17 Signs You May Have a Spending Problem

By Jackie Beck   Updated 07/20/2022 at 8:05 pm

Do you have a spending problem? Many people do, and some of us don’t even realize it.

That’s because being human means that it’s hard for us to see our own issues — even if they’re things that might be obvious to an outsider.

And it’s not always easy to recognize a spending problem.

So how do you know when you have a spending problem? The most obvious signs show up in your finances.

Signs of a Spending Problem

You probably have a spending problem if you should (in theory!) have more than enough money each month to pay all of your bills but:

  1. You’re living paycheck to paycheck, spending all of your money before your next payday comes
  2. You’re living beyond your means (meaning you’re using credit or loans to buy things because you don’t have the cash right now — even though you know how to budget)
  3. You often buy things that you don’t need or can’t afford
  4. You don’t know how much money you owe on your credit cards, and don’t remember what you bought with them
  5. You max out your credit cards every month, or use high interest debt on a regular basis
  6. You have problems paying your bills on time because you’re short of funds
  7. You’re only making minimum payments on your debts, even though in theory you should be able to send extra toward at least one of them
  8. When you do add up how much you’ve spent, you’re surprised at the total (or you don’t add up how much you spend because you don’t want to know)
  9. You’re not meeting your financial goals due to overspending
  10. You have many items still with tags on them
  11. You hide purchases from your family or friends
  12. You feel stressed out, guilty, or ashamed about your spending
  13. You get the urge to shop often (out of stress, boredom, or habit)
  14. You’re easily influenced by ads or impulsive (and find yourself spending money on things you didn’t want before)
  15. Money seems to flow through your hands like water
  16. You spend a lot of time thinking about you want to buy or activities you want to spend money on
  17. You’re googling “signs of a spending problem”

Do You See Yourself in Those Signs?

If so, that’s a step in the right direction. You can’t fix what you don’t know is broken, so if you recognize any of the signs of a spending problem from the list, don’t worry.

And you’re not alone. Millions of people deal with this issue on a daily basis. Recognizing that you have a spending problem is the very first step toward making a change.

The important thing is that you do something about it. Ignoring the problem will only make it worse in the long run. There are plenty of resources available to help you get your spending under control.

17 signs you may have a spending problem

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