Hey, watch out — your daily budget leaks! I dunno whether you’re like my mom who routinely does the review of the household cash outflow at the end of each day before hitting the hay, or my 60-something aunt who prepares a long shopping list every Friday night.
Like them, you should be wondering where your daily budget goes, and whether your allocations go to where they’re supposed to be. That’s basic household budget management! If not however, then you should really start being mindful of these daily budget leaks that give you a damn reason why you still can’t make a decent savings. You should beware of these little but budget-wrecking expenses. As Benjamin Franklin said, “A small leak will sink a great ship.”
Lo! He’s a great American polymath and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. History is another interesting stuff. Okay! We are in the Philippines, and I shouldn’t be talking more about Benj, rather about Juan. Worry not then because I’ll talk more about how a common Juan frequents the neighborhood sundry store, not the grocery, for almost all his daily needs and, of course, his other unexamined household practices. So, here are the top six (6) daily budget leaks that you should plug as soon as possible:
1| Snacks and Soft Drinks
Filipinos love chips and coke. Lol, I love coke, but not chips. When I’m on a binge though, I feel a little guilty spending on something that’s not helpful. They’re not healthy though. Admit it. Snacks and drinks are but daily budget leaks. You may be spending at least PHP 50.00 a day on convenient snacks and drinks. That’s PHP 1,500.00 a month!
Mostly, they’re not a part of your daily food budget, but you keep on dispensing cash and coins from your wallet should you want instant refreshments. I suggest however that you consider those readily available at your kitchen or in the fridge. Eat what remains on the dining table after your regular meal plus a glass of cold water.
Coffee break, please! I finally had the chance to encash my Google AdSense payout two days ago through the Western Union Quick Cash. I have observed however a sudden drop in the audience traffic and earnings for the past few days. I believe I should make more aggressive efforts reaching more millennial readers out there.
While writing this article though, I still feel irked discovering past noon that one of my articles got reposted, duh as in verbatim, in another three-week old blog. I pitched the blogger a message to scrape the article from his publication. Likewise, I filed a report on the copyright infringement through Google Search Console. So, it’s a big warning. Next time someone does it, I won’t have any second thought writing an exclusive article about the copyright infringer. Kapalmuks!
2| Retail Cooking Ingredients
Continuing, most Filipino households rely on the neighborhood sari-sari store for instant cooking ingredients. Soy sauce, vinegar, salt, pepper, and other seasonings are readily available retail. Well, that’s good, but you should also know that your daily budget leaks with retail especially when it comes to meal preparation that you do imperatively twice or three times a day.
Convenient, yes, but you’re not making the most of your daily budget. Try instead doing the weekend grocery for basic cooking ingredients. Have a stock good for two weeks or a month, but make a second thought with those ingredients and seasonings that you use once in a blue moon. You don’t want to see them expire in your kitchen cabinets and fridge.
3| Prepaid Mobile Credits
Communication is your necessity, and hence, you maintain prepaid mobile credits for text messages, calls, and surfing the web. You may be loading up your phones every day or three times a week for these purposes. Most prepaid mobile credits however have short-term expirations, and you’re not making the most of what you pay for.
You’ve got to plan and be a little streetwise next time you load up your mobile. If you’re not into making regular calls or texting, then you better choose plans and promos with credits extended for weeks or a month. Don’t load up with those consumable within a day or two. Facebook browsing is no longer a big issue as almost all networks offer it free as long as you maintain a peso-load balance.
4| Public Transport Fares
A common signage in jeepneys runs, “Barya lang po sa umaga.” If you don’t have exact fare amount, you might anger the driver or the fare collector, or worse, let them keep your small change. You might then be reluctantly generous. Another thing, going out and to unfamiliar places without clear routes lead to misspending transport fares, and thus, additional budget leaks.
Prepare then exact amount, better be small bills and coins, when commuting to work. Of course, you don’t want another stress upon wasting a few precious coins on your mismanaged transport fare most especially after already getting one from traffic jam and the thought of being late. Sigh. When making new trips, better ask others for directions and possible public transport fares. In the first place, you might not want to spend hundreds on a cab or Grab.
5| Toiletries and Hygiene Products
Toiletries and hygiene products are also among daily budget leaks you should not discount. Say, you’re about to take a bath, but you run out of shampoo or conditioner. So, you go to the nearest sari-sari store for a retail. It’s okay, but if this becomes a habit, it’s not anymore budget-wise.
It’s not practical buying regularly consumed products at a retail. Toiletries and other hygiene products are consumed on a daily basis, and hence, you should have them from the grocery bought in bulks and good for couple of weeks or a month. When you make a stock though, regulate your consumption. Do not overconsume.
6| Vices and Other Fancy Stuff
Completing the list of daily budget leaks are vices and other fancy stuff. Your unplanned hangouts with friends and colleagues may lead you into shelling out hundreds for a few bottles of beer. Your daily dose of work stress may require you more smoke. Your mall trip may end you up buying cute stuff that are of no use but make another space in your drawer or office. You’re wasting money then.
I don’t want to sound a kill-joy here, but if you really want to make your daily budget work and save more at the end of the month, then you better get rid of your vices and fanciness that hurt your budget. It is a struggle, but well worth it.
So, start the plugging of these daily budget leaks.