Being frugal is not just coupon-ing, DIY and garage sales. Being frugal also about doing the hard work to avoid those financial "incidentals" which blindside us and take a dent out of our wallet.
Some financial troubles may be totally unavoidable, such as emergency room visits, flat tires, or job layoffs.
But other financial "road bumps" can be avoided. The old adage is true: "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure." The car breaks down because you neglected scheduled maintenance. A below minimum balance bank charge hits because you lost track of money flow in the account. Speeding to work, a cop pulls you over and you get a ticket. We can get over-scheduled and unable to keep up with all the demands of life. And sometimes we can get careless or just don't take the time to plan. That's when we get "zinged" with a nuisance fee.
Bank fees:Avoid ATM fees, Overdraft charges, & Minimum balance charges:
- Check out this article on 5 Ways to Avoid ATM Fees by US News: http://money.usnews.com/money/blogs/my-money/2011/03/17/5-ways-to-avoid-atm-fees
- Online Banking and Mobile Banking allows you to access your account information 24/7 and helps you keep track of your account balance.
- Online or Mobile Banking Alerts allow you to receive email Alerts when there's important activity on your account, such as a low balance.
- Sign up for overdraft protection (as long as it's free). Overdraft Protection automatically transfers available funds from your savings or second checking account if you overdraw it.
- Avoid parking tickets, traffic tickets, vehicle boots, towing services, unpaid tolls, and more. Drive safely, don't take risks, and don't park illegally. Keep extra money in the car to feed the meter or pay a toll if you forget your pass.
- Take your car in for timely, regular maintenance to prevent damage to your car and expensive repairs.
Late fees, balance transfer fees, annual fees, cash advance fees, surcharge fees from retailers, over-the-limit fees, and more. This article on About.com explains what these fees are, when they are charged and how to avoid them: http://credit.about.com/od/creditcardbasics/tp/credit-card-fees.htm
Medical & Dental Care:As your car needs regular maintenance at scheduled intervals, so do you and your family.
- Get a dental cleaning every 6 months to avoid paying for cavity fillings, expensive oral surgeries such as root canals, complications with your gums, and other potential problems. We had a friend who skipped out on going to the dentist for about 8 years - as you can imagine, the dental bill was pretty hefty after all the work that needed to be done on his mouth.
- regular medical check-ups, annual physicals and doctor visits at the first sign of a health issue can often prevent expensive surgeries or medication costs.
|Our English Setter, Suka|