Lack of money is undoubtedly one of the biggest issues in many women’s lives, and with the current economic conditions, it’s fair to say that we all have money on our minds more than ever. Against the background of an ongoing global recession and uncertain future, it’s natural for us to think more about our financial security and planning for worst-case scenarios.
Most of us need a little extra help from time to time to get back on track with our financial plans and goals. Whether you’ve managed to accrue debt that you need to repay, you want to build up a safety net in case of hard times, or you have a specific financial goal, such as starting a business or buying your first home, you need a plan to proactively secure your financial future.
Educate Yourself about Money Matters
As adults, we all participate in the financial world, and our money has a dramatic impact on our quality of life and options. Yet, despite how crucially important it is, many of us are happy to plead ignorance on things such as interest rates, APR’s and savings accounts.
Taking responsibility to educate yourself on personal finance is really the first step to financial security. There are plenty of blogs and books out there on almost every money topic you can imagine. Make it your mission to become better informed so that you can make better money choices.
Stick to a Monthly Budget
Despite it being one of the real fundamentals of personal finance, you’d be surprised how few people are used to creating a monthly budget and sticking to it. If you don’t understand exactly what your income and expenses are, you’re asking for trouble in the future.
It’s extremely important to have a handle on what you owe and what expenses would still need to be paid tomorrow, even if you lost your source of income. Having a budget mapped out also allows you to make adjustments when necessary. Using an app to track your finances is an easy way of having an overview of your money at your fingertips and being able to make quick adjustments where needed.
Aim to cut down unnecessary expenses and minimize the ones you do have to pay for a few months. This allows you to build up your savings to further secure your financial future. Tools like Pigly.com can help you to understand more about your finances and make those small changes that can really add up.
Stop or Minimize Credit Use
Credit can be a highly useful tool in emergencies, or as a way of dividing a large expense into more manageable chunks. The problem arises when you use credit to pay for indulgences or even just daily living expenses. This is an extremely risky strategy that is likely to end in large amounts of debt.
Wean yourself off credit cards by creating a plan to pay the outstanding balances. Either cut up the cards or put them somewhere inaccessible. Don’t get into the habit of taking them out with you or you’ll be tempted to use them. The less debt you have, the more you can put into savings and get closer to your financial goal.