When I’m looking to cut expenses, should I cut out household services like cleaning services, grocery delivery, meal kits, etc.?
Ultimately, it depends on how much benefit these services provide. I have listed two examples as an exercise to determine if the service’s benefit justifies its cost. Both examples assume you have the cash flow to pay for some of these services.
You are a freelance graphic designer who earns the equivalent of $50 per hour. Your cleaning service charges the equivalent of $50 per hour. Even though this seems like a wash, it may still be beneficial to hire out the task because:
1) You can use this extra time for servicing clients or increasing future business
2) The cleaners can complete the task in less than two hours, where it may take you three or more hours to complete.
By hiring out this task, are you able to add more hours for completing tasks that will pay dividends in the future?
You have a 9-5 job that pays a $100,000 per year salary (no overtime). If you free up more time to work, it doesn’t translate to more money. If you followed the logic above, paying someone to clean your house would not provide a financial benefit. However, you may feel the benefit is giving you more time for enjoyable activities.
So what do you cut? I can’t answer that question for you. The take-away here is to provide a framework to evaluate expenses – to see if the benefit of hiring out the task is greater than you completing it yourself.
Do you have questions about organizing your finances? Leave a note in the comments!