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Don’t worry, we’re not suggesting you start cutting your own hair or skimping on tips to save a few hundred dollars a year. But there are things you might be spending money on that don’t improve your quality of life or money that is owed to you that you aren’t collecting.
When was the last time you checked how many auto-payments are dinging your account every month? Or apps you never use that have an annual fee? Make it a practice to periodically check your bank and credit card statements for automatic or unapproved charges. If you have an iPhone, you can see all the apps and some subscriptions that are automatically billing your account and cancel the ones you don’t need.
You can always re-subscribe if you find you need the app or service later.
Your own unclaimed money
This isn’t a joke. The state of Utah holds hundreds of millions of dollars that go unclaimed every year. This property comes from sources, such as unpaid insurance benefits, last paychecks that weren’t picked up, medical refunds, old rent deposits, dormant bank accounts and forgotten safe deposit box contents.
In fact, 1 in 5 Utahns have money waiting for them to claim in the state’s Unclaimed Property Division. The process to find and claim your lost money is as simple as searching your name on the state’s secure website: mycash.utah.gov. You can also look for property belonging to friends, family, and even deceased relatives. Most claims processes can be completed entirely online.
Cell phone and cable extras
How many bells and whistles are you paying for on your phone or cable bill that you don’t need or care about? It’s most likely at least one.
Call your phone and cable providers to get all the details on your monthly payment and find ways to cut costs. As you explore your options, beware of potential price increases. In many cases, companies will raise your bill after an introductory rate has expired. Plan for this ahead of time and make sure you are comfortable with the increased costs.
How many streaming services do you pay for? How many do you actually use? Take a quick inventory of your media consumption versus your streaming payments, and cancel the services you aren’t actively using.
Making a couple quick phone calls or easy clicks can add hundreds or even thousands of dollars a year to your bank account without ditching your Starbucks habit. But you should think about doing that, too.