Special Report

40 Money Habits That Can Leave You Broke

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1. Your App Addiction

In the list of things to waste money on, smartphone apps are a big one. Those $1.99 purchases seem inexpensive enough, but they can snowball — especially if you have kids who are adding to the overall purchase price or frequency.

Consider free app downloads exclusively or cap yourself and your family with a monthly app budget.

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2. Paying Bank Fees

Many banking fees can be avoided, so there’s no reason to pay these if you don’t have to. Instead, find a financial institution that will allow you to avoid certain fees.

With the right checking account, you can avoid the monthly fee with a monthly direct deposit or minimum daily balance of $500 or more. When it’s that easy to avoid a fee, you should always take advantage so you can keep more of your money in your account.

ALSO READ: Budgeting 101: How To Create a Budget You Can Live With

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3. Not Checking Your Credit Report

People with top-tier credit ratings qualify for the lowest finance rates when car or home shopping. Over a 30-year term, a quarter of a percentage point can add up to thousands of dollars.

Check your credit history regularly and clean up any problems as soon as they arise.

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4. Having Wine With Dinner

Buying wine with dinner is a pricey proposition. Restaurateurs routinely mark up bottles by about three times the wholesale price — sometimes more. Consider a BYOB-friendly restaurant instead or, if you can bear it, skip the wine altogether when dining out.

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5. Leasing Your Car

A 2019 cost-comparison report by car cost site Edmunds found that the overall cost of leasing a compact SUV can be over $5,000 more than the cost of buying a similar car used, and it is about $7,000 more than buying the same car new when you take equity into consideration.

Drop the lease and invest the difference, and you can boost your overall financial scenario.