Saving money can be challenging, for sure. With rising costs of living and wages from jobs rarely keeping up the pace, it’s so easy to feel like you’re just barely scraping by as it is.
But one thing’s for sure. SO many people throw away money unnecessarily without even recognizing it!
Don’t let that happen to you.
Here are 10 silly ways you might be throwing away your hard-earned money!
10 Silly Ways You’re Throwing Away Money
1- Wasting Money On Gym Memberships
First, if you’re like many people you probably say this time you’re serious about losing the weight, right? You think if you spend money on that gym membership, the financial commitment will make sure you whip yourself into shape.
Well, if you don’t go to the gym regularly, you’re not alone. Up to 80% of those who purchase gym memberships no longer use them past the 5 month mark. Ouch.
This is an obvious waste of money.
Going even further, if you DO use the gym but could find other ways to workout for free, it’s totally in your best interest to do so.
Engage in active sports with family and friends, or browse YouTube for free workout videos you can do at home.
Your waistline – and your wallet – will thank you.
2- Spending Too Much Money For Cable TV
This may seem like a no-brainer, but cable TV is nigh useless these days. If you’re spending money for cable TV, stop that!
Get yourself a Netflix or Hulu subscription for a fraction of the price and throw that money in the bank!
3- Racking Up Credit Card Interest Charges
Responsible credit card use is an excellent thing. If you’re paying your bill in full on time and not purchasing things you truly can’t afford, the best credit cards can earn you free travel, cash back, gift cards and more!
But if you consistently carry a balance, your credit card use is doing you more harm than good.
So, each month, for every $100 on your balance, you’re just throwing $16 in the toilet.
Until you get your credit card balances under control, consider focusing on getting out of credit card debt as one of the first things you do. The money from the interest could so easily go toward better things.
4- Letting Coupons & Groupons Expire
Fourth, so many people fall into the trap of keeping gift cards, coupons and Groupons but never really cashing them in or using them.
This is just money thrown away!
See if you can collect all your Groupons and coupons and pick a situation where they may be of use. Then use them!
5- Wasting Money By Impulse Shopping
How many times have you gone out to Target or even the regular grocery store with a specific purpose, and emerged with a huge pile of stuff that you didn’t even mean to buy?
Impulse shopping is a huge problem and could be a big way you’re wasting your hard-earned cash.
Do yourself a favor and avoid shopping without a list.
And once you have your list, stick to it!
6- Not Returning Items That You Don’t Really Want
Another way many people throw away money is by failing to return things.
Things that don’t fit, are broken or don’t work well in some way can all go back to where they came from.
This boils down to laziness.
It’s a total hassle to pack something up and ship it back via postmail or drive it back to the store where you found it. For sure.
But if you’re serious about saving more money, you definitely want to recoup that opportunity.
Get off your butt and make it happen!
7- Wasting Money On Eating Out Too Much
The price of food is going up everywhere. So even if you eat at less expensive fast food chains, you’re still spending so much more money than you would if you prepped at home.
Eating out more than once a week or so is a problem if you’re trying to save money.
Cut that out, and you’ll have so much more money left in your budget at the end of the month.
8- Paying Bank Fees Is A Waste Of Money
Depending where you bank and how much money you keep in your bank, you could be wasting money on bank fees. Some checking accounts come with monthly fees just for having the account if you don’t have a high enough average balance. Consider switching to a bank that doesn’t charge you for your business, such as Ally Bank.
On the other side, if you have a financial mistake like overdraft fees or returned checks, you could be charged for the error. This is another way you can waste money at banks.
Be diligent about your spending, your check cashing, money transfers and you’ll fare much better.
9- Wasting Money By Not Packing Lunch
Even if you still choose to eat out a few times a week for dinner with friends or family, the very least you can do is commit 100% to packing lunch every single day.
Even if you spend just $5 per day for lunch (which let’s face it, nobody does), that adds up to as much as $100/month just on food – when you can bring food for free!
If you’re going to eat out, make it count!
Pack lunch, save outside meals for nice dinners!
10- Purchasing Low Quality Items Is Throwing Away Money
Finally, this may seem counterintuitive because we want to spend less money, not more. But the cheapest option is rarely the best.
What you need is quality items that you purchase once and never again – or at least not for a while.
Instead of opting for cheap fast fashion items, for example, it makes far more sense to invest in fewer, higher quality basic clothing items that will last you for many years.
The same is true with household items like pots and pans. You want quality items that last you years, rather than flimsy things that rust over and fall apart.
Consider where you’re spending money on junk and see if an upgrade can make more sense down the line.
Where Are You Wasting Money?
So, take an honest inventory of your spending habits. Do you see any obvious areas where you may be throwing away money? Sound off in the comments below with any realizations or ideas!