something similar yourself.

Buy foods whole and cut them yourself.

Disorganization

It can cost a lot of money to replace lost chargers and cables, expensive jewelry or losing keys and having to pay a locksmith to get into your house or car. 

Find motivation to declutter and get organized to prevent future incidents.

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Single-Cup Brewing

It is more efficient to brew one cup at a time and you can choose from a great variety. However, it can be very costly. The excess packaging also causes environmental problems.

Microwave Popcorn

Popcorn is a great, healthy snack.

Instead of buying popcorn in microwave bags, one can also pop corn at home for much less than the bagged kind.

Bottled Water

Bottled water drinkers give 3 main reasons for their choice: 

  • Taste: Many claim their tap water tastes bad, but a simple pitcher filter can probably fix it.
  • Safety: Bottled water is not necessarily safer than public water sources. A high-end filter can remove impurities from tap water.
  • Convenience. A decent filter and a reusable bottle or stainless-steel flask can replace bottled water.

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Measure your expenses

Take a hard look at how much you are spending day to day. Every time you spend money, write it down as it happens in a little notebook or log it into an app.

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Aiming to save pounds, not pennies

Get a cheaper living situation: Live in a smaller house that needs less stuff to fill it or get a roommate.

The personal finance rule of thumb is to spend no more than one-third of your income on rent. 

You Can Cook

If you can read, you can cook. If you can read and cook, you can use meal planning and prep to save time, money, and improve your health.

Base your menu for the week on two things: what you already have in the house and what is on sale at your supermarket.

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Save On Transport Without a Car
Save On Transport Without a Car

You’ll save far more if you don’t buy a car or sell it if you already own one but can go without it.

If you can use public transportation, you can save quite a bit of money on ...

Save On Transport While Keeping a Car

Carpool to work if you can to significantly reduce wear and tear on your car, save on gas, and take advantage of carpool lanes that might make it easier to get to work.

Check at least once a month to keep the tires on your vehicle properly inflated. Doing so can improve your gas mileage.

Save On Debts

Refinance your home or automobile at a lower rate to save money over the life of the loan and lower your monthly payment.

If your student loans are locked in at a high-interest rate, figure out whether it makes sense to consolidate all or some of them.

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