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Spending Leaks

Spending Leaks

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Spending leaks can do just as must damage as a water leak. Luckily finding a spending leak is not as complicated, and costly, as finding and repairing a water leak. But what is a spending leak? There are two types of spending leaks:

Yearly expenses we tend to forget about. Like birthdays. Oh yes, we’ve all been there. Innocently checking Facebook when suddenly your mother-in-law’s birthday reminder appears. Great…you forgot, again. So you pop into the shops after work and before you know it you have spent R 500 (which you initially thought would have cost R 200).

Expenses we consider too small to take into account when it comes to our personal finances. Consider this: If you’re in the habit of buying coffee every day at work and that coffee costs R 13 you’ll be spending R 3,146 every year… ouch. What would you do if someone gave you R 3,000?!? Yes, that R 3,000 was a direct hint at our competition 😉 Want to enter? Click here.

Most of us don’t even realise we’re costing ourselves financial headaches with spending leaks. So we’ve put together a list of common spending leaks. Go through the list, add your own and work it into your budget and financial action plan. Your future self will be impressed!

 School Spending Leaks

  • Uniforms
  • Stationary
  • School Pictures
  • Extracurricular participation fees (sports equipment, musical instruments, costumes, Eisteddfod entry fees, etc.)
  • Field-trips and camps
  • Teachers and classmate birthdays
  • Extra classes
  • School participation fees (entrepreneurs’ day, Spring Day, inter-house sport, etc.)
  • Tuck shop
  • After school care
  • School projects

Spending Leaks at the Petrol Station

We’re all guilty of this one! It’s sooo tempting to pop into the convenience store when we’re filling our car. The problem is that shopping at a convenience store is way more expensive. And because it’s an unplanned shopping spree we tend to buy extra items we don’t need. Rather just avoid shopping there altogether.

At Work Spending Leaks

  • Buying coffee
  • Buying lunch
  • Buying snacks
  • Co-worker and manager birthdays
  • After-work drinks
  • Company fun days (Spring Day etc.)
  • Company charity donations
  • Work wardrobe

Celebration Spending Leaks

  • Gifts – birthday /anniversary / baby shower / wedding
  • Cards
  • Wrapping paper
  • Parties
  • Decorations
  • Restaurant
  • Food, drinks, and snacks
  • Fuel, toll and accommodation expenses (if you have to sleep over)
  • Outfits
  • Salon visits

Holiday Spending Leaks

  • Souvenirs
  • Fixing up your car before the trip (replacing tyres etc.)
  • Day trips to attractions (water parks, museums etc.)
  • Salon visits before the vacation
  • Restaurant
  • Emergency cash
  • Toll fees
  • Car rental
  • Travel insurance
  • Pet/house sitter
  • Fuel

Spending Leaks at Home

  • TV License
  • Repair/replacement cost of appliances, tools, electronics, kitchenware, etc
  • Garden care (plants, insecticide, lawn treatment etc.)
  • Swimming pool maintenance
  • Home repairs

Shopping List Spending Leaks

  • Prescription medicines
  • Pet care
  • Not making a shopping list beforehand
  • Going shopping when you’re hungry
  • Not checking your cupboards and fridge for what you already have before going shopping

Year-End Spending Leaks

  • Year-end tips/bonuses for service professionals
  • An increase groceries when you’re entertaining
  • An increase in your electricity and water bill when you’re home
  • Household maintenance
  • Festive decorations
  • Day-trips to local attractions
  • Restaurant

With our busy schedules, it’s easy to miss or forget about certain expenses. But if we wish to save more money in the year ahead we’ll have to get creative. Identifying your spending leaks is a great starting point, and at the end, it does make a big difference when added together.