When you think about your finances, what do you think of? If you’re like most people, you probably are thinking about the bills, you need to pay with your next paycheck or worrying about how you’re going to get everything paid. There’s a better way to handle your finances than this; read on for some advice.
If you want to make the most of your assets, you should consider getting a rewards credit card. Depending on your lifestyle, you may be better off to get the card that offers the best cash rewards, or the largest number of airline miles. You should get the credit card that best fits your spending habits. It can return assets to you for spending money that you would spend anyway. The bottom line is always pay the balance in full every month and don’t be tempted to spend more money just to qualify for additional rewards.
To improve your personal finance habits, maintain a target amount that you put each week or month towards your goal. Be sure that your target amount is a quantity you can afford to save on a regular basis. Disciplined saving is what will allow you to save the money for your dream vacation or retirement.
If you travel by air frequently, it can be worthwhile to sign up for a program that rewards frequent fliers. Most credit cards come with reward programs, many of them providing discounted or free airfare. You can use frequent flier miles at hotels for discounts, or even free stays.
Set up any bills that you can to be directly withdrawn from your checking account. This will assure that they are always paid on time as long as you have the available funds in your checking account that is needed to make these payments. It is easy to set up and will save a ton of time and money in late fees.
Never try to rent an apartment alone if you do not have a steady source of income. This may seem obvious, but there are many people that are employed by temporary employment agencies and they look for rental properties. If their contracts end, they will not be able to make their monthly rent payments.
Get into a real savings habit. The hardest thing about savings is forming the habit of setting aside money — of paying yourself first. Rather than berate yourself each month when you use up all your funds, be sneaky and set up an automatic deduction from your main bank account into a savings account. Set it up so that you never even see the transaction happening, and before you know it, you’ll have the savings you need safely stashed away.
If you need a financial planner, it is better to hire one who charges a flat fee rather than commissions. Fee-based planners charge a fixed amount to advise you and invest your funds, but commission-based planners get paid when they trade for your account. This can give commission-based planners an incentive to trade your holdings excessively, increasing your costs.
If you work for a company that offers a 401k, contribute to it on a regular basis. Have a percentage of your paycheck drawn out every month (usually around 4-6%) and put into this account. Most companies are willing to match what you put into the account up to a certain percentage.
If you’re still in school and have a job, refrain from purchasing a car. This is especially true if you want to keep your finances looking clear and colorful going forward. Getting into a bad auto deal now will just leave things looking bleak. Hopefully you can get a car for a graduation gift, or at the very least borrow your parents’ car until you can outright afford one.
To help yourself cut back your spending, track your spending. There are many free spending tracking applications available for phones and computers. Take a look at what you’re spending the most money on, and see how essential it is. Seeing where your money goes each month can be sobering, and will let you know what areas cutbacks should be focused on.
Don’t get whacked by insane ATM fees. If you use an ATM that is not run by your bank, you may find that you are actually charged two fees: an “access” fee from the bank that runs the ATM, and an “out-of-network ATM” fee from your own bank. Added together, these fees can exceed $5.
Sort out your financial situation. This may take a long time, but setting small financial goals can help put your mind at ease. Financial problems put a strain on the rest of your life, so it is best to handle them as quickly as you possibly can so you can live your life in peace.
Living paycheck-to-paycheck is stressful. Now that you’ve read this article, you can leave all that behind you and approach your finances a different way. Just use the tips you just read in order to help improve your finances and put money aside from every check for emergencies and unexpected expenses.