When reading about personal finance, there are many subjects to cover. Some examples are budgeting, savings, insurance, investments and those things concerning your retirement. Read on to find the best suggestions on how to handle your personal finances in the short term, as well as, what you should be doing long term.
The stock market is in a dangerous state right now, so don’t take any big investment risks unless you’re willing to lose a lot of money. Any investment might seem like a good idea at first, but there are a lot of factors that affect stock prices and unless you’re an expert, you won’t see them coming.
When you are saving for an emergency fund, aim for at least three to six months worth of living expenses. This is not a large amount, considering the difficulty in finding employment if you ever lose your job. In fact, the larger the emergency fund, the better position you would be in to ride out any unforeseen financial catastrophes.
You can improve your finances dramatically by taking advantage of available discounts. Saving with coupons should be more important to you than brand loyalty. For example, you might consider switching from your regular brand and opting for a product that comes with a promotion or discount.
Look into a better plan for your cell phone. Chances are if you have had your cell phone for at least a couple of years, there is probably something out there that will benefit you more. Call your provider and ask for a better deal, or look around and see what is being offered.
In order to keep track of your personal finances, use a smart phone based app or a calendar warning, on your computer or phone, to tell you when bills are due. You should set goals for how much you want to have spent by a particular date in the month. This works because it’s an easy reminder and you don’t even need to think about it, once you’ve set it up.
Live below your means. Most Americans live paycheck to paycheck. This happens, because we are spending as much as we are earning or in some cases, more. You can break this cycle by leaving yourself a lot of room in your monthly budget. If you only need a smaller percentage of your income to pay your living expenses, there will be more left over to save or to pay for unexpected things that come up.
Before purchasing a car, build up a strong down payment amount. Save money everywhere you can for a while in order to be able to put a significant amount of money down when you purchase. Having a large down payment will help with your monthly payments and it may make it easier to get better interest rates even with bad credit.
If you are having trouble managing all of your bills because they are coming due at the same time, you may be able to rearrange your due-dates to make things easier for you. Contact your credit card company or utility company and ask them if you can change your due-date so you have more time between each bill.
If you love to shop, one tip that you can follow is to buy clothes out of season. When it is the wintertime, you can get great deals on summer clothes and vice versa. Since you will eventually use these anyway, this is a great way to maximize your savings.
As you can see from the above article, personal finance is more than just your paycheck. It involves both short-term and long-term goals for your money. Smart decisions now, could see you through some tough times in the future. You will be glad that you buckled down and took control of all your personal finances.