Times of strife within the financial market create very weary consumers. According to TransUnion–one of the leading credit bureaus in the country–most citizens are doing a much better job at managing their credit well, but where does the management of actual dollars and sense come in? Have you ever wondered what’s eating away your money? There are a number of unseen factors that we don’t even seem to realize in our everyday lives. Get familiar with these little annoyances and find out more about what’s eating away your money.
Investment Service Fees
Do you know just how much money it costs you to invest in different ventures each year? While investing in several markets can put you on the right track to creating a very financially free future, it’s also important that you keep in mind all those fees that you’re racking up. You should also make it your business to lower them in whatever ways you can. Take a look at your most recent banking statements and get an idea of what you’re actually paying in account maintenance fees, investment advisory fees, in-service transfer fees, performance fees, withdrawal and surrender fees and sales charges. The actual list of fees might surprise you, and you’re probably spending more here than you thought: that could be a big part of what’s eating away your money.
Automatic Renewal Fees
Signing contracts quickly has never been easier than it is in today’s modern world. With that being said, it’s also just as easy to forget all of the terms of those contracts. It might have slipped your mind that your online movie subscription and your magazine subscriptions are set to automatically renew at the end of each year. If you’re not reviewing your statements closely enough, you could be missing these things. If you don’t get around to watching many movies or reading many magazines anymore, you might consider cancelling those services altogether: it goes without saying that these things could be a cause of what’s eating away your money as well.
Credit Card Fees
The credit card industry will always be scheming up new ways to get creative with their charges. They exist to stay in business and pull in revenue and they could definitely be contributing to the bigger issue of what’s eating away your money. If you already have a credit card or two, you should be sure to check the terms and conditions regularly as they are sure to change often: existing cardholders have been known to be charged with new cardholder’s fees! Annual fees, account inactivity fees and late payments have been beefed up to make the card providers more money in the long run. If you hold a card that charges an annual fee, think about making the change to one that doesn’t make you pay for the privilege to charge it.
It’s part of big business in many industries to entice customers into signing up for services by offering special perks like free premium cable channels or free service trials with a new cell phone that only last a short while. They’re great to have in the beginning, but when the trial ends and you don’t want to fork up the cash to keep it, your company will gladly cancel the perk after charging you a nice little cancellation fee.
If you’re still paying for your checking account and the privilege to have one, you should definitely think about making the switch to some other bank. With all of the offers out there for free checking accounts, ATM access and debit cards, there has to be another provider out there in the world that’s willing to treat you better as a loyal client.
Packaged Snack and Junk Food
While you’re looking for a quick snack to eat when the afternoon munchies kick in, I can tell you what’s eating away your money: those vending machine treats that are so hard to say no to! If you added up all of the money you spend punching in numbers at that vending machine in the break room, you’ll realize very quickly how bad a habit it is to take on. Spending more than $25 to $50 a month on snacks that aren’t even a part of your lunch can become a problem very quickly. Head out to the grocery store and buy bulk so you’ll be able to make little snack packs to take in to the office instead.
Brand Name Items
Springing for the name brand over the private label brand doesn’t make you a better person, nor does it save you any money. In reality, both products are generally the exact same things save a few characteristics. Want to know what’s eating away your money? It’s your tendency to grab the name brand just because you think it is better! Save yourself a few bucks and don’t feed into the hype.