Improve your economy by eliminating unnecessary expenses (ant expenses)
Have you ever heard or read about ant expenses and how they affect your personal finances?
This definition refers to those small capital leaks, which until now have been practically unnoticeable to your eyes. Surely you have gone through that moment when you ask yourself: what happens to all the money I earn, it flies away! The reality is that, due to bad investments or waste of your capital, you can´t have savings and even have some trouble making it to the end of the month.
At this point you may be thinking that we are going to suggest that you do not enjoy what you have worked for, but this is not the case. We invite you to analyze your investments, draw your own numbers of all the money you earn and ALL your expenses on a monthly basis (electricity, water, fuel, purchases, debts, etc).
It will seem to you that you are making the economic closing of the month of any company and that is exactly the idea. This way you will be able to see clearly your personal finances, you will take control and you will modify or eliminate all the micro expenses that prevent you from reaching your financial liberation.
As always, our duty is to provide you with the necessary information to make your own decisions, so we will show you the most frequent examples of ant spending.
Do you make full use of your cable TV plan? Certainly not. Most likely your plan will include channels you don’t even watch, or movie packages that are not entirely of interest to you. Check your current service bills and either cut your plan or switch to another provider. If movies and series are your thing, consider Netflix, it’s an economical alternative with very good quality products.
Are you aware of the commissions that the bank is charging with each withdrawal you make at an ATM and that writing checks has an additional cost? Well, it’s time to wake up, find out the percentage your bank charges for each movement you make on your account and analyze the percentages of other banks. Bank commissions vary greatly, ranging from the most expensive to zero.
These guarantees are usually offered when you purchase technology items and provide you with additional protection. Most of these extended warranties are a total waste of money. They are very expensive and come with a number of terms and conditions with clauses that leave you with virtually no protection that they promise.
The most logical and reasonable thing to do in this case is to take care of your belongings and just keep the warranty period that comes with the product.
Mobile and internet data
This point will depend a lot on your consumption. If you are one of those who has a cell phone plan, the first step is to know how many minutes, messages and data you have in your current plan and if you make a total consumption of it. If not, it is time to evaluate the offers of companies that provide the same benefits for a lower price or if the one you have gives you the option to cut those services you do not use.
On the other hand, if you are not subject to any plan and what you do is recharge your line when resources run out, we advise you to sit down and do the math. It is much more profitable to make a monthly payment to an occasional one.
Online shopping is one of the biggest money leaks you will find in your capital. Not only because of the excessive purchase of items that you will not really use or with one or two put in your closet, but also because of the premium services that you acquire so that you do not use them later, the taxes and shipping that are almost never taken into account and that increase the value of the final invoice. Next time you go shopping online, ask first if you really need it and wait a day to do it, so you avoid impulsive and compulsive purchases that you don’t need.
You can use this technique for all purchases you are going to make both on and off the Internet. How many times have you not gone to the malls to see what there is or looking for something specific and you come out of there full of bags with items that will end up in a drawer.
Draw the numbers for everything you spend eating out, you pay not only for the food and its quality, you also pay for the stay in the restaurant, some extra services they provide and you end up with an extensive bill for satiating your appetite. Not to mention that fast food is not only a problem for your pocket, but also for your health.
The idea is not to go extreme here and never do it, although this is the most ideal scenario, but to rationalize the number of times you resort to these services, leave it for specific occasions and start developing healthy habits that contribute to your quality of life.
Life insurance is not the problem you should be looking out for, but the type of life insurance you are paying for is. Keep in mind that the value the insurance can reach will depend on your age, health, the risks you assume and your family.
Our suggestion is that you get very well informed about all the alternatives and don’t stay with the first option you find just because it sounds good to you. Consider that the plan you are choose covers realistic risks and that you use all or most of the services it offers.
Love, friendship and loyalty of those around you will not be earned by the number of gifts you give them or their prize. With these actions in addition to impoverishing yourself each time, you are deceiving yourself into believing that those people you have bought from will be there the day you have nothing. It is better to give away special experiences and moments, which are not devalued over time like those ostentatious gifts, but are treasured for a lifetime.
This section includes all subscriptions, whether to magazines, gym, surprise gifts, social network articles, etc. You’re sure to be subscribed to things you hardly use, which are automatically charged to your card or paid for without even realizing it. Eliminate all the unused ones and manage the ones you do use depending on the actual usage.
Buy high-end phones on a fee basis
This is one of the endless cycles in which one usually falls. Take out your bills and you will see that you don’t achieve anything by buying a high-end phone in installments and when you finish paying it, its value will drop by more than 20% and newer models will be on the market, with better features and lower price. Also don’t think it’s a good idea to change the one you were paying for, for the new model and assume the difference in the same way (paying little by little). If your cell phone is still functional and fulfills all the services you need, don’t change it until it stops being so. An extra tip: wait a few months after its launch and you will find it with a more affordable price to your pocket.
Vices such as cigarettes and alcoholic beverages
If you are or have a friend or family member addicted to one of these vices, chances are you won’t want to admit it and won’t face all the harm it is bringing to your life and the lives of those around you. The advice is to try to stop it gradually or to cut it drastically. If you can’t, seek help from specialists.
Buying items just because these are on sale
We want to clarify that sales are not bad, but you have to take into account several aspects before buying. First, don’t buy what you don’t need. Second, you must have previous knowledge of the real price you had; in many occasions the discounts are minimal and they deceive the customers just by changing the price ticket so that the “discount” catches your attention. Finally, you must change the way you see the sales, “you are not saving 20% but spending 80”, so make sure you need whatever it is you are buying.
Buying New Cars
In this case it is not an ant expense because of the cost they have, but we believe it is necessary to mention it. There is some information you need to know: cars have a fast devaluation in the market, in the first year they usually lose up to 25% of the cost and for the third year they already have 46%, almost half of their initial value. Itt´s way better to get one that is 2 or 3 years old, with Little use and for a much lower price.
With all of the above you are ready to make your monthly budget. By taking into account the elimination or modification of these unnecessary expenses and money leaks that used to affect you, you will achieve control and improve your capital considerably. As we always tell you, the decision is yours, the power of change is in your hands.
Also read our article about Investment Techniques!