This post may contain affiliate links. Please refer to my Disclosure for more information.
9 Things You Are Spending Way More Money on Than You Think
#1 Eating Out, Coffee & Groceries
In the US alone, every single year $165 billion dollars worth of food is throw out every single year. That is billion, with a b. The average American family throws out about $2200 worth of food a year.
When we haven’t prepared ahead of time, knowing what we are going to eat when we are at work or get home from work, we often eat out or grab something that is already prepared, even if we have food at home. We waste so much food because when we are not prepared, we are not eating the food that we have already purchased, which ends up getting thrown out often.
The amount of money that is spent on a morning or afternoon coffee really adds up. The average American spends around $3 a day on coffee, which can add up to be almost $1100 a year, just on coffee!
Tip – write down at the beginning of the week, what you are going to have for the week for suppers and then cook enough to have leftovers for lunch. You can also easily write down 7 breakfast meal ideas. This will help you to be prepared as you already know what you are having and you can prepare it as soon as you get home, or have it prepared before you go to work.
Tip – Check out my 11 Ways to Save Money on Groceries post
Tip – Make your coffee at home before you leave and take it with you or drink coffee once you get to work if your workplace offers it for free. It might seem like a small expense, but when you spend on it regularly, it really does add up!
#2 Hair, Aesthetics, Grooming & Cosmetics
When it comes to grooming, aesthetics, hair and our cosmetics, it can add up really quickly. Getting a cut and color, getting our eyebrows waxed, eyelash or hair extensions, nails, when you are getting ALL of the things done, it adds up very fast!
Many of us also have way more cosmetics than we truly need. We have a makeup bag that is exploding, yet we likely only use the same items every time that is less than a ¼ of the number of items we have in our makeup bag.
Tip – Decide on the one or two things that you want to keep doing when it comes to grooming & aesthetics that make you feel high vibe, that make you feel abundant, rather than doing ALL of the things. If getting your nails done is that one thing, keep doing it, but work on reducing getting your eyelash extensions every six weeks or change your schedule for getting your hair done to every other time than you normally would.
Tip – You can also look into more affordable options than what you are currently doing. You can see if there is an aesthetics school in your area where they need people to practice on so the price is a fraction of the cost than what it is at the salon! You can get waxing, nails, hair, etc done for so much cheaper! And if you are worried about someone screwing up your hair, stick with your hairdresser you know you love and just go get your other services done here!
Go through your makeup bag and see how you already have SO many cosmetics and throw out all of the things that you aren’t using. Take a more minimalistic approach and stick to just purchasing the items you use, when you run out of them. You don’t need 8 different shades of bronzer and 15 lipsticks and 20 glosses. You can have the same effect with so much less and still look glamorous and gorgeous!
#3 Home Décor
With Pinterest and so many home shows, it is so easy to have #homedecorgoals. But just think about how quickly it can add up and break the bank when you are filling your home with expensive home décor items that you may not truly need. I am all about having the things that you love and having quality, but figure out what is most important to you, what is it that you HAVE to have and what can you get for a steal of a deal instead?
Figure out the items that you know you want to spend the money on and then you will know the ones that you are okay with taking some more time to find or purchasing them just when you find a wicked price for them that totally makes it worth it.
Do you really need the throw pillow for $59 that everyone picks up and sets to the side so they can sit down anyways?
Also, consider DIY projects, Pinterest is amazing for resources for DIY when it comes to home décor. You can also find furniture that people are throwing out or want out of their house because they are moving or downsizing that if you just pick up, you can get for free! A little bit of sanding and some paint and it completely transforms it! You can look at online Facebook garage sale pages or free online sites to find furniture and other treasures that you can get for a fraction of what you would pay in store.
#4 Our Beloved Pets are More Expensive than We Think
We love our pets so much because they really are amazing. And I will be the first to admit that I love spoiling my dog. But, it can definitely come at an expense.
We overspend on our pets like crazy. Marketers know how we will basically go to the end of the earth for them, so they use that to their advantage and definitely charge us based on it!
Tip – Spend a little more time looking around when you are going to purchase something for your pets and see what is an absolute necessity to pay a pretty penny for and what you can get a bargain on. Some items you can purchase used on garage sale or online sites for a deal. The things that you know you want to pay top dollar for, do it, but make sure you are conscious about spending top dollar on the most important items and not ALL of the things. I have been in two stores and seen the exact same dog toys and one is three times more than the other. It saves you a ton of money to look around.
#5 Credit Card Interest is Costing us Hundreds to Thousands
This one is insane. When you are carrying a balance every single month on your credit cards, you are literally taking your money and lighting it on fire. Do everything that you can, to pay your credit cards off every single month. Credit cards are one of the highest interest rates you will pay, upwards of 19-26%+ which means your purchases add up insanely quickly and what seemed like a deal at the time, now cost you more than the original price due to putting it on your credit card and not getting it paid off in time and paying interest on that balance.
Tip – Make paying off your credit card a priority every single month. If you need help with getting your credit cards paid off, I am an online financial coach and I help teach my clients the exact steps to getting their credit cards paid off so much faster AND how to save a ton of money while doing it. You can also check out my 4 Things to Do to Get Your Debt Paid Off post.
It doesn’t take much for our clothes to add up quickly when we are shopping. Again, pick what you are willing to spend top dollar on for quality and what you can spend less on and save money. Personally, when it comes to pants I am willing to spend the money and get exactly what I want, because I have crazy long legs and it’s really hard to find anything that fits, and when I do, I usually wear my pants for 8+ years, so for me, it is totally worth spending the money on them.
But when it comes to shirts, dresses and sweaters, I am willing to spend less money on them and I know how much I am willing to pay for them and I don’t go over those amounts.
Tip – Don’t be afraid to purchase second-hand clothes! I LOVE doing this. I have bought clothes that were incredibly lightly used from my friends before, in Facebook online garage sales groups and from second-hand stores. I have zero shame in purchasing second hand, some of my most favorite items I purchased second hand! I even bought my wedding dress second hand and it was way nicer than any of the ones I tried on in the wedding dress stores, that were 2x+ more than what I paid for mine (and I didn’t settle for this second-hand dress, it was exactly what I wanted and my size!).
#7 Shipping Costs & Needing Things to Arrive the Next Day
We get so caught up in needing instant gratification in our society nowadays that when we hit that “purchase” button, we need it NOW, especially in the era of Amazon Prime which makes us think that we really do need it now! Which means that we are often willing to spend more money on shipping, which is already costing us enough.
Tip – When you are paying for an item, ask yourself, do I REALLY need this item tomorrow or the next day? Or will I survive just fine without it until it arrives in the mail in regular time? If the answer is yes, then skip out on paying extra for shipping and save your money for more important things.
We often love giving gifts to our loved ones, which is amazing, I love the feeling of giving too! But when we don’t plan very well for it, all of a sudden our gift has turned into costing us 50%+ more than we originally wanted it to. We saw this thing that we thought they would love, but then we saw these other 2 things that they just had to have, so we bought those too!
Tip – Decide on how much you are going to spend on gifts BEFORE you buy them, so when you are tempted to just keep buying them things, you stop once you have hit that budgeted amount. They are still going to love you and it is going to help you to be able to be more financially responsible.
#9 Lottery Tickets
Did you know that in 2016, $73.5 BILLION dollars was spent on lottery tickets in the US alone!
Let’s just take a minute for that one to sink in. $73 billion dollars.
The chances actually winning the lottery are 1 in 14 million, which means I can count about 870 things that would be a better idea to spend your money on. If you are wanting to make more money, work on getting high-interest rate debt paid off like your credit cards, so you aren’t throwing money away in interest and you have more money you can use to increase your skills to make more money or to start a side hustle or to take your side hustle to the next level. If you need help with paying off your credit cards, my Pay Off Your Credit Cards course teaches you exactly how to do it.
- Frequently Asked Questions about Financial Coaching
- 10 Ways to Reduce Your Anxiety About Money
- 4 Things to Do to Get Your Debt Paid Off
- 7 Tips for Increasing Your Credit Score
- 11 Ways to Save Money on Groceries
- How to Plan Your Finances For an Entire Year (in under a couple of hours)
- My Top 6 Money Mistakes I’ve Made, That You Can Learn From & Avoid
- Why You Haven’t Been Able to Get Your Credit Cards Paid Off & How to Change it so You Can
- Using Your Credit Cards This Way Is Harming Your Credit Score (and costing you thousands more in interest)
- How I Saved Thousands of Dollars so I Could Leave My SIX Figure Career
- How I Made Over $9000 Just by Selling Things I Already Had in My House
- 3 Real Reasons You Are Overspending & How to Overcome It
- Top 8 Best Books for Overcoming a Financially Scarce Mindset for Women
- Why You Need a Blog & Start One
- How I Lost 10lbs from Working on My Money Mindset
- 4 Things You Need in Your Health & Wellness Business to Save You Time, Energy & Money
- How to Make Saving Automatic & Easy
Do you have any questions or anything to add? Leave me a comment and I will respond back to you!
I am very active on Instagram, follow me here for more financial tips & tricks: http://instagram.com/mandyythomas (@mandyythomas)