Even Wealthy Americans Are Cutting Costs Due to Inflation. Here Are Some to Consider Yourself

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It may be time to rethink your spending.


Key points

  • Inflation has been rampant since the latter part of 2021.
  • Consumers across a range of incomes are making adjustments to cope with it.
  • There are certain changes you may want to consider that could lead to more financial security, such as cooking at home more often and getting rid of an extra vehicle.

Rampant inflation has been with us since mid-2021. And it’s forcing consumers to make hard choices.

For some, that’s meant cutting back on leisure spending. For others, it means downsizing to a smaller home or moving back in with parents as an adult.

But it’s not just low- and even average-income consumers who are making changes because of inflation. In a recent survey by Edelman Financial Engines, 80% of respondents have been forced to adjust to rising living costs, and 49% have coped by purchasing fewer things for themselves. Meanwhile, 46% have cut back on entertainment and recreation spending, and 42% have slashed their food costs.

That same survey found that even affluent respondents — those with household assets between $500,000 and $3 million — have made changes to cope with inflation. In fact, 75% of people in that category say they’ve made some type of financial sacrifice in the wake of higher living costs.

If you’ve been struggling to pay your bills recently, to the point where you’ve been racking up credit card debt or raiding your savings account consistently, then it may be time to employ some cost-cutting measures yourself. Here are a few worth considering.

1. Stop dining out and ordering in

Eating at restaurants and ordering takeout can be a treat. And when you’re pressed for time, the latter can sometimes seem like your best option.

But prepared food tends to come with a really high markup. A meal you order from a restaurant that costs you $40 might cost just $10 if you were to prepare a similar sized portion in your own kitchen. As much as it might pain you to have to spend more time shopping for groceries and cooking, if money has gotten tight, it pays to make that effort.

2. Limit yourself to local travel

Travel has gotten expensive over the past year and change. If you’ve been having a harder time paying your bills, it may be time to cancel travel plans that have you boarding a plane and leaving the country.

Instead, consider staying local the next time you’re entitled to some days off. Explore your own city, or take the opportunity to relax, unwind, and tackle home projects that can improve your quality of life.

3. Give up a car you no longer need

Maybe you needed a vehicle when you were reporting to the office five days a week. But if you’re now working remotely, your car may be more of a luxury than a necessity. And in that case, it pays to consider unloading it. You might save a bundle by not having to pay for auto insurance and maintenance.

Cutting back on spending is not an easy thing to do. But at a time when inflation is surging, it may be necessary. If you’ve seen your personal financial situation take a turn for the worse, it may be time to make some sacrifices so you’re able to get a more financially stable place. After all, even the wealthy are doing that.

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