The Authentic Assistant

How to manage your subscriptions. Ask yourself do you need another subscription

It is difficult to know how to manage your subscriptions if you don’t even know how many you are signed up to.

Where is your money going?

Why is it that we can’t buy or own things anymore? There seems to be a subscription for almost everything. It is easy to lose track of all the things that you are signed up for. 

You may be paying for memberships for various things, online games and apps. How on earth can you keep an eye on it all? 

How did we come to this stage of life? That is a good question. Not sure how to answer that one or even attempt to. 

Is life really that complicated or are we just making it seem that way?

An app to help you manage your subscriptions

Why do they think you need an app to tell you how many you have? 

If you need an app to manage your subscriptions maybe you have too many. 

Surely we as responsible adults should be aware of how many payments we make a month or year. 

Relying on yet another app is another way of dumbing us down. Downloading yet another thing onto your device means taking more memory space and so slowing down the device. This of course leads to many thinking they need to buy a new phone to have more memory. 

It also means possibly another expense you have just made to purchase the so-called miracle app. If you are smiling thinking ah I did not pay anything for the app well then that may be a bad thing. If it is free it means you are the product and you could potentially have handed over private information to the company and their associates. They have access to your photos, details, contacts etc. They are selling your private data to whoever is willing to buy it and you lose even more privacy.  Is it worth it? 

If you want to know more about how to protect your privacy when downloading apps check out this blog post. 

The safe way to manage your subscriptions

And it does not even take that much time. 

All you need to do is invest some time and do some auditing of your own finances.

check the last bank statement you have. Either online or print it out 

Yes, printing I find easier. Take a colour highlighter and mark the subscriptions that are going out of your account each month. 

Yearly statement to catch all the yearly payments .

A different colour for the yearly ones 

If you add up the total even of the monthly payments it may shock you at how much  you are paying for a and then it is time to sit and think are you even using them

Did you sign up for gym membership and go for a month or two but let it slide and have not been for a while. Feel embarrassed cancelling and showing possible laziness..

Or afraid of the hassle trying to cancel. Remember it is your money and if it is not working for you .. you have to take back control of your money, 

Maybe you could cancel gym membership and save that money to buy some equipment for your home use. 

Is there an easy way to manage your subscriptions?

Yes, however it means putting in a bit of detective work to begin with. But this could be a fun thing as you may realise you have access to things you forgot about. That is a win in today’s world. 

Take out your bank statements. Yes, for the whole year. Personally I like to print it out and have the paper format.

Go through your outgoings for the last year and see what yearly payments you have made and what the monthly outgoings are. 

List the yearly subscriptions or memberships you have. 

Track the monthly payments you are making for various things. 

It is easy to see the main priorities such as rent/mortgage and utilities. 

The challenge is going through the discretionary payments. Who defines what is necessary and what is a luxury? Well, you should be the one who decides that for your life. 

Are we really at the stage that we are handing over our lives to another app? 

I don’t know about you but I don’t have that much money that I cannot keep an overview of it. Wonder what it is like to have that much money you don’t need to think about balancing payments. The super rich probably have highly paid accountants to handle their accounts.  Can they trust them to honestly manage their money? 

Just do the audit

Maybe it is time to do an annual audit of your own finances and get a snapshot of what is going on. 

Don’t rely on an app or anyone else to manage your own money. By installing an app to do it it actually means you are allowing a stranger basically to go through your personal finance details and give that information or access to it to others they agree to. You have no control over who sees your private matters. 

It is the money that you have earned and it should be working for you. Yes, money that works for you. Sometimes that seems like a strange concept. 

We are living in a world where we don’t own as many things as we used to and that is sad in a way. 

What about cancelling your membership?

The idea of having to go through the cancellation process is daunting at first. It feels like a  hassle to jump through the hoops to get out of the contract. 

It may not be as bad as you think. 

Go through the bank statements and list all the monthly payments you make, or yearly ones.

Note down the date when you signed up for the yearly one and when it will be finished. Find out the cancellation deadline. This could be the month before the deadline, maybe more. 

What happens if you cancel now?

It means doing a bit of research and finding out the time frame of quitting but it will be worth it. 

If you have a few months to go before the end of the contract and you have not used the service then find out exactly what is included in your contract and what services are available to you and start to use it now and take advantage of anything that is within the payment plan.

It gives you the chance to find out if it is really something that benefits you or that works for you or not. If you find it is something that you could continue to use then talk with the company and state you want to cancel, maybe they can offer you a better price plan.

When you find out that the subscription or membership doesn’t work for you then that is a sign that you need to get out of it. If they offer a higher fee and it is not worth it for you then you know you should cancel it.

If it really is something that does not work for you and does not fit into your lifestyle at all then agree to cancel. 

This is a win-win situation.

A lot of places have low monthly subscriptions so you may not notice that 5 or 10 is leaving your account every month. This all adds up. 

Is the subscription working for you?

If it is not then it is working against you. Why should you pay for a service you don’t use or need? It is your money and you should get value for it. It is hard earned after all. If they want to keep you as a customer maybe they should try and offer you better options.

By cancelling subscriptions you no longer use or need you are saving money that you may need in today’s world for necessary things. You are also freeing time in your life to focus on the things you love to do.

Having that extra cash is wonderful, who knows maybe you can start a saving fund for yourself. Instead of paying into the subscriptions of some random useless things why not invest in yourself and your future. 

Save for your next holiday or city break. 

A savings fund for car repairs or maintenance

How about a fund to help replace any appliance that breaks. 

Think about setting up a rainy day fund for when you really need it. 

Join that course that you do really want to do. Learn how to do things for yourself and save money in the long run. 

Do you need another subscription or membership?

An app is just a slippery slope of losing more control over your finances and more importantly your personal information. 

The hardest thing is the beginning. Thinking about going through your bank statements may seem daunting. . 

But if you don’t do it and face your situation then why are you letting an app look into your financial life. Do you know how many people or companies are accessing your private details? 

Who knows who can look into your account alongside the app. Helping you manage your subscriptions is not even on their agenda.

The best thing is if you face the fear now and complete an overhaul of your financial situation now it makes you realise where your money is going. It may be overwhelming but it makes you face reality and once you have completed the task you know what you can cancel and which ones are necessary. 

Who knows how much money you may be saving. This makes it easier to manage your finances. You become more aware of things and think about signing up for another thing. The assessment begins of is it really something that I need in life. 

How to manage your subscriptions

When you know how many subscriptions you have, you have achieved a huge goal. You are in control of your finances. The relief of knowing exactly where your money is going and what subscriptions you have means you are aware of the benefits of them and simplifying your life. 

Your money is now working for you and you understand how things are. The benefits of being subscribed to the things are known and you are taking advantage of them. Doing a regular assessment of them throughout the year makes it easier to stay on top of them. 

Weed out those that are not relevant or of any benefit to you and focus on what you need to do. 

It is your life after all and when you pay for something you should be getting a benefit out of it. If you are not then you get to decide what to do. 

Manage your subscriptions and don’t be afraid to cancel. 

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