October 13, 2012

October 13, 2012
10 Bad Spending Habits

Welcome to another day in my life. Today is Saturday and I hope you have a very safe and great week. It is another busy weekend for Dab the AIDS Bear as the bear is at four events this weekend.

One of the adjustments people have to make after finding out they are HIV positive is their budget. Between doctor visits, lab test and medications; it can all get very expensive. So you have to learn to make every dollar stretch as much as you can. So today and tomorrow, I am going to blog about 10 bad spending habits.

1.Out of Network ATM Fees
Racking up fees by using ATMs that aren't on your bank's network? Switch banks or open an account at a bank that's more convenient to where you live/work. "Foreign" ATM fees average about $2.50 per transaction, says BankRates.com. That's more than $250 per year if you use out-of-system ATMs just twice a week!

2. Bottled water
Getting your recommended daily amount of water exclusively in bottled form can easily cost more than $1,000 per year, as compared with about 50 cents per year for just-as-healthy tap water. If your tap water has a chlorine flavor, try refrigerating it overnight before drinking.

3. Oil changes
Regularly changing the oil in your vehicles and staying on top of routine maintenance are good habits to have, but if you're still changing your oil every 3,000 miles, you may be wasting money. Newer vehicles often use synthetic oils that can last 7,500 miles or more. See the website checkyournumber.org for oil change info for newer model vehicles. It's a pretty slick way to save.

4. Incandescent light bulbs
Even though they cost more, "compact fluorescent lamps" (CFLs) those crazy corkscrewed light bulbs last about five times longer than old-fashioned incandescent bulbs and use about 75 percent less electricity. That could easily add up to a net savings of $10 per bulb per year. Bright idea!

5. Extended service plans
Don't be a sucker for the sales pitch trying to sell you an extended service plan or warranty of electronics, appliances and other merchandise. They're rarely a wise purchase, and typically go unused or forgotten by the consumer. Most merchandise comes with a manufacturer's warranty that's sufficient for most defects and repairs.

I will continue tomorrow blogging about five more bad spending habits. Hope you have a beary safe and great Saturday!

Until we meet again; here's wishing you health, hope, happiness and just enough.

big bear hug,

Daddy Dab