Politics and Business
Savvy Spender – 5 Practical Ways to Build Better Money Habits
Be honest: how confident are you that your finances are 100% under control? If you answer is “not very”, it may be time to review your existing money habits. It’s never too late to get on top of your finances and start working towards a healthy and secure financial future. Here’s how you can get started:
Avoid the Credit Trap
A credit card can seem like a blessing in times of economic strife – you can just put that bill on credit and deal with it later, right? While credit cards are certainly useful in some situations, countless people end up in serious debt when they’re hit with high interest repayments that they can’t pay off later down the track. If you need to cover an urgent expense, opt for fast online cash loans instead. Plenty of reliable providers offer small loan amounts with flexible, low interest repayments that are much kinder to your bank account than a credit card or payday loan.
Make a Budget
The word “budget” may make you groan, but it shouldn’t! Budgeting doesn’t mean cutting out all of the fun things from your life – it’s about creating a plan that accounts for your necessary costs and hobbies while allowing you to save for the future. Make a list of your income and expenses and figure out how much you can put away into savings each paycheck. Instead of completely removing non-essential costs from your budget, set yourself a weekly allowance for things like clothes, takeout, and leisure activities. This way, you’ll never have to worry about not having enough to cover rent and still get to enjoy doing the things that make you happy.
Get Smart with Groceries
The average American spends $302 on groceries per month, making it the second most expensive basic need after rent or mortgage costs. While everyone needs to eat, there are some easy ways to slash your grocery bill without having to go hungry. Instead of buying brand name items, opt for the store’s generic brand – the quality is the same, but the cost will be significantly less. Additionally, take stock of your fridge and pantry before going shopping and make a list of the things you need. Having a list to stick to will help you avoid impulse buys and prevent you from purchasing items you don’t actually require.
Automate Your Savings
One of the easiest ways to save is by setting up automatic transfers that take money out of your account every paycheck. This ensures that a little bit of cash is going in every time you receive your income without any effort on your part, and stops you from unnecessarily spending money that you could be saving. To make the most of your savings account, look around for the best interest rates and lowest account fees available – this will help you make decent headway towards your financial goals.
See a Financial Advisor
If being responsible with your money doesn’t come naturally to you, you’re not alone – 44% of Americans don’t have enough money saved up to cover a $400 emergency. Financial literacy is something that has to be learned, so if you’re struggling to cut down on unnecessary costs and save, don’t be afraid to seek the help of a financial advisor. An expert accountant can look at your financial situation objectively and provide useful advice tailored to your income and expenses.
Developing good money habits takes time and patience, but the benefits are undeniable. Begin planning for a healthy financial future today by trying out the above tips – you’ll thank yourself later!