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Your Latté is Not “Only” $5…And Other Misperceptions

Your morning caffeine fix, that bagel on the way to the office, eating out. Let’s face it: It all adds...

Published May 13, 2021

Your morning caffeine fix, that bagel on the way to the office, eating out. Let’s face it: It all adds up. These (seemingly) small costs won’t hit you right away, but your bank account is certain to feel the pinch down the road.

We’ve heard before that millennials are spending more on coffee than on retirement plans (gulp).

But listen up, ye java offenders—it’s the small changes—not the drastic ones—that slowly grow your savings. That leaves you more money for (hint hint) your student loan repayment plan, or whatever else your heart may desire.

Heck, while we’re at it—let’s apply our latté wisdom to your happy hour and fitness fads. Ahem…Ms. “Barre Bar Betty”…we’re looking at you.

Here are some small but useful lifestyle tweaks to get you saving right now:

Enroll in Reward Programs

We’ve all had that question popped to us at the counter before checkout. Our short advice to you: Just say “yes.”

It may seem pointless to try and earn eighteen million points for a $5 reward, but if you sign up for rewards programs for the stores you frequent, it’s well worth it. Plus, there’s nothing like walking up to a counter and learning that you earned $10 off of your $20 purchase. Savings like that can go towards your student loan repayment plan because “every dollar saved is a dollar earned.”

Limit the Lattés

Monday, it’s five dollars; then Tuesday it turns to ten, and by Friday you’re at $15. If you get that hot beverage even three days per week, that’s $60 per month. Still think it’s worth it? By the end of the year, you would have spent over $700. That $5 latte is not really only five dollars—it’s more like a car payment. Nespresso anyone?

Buy the Bar Cart

If you’re a city-dweller, that tasty gin drink can run your tab up exponentially. Add to that the fact that your hot date keeps ordering, and you’ve swallowed up a third of your rent on one evening’s imbibement. Rather than go for broke on making an impression, try the ‘pregame at-home’ method next time—and enjoy building some bartending chops while you’re at it. That’s sexy.

Get a Budget-Conscious Workout Routine

It’s true, your health is your wealth. But that doesn’t mean you need to go broke to maintain it. Contrary to popular belief, there is a way to have a regular workout routine without spending the equivalent of a car payment on a membership every month to the new studio fad. Taking up running in the warmer months could save your wallet some serious stress. Or try a streaming at-home workout service like Beachbody on-demand, for only $99 per year. If you absolutely must have that group vibe, programs like Classpass are affordable—and plentiful.

Once you’ve mastered a few of these life hacks, put the savings into action by having a solid plan for paying down your student loans. Visit our rate checker to see if you could save by refinancing with us. Your wallet, your waistline, and your will to be debt free with have something to say for it.

Disclaimer: Any opinions, findings, and conclusions expressed within the linked content above are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of Laurel Road or KeyBank National Association (“KeyBank N.A”).  Linked content is provided for informational purposes, Laurel Road and KeyBank N.A. are not responsible for and do not endorse any third-party product or service mentioned.

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