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How procrastination is expensive

By Paula Pant ·
Monday, April 1, 2013
Posted: 4 pm ET

How much money does procrastination cost you?

Most people recognize that procrastination eats away at their time but don't see how it impacts their money.

Still, procrastination can be expensive. Let's look at the ways it digs into your bottom line.

It triggers fees

Late fees, overdraft fees and finance charges are obvious examples of costs that spring from procrastinating.

Just last week, I procrastinated making a transfer from one checking account to another. As a result, I overdrafted my account and received a $31 fee. Ouch!

It makes you buy 'convenience' items

Have you ever stayed up late to finish a project -- while eating fast food, ordering takeout or drinking soda from a vending machine?

When we're rushed or stressed, we tend to spend money on convenience items. Unfortunately, the cost of these choices adds up quickly.

It forces you to replace instead of repair

Have you ever taken a jacket to the cleaners, only to be told that it's "beyond repair"? If you wait too long to clean and maintain certain items, you might end up needing to throw them away.

Some houseguests once spilled wine on my parents' imported rug. My parents waited for a few weeks before taking the rug to the cleaners. Unfortunately, by that time it was too late.

It causes you to miss bargains

You were planning on hitting that major sale at the appliance store, weren't you? But you procrastinated, and now everything is back to full price.

This happened to me once when I was shopping for a refrigerator. I saw the sale price, decided to go home to think about it, and returned to the store after the sale had ended. (Fortunately, though, I convinced the manager to let me buy it at the sale price anyway.)

It keeps the auto charges coming

Many subscriptions are set to auto renew each year unless you cancel them. Many times, people intend on canceling these, but don't get around to doing so before the deadline. As a result, they get charged for the next billing cycle.

I've had this experience with lots of subscriptions: Web hosting, magazines and even credit cards with annual fees.

Paula Pant blogs at about creating wealth and living life on your own terms. She's traveled to nearly 30 countries, owns five rental units and works for herself. Follow Paula on Twitter @AffordAnything.

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