Have you ever checked what you are paying for your subscriptions? Are you paying monthly fees and not taking advantage of having paid for that service? Beware the Auto-Renew!! You could be A) wasting money without realizing it and B) you may discover some cost savings options.

I recently checked what I was paying for an entertainment streaming subscription. It was a low cost per month, so it wasn’t going to break the bank if we canceled entirely. But, I wanted to do the research. I found out that there was a cheaper option: paying for the entire year up front! We are now saving $12 for the year. That doesn’t seem like much, but we can invest that either into 401k or save it into a sinking fund.

I imagine gym memberships have declined since COVID started. Although with the start of a new year, resolutions trend upwards, so there may be an uptick early regardless of the pandemic. It might be worth it to look into how much you are paying for that subscription as well if you are a gym member.

Whenever there is a free trial, I always find out what the date is that I need to cancel before they auto-renew. We got AppleTV one year ago for Christmas and I set a calendar event to remind myself to cancel on the day they require. You need to look at the fine print because they told me “at least a day / 24 hours before the renewal.” All that means is that I set the date 1 day earlier to give some cushion which ensures that they receive the cancelation prior to my card getting charged. Bonus – we got an extra month for free! Instead of having to cancel in December, I will cancel at the end of January.

Before AppleTV, we would stream everything with an XboxLive membership. That would auto-renew every year for $60-70 bucks. It has been a game-changer by not having to pay for the gaming console subscription. Again, choosing to save the money and utilize it elsewhere.

Food. We used to subscribe to a meat delivery service. Every 2-3 weeks we would receive frozen meats on our doorstep. It was pretty cool (no pun intended). It was easier than having to decide what meats to purchase at the store. Occasionally they would be on sale. The quality was better than what you typically would get at the store too. After a few months, we decided to cancel the subscription because the food supply chain was throttled by the pandemic and even the company didn’t know what kind of meat box the customer would receive. They were just throwing random cuts in to get food to people in a timely manner.

We have never looked into HelloFresh, Amazon Fresh, Farm Fresh to You or anything like that. If you have recommendations, let us know!

Music. Do you have multiple music streaming apps that you are paying for? Why not consolidate to one? You may even consider (if you are trying to save money) going with all non-paid versions of the music streaming apps temporarily. I admit, it is a really big headache listening to ads all the time. Companies are vying for your attention and they want you to spend money on their products. Don’t even get me started on SIRIUS XM. We have had the car for almost 5 years and when the subscription expired after the 1st three months, we did not renew. FYI – they still try calling me on my cell with a known local area code.

One thing I have really considered is a subscription for a shaving kit / razor service. It seems that I am always buying razor cartridges. This time around, I am going to measure how long they last and how much they cost at time of purchase to see if I can scale down on clutter and maybe pinch a few pennies.

Clothes. I LOVE Stitch Fix. Every quarter, I receive a box of items that I could add to my wardrobe. There is a styling fee, but usually it gets absorbed into the cost of any purchases you make. If you buy the entire box, you get an additional 25% off! If you are interested in trying it, visit this site: You can select your styles you like, tell them about your build, fit, what you already have in your closet etc. If you don’t like shopping in stores, this could be a great avenue for you.

Published by MadsenFinancialCoaching

Madsen Financial Coaching was created to bring awareness to personal finance. When you pay attention, you win! We work with clients to understand their behavior and relationship with money, as well as basics of personal finance such as: following a budget, eliminating debt and building an emergency fund to name a few. We want you to succeed, and it starts with your willingness to put in the work.

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