As we have learned anything from the way the economy has nose dived, it’s the reality that we need to learn to stop living beyond our means and that we ought to have some money set aside in savings for the “rainy day” that we just know will show up sooner or later. These days, more than ever, people are beginning to see that taking control of their personal finance concerns must be done.
Lots of people were caught flat footed when the bottom fell out. They lost their jobs and didn’t have any sort of backup plan. Without a reserve and with a great deal of debt many people lost everything they had. Not a great deal of a reward for years of efforts, is it? But whether we want to admit it or not, we are responsible to a large degree.
Many of us have averted from the ideas of our parents and their reluctance to have any debt at all. They believed that if they couldn’t pay cash for something, they couldn’t afford it and they didn’t get it. Nowadays, it is way too easy to just take out a credit card, and a lot of of us have tossed common sense right out the window along the way.
But it is not too late to make changes with regards to personal finance you can start today to take control and hopefully be much better prepared the next time the economy decides to head south.
Below are a few simple tips you can try to take charge:
- Firstly, you need to get a handle on your budget; how much money you have coming in and how much money you have going out. When you take your time to sit down and write everything out (or use a software application) you may just be surprised at how uneven it is. Many of us are shocked to see that we are frequently spending a lot more than we are earning. Getting it all in black and white can be quite sobering.
- Ensure that you put aside a specific amount every paycheck for savings. It doesn’t have to be a lot but when you make out your budget include a specific amount to go straight into your savings account. Many employers will let you do that automatically. You can often sign up for direct deposit and have most of your check go into your checking account and a smaller amount go directly into a savings account. This way you’re certain it will get into savings.
- Eliminate the debt. Once you have your budget set up take a little extra each month and set it towards repaying some debt. Start off with your smallest debt first, just apply a little extra every month. As soon as that debt is paid off you can take the amount of money that you were spending on that and apply it to your next smallest debt. Keep repeating this routine right until all of your debt is cleared. Once you are free of debt, remain that way.
This is the way to help keep your personal finance situation on solid footing.
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