Personal finance might appear very complicated and involved, but if you know what you are doing it can be very rewarding to your current and future affairs. If you don’t know what you are doing, you can lose a lot of money or be left with nothing. Fear not, the tips listed below can help you avoid this.
In this economy, it’s best to have multiple savings plans. For example, don’t put all of your funds into a savings account. Put some funds into checking or into stocks. The more diverse your investments, the safer your money is. Use a combination of several of these approaches to limit your financial vulnerability.
Another great way to help your financial situation is to purchase generic alternatives to branded products. For example, buy the store brand corn rather than popular brands. Most generic products are surprisingly comparable with respect to quality. This tip could save you hundreds on groceries each and every year.
Your bank probably offers some kind of automatic savings service which you should look into. This typically involves setting up an automatic transfer from checking into savings every month. This method forces you to set aside some every few weeks. It can also be useful for when you are trying to save enough money for a major event, such as a cruise or a wedding.
To keep your personal finances in order, it’s essential to protect yourself from identity theft, and there are some simple ways to do this. Ensure that you thoroughly shred any documents containing any information from financial institutions, such as bank statements, before throwing them out in the trash. This is because fraudsters target the waste disposal system precisely for documents containing information like this.
Do not charge more each month than you can pay when the bill comes in. The interest adds up if you only pay the minimum balance, and you can end up paying much more for your purchase in the end than if you had simply used your own money to buy it outright. Bonuses such as airline miles or even rebates seldom make up for the additional expense.
If you are self-employed, don’t forget to deduct your insurance premiums on your taxes. The premium amount you deduct will reduce your adjusted gross income and you can use it even if you do not itemize your deductions. This can save you quite a bit come tax time, so don’t forget about it.
If you are planning on not paying a bill this month, don’t let it be your insurance premium! In as little as two missed payments you could find your insurance coverage canceled. If you’re already facing financial difficulties, this will NOT be the time to have to pay for any accident that happens out-of-pocket!
Put money in a separate account to save for big purchases. When you set your sights on that flat-screen t.v., an expensive pair of shoes or a much-needed purchase such as a new refrigerator, using credit to buy it is always tempting. In the current economy, though, racking up more debt is something to avoid at all costs. Set up a new bank account, preferably one that is harder to get money out of, and have a set amount automatically transferred into it each month.
For large purchases, such as home renovations, one way to get a better loan is to borrow against the value of your home, also called a home equity loan or a second mortgage. Because of the security provided by your home’s equity, these loans often have better rates than a normal loan.
It is never too early to teach children about personal finance and savings. If they earn an allowance, have them set aside a percentage into a piggy bank or a savings account (if they’re old enough to have one). They can also do the same with money they receive for birthdays or holidays. Try signing up for an education saving plan, talk to professionals at Knowledge First Financial to get started.
So as you can see, personal finance is not as complicated as it may appear. It is involved in terms of research and asking questions, but it is worth it in the end. With the above tips in mind, you should be smarter when it comes to improving your own financial situation.