Sometimes, it’s hard to figure out just where all your money goes. Little purchases can add up fast, and if you’re already in bad financial shape, they can take your situation from bad to worse. That’s why it’s important to develop good personal finance habits. Keep reading to learn money advice anyone can use.
When it comes to personal finances, pay yourself first. When you get paid, put at least ten percent of your pre-tax income into savings before you use your pay check to do other things. If you get in the habit of doing this you will never miss that money and you will be building your savings account.
To get out of debt faster, you should pay more than the minimum balance. This should considerably improve your credit score and by paying off your debt faster, you do not have to pay as much interest. This saves you money that you can use to pay off other debts.
Business and personal travel can mix well if you log your spending wisely. Take a small journal that will allow you to log any business-related expenses while away. Attach a small envelope inside the front cover of the book that will hold any receipts you will acquire as well.
If you have a credit card without a rewards program, consider applying for one that earns you miles. Combine a credit card that earns miles with a frequent flier rewards program from your favorite airline and you’ll fly for free every now and again. Make sure to use your miles before they expire though.
It is never too early to save for the future. Even if you have just graduated from college, starting a small monthly savings program will add up over the years. Small monthly deposits to a retirement account compound much more over 40 years than larger amounts can over 10 years, and have the additional advantage that you are used to living on less than your total income.
To make your savings account earn money while you sit back and watch, invest in a long term fixed rate. These accounts offer a higher, fixed interest rate for a longer period of time. Most banks offer high interest to get your money, then cut the rate after a few months. Long term fixed rate accounts will have your money making money while it is in the bank.
If you are planning to adopt a child, do it this year. The government has created a larger tax break for those people who choose to adopt. It is not just for special cases, but all adoptions. This tax break can even be refunded if you don’t owe any taxes.
If you have consistently made your credit card payments on time for at least one whole year, you may have some leverage to negotiate more favorable terms, like a lowered interest rate or even a higher credit limit. Of course, only go for the second option if you have a real need to do so and can responsibly pay the added amount every month.
Whenever possible, pay with cash. Carrying cash is a tangible reminder of how much or little money you have remaining, to meet your upcoming needs and expenses. Unlike debit and credit cards, cash is accepted practically everywhere and is perpetually free of annoying surcharges, fees and confusing fine print.
Signing up for direct deposits eliminates the hassle of making a special trip to the bank every payday. It also helps you to avoid lost or stolen paychecks and will reduce impulse purchases that are made between the time your check is cashed and the time that it is deposited into your account.
Many people think that unreasonable fees and minimum balances are a normal part of banking, but that is not the case. Most banks actually offer free checking accounts, and some offer accounts that become free if you use a debit card regularly or sign up for direct deposits. Avoiding those pesky fees will help you save money.
Commit a specific amount of money to savings every month, and do not deviate from it. Start saving early, even with just a little bit of money, to get into the routine of saving. This puts you into a savings mindset, which is important in your overall money management strategy.
A great personal finance tip that can help you save money is to always hold on to your spare change. Some people just toss their spare change as if it doesn’t matter and that’s a huge mistake. Spare change can add up, which can save you money in the long run.
Many people don’t learn good personal finance habits, and bear the consequences of their lack of knowledge later on. Now that you’ve read this article, you’ll be able to take control of your finances and get them in better shape. If you develop good finance habits now, they’ll last you for the rest of your life.