We all have vices. Whether big or small, overt or secret, these nasty little habits can cause major problems when it comes to your finances. Here are eight vices that could take your budget way off course.
Smoking. Lighiting up will not only kill you, but it can also do a number on your finances. Once you figure in the cost of additional dry cleaning and dental visits, you’ve wasted a huge chunk of cash. On average, a pack of smokes will set you back about $5 (and those are the cheap smokes). If you’re a chain smoker and you smoke a pack a day, that equals almost $2,000 a year.
Extramarital affairs. Keeping both of your honeys laced in ice and fine clothes will do more than wreck your budget–it could cost you a marriage. Make sure you set aside some cash for a divorce attorneyif this is a vice you just can’t seem to give up.
Drinking. Don’t drink your money away. That buzz could cost you, especially if you hang out at bars or clubs, where prices are usually in the double digits. If a sip of wine now and then does the body good, consider drinking at home. A bottle from your local winery could be much less expensive than a glass at the local hot spot.
Lotto. Playing the numbers isn’t a last-minute retirement plan. Stop dreaming and start saving money for your golden years.
Eating out. Those $5 foot longs, dollar menu meals, and $4 lunch specials at the Chinese restaurant might be cheap and quick, but it adds up over time. Start cooking at home and put what you would have spent on meals into your savings account.
“Escape to freedom? Not now, Harriet! Girl, there’s a sale today!”
Coffee. A daily cup of designer Joe at $4 a pop will cost you $1,460 a year. Buy a coffee maker and brew your own at home. But if you must purchase your coffee, try to get it from a mom-and-pop store for a dollar (or less, if you can find it). You’ll be supporting a small business and save a few dollars in the process.
Excessive grooming. Weekly facials, manicures, massages, and hair styling might be relaxing, but you’ll burn through your cash before you know it. Do it yourself for less, and go to the professionals for special occasions.