by Dana George | Updated July 17, 2021 - First published on May 11, 2020
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Little expenses can bleed your bank account dry. Here are three types to be aware of.
We pay small(ish), avoidable expenses all the time. Banks make billions on overdraft fees alone. Utility companies tack on late fees if our payment reaches them two days late. We pay both a "delivery fee" and a tip whenever pizza is delivered. These expenses add up. We are often so distracted by everyday life that we don't pay attention to them, but imagine what would happen if we did.
Here are three expenses we should all take time to note and do whatever we can to avoid them.
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Credit cards can be a useful financial tool. Used wisely, they help build credit, secure services (like hotel rooms and rental cars), and earn you great rewards. That said, there are plenty of credit card-related costs to watch out for. The good news is, once you recognize how much they cost, you can look for alternatives. Keep your eye on these three charges:
Personal loans can be an awesome weapon in your financial arsenal. They are a great way to consolidate high-interest debt, finance a home project, or otherwise meet your financial obligations. Even so, there are things to look out for.
Buy Here, Pay Here dealerships work like this: Buyers (normally with low credit scores and trouble qualifying for a traditional auto loan) find a car they want on the dealership lot. The important thing to remember is that Buy Here, Pay Here outfits are expensive.
The average interest rate at a Buy Here, Pay Here lot hovers around 20%, far more than you would pay through a traditional lender. They often charge more and lend more than the car is actually worth, meaning you'll owe more than the car's value. And, unlike traditional lenders, not all Buy Here, Pay Here dealerships will report your payments to the credit reporting agencies, which would help to build your credit score. If you're going to take out a loan, the least you should expect is the opportunity to build your credit.
It can take vigilance to avoid everyday expenses. You can save money through simple acts, like checking receipts when you leave a store, setting up auto payments so your bills are never late, and keeping a portion of your emergency fund in checking so your account is never overdrawn.
After all, it's your money and it's worth protecting.
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