Sometimes the hardest thing about saving money is just getting started. Now is a perfect time to create a plan, start saving, and begin your journey towards financial stability.
Here are some tips that can help you get started and make you feel more in control of your money.
- Formalize a Written Financial Plan – Not only does a written plan provide you with goalposts to know you are progressing towards them, but it also makes it more likely that you will achieve them.
- Make a Monthly Budget – It is not enough just to plan for where you will be spending, but it’s also important to take a hard look at where you already spend. It is never too late to understand what your ‘needs’ versus ‘wants’ are.
- Pay Off Debt – Be smart about how you tackle paying off debt. List your debts from smallest to largest. Attack the smallest debt with vengeance while making payments on the rest. Once you have paid off the smallest debt, take that payment and apply it to your next-smallest debt.
- Open a Savings Account – Emergencies happen rather unpredictably. That is why having a savings account is one of the best ways to guard against using high-interest credit cards or loans to pay for unforeseen expenses.
- Use Mobile Apps to Track Spending Habits – Use mobile apps to help better track your spending habits and keep tabs on account balances, pending deposits, and a host of other features.
- Build a Buffer to Cover Unplanned Expenses – In order to create a buffer, give yourself some grace and open a separate account at your bank, aside from the one that holds your emergency fund.
- Do a Daily Financial Check In – Take a minute to think about what you are saving for. It really helps to create a picture in your mind of the reason you want to save for the future.
- Pause Before You Purchase – Pause for 30 minutes or so before you make a purchase and take a few moments to reflect on why you are buying the item.
- Pay Bills on Time – A good chunk of your credit score is based primarily off payment history, according to FICO. In fact, it is weighted more than any other factor. When it comes to improving your financial health, paying bills on time can have a significant impact.
- Periodically Check Your Credit – Credit reports contain information about your financial life and payment history. That is why it is always a good idea to glance at your score from time to time.