You’re standing at the register to check out at your local Walmart and your eyes widen in surprise from another $100+ that you just spent. What did you even buy? You rack your brain and think about the most expensive item in your cart: that $40 coffee maker you were on the fence about.
You even consider taking some items out. But after quickly convincing yourself that you do need everything on that conveyor belt, you bite the bullet and reluctantly hand over your card to the cashier. Oh, well, you think to yourself. I’ll do better the next time around.
While determining an investment strategy or purchasing insurance might be complicated, not everything related to creating a sound financial future has to be. In fact, there are plenty of small but substantial habits you can adopt now in order to place yourself firmly on the path to financial stability.
Shifting existing money habits can be challenging, but once these five new habits are adopted, you’ll likely notice a decrease in money stress and a more positive outlook on your overall financial picture.
If you’re ready to get moving towards a more certain and solid financial future, start here:
Whether you’re in the process of getting out of debt or your budget is feeling a little too restrictive, earning extra money on the side is a great way to get over the hump.
Even if time and energy are in short supply, there are plenty of apps to help you sock away a couple extra dollars without leaving the comfort of your couch. You won’t earn enough to buy your dream house, but even a little bit of extra breathing room can go a long way.
I stood in the aisle, running my hands over the different colors, contemplating which one I could add to my collection. The problem was, with a large container at home already filled to the brim with nail polish, I couldn’t be certain I wasn’t spending $10 on something I already owned.
Then I stopped.
I didn’t even actually want the nail polish. There was a long list of things I would rather have, but this one item had become a trigger for me. When I was feeling overwhelmed with life in the past, I made a few purchases to “treat myself.” While I was normally conservative with my money, I found that buying something that was under a certain price point didn’t make me think twice. In fact, it switched my mindset entirely.
We’ve all thought about what it would be like to win the lottery at some point in our lives, may have even purchased those tickets praying to get lucky and to strike it big. We think about all the new purchases we’d make: perhaps a new car or a house, the travels, the new business ventures, paying off debts, the things we’d do for our families, and perhaps even the status that may come with being that much richer and in the limelight.
What we don’t think about are the number of winners who’ve squandered all their winnings and are no better off than before due to poor decisions. Nor do we think about the other horrific tragedies that may come along with having more; as they say, “mo’ money, mo’ problems.” For those unfamiliar, they say the lottery actually brings more curses than it does happiness because after all, does money really buy more happiness? Happiness is only a byproduct of successful living.
A survey by the Pew Charitable Trusts this year revealed that nearly half of Americans don’t feel financially secure. One-third of American families have no savings, 57% said they’re not prepared for a financial emergency, and 55% of families barely break even with their finances every month or actually spend more than they earn.
These are pretty dire circumstances for American families. Have we not learned our lesson from the 2008 economic crisis?
When my husband and I were first married, we were $45,000 in debt, my husband was making minimum wage, and we were spending more than we earned every month. We just couldn’t make ends meet.
If you’re a frequent visitor of personal finance blogs or websites, you’ve read plenty of financial advice and rules of thumb. Since the information that’s fed to you is compiled for mass consumption, you should take each advice with a grain of salt. The information can vary wildly depending on the source and, more often than not, it reflects the experiences and values of the person or organization putting it together – not necessarily the hundred, thousands, or millions of people consuming it.
Don’t get me wrong – these sources can be hugely valuable in spreading financial literacy to those who wouldn’t otherwise have easy (or free) access to this information. The key, however, is being able to discern what information and advice fits for your life and your situation and what doesn’t keep your best interests in mind.
Owning a home is expensive. I know that’s not terribly earth-shattering, but it’s true. There always seems to be something in need of fixing or an upgrade. It’s one of the reasons why I believe many shouldn’t buy a house, rather rent until they’re more financially stable.
Most estimate you need to budget at least 1-4% of the value of a home for repairs – each year. That can be a significant number, especially if you have a major repair to cover. If you’re facing a situation where you need cash for a home repair, consider some of the following issues first.
Balance transfer credit cards are a great tool to pay off debt. I did not use a balance transfer card while I was paying off debt though it was something I considered. If you’re looking to save money on your debt repayment efforts, consider some of the tips below to find the best balance transfer credit cards.
Why Would You Get A Balance Transfer Card?
There are several reasons why many want to work with a balance transfer card though the main reason is they usually allow you to cut down on the amount of interest you pay on your debt. Don’t have debt but need to make a large purchase in the near future? A balance transfer credit card is an option to consider to avoid interest payments. For our purposes, we’ll be looking at it from the debtor angle.
We’ve all been in that situation where we’ve had to shuffle around to pay for a tab while dining with a large party at a restaurant. How do you and your friends or family tackle this tedious task? Everybody either pulls out their phone calculators or begins writing down their orders on receipts to calculate what they owe plus a little extra for tax and tip.
Having been a server during my college years, I once had a party of 5 who wrote down on 5 different napkins step by step instructions for what amount to charge to each of the 5 cards, as well as what each individual had ordered.
Additionally, nobody wants to be that one person in the group responsible for going around collecting exactly $41.26 from everyone either. Usually in these large-group dining situations, someone usually ends up overpaying while some may underpay.