Save Money, Snub the ATM

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Since bank machines (ATM’s) came into our lives, it’s been hard to imagine being without them and we can’t help asking ourselves how we ever managed before the invention of this handy (and quick) way of withdrawing money.

Yes, some of us have been around since before ATM’s…when you had to go right into a bank to withdraw money and only during business hours.  Hard to picture isn’t it?

Unfortunately this wondrous piece of machinery has been our downfall when it comes to saving money and paying down debt. While it is handy and no one can dispute its benefits, it does have a real ugly downside. Plainly put – it’s just too easy to take money out.

Have you looked at the enormous column of withdrawals on your bank statement, or have you opted instead to look quickly only at the bank balance and to ignore the rest? Familiar with that dreaded cringe when the bank statement arrives?

If we want to improve our financial situation, we must cut down on ATM stops. Some banks charge a small fee for ATM withdrawals and non-bank machines usually charge some pretty hefty fees. But it’s not only these bank related charges that deplete our cash, it’s the ridiculous amount of trips we make to withdraw money, for whatever reason and that often includes things we can live without.

We don’t like it when we are being nickel and dime’d to death, but that’s what we are doing to our bank accounts. We have to stem this continuous trickle of cash, if we want to get ahead. It takes courage to say NO, but we must.

That means, leaving the bank card at home on some outings or limiting its use to a more reasonable amount of withdrawals per month. Of course, it also helps to take a closer look at what we spend money on, but I’ll differ that to another day and less ATM is a good start.

If you feel an ATM withdrawal attack coming on as you read this, allow yourself a ‘free’ $5 ATM trip for a good cup of java and then….ready, set, go! You’ll thank me later when your bank statement goes from 10 pages to 2.


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