How to Cut Expenses: 12 Small Ways to Increase Your Budget
I'm going to share with you how to cut expenses and twelve tiny habits that drain your wallet. Knowing where your money is going is the first step to cutting expenses, and the following are the most common money drains. Try correcting one habit at a time, and you'll save quite a bit of money as time goes on.
1. Coffee runs
The number one thing draining your wallet is coffee runs. Let's do some simple math here. The average coffee averages about $5 per cup. If you do that every single day, seven days a week, that's $35 a week, $140 per month, and $1,680 per year.
The best thing you can do to cut expenses is to make your coffee at home.
If you like Starbucks, McDonald's, or Dunkin' Donuts, you can buy their coffee beans to brew at home. We invested in a very good coffee maker, which paid for itself with what we saved by not buying premade coffee.
2. Bottled water
The next thing draining your wallet is bottled water. Not only is it bad for the environment, but it's also bad for your wallet.
We invested in a Brita water filter, which is very convenient.
You just fill it up with tap water, and it filters out all the not-so-pleasant things in tap water, making it taste better for much less than bottled water.
3. Lottery tickets
Lottery tickets are another money drain. I know we think $1, $5, or $10 is not going to add up, but it does. Small spending habits really do add up in the end.
Consider going in on an occasional purchase with family and friends. That way, you're not only increasing your chances, but also you're spending less as well.
4. Eating out
Next up is eating out. With tips and delivery charges, eating out or getting takeout is expensive.
We love takeout food, but now it’s an occasional treat instead of a weekly habit.
If you invest in a Crock Pot or an Instant Pot, there are plenty of recipes where you can have a quick, easy, and healthy meal within minutes. Try playing with new recipes or copycat recipes of your favorite takeout.
Not only does buying cigarettes drain your wallet, but it's also unhealthy. It's a very expensive habit. I know it's challenging to quit, but some insurance plans cover nicotine patches or classes that can help you quit smoking.
6. Rideshare services
So many people like using Uber or Lyft. While it is very nice and convenient, it also does cost a lot of money. I suggest downloading the Uber and Lyft apps because sometimes when I am traveling, I notice one is way cheaper than the other. Compare the cost.
7. Credit card fees
Use credit cards wisely. I wouldn't recommend using your credit card if you can't pay it off soon. If you are in credit card debt, I recommend paying above the minimum fee, if you can, to get your debt down.
8. Paid phone apps
It's very tempting to pay for a phone app, but not buying apps is a great way to cut expenses. You don't need that app. Delete it and save your money or try to find a free app.
9. Unused subscriptions
With all the streaming services today, it can get overwhelming.
You have Netflix, Hulu, HBO, and so many more.
I noticed we were not using some, and at an average of $9 a month, that does add up. Cancel any services you don't use.
10. Not searching for discounts
We search for discounts anywhere that we go. Not getting discounts is wasting money. I always try to see if there's a Groupon or search on Google for coupon codes for whatever I'm buying.
You could install the browser Honey, which will search for discounts for you. I also go to YouTube and search for the word coupon code. A lot of YouTubers have their own partnerships and coupon codes.
11. Overpriced cell phones
Cell phone brands come out with a new one every year, but you have to ask yourself, do I need to upgrade? If your phone is slowing down and doesn't store what you need, then it may be time to upgrade.
If you do need to upgrade, I would recommend buying a used phone. You can go through Google or your cell phone provider's website to see if there's a good used phone that fits your needs. Most come with a warranty.
12. Going to a bar
Lastly, the 12th thing draining your wallet is spending money at a bar. Going to bars and paying for high-priced drinks is a very expensive way to socialize.
Try to make your social gatherings budget-friendly and fun. You can host a make-your-own cocktail party where your friends or family bring a liquor of their choice and the ingredients to make their favorite cocktail to share.
If you do go out for drinks, I highly recommend checking happy hours. Not only are the alcoholic drinks on sale, but so is the food.
At restaurants, breweries, and wineries, if you and your friends have similar tastes, you can all pitch in on a pitcher of beer or a bottle of wine or champagne. With tipping and everything, try to have a budget in mind and stick to it.
How to cut expenses
I hope this gave you some food for thought concerning where you can cut back on your expenses. Cutting out any or all of these twelve habits is an excellent place to start if you want to learn how to cut expenses. Comment below to share any other tips you use to save money.
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