How often we buy something, we don’t really need. Invisible spendings are the amounts people regularly spend on ordinary products, costing so small that it is not worth budgeting for. But we realize their actual cost only when we check our finances at the end of the month. This may include snacks, drinks, newspapers, magazines, and takeaway food.
Simply take a minute and look at your last month’s bank statements. Now calculate all small purchases you made without giving any actual value to them. Are you shocked by the results? Wait, wait, now multiply it by 12 months. Wa-lah! Your one-year invisible waste!
Now let’s discuss together how to avoid overspending with simple tips.
Make a Shopping List
When shopping, always have a shopping list and ensure you only pick up what you have on the list. By making a list of necessary items before getting to the store, you can prevent yourself from momentum purchases. Follow your list, and don’t add anything to it once you are in the store.
Do not Attach Your Credit Cards to Online Accounts
“One-click purchasing” induces us to impulse buying with easy clicks. Thus, to avoid it, simply remove your card info from online shops. Consequently, every time you would like to buy something online, you will contemplate each purchase, as you will have to retype all card information.
Calculate in your mind how much money you spend on transportation by taxies, buses, or even on your car. Walk to as many places as possible. Don’t take cabs to closeby stores or workplaces. Besides, when you walk, you won’t be able to carry extra items you just bought from this or that store.
Do Not Carry Too Much Cash with You
When you have extra cash in your pocket, you can catch yourself in the thought of how to spend it. The temptation of having cash can bring a crisis of self-control. Thus, having little money with you is a great money-saving technique and helps to avoid overspending.
Keep yourself Busy
When you are busy with something important, you don’t have time to think about shopping or purchasing unnecessary things. Read a lot, go to libraries, check out books or simply create a project to work on. When you have much free time, you can think of pampering yourself and spending money on something unnecessary or unimportant.
Avoid Spending Too Much Time with Friends
Of course, friends are important, but sometimes you should stop seeing your friends frequently as meetings with them may lead to spending too much. Either spend little time with friends or create such situations where money and spending are not applicable.
To cut down on invisible costs means prioritizing your spending. If you do not need something or hardly ever use it, why are you spending money on it? Highlighting priorities in spending enables you to be a wise shopper.
As Benjamin Franklin once said, “Beware of little expense. A small leak will sink a great ship”. Thus, concentrate more on repairing “small leaks” in your budget. Estimate the value of how and who you are spending your time with. When you realize what activities make you spend more, you will eliminate wasting effort and money.