If you have made some poor financial decisions in the past or gotten into some bad spending habits, the time to break and fix those is now. There is no time like the present to focus on your income, your spending and your debt. The ideas that follow are ways that you can start to regain some control.
Pack one suitcase inside of another. Almost every traveler comes home with more stuff than they left with. Whether souvenirs for friends and family or a shopping trip to take advantage of a good exchange rate, it can be difficult to get everything back home. Consider packing your belongings in a small suitcase, then put that suitcase into a larger one. This way you only pay for one bag on your trip out, and have the convenience of bringing two back when you return.
If you have fallen behind on your mortgage payments and have no hope of becoming current, see if you qualify for a short sale before letting your home go into foreclosure. While a short sale will still negatively affect your credit rating and remain on your credit report for seven years, a foreclosure has a more drastic effect on your credit score and may even cause an employer to reject your job application.
When you get paid, the first thing you need to do is put some money into savings. It is easier to save money every week rather than waiting to see what you have left when the month is over. Once the money is put in a separate account, it reduces the temptation to spend, since you’ve compartmentalized it in a way that makes it psychologically “less available.”
Department stores will feed on their customers purchasing items at retail price, which can drain a bank account very quick. Instead of falling for this, go into all of your favorite stores and find the sale or clearance rack. Typically, you will find great deals on quality items in this section.
One thing that you will need to be very concerned with when analyzing your personal finances is your credit card statement. It is very important to pay down your credit card debt, as this will only rise with the interest that is tacked onto it each month. Pay off your credit card immediately to increase your net worth.
If you are a college student, make sure that you sell your books at the end of the semester. Often, you will have a lot of students at your school in need of the books that are in your possession. Also, you can put these books online and get a large percentage of what you originally paid for them.
An important tip to consider when working to repair your credit is that if you are going to be filing for bankruptcy as a certainty, to do it as soon as possible. This is important because you need to start rebuilding your credit as soon as possible and ten years is a very long time. Do not put yourself further behind than you need to be.
Take advantage of rewards cards offered at stores. You can get free gas or money off of gas if you buy groceries at certain stores. You can also buy gift cards for other purchases you may make at retail stores and save even more on gas! You will be happy you thought about it!
To sell an item, draw attention to it with a catchy slogan or a good price. For example, a person trying to sell a truck in the winter could say “Need a good winter vehicle, here is a ……” Do this and instead of your items being overlooked you’ll get the sells you need.
Your personal finances will bring you to take on debt at some time. There is something you want but cannot afford. A loan or credit card will allow you to have it right now but pay for it later. Yet this is not always a winning formula. Debt is a burden that inhibits your ability to act freely; it can be a form of bondage.
Determine what your risk tolerance is before you start investing your money. Your risk tolerance influences your decision on what to invest in. If your risk tolerance is low, you are better off investing in cash-based investments. If your risk tolerance is high, you can explore the various emerging markets.
There are a lot of things that we have become accustomed to having that are not necessary. When budgets get tight, these are the first things that need to go. Your high definition sports package, while entertaining, is not necessary for your survival. Trim the fat from your spending and reap the benefits of saving instead.
To find areas where you can save money, track your spending carefully. Get a little notebook to take with you and write down everything you spend. Track cash, check and credit card expenses. Also write down what you spend to pay your bills. This is just like a check ledger. Write down the date, place, purpose and amount. At the end of the month, review your expenses. You will quickly see areas where you are wasting money.
Do not assume that using coupons will guarantee big savings. Because coupons are usually only available for name-brand products, you may actually get a better deal by purchasing store brands. If you do use coupons, try to use them when the listed item is already on sale, in order to get the best deal.
Having a savings account doesn’t need to be a complicated affair. The easiest way to add funds to your savings is by automatic deposits every month. Even if you don’t do that, simply allocate a certain percentage from your pay that will go towards savings every month. As soon as your paycheck is cashed, move that percentage into your savings account.
Feeling like you are out of control in your own life is not a good way to live. Taking charge of your finances means that you need to really take a deeper look, find out what you have been doing and what you should be doing instead. This article has shown you how you can start to do just that.