A survey conducted by the AICPA polled over 1,000 adults to find out what they would cut back on in a financial bind or to help with long term saving. Where would you fit in?
- 41% say they would cut back on eating out
- 20% say they would cut off cable television
- 8% say they would end cellphone service
- 2% say they would stop contributing to their retirement accounts
- 1% say they would put off a mortgage or rent payment
Of the people that answered this it is clear that the most nonessential expenses are the ones that will be given up first if needed. The long term necessities, retirement, mortgage, etc., are only skipped when all other options have been tried. This is good and hopefully means that people are making adjustments to their discretionary spending habits so they can work within what the current economic situation is allowing.
Along the same lines, ninety four percent of the participants said they have some kind of financial concern. Forty-one percent identified basic living expenses, which include the cost of gas, medical expenses, and lack of emergency savings, as their top financial concern. Tips, such as carpooling, combining trips to the grocery and drug store into one outing and driving less aggressively, can all help to save a little money at the gas pump.
Although things are slowly getting better, it is important for people to take more control of their financial future. This will allow us to also be slightly more prepared for the unexpected things that pop up in life.