Ask Away...: Financial Planning That Makes Cents

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Financial Planning That Makes Cents

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Being good with money isn’t about how much you earn but how well you manage your finances.  You might be able to make money but unless you know how to look after money you will only ever have part of the puzzle.

Here are 10 simple steps towards becoming a financial wizard, whatever your income.

  1. You can’t even begin to get your finances under control unless you have a budget. This is common sense but you actually have to stick to it for it to make a difference. Review it regularly because things do and will change.
  2. Include a contingency for the unexpected. This isn’t just about insurance for a burst pipe or car accident, this is an emergency fund for those things even insurance companies can’t predict. Include this fund in your budget.
  3. Avoid debt.  Don’t be tempted to buy things on credit, take out credit cards or a loan to pay for things you can’t afford. Debt can snowball and before you know it your income doesn’t cover your outgoings.
  4. But if you are in debt already make a plan to get out of it. Work with your lenders to reduce your balance month by month towards debt freedom.
  5. Transfer your balance. If your credit card interest rate has just gone through the roof don’t just accept it, shop around and find the best deal and then transfer the balance. Even if your interest rates stay the same it’s worth knowing whether you could get a better deal elsewhere.
  6. Pay of credit card balances in full every month, it could save you hundreds in interest rates.
  7. Keep your credit score in good shape. If you avoid debt, take action with the debt you have and regularly monitor your credit score you will be taking very good care of your credit rating.  If your credit rating does need repairing make it your priority to do so. You can check out online reviews of the best credit repair companies of 2017 and work with them to get that score back to good health.
  8. Don’t be afraid to use coupons, special offers or sales as a way of reducing your outgoings.  No matter how much money you earn getting money off items is good news.  Yes they may take a little coordination but it will reflect in your growing bank balance so is well worth the effort.
  9. Invest in your future. Don’t just spend money for today make sure you include any contributions towards pensions and investments in your budget.
  10. Put your finances on automatic.  Direct debit make managing money much more simple as you can set up payments for all your bills and then sit back and not worry about them.  Make sure you know how much and when they are coming out to avoid unnecessary bank charges.

This might not sound as complicated as algebraic math but it really is that simple to be a financial genius.  Be organized, honest and forward thinking and your finances will suddenly start making a lot more cents.

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