Home Personal Finance 4 Common Money Mistakes to Avoid

4 Common Money Mistakes to Avoid

by My Journey to Millions

Whether you call it wasted money, flushing money down the toilet, or lost cash, the bottom line is that even simple money mistakes can compound and quickly drain your financial aspirations. Avoiding these all-too-common money mistakes will only enhance all aspects of your life, so put away any sense of shame and start changing your financial life right away.

  1. Not keeping track of purchases made with cash

    Yes, most of us still have to use cash at least occasionally. Tips, sodas, feeding parking meters and the like are cash purchases that we all too often just don’t keep track of. Some financial experts, like David Bach, point out that quarters and dollars spent on sodas, snacks and coffee could total thousands of dollars lost over a lifetime. So learn the truth about your real spending habits by writing down all cash purchases, especially if you’re often left wondering “Where did all my money go?”

  2. Paying fees for checking accounts and not keeping an eye on your ATM withdrawal fees

    These days, there’s just really no reason to pay a monthly fee for a basic checking account. You also should keep an eye on your ATM withdrawal charges; a growing number of banks including Fidelity refund all of your ATM surcharges even when you use a machine outside of your banking network. If your bank doesn’t refund ATM fees then either find a bank that does or limit your ATM transactions to machines within your financial network.

  3. Falling for the “on sale” game

    Many of us have a hard time resisting a good deal especially during the holidays, but before you grab that wallet stop for a second and just think. First, do you really need that item? Second, are you falling for common sales tactics such as “50 percent off?” Sometimes a sale is nothing more than a marketing technique designed to blind even the smartest financial minds and open up those wallets.

  4. Complaining about money or lack thereof

    It really doesn’t matter if you believe in Abraham of the Bible or Abraham Hicks of Law of Attraction fame, or both. Spiritual and financial experts alike believe that when it comes to matters of the wallet, you really are what you think. If you constantly think “I’m so broke” or “I’ll never have any money” then your mind, body and spirit will keep you stuck in that deprivation phase. While being unrealistic about a serious financial situation is pretty ill-advised, sitting around obsessing about what you don’t have in life will make it a lot harder for you to enjoy what you do have.

Written by Stephanie Mojica

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Matt 12/03/2010 - 11:03 am

Ugh, I’m too scared to know how much money I’ve literally handed over to Starbucks. For the sake of arguement, let’s call it six days a week, at $5 a pop (they just raised prices & like a sheep, I go along). So $30 per week, $120 per month, $1,440 per year. Oh dear God, they’ve hooked me! They’re essentially my dealer. Sheesh, at $1,440 per year that’s a new TV, money towards a car, house, savings, or that silly wedding coming up. My word. I pledge that staring Monday, (yeah I’ll enjoy them this weekend- don’t judge) I shall cut back. Heck, even if I only bought it 3-days a week, that’s over $700 saved.

One other new devil to work into the ‘on-sale’ category is Groupon and other services like that. It’s literally something tempting you to buy every morning when you open your email. They are evil!


Evan 12/04/2010 - 12:45 pm


Can you find a cheaper alternative? What about Dunks?

Maybe you can save other ways so this treat you can have?

LifeAndMyFinances 12/04/2010 - 7:34 am

I just barely escaped the “on sale” trap with Black Friday. My wife and I were really excited about a couple of items, but somehow we talked ourselves out of it. Thank Goodness! We really don’t need anymore stuff. In fact, we’re trying to get rid of because we might be moving soon.

Stephanie Mojica 12/04/2010 - 10:03 am

Black Friday and similar sales truly trap people, especially during these economic times. I can’t tell you how many times years ago I succumbed to the “on sale” scam and spent more money than I had (or charged credit cards) for items I didn’t need or really even want that much.

YOU are the master of your finances, not the sales industry.

Peace, love, happiness, and prosperity,

Future Money-Bags 12/06/2010 - 12:47 pm

I get starbucks about once a month, and I eat out probably 2-4 times a month. I only buy something I want, if I really need it or I think I deserve it, or it will benefit me positively and I will use it a lot!

I have quite low monthly expenses and I save more than I make, but believe me I am tempted just as much as anyone else to buy everything I want. But by holding back and continuing to save my money each day, When I actually do buy something I won’t miss the money!

I just bought a new tv and it came to over $1,000. But you know what, I didnt see a drop in my accounts (but they sure didnt grow any last month).

By living below your means, being frugal, and just holding back on getting all those things you want, you can afford to treat yourself and not feel it in the wallet the next day!

Budget Confidential 12/07/2010 - 9:55 pm

#1 is a good tip (so are #’s 2-4). I have dedicated myself to tracking every penny of my spending for a year on my blog just to see how much I am really spending that I never thought about before.

Kevin 12/08/2010 - 12:44 pm

I never fall for the on sale game anymore because of my iPhone and Amazon.com. When I see something on sale I almost always check it on Amazon (because Amazon has just about everything) and it’s pretty amazing how many times it was still cheaper online than on “sale” at the store.

Ken 12/08/2010 - 9:54 pm

That “on-sale” game is really just a marketing tactic. If you really try to do your research, the prices are not the sale price but the true. Most discount are based on the MSRP of the item that I think are overinflated in the first place. I guess it’s all psychological like pricing an item at $29.99 instead of $30.00. People will respond more on the $29.99 one.


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