In a recent survey, it was found that Americans spend an average of $20,000 per person on 8 vices. These are some of the most common costs associated with these activities:
-1 day at Disney World = $159
-2 months Netflix subscription (includes both streaming and DVD plans) for family members = $120
-Domino’s Pizza per month x 6 people in your household=$10

 

We all have vices, but do we ever consider how much they cost us? Spending money on them might have an unintended financial influence on our life.

We all have vices that we know are bad for us. Coffee shop or fast-food visits aren’t life-threatening, but they might cost us in ways we don’t often realize. Our unhealthy habits may have a negative impact on our savings accounts and budgets in addition to hurting our health.

It’s natural to have vices, but allowing them to dictate our life may lead to major financial blunders. Although most things in moderation are great, understanding how they affect your life and money may be eye-opening.

The following are some of the most costly vices we meet in our daily lives, as well as the staggering sums we spend on them.

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1. Hair and skin care

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Although many of us want to appear as wonderful as we feel, it’s equally vital to understand that beauty sometimes comes at a high cost. Americans spent $786 on salon visits, manicures, and grooming items in 2019, with some of us spending far more.

If you feel forced to have a manicure or pedicure every couple of weeks, you may be looking at paying $50 to $100 each month (a basic manicure costs $20 to $50, and a pedicure costs $35 to $40), and the cost can rise depending on the services desired. With that type of price tag, you’ll be spending anywhere from $600 to $1,200 a year just on your nails.

This vice’s potential cost: $1,200

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2. Alcoholic beverages

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While having a few alcoholic beers with friends or celebrating a key milestone with your spouse isn’t a terrible thing, some of us go a bit too far with our happy hours.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, we spent an average of $549 on alcoholic drinks per person in 2019. Excessive drinking also costs taxpayers $249 billion every year in lost productivity, health-care expenditures, and legal fees, according to a CDC study. It’s also the cause of up to 95,000 fatalities per year.

Even a couple of drinks per week can cost anywhere from $10 to $25, depending on what you order. This adds up to $40 to $100 every month, or $1,200 per year. Instead of spending that money on alcohol, you might put it towards your emergency fund or pay off your student loan or credit card debt.

This vice’s potential cost: $1,200 per year.

Traitov / istockphoto / Traitov / istockphoto / Traitov / istockphoto /

3. Lottery tickets and gambling

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Many of us think of slot machines, Las Vegas, and card games when we think about gambling. Lottery tickets, sports betting, raffles, and even bingo games are all examples of gambling.

Gambling isn’t always a night at the casino, but it may be just as expensive. In 2018, Americans spent an average of $69.52 per person on lottery tickets, with seniors aged 65 to 74 spending over twice that ($132.43).

The typical chances of winning the lottery are 1 in 14 million, according to Wonderopolis, a division of the National Center for Families Learning, so you’d be better off saving or learning how to invest money.

The expense of this indulgence might go as high as $132.43 per year in lottery tickets alone.

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4. Theraputic shopping

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When you’re having a bad day, a little retail therapy may be a great diversion, but all those stress purchases can rapidly add up.

In April 2020, Americans spent an average of $182.98 per month on impulsive purchases. We (probably) don’t do it every month, but if we did, we’d be spending $2,195.76 each year that might be put toward our emergency fund or debt reduction.

Try keeping to a shopping list or deleting your credit card information from online shopping portals so you have to key it in manually to make a purchase while you consider how to better manage your money. Both of these options might be simple strategies to avoid purchasing based on emotions.

The annual cost of this habit is estimated to be $2,195.76.

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5. Quick-service restaurants

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On any given day, around 36% of Americans consume fast food, and we dine out one to three times each week. When we eat fast food, we most likely spend more than the national average of $6 per meal.

Even at the average meal cost, it may not seem like a lot, but when you add up all those drive-through trips, you could be spending up to $936 every year.

If we want to save money while also improving our health, cutting less on eating out, particularly at fast-food restaurants, is a good place to start.

The annual expense of this habit might be $936.

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6. Soda

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Soda may seem to be quite inexpensive, yet it may have a huge impact on both our health and our money.

Using myself as an example, I drank three to four 12-ounce drinks virtually every day last year. For $4.49 plus tax, or around 57 cents per bottle, my local grocery shop sells an eight-pack of 12-ounce bottles of my favored brand.

Three of them a day cost $1.71, but that meant I spent $51.30 on sodas per month. That works up to $615.60 each year spent on something that is neither good for my health nor good for my money.

So, after doing the math, did I give up all Coke for good? No, but I did make some cuts, and both my waistline and my bank account are more happier as a result.

$615.60 is the estimated cost of this vice.

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7. Excessive speeding

speeding-cars

When we’re in a rush, it’s easy to speed, but having a lead foot may cost you a lot of money.

The cost of a speeding citation varies depending on where you live and how fast you were traveling, but it may cost anything from $20 in Oklahoma to $135 in Colorado for exceeding the legal speed limit by up to 15 mph. Not only do you have to pay the fine and any associated court fees, but your vehicle insurance premium is likely to rise as well.

Speeding is also the primary habit related with deadly collisions, according to the Insurance Information Institute (17.2 percent ).

Slowing down may be the greatest strategy to save money on vehicle insurance.

The expense of this indulgence might be as high as $135 per ticket.

iStock / yevtony / yevtony / yevtony / yevtony /

8. Coffee

Coffee may be a delightful treat on the way to work or a much-needed pick-me-up when you’re having a bad day.

A medium Cafe Americano at Starbucks costs $3.35 to $3.95, depending on where you are in the nation. If you make that purchase every weekday, your weekly budget will be reduced by $16.75 to $19.75. For a regular cup of coffee, that’s $871 to $1,027 a year, or even more for the expensive seasonal concoctions.

Consider brewing your coffee at home and carrying it with you if you need a pick-me-up. It’s a lot less costly, and you get to choose what goes into it.

The cost of this vice might range from $871 to $1,027.

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How to live a healthy lifestyle without breaking the bank

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So, now that you’ve seen how much money you might save by giving up or limiting your favorite vices, how about some good news? It is not necessary to spend a lot of money to live a healthy lifestyle. Here are some suggestions to assist you offset the expense of some of the aforementioned behaviors while also encouraging you to cultivate the habit of saving.

Use a reward-based credit card.

A rewards credit card enables you to earn points or cash back on everyday expenditures like groceries, petrol, and other necessities, putting money back in your pocket or earning you points toward vacation. Make sure you pay off your amount in full every month; otherwise, any cashback or travel advantages will be lost due to interest.

Consider using one of these credit cards to help you earn cash back or travel rewards if you make a deliberate choice to continue spending on one of your vices:

  • The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is one of the most highly regarded travel cards, with a significant sign-up bonus and rewards points on a variety of common purchases, as well as advantages on a Peloton digital subscription or equipment purchase to help you get a head start on your healthy habits.
  • Citi Double Cash Card: Earn up to 2% cash back on all transactions with this card: 1% when you buy and 1% when you pay. So you earn cash back on every purchase you make, whether it’s a gym membership or better food selections.

Make use of a shopping app that offers cashback.

Ibotta and Drop are simple-to-use applications that help you locate the cheapest pricing and earn money. For additional information, see our list of the top money-saving apps or read our Ibotta and Drop reviews.

Make an effort to refrain from consuming alcohol.

For a month, refrain from engaging in any of the vices mentioned above (or longer). Open a high-yield savings account and deposit all of your funds there. Take a look at our list of the top savings accounts to get a sense of the benefits and interest rates available.

Put a tax on your purchases if you want to be more indulgent.

Instead of entirely refraining from your favorite habit, you may put the equivalent amount you would have spent on it into your savings account. For instance, if I spend $5 on a cup of coffee, I will also deposit $5 into my savings account, thus punishing myself for indulging. If your budget allows it, you may indulge in your habit on occasion while still accumulating funds.

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In conclusion

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None of these behaviors are inherently bad (save maybe speeding), but engaging in them to the degree where they negatively damage your finances and/or health may be considered vice.

You could discover that going 30 days without your favorite coping strategy leads to better alternatives, or at the very least, makes you more attentive when you do indulge.

This item was syndicated by MediaFeed.org and first appeared on FinanceBuzz.com.

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