Are You Paying Too Much on Monthly Bills?
No one wants to pay more than they should on routine bills, such as utilities, mortgages, and student loan debt. It is easy to get in the habit of paying your monthly expenses without giving it much thought. When you do this, you may be spending more money each month than you need to.
Review Your Current Interest Rates
The amount you pay in interest is the profit you are giving the company you borrow from. Reducing the amount you pay them puts money in your wallet. When you refinance a loan, you may shorten the length of the loan, lower your monthly payment, or both. You can use a student loan calculator to determine how much you will save, both monthly and over the life of the loan, by refinancing. If you own a home, consider the same process for your mortgage. There are expenses related to refinancing your mortgage, so if you don’t plan on staying in the home for long you may not save enough to justify the costs. An online calculator that calculates your savings allows you to make the best choice for your particular situation.
Credit card debt is the most expensive debt you will face. Take a hard look at the interest rates you are paying on any existing credit card debt. If your credit is in relatively good shape, you can probably qualify for a lower interest balance transfer card. Transfer your existing debt over to that card and make it a priority to pay it off before the introductory offer expires.
Take a Hard Look at Your Utilities
You may have signed up for internet or cable during a promotional period that has expired, or your package may have changed over time, with the price creeping up without you noticing. Sit down this month and take the time to go over each of your bills. Look at them carefully, accessing them online if necessary. If something seems unreasonable, contact your provider. They may be able to switch you to a less expensive service. If it is a service you rarely use, such as cable, you may find looking at the bill provides the incentive you need to finally cancel your service.
Investigate Your Subscription Services
Subscription services often accumulate over time, a few dollars at a time, until they make up a good portion of your monthly expenses. If you are paying a little each month for the privilege of listening to music without ads, access to several streaming television services, cloud storage you don’t use, or skincare boxes when you have unopened products piling up, now is the time to go on a canceling spree.
Look at How You Spend Discretionary Income
If you look at your monthly income and fixed expenses and don’t understand why you feel short on funds all of the time, it is time to take a look at your discretionary spending. You may be spending more than you realize on eating out, unnecessary groceries, and other expenses that could be cut out. The goal is not to never spend an extra penny, but to recognize where the money is going. Spend money on the things you care about and bring enjoyment. Know where your money is going and make rewarding choices.