5 Money Traps To Avoid Each Month
(BPT) - Are you always on the prowl for a better deal? Looking for ways to save money – but without having to cut back on quality?
People often overspend in ways they don't even realize. From service plans that aren't being used to buying too many bulk items, it is easy to throw away money without even knowing it. If you want to better balance your budget and keep more money in your pocket, keep an eye out for these five money traps:
1. Bulk shopping in the grocery store
Avoid bulk shopping unless you’re sure you’ll use the whole package. Yes, the price is cheaper when you buy in bulk – but is your household actually consuming the food products before they go to waste? If you're throwing away spoiled foods frequently, you're probably buying too much. To make the most out of discounted bulk shopping, go shopping with a friend or neighbor. Split the cost of the goods and carpool to the store. This way, you'll both be saving money.
2. Shopping the coupons for items you don’t need
Don’t use a coupon unless an item is on your shopping list. Manufacturer coupons are a great way to save money on an item – if you need the product, that is. Only clip coupons for the items you have on your list. If it's not there, that coupon isn't saving you any money. In fact, it's costing you money. To make better use of coupons, combine them with store discounts for bigger savings on the items on your list.
3. Paying for more than you need
Take a good look at your service contracts like your wireless bill. Are you using all the services you're paying for? No-contract plans like Total Wireless ensure you get everything you need and nothing you don’t. Available exclusively at Walmart, this plan offers unlimited talk, text and 2.5 GB of data on America’s largest and most dependable network – all for a low price. And, for just $10 you can purchase 1.5 GB of Carryover(TM) data that never expires with active service.
4. Throwing away what can be reused
Take stock of what you're sending to the curb in your garbage or recycling containers. How many reusable plastic food containers and paper towels do you throw away each week? Try using cloth towels instead of paper ones, and cleaning and reusing plastic containers. You'll never need to buy plastic storage containers again, and as your towels start to fray and show signs of wear and tear, just send them to the garage where they'll be perfect for washing the cars or checking the oil.
5. Setting up automatic payments
Don’t schedule automatic payments for non-essential expenses. Scheduling automatic payments from your checking account or credit card is certainly a time-saving tool, and it should be used for specific bills that you must pay each month to avoid giving away money on late-fee charges. But for superfluous payments such as a gym membership or movie-streaming subscription, it makes it harder for you to analyze if the service is something you need – or want – each month. Consider physically writing out a check or paying these bills online each month, so that you can reflect on how much you actually used the service, and if the price was worthwhile for you and your budget.
A careful review of how you're spending your money might shine light on areas where you're throwing money away. So take a careful look and see if any of these tips can help you save some money, or at least put it to better use.
More PERSONAL FINANCE ...
- 10 Tips for Improving Your Credit Score
- Get Out of Debt with Help From the Web
- Worthy Personal Finance Apps
- Save Big With These Online Tax Programs
- Spend Less with These In-Store Apps
- Getting Started with Mobile Payment Apps
- Find the Right Loan to Realize Your Financial Goals
- How Women Can Plan For Their Financial Futures
- Tax Hints Every Investor Should Know
- Common Tax Return Blunders To Avoid
Tax Time Tips: How To Combat Tax Identity Theft Fraud
- How the Affordable Care Act Impacts Your Taxes
- How Obamacare May Affect Your Tax Refund
- How To Maximize Your Tax Refund and Cut Monthly Expenses
- Helpful Tips For Choosing DIY Tax Preparation Tools
- What's Your Path To Retirement Happiness?
- Hoping To Retire In 10, 20 Or 40 Years? Here's What You Need To Know Now
- This 30-Minute Check Could Increase Your Retirement Savings
- 5 Money Traps To Avoid Each Month
- 4 Things You Should Know About Choosing Your First Credit Card
- The 6 Smartest Money Moves Millennials Can Make
- Busting First-Time Homebuyer Myths
- Ways First-Time Homebuyers Can Make Themselves Mortgage-Ready
- 5 Tips To Slash Prescription Drug Costs
- Tips And Tricks For Filing Your Taxes Last Minute
- A Lesson in Tax Deductions
- 3 Smart Ways to Stretch Your Retirement Savings
- Why Paying Off Your Mortgage in Retirement May Not Be the Best Idea
- Wedding Costs Soar to New Highs
- 4 Ways to Pay Off Your Debt for Good
- Best Financial Move: Buy or Rent a House?
- What Is a Good Credit Score?
- How Much Home Can You Comfortably Afford?
- What Makes Up a Mortgage Payment
- What to Do When You Can't Pay Your Taxes
- The Retirement Lies We Tell Ourselves
- Obamacare and Your Tax Return
- Don't Miss These Money-Saving Tax Breaks
- 5 Deals We Shouldn't Fall For
- Apps That Will Help You Save Time and Money
- The Best Way to Teach Children About Money
- This Is Why You Talk About Money Before You Get Married
- The Top Money-Saving Shopping Apps
- Secrets to Saving at the Supermarket
- How to Stick to a Budget
- Becoming Financially Independent
- Budgeting for Baby
- Is a World Without Wallets Coming Soon?
- How to Cut the Cost of Daily Chores
- A Coupon Expert Cuts Your Grocery Bill in Half
- How to Play Catch-Up on Retirement Savings
- Best Dollar Store Deals
- 6 Surprising Ways to Boost Your Credit Score
- The Money Conversation All Couples Should Have
- Why Seeking More Money Hurts Happiness
- 11 Ways to Spring-Clean Your Finances
- Parents: Stop Being So Awkward With Money
- How to Avoid Being a Financial Burden on Your Children
- Brainless Money Rules to Live By
- How to Break Up With Your Financial Adviser
- How to Help Family Members Without Hurting Your Own Finances
- The Key to Creating and Sticking to a Budget
- Ways to Donate to Charity on the Cheap
- What's the Best Way to Give Money to Charity?
- Why Money Really Can Buy Happiness
- How to Finance Life Until 100
- How to Calculate Your Retirement Number
- 10 Important Ages for Retirement Planning
- How to Save More Now With Savvy Budgeting
Article: "5 Money Traps To Avoid Each Month"