With the economy being in as much turmoil as it is, it is important to have a good hand on your personal finances. It is important to be organized and to closely watch your expenditures or else you’ll find yourself in debt before you know it. This article can help prevent that.
To stay on top of your money, create a budget and stick to it. Write down your income and your bills and decide what needs to be paid and when. You can easily create and use a budget with either pen and paper or by using a computer program.
Hiring a credit repair company can help you with some of the legwork involved in cleaning up your credit report, but beware of shady companies that make false or misleading claims. These companies may allege that you can start fresh with a clean credit report by using an Employee Identification number (EIN) rather than your Social Security number. However, they neglect to tell you that requesting an EIN from the IRS for this reason is a federal crime.
To help you keep better track of your money, be sure to categorize all of your expenses. Have one category for fixed expenses like the mortgage payment, another for variable expenses like the phone bill and credit card payments, and a third for things like shopping trips or meals out.
If you need more income, start your own business. It can be small and on the side. Do what you do well at work, but for other people or business. If you can type, offer to do administrative work for small home offices, if you are good at customer service, consider being an online or over the phone customer service rep. You can make good money in your spare time, and boost your savings account and monthly budget.
To improve your personal finance habits, keep track of your actual expenditure in comparison to the monthly budget that you plan. Take time at least once a week to compare the two to make sure that you are not over-spending. If you have spent more that you planned in the first week, you can make up for it in the weeks to come.
Set up a deduction from your paycheck to automatically go to your savings account. Saving is much easier when it requires no further conscious action. As you begin to think of your spendable income as the new, smaller amount, you can adjust your budget accordingly while your savings keep growing with every deposit.
If you have managed your finances well enough to own a home and have a retirement account, don’t jeopardize those by borrowing against them later. If you borrow against your home and can’t repay it, you could lose your home; the same is true for your retirement fund. Borrow against them only in dire situations.
These hard financial times don’t have to envelop you like they have nearly everyone else. If you are prudent, wise, and organized, you can prevent the tragedy of debt from befalling you. This article has armed you with the advice necessary to prevent and prepare yourself from falling into the hands of debt.