If you find yourself in bad financial shape and you’re not sure why, there’s a fairly good chance it has to do with your spending habits. Now, to be sure, there are times when you have to spend money. If you’re seeking advice on refinancing your home, for instance, you will need to consult a specialist. Or, if you’re upgrading your home to be more energy efficient, you’ll once again have to throw down some bills. That’s part of the cost of living. Other expenses are more recreational and, added up, can put you into debt. What are the warning signs of impending financial doom? Well, you may be spending too much money if…
You’ve left your credit card at the bar more than once. We’ll grant you a mulligan for doing it once, but any more than that and it’s obvious you’re driving up massive tabs at the bar. Usually, the only time you’re short-sighted enough to leave your credit card or debit card at the bar is when you’ve had a few too many. And if you’ve had a few too many, you’re almost certainly spending too much money at the bar. A six pack from the store costs you $10 at most. At the local watering hole, those same six beers will run you at least $36, before tip.
Your bank statement would take an entire tree to print out. Most people nowadays use their cards to pay for many of their expenses, so it’s not too unusual to have a long list of monthly transactions posted on your online account report. But let’s be reasonable. If you’re charging hundreds of transactions to your card every week, you’re probably spending too much. Sometimes it’s good to sweat the small stuff.
You pair swordfish with three bottles from the local vintner. There’s nothing wrong with eating out on occasion, and there’s nothing wrong with ordering something tasty and exotic. But when you’re having lavish, royal meals at a four-star restaurant, you should think about how much money you earn. If you entree costs more than you make in half a day’s work, you may be living beyond your means. And one bottle of wine is enough!
These are just a few examples of how you can spend too much money. There are, obviously, hundreds more. The important thing to remember is to trust your gut feeling. If you think you’re spending too much money you probably are. Don’t let the glow of alcohol distract you from the fact that financial responsibility begins with making sacrifices.