Yahoo Finance has a great post on the top ten money drains people can have. It is interesting to think about where your money is going when you don't think it is going anywhere. That is why having a solid budget is so important! Keeping track of how much you are really losing on all the little things will help you see how to better spend your money.
No body is perfect and often the most seemingly frugal person finds themselves spending more money than they thought they were. Before I cracked down on the budget I was losing money in little places and wasn't sure how. Here are just some of the ways I was letting money go down the drain.
- Stopping to get "just a drink" and "just a bite to eat" at the gas station on my way out of town. If I'm really in a rush and need to eat in the car it's cheaper to bring my own bottle of water and a snack from home.
- Running single errands during the day. I burn more gas by running out once to the post office then later to the store than if I do them in one trip. I was letting a lot of money go down the drain each time I wasted gas making separate trips.
- Paying just the minimum on my credit card charges. I know it seems hard to get that you can save money by spending more, but letting charges add up by only paying the monthly minimum you're losing money in the long run.
- Buying books. I'm a book lover, so books have been a huge drain for me. Instead get books for free at the library to enjoy. Or, if you absolutely have to buy a book, look for a cheap used copy. You can even join PaperBackSwap to give and receive used books for only the cost of shipping.