Creating New Year’s resolutions might be overrated, but everyone should always make the new year better than the last. With these simple and easy-to-remember tips, you’ll surely keep yourself checked and in line, and you’ll most certainly find solutions for better financial management.
Track your Spending Habits
Some people don’t know exactly what’s wrong with their financial situations. They keep ending up in debt because of financial ignorance. Stop the cycle and get your monthly balance statements. Study your receipts and bills. Know exactly where your money goes. If you know what kind of a spender you are, you’ll be more successful in coming up with a clear-cut solution of what you’re supposed to do.
Narrow Down your Goals
It’s good to dream big, but realistically speaking, you’ll only get depressed or disheartened if you don’t get your targets within a given amount of time. Try to simplify your financial goals. For example, save $10 this week. The easier it is for you to accomplish, the better. Why is this helpful? The easier you make things possible, the easier it is to make it a habit. Fulfilling your short-term, realistic goals will do crazy boosts for your ego. You’ll be ready to accept even bigger goals if you can get by with the small ones.
Review your Current Contracts
This means you have to check your insurance policy, broadband package, phone plan, credit card, or your cable subscription. Update yourself on any changes since you last renewed or availed of your current plan. What if you’re unexpectedly paying for higher credit card rates because the 0% rate has an expiration date? Do your research online and make sure that everything—especially the fine print in the contract, is transparent to you.
Once you’ve done your research, the next question to ask yourself is: Am I getting the best plan out there? To keep track of the best deals out there, visit online comparison sites. Not only will you be able to compare the latest and best deals with one another, you’ll also get financial advice about saving and investing. No doubt, this is one of the best tools to help you find the financial solutions you’re looking for.
Don’t Put Off Paying your Debt
Delays in paying your credit card or any kind of debt will result in only one thing: MORE DEBT. Why? Because you already have debt. Here are the signs that you’ll fall into the credit card debt routine:
You’ve spent more than what you’re actually able to pay back soon. This is also another term for: You live ABOVE your means. Remember, your credit card isn’t an unlimited source of money.
You find yourself paying for purchases in more than 6 months when you should, instead, pay off your credited purchases in 2-3 months tops.
You’re pretty lax about the whole situation. If you’re not worried, that’s probably the first sign you’re in trouble.
Your optimistic attitude and mindset that you’ll “eventually” pay off your debt will NOT help your situation if you don’t make any concrete steps to pay it off every day. Here are a few debt-management advice you must absolutely follow to avoid adding to your credit card debt bigger this year:
Practice better credit card management. Don’t use it unless you need it, or you can pay off your purchase soon. Again, try to take care of your credited purchase in 2-3 months.
Use the right credit card for your purchases. Some retail stores are partnered with credit card companies, and will give you points every time you make a purchase there. If you’re going to use your credit card, you might as well take advantage of the points and rewards you’ll benefit from.
Pay above the monthly minimum. Don’t even think about missing a payment! You need to make it a point to always pay what you owe the bank—on time, all the time.
Study this very important term: debt consolidation loan. It might just be the solution for you, particularly if you have multiple debts.
Finally, stop spending more than you earn. Always think of the consequences of credit card debt.
You don’t need debt in your life. Ask people who are debt-free, and they will gladly tell you they’re worry-free, and probably living their lives to the fullest. That should be your goal as well.
Stop Talking and Thinking about it
Start ACTING on it. Financial help won’t approach you. You need to seek it. You need to apply the tips you read. Dwelling on thoughts about the highs and lows of economy or how you botched your last attempt to salvage your finances will NEVER help your situation. If you keep on thinking about the “what ifs” or “risks” and you don’t take one step forward, you’ll never get anywhere. Spending all your time in planning will never kick-start anything, so trust that making at least one move is going to be worth the try. Just actively make the first move, and the rest will follow.
These will be genius financial solutions only if you follow them. Recognise the fact that you can take control of your finances because you can. Make it a mission to be debt-free and financially smarter this 2014.