I get it; changing habits can be hard, especially when it comes to financial ones. No one changes overnight, but there are some things that you can start doing today that will change your life in the long run!
Some people advise against this, but I think it’s a good idea to get a credit card…but to use it wisely! Credit cards help you build up your credit, plus you get access to lots of perks and benefits that normal cash, checks, or debit cards don’t get you. However, don’t max out your card every month or forget to pay it off. Get a credit card, but use it wisely.
Start now to save consistently. You could put away $10 every week, $100 every month, or something else. How much you put away isn’t as important as just getting in the habit of saving money. In a few months or years, you’ll have a great emergency savings fund to rely on.
If you have a few debts you’re trying to pay off, do the snowball method. Simply put, you throw all your extra money at the smallest debt until it’s gone. Then you move on to the next biggest one. This eliminates the amount of interest payments you have to pay, which is why it’s called the snowball.
Sit down right now with whoever you share money with and make a budget. Plan out how you’re going to spend your money this month and project it out for the year. This will help you stay on course with what you spend, giving you more control of your finances.
Do your best to live within your means. If you really want a $30,000 car but can’t afford it, then don’t buy it. Instead, get the one that fits your budget. Living within your means still gives you plenty of ways to be happy and fulfilled without loading yourself with debt.
Whenever you go out or decide to buy something, ask yourself “Why am I buying this?” or “Do I really need this?” Believe it or not, stopping to ask yourself this question (and really pondering on the answer) can save you from spending money on things you don’t need.
Another good way to curb your purchases is by waiting 30 days before making any unnecessary purchases. You may want that new ottoman in the moment, but 30 days from now it won’t seem like such a big deal. And if it still is, then consider getting it!
When you go to make big purchases, make sure you’ve done your research first. It may not be very fun, but doing your research will allow you to make the smartest decision, giving you the best quality for the cheapest price.
With the leftover money you have, consider investing some of it in stocks or other financial options. Investing can be a tricky business, so talk to a friend who’s in the know or do some research to make sure you’re making smart financial investments that will give you good returns.
If you’re really serious about making some changes to your financial life, then get a money buddy. This is just someone that you will be responsible to for all your financial choices; by making you accountable to someone else, you’ll think twice before you buy anything you don’t really need. You and your money buddy can help each other be smarter spenders.