A New Year is almost upon us, and it’s time to start thinking about how you want to improve your finances for 2011. One of the things you can do is avoid spending money on fees. Fees go right into someone else’s pocket, representing a drain on your wealth. Here are five fees to try to avoid paying in the new year:
1. Overdraft Fees
If you overdraw your bank account, you will have to pay overdraft fees. These fees can range anywhere from $15 to more than $39, depending on your bank’s policies. You can avoid these fees by keeping track of your spending, and monitoring what is in your account. Do your best to keep within the money that you have.
2. Monthly Service Fees
Some banks have begun charging monthly service fees. In many cases, these fees come as a result of not meeting a minimum balance amount in an account. You can either make sure that you always have the required balance in your account, or you can shop around, looking for a bank account with no minimum balance.
3. Other Bank Fees
There are a number of other bank fees that are charged these days, from fees for not using your debit card enough, to fees charged for having your statement delivered as paper. Make sure you check your statement to find out what fees are being charged, and how you can avoid them. You might also want to consider shopping around for a new account without as many fees.
4. Credit Card Interest Fees
The interest fees you pay for carrying a balance on your credit card can be some of the most devastating costs out there. You put money straight into someone else’s pocket. Carefully consider your credit habits, and consider what you are spending money on. Don’t purchase items just for the rewards, and make sure that you only spend what you can afford to pay off each month. That way, you won’t have to pay interest.
5. Early Termination Fees
Before you sign a service contract, you should find out what fees are charged when you terminate it early. If you are unsure about keeping a contract for a year or two, you should re-think getting it. In some cases, you might find that the savings that come from canceling your contract outweigh the cancellation fee. But, in most cases, it’s best to be as certain as possible before you sign a contract.
What other fees do you think should be avoided in the New Year?