You're Probably Wasting Money: Here's How to Stop

You're Probably Wasting Money: Here's How to Stop

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Jennifer Hunter
May 23, 2016
(Image credit: Lindsay Tella)

There are so many fun things to buy with your cash that wasting it on these things at home makes no sense! Are you throwing your money away? Stop doing that, silly. Read this.

Energy inefficiency

Wasting money on an unnecessarily high electricity or heating bill is a major bummer for your wallet and another precious resource — our environment. The good news is that there are lots of little ways you can get really aware of your usage and bring those numbers down. Think about things you can do like diligently turning off the lights and unplugging vampire appliances but, for even bigger gains, consider the ways your home can be improved. These might require a little cash upfront but can really pay off. Make sure your insulation and roof is up to snuff, check for window and door drafts or even consider some alternative energy like solar. Little improvements really add up over time.

Buying duplicates

This is my personal number one money wasting frustration. Since I know I always need certain things on hand, I'll grab milk or cotton balls while I'm out, just in case. Especially with perishables, this is such a waste and could so easily be solved with a list. Another of my duplicate downfalls? My closet. I love buying certain types of items (how many grey sweaters does a girl need?), no matter how many I already own. Eek. No big secret cure here — I just need to identify the problem and stop.

Extra fees

If you are paying money to either get at your own money (ATM fees! Arrgh!) or as a penalty when you haven't paid something (like a bill), it's a waste! A little planning, bookkeeping basics and organization will go a long way. You need a system for paying all bills on time (or just put them on automatic payment) and the awareness not to overdraw your account and rack up extra penalties there. Getting a good grasp on your finances will save you all kinds of grief anyway, but it will also save you quick cash!

Food waste

When you waste food, you not only waste money but also your grocery shopping time. Why? Some rough meal planning and list making (and a commitment to follow the plan once you've bought the food) will go far towards reducing rotten food you have to dig out of your fridge and throw away every week. Another great strategy? Organize the fridge. When you can see what you have, things are less likely to go unnoticed and unused, so make a little fridge upkeep part of your weekly routine.

Well, time to admit it. Where do you know you waste money at home?

Re-edited from a post originally published 5.13.15-NT

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