Don’t Manage Your Money Like a Halloween Monster
Do you recognize your own financial personality in any of these scary Halloween characters?
By their very nature Halloween monsters are supposed to be scary, but did you know they are even scarier when it comes to how they handle their finances?
Learn more about each of these frightening financial monster money mistakes.
Monster Money Mistake #1: The Mummy
Mummies are old-fashioned, wrapped up in the past and rely on papyrus (paper). Don’t settle for a monthly paper bank statement delivered to your mailbox where it can be lost or stolen. Sign up for e-statements and your monthly bank statements will be available in your Zions Bank online banking account.
Monster Money Mistake #2: Frankenstein’s Monster
Frankenstein’s Monster is built from other people. Don’t let someone else build their financial profile by stealing your identity. The Internal Revenue Service (which can be pretty scary itself) has some useful identity protection tips.
Monster Money Mistake #3: Count Dracula
Count Dracula turns his victims into mindless followers who lose their ability to act independently. In modern America, many people get all their free time sucked out of them by excessively binge-watching TV shows and movies or playing video games. That time lost can’t be used to further develop your career skills, work a profitable side gig, or even stay on top of your monthly budget. Also, excess media usage can result in loss of sleep. People operating with less sleep are vulnerable to stress, anxiety and depression, all of which can lead to making poor financial decisions.
Monster Money Mistake #4: Wolf Man
Wolf Man is a normal guy until the full moon comes out and then he goes crazy. Make sure you don’t go crazy when the credit card comes out. Yes, you can spend up to your credit limit and minimum payments may be affordable, but if you make minimum payments you could end up paying thousands of dollars a year in interest payments. Use the full moon as a reminder and remember to pay off your credit card balance in full each month on time so you can avoid paying interest.
Monster Money Mistake #5: Zombie
Zombies go through life, er un-life, as mindless, unthinking walking corpses. No wonder they are terrible with money. Now you know why you’ve never heard of a zombie millionaire. In an age of one-click shopping and mobile payments, you can’t afford to mindlessly manage your money. Plan a monthly budget where you tell your money what to do before you spend it.
Set up monthly spending limits for budget areas where people often tend to overspend, such as food, clothing, and entertainment. With Zions Bank’s OnCard — a prepaid, reloadable debit card with a built-in money management app — you can use the cash reserve feature to save a set amount each month, and the app won’t allow you to spend it.
Monster Money Mistake #6: Godzilla
Godzilla is the nightmare of insurance companies. If he’s in the neighborhood, stuff is going to be destroyed. Accidents happen, even if Godzilla is not the cause. Make sure you carry enough homeowner’s insurance so a physical loss is not compounded by a financial loss. Everyone should make sure they have proper home, auto, health, and life insurance. Don’t forget to look at some of the lesser-known insurance types like renter’s insurance, umbrella insurance, disability insurance and long-term care insurance to find out if you need them.
Keep those monsters where they belong – trick-or-treating on Halloween, and not making a horrible mess of your money. If you need help banishing these monster money mistakes from your life, set up an appointment with one of our Zions Bank branch managers today.
Don Milne is the Financial Literacy Manager for Zions Bank. He is a big fan of the old Abbott and Costello monster movies. If he could be a monster, he would be Monsters Inc.'s Mike Wazowski because Mike always finds the bright side of any situation, no matter how bad.