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Sticking to a budget can be tough and you’re not alone if you agree. According to a new poll, Americans admit to spending $7,429.24 over their budget every year.
The research found that, while only three in four Americans (74 percent) say they have some type of budget ‒ 79 percent of those still have trouble keeping themselves within their own parameters, despite their best efforts.
Over half of those polled say they even have a “meticulously planned out budget” – yet still, Americans spend $142.87 over budget each and every week.
Altogether, the average weekly budget of those polled (outside of housing, credit card bills, etc.) equates to $197.31. But that number, it turns out, is optimistic at best. In reality, Americans surveyed spend closer to $340.18 every week.
Which explains why only 10 percent of the survey respondents were able to say they think sticking to a budget is easy.
The survey of 2,000 Americans, conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Slickdeals, also uncovered which things we overspend on the most.
Our biggest budget killers? Online shopping, grocery shopping and subscription services, according to the poll.
“The survey shows how difficult it can be for consumers to stick to a budget, but there are ways to approach your shopping differently that can be used to your advantage,” said Josh Meyers, CEO of Slickdeals. “Purchasing technology products, household goods, snacks or even entertainment when there’s a great deal or discount code available can actually save you money in the long run.
"For example, by stocking up on household essentials at a great price and storing them for the future, you don’t end up overspending on something simply because you ran out of it when there wasn’t a sale available.”
“Budget guilt” can rack up, with over three in four Americans (76 percent) saying overspending on their budget makes them feel guilty.
The study also found that Americans actively resist the urge of buying six items on average due to their budget constraints every week.
But when Americans are able to let go of their guilt and actually choose to indulge in overspending a bit, they’re actually happier, according to 69 percent of the respondents.
Meyers added, “At Slickdeals, we view the top budget killer (online shopping), as the greatest opportunity to help support your budget. As the leading crowdsourced shopping platform with 11 million deal seekers, we help consumers tap into the very best deals at any given time, which means you don’t have to scale back on your purchases to stay within your budget.”
TOP 10 BUDGET KILLERS
1. Online shopping 40%
2. Grocery shopping 39%
3. Subscription services 37%
4. Technology products 36%
5. Buying lunch everyday 35%
6. Household essentials 32%
7. Coffee 32%
8. Food delivery 32%
9. Gym memberships 30%
10. Entertainment (movies, concerts, etc.) 29%