10 Expenses Most Likely To Drain Your Checking Account Each Month

Although Americans have gotten some relief from high inflation, many still struggle to cover their bills. Even if you have a budget, you might find that your bank account is always getting drained by the end of the month.

Learn More: 5 Unnecessary Bills You Should Stop Paying in 2024

Find Out: 4 Genius Things All Wealthy People Do With Their Money

Unnecessary expenses and poor spending habits often play a role. To spend less and have more for goals, watch out for these 10 expenses that are likely to drain your checking account.

Unnecessary Groceries

Unless you carefully plan your meals and shopping list, you can easily buy more food than necessary or pick up several new things to try. Along with leaving you with less money, buying unnecessary groceries can later lead to throwing away expired or unliked items.

Control your spending by shopping with your list, seeking deals, using coupons, considering generics and eating before your trip.

Fake Emergencies

True emergencies — such as illnesses, vehicle breakdowns or home repairs — can justify spending extra cash from your account.

However, you might mistakenly identify other expenses as emergencies, such as replacing your broken TV or attending a last-minute entertainment event. It’s better to put aside money for such expenses beforehand rather than risk your financial stability.

Read Next: Mark Cuban Reveals Why He Keeps a Strict Budget Everyday

Restaurant Trips

Budgeting for occasionally eating out is fine, but you can drain your checking account funds if you do this too much. It can also be a big waste of money when dining out keeps you from using the groceries you already bought.

Instead, cut back on coffee shop and restaurant trips and plan your meals for less wasted money and stress.

Costly Vacation Plans

Vacations are much needed breaks from the day-to-day, but they can also wind up being pretty expensive. Travel costs can drain your checking account if you’re not planning trips wisely and saving for months before the trip.

Consider cheaper options such as staycations, road trips and free attractions to reduce costs. If you do need to fly or book a hotel, compare prices for different providers and dates, try to avoid busy seasons and skip the luxury upgrades.

Expensive Plans and Subscriptions

Whether it’s your cable, internet or cell phone plan, premium packages can drain your wallet. Plus, you might pay monthly for a gym membership, various streaming and app subscriptions and online service plans.

Review these expenses and think about downgrading packages, canceling unnecessary subscriptions and looking for free alternatives. For example, workout at the park or borrow media from the library.

Retail Therapy and Impulse Purchases

You might find yourself making purchases simply because shopping makes you feel better or the item looks interesting at the time. Afterward, you might have regrets when you see the charge on your statement or realize you really aren’t that interested in the item.

Finding other ways to manage stress and carefully thinking through purchases can help reduce these costly impulses.

Lavish Nights Out

Especially if your friends are higher earners, they might invite you to fancy nights out that don’t fit into your current budget.

Although you may not want to feel left out, skipping these outings can greatly benefit your checking account. You could also try to recommend cheaper outings or simply wait until you can save extra cash for a special outing.

‘Latest and Greatest’ Purchases

Whether you’re shopping for a car, house or cell phone, you might feel attracted to what is brand new and has the most features. Especially for high-cost items, such decisions can drain your checking account with large upfront expenses or high debt payments.

Looking for used items or even just staying away from premium options can save you money.

Pampering Services

When you’re stressed out, enjoying a nice spa or salon day can make you feel better. However, these services can empty your accounts if they’re more than occasional.

You can help yourself financially if you find ways to pamper yourself at home.

Checking Account Fees

Several checking account-related fees could be costing you a lot. You might be paying a monthly service fee (unless your bank has a waiver option you qualify for). Plus, out-of-network ATM fees, overdraft charges, stop payments and various transaction fees can add up.

Review your account terms and either find ways to avoid these charges or consider switching to a checking account with less fees.

More From GOBankingRates

This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: 10 Expenses Most Likely To Drain Your Checking Account Each Month

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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