Most people waste money and they don’t even realize it. But you don’t have to be one of those people. The beauty about it is: you can do something about it!!!! Also, for most people, New Years resolutions don’t work. They are usually unrealistic, and most people can’t keep up with them, unless you make a habit. Running 5 times a week for 2 hrs. is not possible unless it becomes a daily habit for you. The same with finances, budgets don’t work, unless they become a habit for you and your family.
On this article, we at Saving For Hope wanted to list a few money wasters to help start on a solid foundation in 2019. Take advantage of this list and start targeting them one by one as we get closer to the New Year.
If you are interested, read on:
Buying in bulk. I remember a few years ago, we got a Sam’s club card and we thought that was the best thing ever. We started stocking up on items like toilet paper, paper towels, etc. Nothing wrong with stocking up, especially on items that do not expire (like those mentioned above). However, most people sometimes buy in bulk thinking they will save in the long run, but sometimes the items do not get eaten, go past the expiration date, and then they need to be thrown away. If that is you and your family, stop doing that. Buy only what you know you will consume and what you think can stack for a while without breaking the bank and wasting money. Throwing food or unused expired items is the worst and it wastes a ton of money. Don’t fall prey of the buying in bulk catastrophe!
Food and water. Here is another area where most people waste a lot of money without even realizing it. We have done several posts related to food and drink expenses in the past. However, I wanted to mention here 2 important money wasters: bottled water and restaurant outings. Bottled water is easier to stop wasting on but going out to eat is one of those that is tricky for most because a restaurant visit can be entertaining and relaxing. But with a few tips, you don’t have to cut the outing all together. Tips like: sharing meals, using buy one get one, going out on days that kids eat free, etc. can significantly cut the cost of your outings without sacrificing the time together and the therapeutic benefits of a day off from the stress of the kitchen. Pay attention and plan ahead, and you can still go out and enjoy your meals.
Buying items on “deals.” This one is one the scariest one, because when you find a good deal, it gives you a great feeling. However, that feeling usually passes away after a few days (sometimes a few hrs.) and reality sets in. There is nothing wrong with getting a good deal! Usually the problem comes when you get a good deal on an item you did not need. If you did not need the item in the first place, you did not save anything, or get a good deal. You just wasted your money. Click To Tweet So, our suggestion: don’t do it! stop wasting money on items you don’t need.
Extreme “couponing”. I am not even going to explain my view about coupons, since the same principle of getting what you don’t need from the item before applies, and you can read my detailed opinion about couponing and the extreme use of them HERE.
Taking advantage of the 401K match. Here is another one of those practical, yet underappreciated financial issues. Most companies these days offer 401K matches to their employees up to a specific percentage or dollar amount. Most people still don’t take advantage of this feature. I know some coworkers of mine that still don’t have a 401K and use the match, even when the company we worked for has done the match faithfully year after year for over a decade. If the company matches your fist $1,000 of contributions, you just saved $2,000!! You double your money and that money will continue to grow and accumulate interests! Ask your employer and take advantage of those savings today.
Paying too much taxes. This one goes in line with the 401K match, but the truth is, people will pay more in taxes that what they need to because they don’t plan for it. What do we mean by that? Good question! And we will answer it with the following principle:
Taxes will always be cheaper today, than tomorrow! That is right, there are no “cheaper” or “less taxes” later.
The cheapest you will pay taxes is to pay them at current rates as you go. To do this, make sure you are saving money after taxes. For retirement open a ROTH IRA (with its contributions are tax free because it is done after taxes, unlike the 401K which is done before taxes). Paying taxes at today's rates, will ensure that you keep more of your hard-earned cash in the future! Click To Tweet
There is our list for 2019!! If you can cut at least 2 or 3 expenses out of this list, you and your family will be on a better financial position next year. Another resolution to consider is to start the year on a budget (as you make it a habit that can last a lifetime). And remember, in 2019… Enjoy!!