Do you ever wonder where all your hard-earned cash disappears to each month? Maybe you find yourself counting down the days to your next pay check, struggling to make ends meet, or facing mounting bills that seem impossible to conquer. If your wallet resembles a black hole, it might be time to explore the signs that indicate a money problem. Let's explore the red flags that might be signalling it's time to regain control of your financial ship before it drifts too far out to sea!
1. You Can't Afford To Pay Your Bills
As each new month arrives, and the stack of unopened bills on your kitchen counter grows taller, the more you'll recognise you're in hot water. When you can't afford to pay bills it's like trying to tread through a financial thunderstorm. The stress of debt can feel suffocating!
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Missing bill payments or just not having enough money to pay them in the first place can lead to massive issues later down the line. Late fees and fines will continue to pile up, and your problems will only continue to grow if you can't make your bill payments in time.
2. You're Maxing Out Credit Cards
Maxing out your credit cards can seem like a quick fix for some instant gratification cravings, but it's an extremely dangerous path to follow. The soaring balances and sky-high interest rates could ultimately lead to you falling in to financial ruin. Don't do this!
Image source/WhichIf you find you're constantly maxing out on your credit cards - alarm bells should be ringing! This is normally a sign you are overspending, and are living way above your needs. Maxing out on credit cards can also cause you to be paying off serious amounts of interest over time so find alternatives.
3. You're Making Impulsive Purchases
Have you ever found yourself impulsively buying items you really don't need? Perhaps you own a collection of gadgets or toys that seemed brilliant at the time but are now sat gathering dust? It might fill us with some momentary satisfaction but in the long run it'll only be a negative.
Image source/Christian Credit CounselorsWe are not saying that you can't enjoy spending your money, we all like to buy new things. But spending your money carelessly and impulsively can be a bad sign. Everybody has things they must pay for, bills, insurance, mortgage etc, but if you're going out buying loads of new clothes before putting money aside for important things, that's a good sign you have money problems.
4. There's A Sudden Change In Your Spending Habits
Your friends and family might have noticed your spending habits have taken a sudden turn for the worse. Where once you were a thrifty shopper, you've now transitioned into someone who enjoys spending sprees. Financial habits shouldn't change so unexpectedly or dramatically however.
Image source/CNBCIf you have noticed yourself, or even a loved one spending more or less than they usually do, they may be having problems with their money. A sudden change in spending habits is a good sign somebody has lost control of their finances and needs serious help. Whether they are overspending or underspending, the results can be very harmful.
5. You Avoid Talking About Money When Asked About It
Money can be quite the touchy subject and many people prefer to avoid conversations about their financial situation. However, constantly dodging the discussions about money when friends and family talk about it could isolate you from some potentially valuable advice and support.
Image source/The AtlanticThere is nothing wrong with not wanting to talk about your finances, however if the topic is causing you a lot a discomfort and is raising suspicion from your loved ones, it could be sign your having trouble with money. If you notice somebody acting funny when money is mentioned, maybe try support them, otherwise it can lead to serious breakdowns in relationships.
6. You've Recently Been Denied Credit
Receiving a rejection for a loan or credit card application is pretty much the financial equivalent of a gut punch. It's a clear signal that financial institutions view you as a risky borrower and this could have some long term implications on your financial and mental wellbeing.
Image source/CNBCBeing denied credit should be your wake up call to sort out your financial problems. being able to get credit is extremely important, as you can make payments with it to help improve your credit score. This only works however if you pay it back on time and in full.
7. You're cancelling plans
Turning down social invitations or cancelling plans with friends due to financial constraints isn't just disappointing; it's a sign that your money situation is impacting your quality of life. Rather than continually bailing on your friends and family, address your financial problems.
Image source/MediumWe all have to cancel plans every once in a while, but if you're the person who's always letting the group down, perhaps you could be struggling with money. Constantly cancelling plans could be sign that you're having financial issues and need to find creative ways to manage your budget.
8. You Don't Know How Much Money Is In Your Bank
Checking your bank balance can be a nerve-wrecking experience, especially if we're coming towards the end of the month and you've been living in denial! Ignorance might feel like bliss, but it's not sustainable and finding out you have no money will certainly destroy that bliss.
Image source/N26If you're filthy rich and genuinely have no idea how much is in your bank, then this doesn't apply to you. However, those of you who don't earn billions, not knowing how much money is in your bank can be a problem. You have to know how much you have in order to pay your bills and spend within your limits.
9. You don't save money
Saving for a rainy day isn't just an old, traditional saying; it's actually a fundamental financial practice. If you find you're living pay check to pay check and have little to no savings then you're essentially sailing through life without any form of financial safety net.
Image source/The Motley FoolNot saving money equals spending too much money, spending to much money equals problems with money. Not being able to save any respectable amount of money is a clear sign of money problems. Of course, not everybody can put aside thousands, but try to build an emergency fund.
10. Decline in your mental health
Our mental health is closely linked to our financial well-being. Constant stress, anxiety, or depression stemming from money matters can have a significant impact on our overall quality of life. It's essential that you seek support and guidance to know you're not alone!
Image source/Inc. MagazineIf your mental health is taking a noticeable decline, a larger factor such as money could be coming into play. Anxiety and depression are two very common signs that a persons mental health is rapidly deteriorating, and if these illnesses are a result of financial trouble, you need to manage your finances better.
11. You're ignoring financial statements
Financial statements are very much unwelcome guests at our doorstep; our natural inclination is often to stash it in a drawer or archive it away (if it's digital). This might seem nice at the time, but it won't magically resolve itself, ignoring these is the start of financial hell.
Image source/Shawbrook BankOnce you start ignoring financial statements, your finical troubles will start to grow exponentially. We all get that sinking feeling when we look at a statement in the post, but putting it aside and not dealing with it will only come back to haunt you. Make you sort it straight away!
12. You're considering bankruptcy
Bankruptcy is usually the final port of call for most people when it comes to their diminishing finances. If it's getting to this point you're probably going to be running either extremely low on finances or you've already ran out of cash. It can be quite a frightening moment to happen.
Image source/ABC-AmegaOnce you reach the point of considering bankruptcy, you definitely have a serious money problem. At this point you need to seek help immediately and find a credit counsellor. They will help you figure out the best way forward with the least amount of repercussions.
13. Your credit score is decreasing
Maintaining a high credit score is incredibly important for most of us, you don't want to be overspending, especially on items that are materialistic and not necessities. Your credit score might impact the chances you have of owning your own home in the future.
Image source/ExperianIn addition, having a low credit score can make it much harder for you get credit when you may really need it, not to mention you will be paying back at higher interest rates. Make sure you keep you credit score as high as possible to ensure people don't start coming for you!
14. You use payday loans
Payday loans are very appealing to people who have fallen on hard times, but you probably want to avoid using them at all costs. Even if they are able to assist you with short term problems, you're probably going to find that it only ends up causing you more issues in the long term.
Image source/Credit SummitAn instant red flag for money problems are pay day loans. Anybody who needs money that quickly has either a big spending issue or is in serious debt. Over the short term, this loans may seem like a quick way out, but with extortionate interest rates they come with can quickly lead to disaster.
15. You're afraid to use your card in public
If you're already aware that your bank account is running a little bare then you're not going to enjoy getting your card out in public. It can be a little terrifying knowing your account might be declined, but the best option is to be open with the people you know will support you.
Image source/iStockSome people with money issues have no fear in using their card, however the ones don't know whether their card is about to decline or not will be terrified of using it in public. If you're out with your friends or on a date, and you know you have financial troubles, the embarrassment of having your card declined will make you feel terrible.
16. You're constantly borrowing off family and friends
Although this can pretty much be a risk free way to gain some cash in the short term, you're always running the risk of causing some rifts in your relationships. Instead of having to rely on other people you might want to try and find a more stable source of income for yourself.
Image source/NBC NewsRelying on your close friends and family for money is a bad sign. It may seem like a good idea, you're basically getting an interest free loan, but the tension of having to pay them back can break apart relationships. Taking money from friends and family is not worth the risk.
17. Money causes arguments in your relationship
When we get into relationships we end up sharing everything with our partners. This isn't just an emotional connection but also a materialistic one too. This means that all of your money problems also become shared which can be a source of disagreement between the two of you.
Image source/Today's ParentLiving as a couple isn't always going to be perfect, but if you're fighting over financial situations regularly, you could be in trouble. If you're fighting over your credit payments, or not having enough money saved, then you definitely have a problem and need help!
18. You've taken money from your retirement account
We all work, pretty much our entire lives, to ensure that when we are finally able to retire, whether that be via old age or via making millions. You don't want to be pulling money from these savings which have been built in order to get to the point of financial stability.
Image source/The New York TimesTaking money from your retirement account to cover everyday expenses can indicate you have a problem with money. That fund is designed to cover you once you're retired, and suppose to support you. Taking from that nest could leave you in a dangerous position in the future!
19. You're losing sleep over finances
Sleep is one of the most important things for us to get involved in during our daily lives. We all need to be feeling our best mentally in order to function properly and get on with our lives in the most efficient way. Try to not allow dodgy finances ruin your daily lifestyle too often.
Image source/UKNowIf you're losing sleep over finances, you defiantly have money problems. Obviously we all have some stress when it comes to money, we have to feed ourselves and others, we need a roof over our head, but to be staying awake at night and not sleeping is a sign you need serious help financially.
20. You only make the minimum monthly payments
You might think that you're outsmarting the banks by paying the minimum amount back on your credit card bills although, in reality, that's one of the worst things you can choose to do. You need to be putting as much as you can whilst still being able to live comfortably.
Image source/ClearOne AdvantageBy paying the least amount, you are only going to end up paying your money off for longer, which is only going to result in the banks making more from interest off you. You don't want to let it get too far and find yourself in thousands and thousands of dollars of debt in years.
21. You don't have a budget
Although it isn't easy to arrange for this, you should always try and arrange a budget for yourselves. By having a monthly or annual budget for yourselves then you'll be able to work out what you can and can't spend, without putting yourself in any danger of financial debt.
Image source/Nursery WorldNot having a budget for your spending is a huge sign you have issues with money. Budgets also allow you to spend within your capabilities, they stop you getting into debt and help you save up money. Spending constantly without any cap will quickly drain your bank, leaving you in massive trouble.
22. You refuse to handle money
Money is such an important aspect of everybody's lives in modern day society that it can actually be quite terrifying. If you're holding the last of the cash you own it could trigger some endless amounts of anxiety in yourselves. Use your card if you have too, but keep an eye on the account.
Image source/Today's Wills and ProbatePeople who suffer from Chrometophobia, the fear of spending money or even being around it, will hate the idea of handling money. The sight of cash itself can trigger them emotionally and results in their everyday activities being a huge challenge. If this is happening to you, you have a money issue.
23. You can't stop gambling
Gambling is one of the most dangerous, harsh and crippling addictions any human being can find themselves being stuck with. It pretty much guarantees that you're going to be suffering from a heavy financial loss, unless you really have the luck of the Irish on your side.
Image source/Medical News TodayPeople who constantly gamble everyday will always have issues with money. Whether that's gambling away all their assets or wasting their savings on the roulette table. If you know anybody who's aways gambling, make sure you get them the help they need.
24. Shopping relaxes you
Shopping has long been associated with being a form of relaxation or therapy for the human mind. But you have to question why this is the case! Ultimately, even if it releases stress in the short term, it's only going to cause you endless more issues in the long run afterwards.
Image source/Park Grand Paddington Court LondonFinding comfort in spending money unnecessarily on items you probably don't need is a clear sign that you have issues with money. You may have a stressful job, or messy kids, but spending money unnecessarily isn't the best option. You'll only cause yourself more problems.
25. You have high-tech gadgets all the time
Although having the most current, up-to-date and high tech gadgets might make you look much cooler than some other people around you, you have to consider if it's worth spending such an excessive amount of money to do so. Make do with the other gadgets that are just as useful.
Image source/MediumDo you find yourself always needing to have the latest iPhone, or the latest Dyson hoover? If you do it may be a sign you're having troubles with money. Expensive purchases like these can be great but your everyday life won't change dramatically if you have a cheaper, older model that can save you hundreds of pounds.
26. You're counting down the days until payday
Let's be honest, we all reach that part of the month where we're just praying and counting down the days to get paid. This happens even more if you've already went through a lot of money for the month. We're all a little too impulsive in the days following payday right?
Image source/VecteezyTimes may be tough and that is understandable, but it's about being smart with your money and not blowing through it before your next pay day. This is where the idea of budgeting becomes even more important, you don't want to always be waiting for the future to feel comfortable.
27. You have clothes still with tags on
If you feel like you need to spend your money as a form of therapy for yourself, then you need to try and buy things that are going to be useful for yourself. Don't go out and buy superficial items like clothes that aren't useful or you're not going to wear them, it's a waste!
Image source/Good Golly Miss HollieWhen you bought your clothes they may have been a bargain at the time, but having clothes still in your wardrobe with tags on is a massive waste of money, and can be a sign of having a money problem. If you do this, you're buying clothes even when you don't need them!
28. You miss out on things you enjoy
One of the most important aspects of human life is being able to enjoy things that you want to do, this is the easiest way to ensure that you feel happy in life. Hiding away from the things you love just because you can't afford them will make you feel terrible mentally and emotionally.
Image source/Music Industry How ToIf you're finding yourself constantly avoiding activities you enjoy just because you're conscious of spending problem, you have an issue with money. Skipping social events such as the cinema or going and playing crazy golf, just down to the fear of spending money, is a big sign you have a money problem.
29. You hide purchases from others
Let's be honest, if you go out and buy things then you're probably aware that you've done something other people are going to look down on. Realise if you're hiding something then you should stop doing this immediately and try and find a more rational way to make yourself happy.
Image source/The Motley FoolA common sign that you are hazing trouble with money is when you hide purchases from friends and family. If you're married, you should be open about where your money is going and what you're spending it on. So when you start hiding what you buy it can be an issue.
30. You're spending more on takeaways then groceries
We all love to get to the end of the week and treat ourselves to a takeaway, they usually offer a quick and easy way to go through meal times. But it should JUST be a treat, you don't want to check your bank statements and see all your money being wasted away on takeaways.
Image source/Institute of HospitalityIf you notice your bill for takeaways is exceeding your grocery bill, you have to realise you have a spending problem. If you are short of money but are eating out every night of the week, you should definitely reconsider your priorities when it comes to food and cooking yourself will be healthier!