Personal finance is the bane of everyone’s existence. Let’s face it, there are not a lot of people who will put their hand up and say that this is their favorite subject. However, without having a little bit of knowledge about it, your life is going to get financially complicated very fast. So here are a few things that you need to know.
Repairing your credit can lead to paying less money in interest. A lower credit score means higher interest rate on your credit cards and other loans, which means you end up paying more in finance charges and interest. Repair your score and drop these rates in order to save more money.
Set up your bank account to transfer a predetermined sum of money from your checking to your savings once a month. You will forget you even have this money or see it as a bill, just like any other expense. Your savings can add up quickly by doing this.
When thinking about how to make the most out of your personal finances, consider carefully the pros and cons of taking out stocks. This is because, while it’s well known that, in the long run, stocks have historically beaten all other investments, they are risky in the short term as they fluctuate a lot. If you’re likely to be in a situation where you need to get access to money fast, stocks may not be your best option.
If you are currently paying for your checking account, it’s time to find a new one. Banks compete for your business, and so many offer free checking with amenities and services similar to those you used to have to pay for. Shop around and find one that won’t charge you on a monthly basis.
If you don’t already have one, open an IRA. You can contribute catch-up funds anytime throughout the year to get your maximum interest. This is also tax deductible. So, if you need to find a few more ways to raise those deduction amounts, it’s better to pay yourself, than uncle Sam.
If holding a garage sale or selling your things on craigslist isn’t appealing to you, consider consignment. You can consign just about anything these days. Furniture, clothes, jewelry, you name it. Contact a few stores in your area to compare their fees and services. The consignment store will take your items and sell them for you, cutting you a check for a percentage of the sale.
Take advantage of student or senior discounts wherever you can. Certain stores offer the discounts every day, while others limit them to specific days of the week or one day per month. It does take a little work to find out the details of the discounts, but if you can save on the things you would buy anyway it is worth the effort.
Teaching guitar lessons can help one support their personal finances as well as build ties both in the music community and with people from all walks of life. As one builds a customer base or finds a music school to teach out of they will increase their finances and network at the same time.
Jump start your saving efforts by immediately setting aside even the smallest amount possible and depositing it in a piggy bank, jar, or coffee can. Resist the urge to constantly count your savings as it may lead to discouragement in the earliest days. The trick is simply to make regular contributions and eliminate withdrawals.
Don’t just accept any savings account to hold your money. You need to find an account that will protect your funds against inflation. Ideally, you need a high-yield savings account. This will allow you get a better return on your money. Just check whether the rules regarding withdrawing from the account (if you need to have access to the money at short notice), and that there is no investment risk.
In an effort to improve your finances, compare Savings account and CD rates online. In the current low-interest rate environment, it’s more important that ever to find the best possible yields on deposit accounts. Chances are that by searching online, you can find a better interest rate than your local bank is offering, making the most of your emergency fund or other savings.
You can still stay on financial track during a bad economy. It’s important not to panic. If possible, continue to contribute to your savings, even if it’s at a reduced amount. Continue to pay off any credit card debt you have, starting with the lowest balance and working your way to the higher amounts. Staying steady during the hard times can help you come out on top later.
So there you have it. Not such a scary subject now, is it? Armed with the advice presented in this article, you now have the knowledge you need to tackle your finances with a little more confidence than before. Who knows, over time you may even look forward to long term financial planning!