During difficult economic times, intelligently managing your personal finances can mean the difference between living comfortably, and losing your home or being forced to file for bankruptcy protection. This article was written with the average person in mind. It is designed to help you improve your financial situation by teaching you to intelligently manage your personal finances.
While it is important to ask around about what you should invest in, it is necessary that you follow your own intuition in the end. Ultimately, it is your money that you are investing. Therefore, you have to make sure that you believe in every investment that you make.
Set up a bank account for emergency funds, and do not use it for any daily expenses. An emergency fund should only be used for any unexpected expense that is out of the ordinary. Keeping your emergency fund separate from your regular account will give you the peace of mind that you will have money to use when you most need it.
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.
Re-examine your cell phone plan every 1-2 years to make sure you are getting the best program tailored to your specific calling habits. Cell phone bills can be a big part of the monthly budget “� especially for a family “� so it is important to stay abreast of new features and programs you might be eligible for. Plan providers will bundle features like texting into their plans at considerable cost savings, but sometimes you have to ask to get the best deals. Changing phone companies can be a hassle sometimes, but the savings may be worth it. In addition, your current cell plan provider will likely want to keep your business and may match any outside offers you get. So check around and ask questions to save!
If you have extra money, put it in an online savings account. These accounts can earn you a lot of interest, which can add up to a lot of money over time. Use an online savings account if you want to make your money work for you to achieve your monetary goals.
If you have good mechanical skills, you can make some extra money by offering services to neighbors, friends and family. You could offer oil changes or any other service that you are capable of and for a reasonable price, you can supplement your income and may even enable you to be your own boss.
If you cannot avoid eating out because of your schedule then the best way to save money is to choose from the dollar menu. You can get two chicken sandwiches and a soda for three bucks sometimes. This is better than its six dollar alternative on the combo menu, and saves you money.
A good start to setting up a budget for yourself is to keep a daily log of your spending. Write down everything you spend money on, whether it’s a few dollars for lunch or a car payment. This will help you see where your money is going. Sometimes we don’t realize how much the small dollar amounts add up until we see it in front of us.
Remember, intelligently managing your personal finances is the key to wealth and security. In an economic downturn, being careless or foolish with your money can have grave consequences. Carefully read the tips in this article, and apply what you learn to your own personal financial situation. By doing so, you can protect yourself from financial ruin.