Avoiding Money Drains!

Why does it always feel like I’m dead broke or at least scrounging for money? I try to budget/cut back but it’s hard to ID the source that is burning a hole in my wallet. I thought it was my money hungry girlfriend who always needs to order the $7 tiramisu after dinner or could be the semester tuition but I saw this list of deceptive money drains that cost me a ton over the long term.

Once I did the math on my coffee addiction I realized that almost a grand was blown away yearly for a jittery sugar high.

Although German fetish porn doesn’t make the list you should check out the factors that can are costing you dearly after the jump…


1. Coffee
According to the National Coffee Association, the average price for brewed coffee is $1.38. There are roughly 260 weekdays per year, so buying one coffee every weekday morning costs almost $360 per year.

2. Cigarettes
The Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids reports that the average price for a pack of cigarettes in the United States is $4.54. Pack-a-day smokers fork out $1,660 a year. Weekend smoker? Buying a pack once a week adds up, too: $236.

3. Alcohol
Drink prices vary based on the location. But assuming an average of $5 per beer including tip, buying two beers per day adds up to $3,650 per year. Figure twice that for two mixed drinks a day at the local bar. That’s not chump change.

4. Bottled water from convenience stores
A 20-ounce bottle of Aquafina bottled water costs about $1. One bottle of water per day costs $365 per year. It costs the environment plenty, too.

5. Manicures
The Day Spa Magazine Price Survey of 2004 found that the average cost of a manicure is $20.53. A weekly manicure sets you back about $1,068 per year.

6. Car washes
The average cost for a basic auto detailing package is $58, according to Costhelper.com. The tab for getting your car detailed every two months: $348 per year.

7. Weekday lunches out
$9 will generally cover a decent lunch most work days. If you buy rather than pack a lunch five days a week for one year, you shell out about $2,350 a year.

8. Vending machines snacks
The average vending machine snack costs $1. Buy a pack of cookies every afternoon at work and pay $260 per year.

9. Interest charges on credit card bills
According to a survey released at the end of May 2007, the median amount of credit card debt carried by Americans is $6,600. Rate tables on Bankrate.com indicate that fixed interest rates on a standard card average 13.44 percent. Making the minimum payment each month, it will take 250 months (almost 21 years) to pay off the debt and cost $4,868 in interest. Ouch!

10. Unused memberships
Costhelper.com reports that the monthly service fee at gyms averages between $35 and $40. At $40 per month, an unused gym membership runs $480 per year.

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