Often, what we’re paying extra for is convenience. For example, K-cups that you use in Keurig coffee makers cost you about 50 cents per cup of coffee, while a nice French press coffee maker and the expensive organic coffee will only cost you about 10 cents per cup.
Still, K-cups are cheaper than grabbing coffee at a coffee shop! Here’s a list of 12 things you shouldn’t waste your money on, because all of that cash adds up down the road.
1. Cable TV
With cable TV packages starting at $100 a month for access to just basic cable, many people are saving themselves hundreds or thousands a year by buying a Roku or Apple TV. The systems allow you to access Netflix, HBO Go, and more.
With cable, you’re literally paying to rent the box from the cable company. Giving you access to networks doesn’t cost the company that much money, which is why many people are taking a stand against cable providers altogether.
Get rid of cable, and you can still watch your favorite shows through streaming services while saving a ton of money.
2. Bank Fees
Many banks require you to pay fees if your account drops below a certain amount, if you move money from your savings account too often, or if you use an ATM that doesn’t belong to your bank, according to Business Insider.
You can ditch a lot of these fees by switching to a new bank or using a credit union. Credit unions are not-for-profit organizations that just serve their members rather than a larger corporation.
3. Online Shipping
A lot of retailers offer free-shipping options. You can also use Freeshipping.org to find stores and products that offer free shipping right to your door, according to Business Insider.
4. Your Home
Your rent should only account for about 28 percent of your gross monthly income, according to TIME. But that doesn’t mean you should spend that much.
If you make enough money that 25 percent or 23 percent of your income will still pay for a nice place for you to live, then should keep your living space within that amount.
You could save hundreds of thousands of dollars in the next 20 to 30 years and put that extra money toward amazing experiences or vacations.
5. Extended Warranties
Unless the extended warranty will cost you a very small amount when compared to the overall cost of the item, just avoid paying for them completely.
Extended warranties allow companies to give their sales revenue an extra boost, according to Business Insider. Odds that you’ll actually cash in on the warranty are really slim.
6. Unnecessary Smartphone Data
Buy an unlimited plan when you first get your phone, but then check in after a few months to see how much data you’re using. You might be able to cut your plan’s cost $25 or more if you’re not using all the data your plan allows.
7. Fast Food
Just avoid it. It’s bad for your body, bad for your mind, and really painful to your wallet.
If you’re going to eat out at all, you should treat yourself a few times a month to reasonably priced meals that are actually healthy and delicious. Cutting down the amount you eat out, generally, though, can save you hundreds every month.
8. Lottery Tickets
Though it’s fun to say, “If I won the lottery, I would probably…,” it doesn’t get you any closer to actually winning the lottery.
The money you spend on lottery tickets often isn’t returned. When people do win, they often forget to cash in on the ticket, which means they still never get a return on that money.
9. Brand New Items That Are Expensive
Buying expensive items brand new will often cost you a pretty penny and a half. But you can usually buy that same item barely used and it will be hundreds, if not thousands, cheaper.
Used cars are a great example. Many “used” cars have often been driven for a year or two, but they can be $5,000 cheaper than their brand new counterparts.
Laptops are also a good example. If you visit a Best Buy just after the holiday season, you can buy a MacBook or another expensive laptop for a few hundred dollars cheaper simply because someone took it out of the box and it wasn’t the right size or easy to use as they expected.
Subscriptions to magazines, newspapers, and gyms can add up. If you don’t actually read that gossip magazine every month, consider canceling the subscription.
If you go to the gym one day out of every week, maybe think of using YouTube videos to workout instead.
11. Workout Supplements Or Weight-Loss Plans
Odds are these pills or extreme weight-loss supplements aren’t good for your body. If you want to be healthier, find a reliable workout and clean-eating plan online.
Commit to doing physical activity everyday and try to only eat non-processed foods and vegetables, which will also save you a lot of money.
12. Bottled Water
You can save yourself a few hundred dollars a year and a lot of plastic by using a reusable water bottle and drinking from a tap.
If you don’t trust tap water, then buy a bottle with a built in filter or buy yourself a water pitcher that does the filtering for you.
Photo by SteFou!