The past year has kept most Americans safe in their homes, searching for something to occupy their minds and their time. Generally, staying home is a way to save money. Unfortunately, many found hunkering in at home to be a financial drain.
How can staying home possibly equate to a financial disaster? Subscription services. I know what you are thinking – they do not cost that much.
Today’s world allows us to have almost anything delivered, streamed, or accessible for a small monthly fee. If you are tired of coming up with a menu and shopping at the grocery store, you can have a box delivered to your doorstep complete with ingredients and a recipe to create a delicious family dinner.
Finding something to watch on TV is easier, too; just sign up for a streaming service from one or several of the companies offering hundreds of movies and television series. They are great for binge-watching an entire season. From Disney+ to Netflix to Discovery+ to ESPN+, you should be able to find something worth watching, right?
If you can dream it, you can probably find a subscription for it. A beauty box, food and toys for pets, clothing boxes for men and women, toys and activities for the kids, book of the month, car wash, online fitness gurus with programmed workouts, diet monitoring apps, theater, shaving supplies, wine, shoes, and the list goes on and on.
There is nothing wrong with subscribing to any of these services. Believe me, I have several myself. Many can help increase our quality of life and save us time. While reviewing your budget and planning for the year ahead, be aware of these financial drains. The cost for each is generally low and easy to justify. Altogether, they can really add up. Do your subscription costs fit into your long-term spending plan, or could they be preventing you from reaching your financial goals?
Your spending plan should be focused on meeting your monthly needs and achieving your financial objectives. These objectives should be aligned with your personal values and goals.
If you have not already done so, take some time and ponder the year ahead. Where do you want to end up financially speaking? You have a limited amount to spend each month; make it count.
If you need some ideas or suggestions on creating a spending plan, watch our Money Matters recorded webinar on budgeting. You can find it at SmedleyFinancial.com under Just for Women.