Tight on Cash? Here Are 16 Useless Expenses to Avoid

When was the last time you evaluated your expenses? When you’re living paycheck to paycheck, every dollar counts. It’s important to ensure whatever you’re spending money on provides value to your life. The following are sixteen expenses to avoid if you live on a tight budget

1. Banking Fees

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If your financial institution charges mandatory fees to use their service, it’s time to find a new bank. While it might not seem like a lot at first, even as little as $10 a month could add up to a lot of money over time. While there are always reasons for choosing your financial institution, there’s no reason to be loyal to a bank that charges you a fee if there are free options. 

2. Unused Subscriptions

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If the subscription cost isn’t worth the value you receive from it, it’s time to cancel. In recent years, many companies have offered their services through a subscription model, making it difficult to use every platform to its fullest. If money is tight, you need to reevaluate what services you’re subscribed to and decide whether or not it’s worth it to re-up your membership. 

3. Premium Gasoline

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Does premium gas actually make a difference? Many people believe that filling their car with premium gasoline is a necessary expense, but most cars run fine on regular gas. While your car won’t notice the difference between premium and regular gas, your wallet will feel the difference. 

4. Wellness Products 

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Detox teas, collagen drinks, and supplements are a few everyday wellness products that are quickly becoming widely popular. But if you really take a good look at the ingredients, you can get everything you need from these wellness products from a healthy diet. So, to avoid any additional expenses, skip the wellness products and focus on your diet instead. 

5. Late Fees

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Late fees could be a silent killer if you’re living on a budget. If you fail to pay a bill on time, you can expect to accrue late fees. When you don’t have much money to spend, late fees are like throwing your money away. To avoid late fees, automate payments and organize your bills to ensure you aren’t spending money unnecessarily. 

6. Dining Out Regularly

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It’s unrealistic for anyone to avoid eating out altogether, but regularly dining out is one expense you should definitely avoid. The average person spends thousands of dollars a year on dining out. If you live paycheck to paycheck, pay close attention to how much you spend going to restaurants and cafes. You won’t believe how much you could save. 

7. Premium Internet 

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Several people spend money on super-fast internet but don’t actually need it. Unless you’re a gamer, work from home, or constantly download large files, there’s no reason to pay for extra fast internet. So, if you don’t utilize your extra-fast internet, consider getting a downgrade to save money

8. Car Lease 

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If you can’t afford to purchase a vehicle upfront, leasing might seem more convenient. However, a car lease may not be the best option if you live paycheck to paycheck. The additional monthly payments and fees for late payments can quickly become overwhelming. 

9. Luxury Skincare

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The wide variety of skincare and beauty products on the market makes it overwhelming to decide which products to invest in. If you’re someone living paycheck to paycheck, a 10-step skincare routine is a mistake. Find the ingredients that work for you, choose the essential products you need, and stick to them. 

10. Premium Cable Package

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Cable can be an expensive expense, especially when you have a premium package. But with thousands of television shows and movies available at your fingertips through streaming platforms, there’s no need for an expensive cable package. 

11. Extended Warranties

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Have you ever needed to use an extended warranty? People often pay extra for an extended warranty, but the cost of repairing the item is usually less than the warranty itself. If you’re in a tight financial situation, don’t spend money you don’t have on a warranty; instead, set aside savings that could cover any repairs you need. 

12. Overdraft Protection

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Your financial institution will try to convince you that overdraft protection fees are wise, but do you need it? You can easily avoid going over your balance by monitoring how you spend your money. If you struggle with keeping up with your account balance, utilize banking apps that notify you whenever you’re close to a zero balance. 

13. High-Interest Credit Cards

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Credit cards seem like a smart solution for someone on a tight budget, but high-interest credit cards can be disastrous to your budget. If you’re living paycheck to paycheck, you must find a credit card with an interest rate you can realistically repay and ensure you make the minimum payments (or more) on time.

14. Household Energy Waste

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Several things contribute to household energy waste. Leaving your lights on, poor insulation, and leaving electronics plugged in when unused are everyday things that increase household energy consumption. When living on a budget, it’s essential to ensure you save money in every way you can. 

15. Expensive Gift 

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Everyone loves to be able to shower their loved ones with gifts, but splurging on an expensive gift likely isn’t the right choice. Set a realistic limit on how much you can afford for a gift, or opt for making something yourself; as the saying goes, it’s the thought that counts. 

16. Lottery Tickets 

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Everyone living paycheck to paycheck would love to have a source of additional cash. While lottery tickets often seem like a potential solution to financial burdens, the odds of winning are incredibly slim. You should never spend your money on lottery tickets. You’d have much better chances of earning additional income through a high-yield savings account or investment fund. 


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She started her blog, The Money Dreamer, when she realized the 9-5 job was not the lifestyle she wanted anymore. After designing for a while, she wanted a more meaningful life, which was freedom, so she decided to venture out. She took action so that she can live her dream life and decided to help people to live theirs by helping them how to save, budget, and invest.

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