There are so many bad money habits out there. I’d imagine you could probably name a few of your worst without really putting a lot of thought into it. I have some particularly crappy ones, and while I’ve made a lot of progress on them in the past year or two I still definitely have a ways to go.
Since the year is ending and everyone, for the first few weeks anyway, acts like a new year brings a clean slate there are a few really bad money habits that a lot of us have that we need to stop. Stat.
Stop Spending More Than You Earn
This one I’ve mostly got resolved. I work on a much tighter budget than I used to and it’s really made a huge difference. But I used to have such a bad habit of this. It’s so easy to spend more than you earn, especially with credit cards (please see below) and doing so gets you in such a tight spot.
Cutting this bad money habit starts with making a budget. Then, subsequently, following it. A budget (that you follow) can go a long way with helping you manage your money. Try a program like Mint if you need a little electronic help.
If for whatever reason you can’t live within your earnings, it’s probably time to think about increasing these earnings. That might come in the form of asking for a raise, starting a side hustle or getting a second job.
Stop Relying On Your Credit Card
I am so bad for this. It’s just so easy. Credit seems like the best idea until you miss a payment or overspend and have to start paying interest. Interest is never worth it.
I’ll admit that I like to use my credit card for the points, but as of late I’ve been really stringent with making sure that everything that goes on my credit card comes off by the end of the month. Everything.
Otherwise, even with the minimum payment, you’re paying interest on the rest of the balance. And while it might start out as $20 here, $40 there… a few more big purchases unpaid and it’s $150 here, $300 there… that’s a game you don’t want to be playing with the bank!
Paying Bills Late
Paying bills late is no good. Not one bit. Paying bills late can mean additional fees, a bad mark on your credit score and more financial issues.
If you have issues paying your bills on time, there are a few things you can do that might help you get better at it:
- Make calendar reminders that can help you remember that you have a bill to pay
- Switch your bills to automatic payments where you can
- Record bill payments in your daytimer (if you’re old school like that)
Make 2019 the year you pay all of your bills on time!
Stop Using Payday Loans
Luckily, I’ve never used a payday loan, but I know a lot of people who have been forced to do this at times. While I understand the need, I am very much against payday loans. To me, they’re the equivalent of highway robbery.
When it comes to payday loans, the cost-versus-reward is just not there. According to CNBC’s Money, the interest rate on payday loans throughout America is anywhere from 300 to 700%.
If you can avoid these bad money habits, you’ll have a much better new year, at least financially.
Do you have bad money habits that you need to get rid of? Share them in the comments below!
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Tae started out as a journalist before following the money into the corporate world. But it turns out that the grass isn’t always greener and now you can find her spending most of her time writing about all the things she loves. Namely, money, travel and business with a hefty dose of self-deprecating humor. She is a podcast fanatic, blogging aficionado and loves to find new ways to turn passions into cold hard cash!