It can feel like our money goes in one hand and straight out the other. No matter how hard you work or how much you earn, it can seem as though you never quite have enough, and managing money can be tricky to get right. However it’s important that you do so, falling behind with bills and not having enough money to get by is incredibly stressful. Here are three ways you can manage your money better.
Knowing exactly what you have coming in each month and what goes out is key to staying on top of your finances. Without a budget it’s so easy to overspend, and if this is a long term habit it doesn’t take long before you’re behind with bills and getting yourself in a pickle. You could use a budgeting app, software or use a manual method such as a wall calendar or notepad. Either way, knowing exactly where your money is going, and the dates bills and other direct debits are due is essential. You could make it easier by calling up all of the companies you pay money to and have them take payment on the same date in the month. It’s also a good idea to have a separate bills account, that way you’re not accidentally spending into your bill money.
Get Out of Debt
Being in debt is a huge drain on your finances. This is because debts accumulate a lot of interest, meaning every month you carry a balance you’re paying additional money to the company. Over time, you might only able to afford the minimum payment each month, which only pays off the interest. This means you could be making significant payment but never bringing down the actual balance where you’re only covering the interest. If things are bad and you can no longer afford to pay, speak to a debt management company or debt charity who will be able to help. They can often negotiate reduced payments and have interest frozen. Another option if you have good credit would be to take out a consolidation loan or credit card, use the money to pay off all of your other accounts. That way you’re only paying one lot of interest instead of many, and some accounts may have an interest free period giving you time to pay off as much as possible off the balance before the interest is added on.
Plan For The Future
Even if you’re getting by ok in the here and now, it’s important to plan for the future. For example when you retire you will want to live comfortably and so start preparing for this early. You could pay into a retirement fund, and also consider a gold-backed ira. This is an investment you can make now which will pay off later in life. You should also be planning for the unexpected, an emergency would leave you needing cash right away. It could be a medical issue, you could lose your job and need money to pay your mortgage or something else entirely. Getting insured and having a savings account for emergencies are two ways you can protect yourself here.
If you know you’re not the best with money, why not get yourself sorted and make 2018 a much better year financially. A little planning in the here and now goes a long way to prevent you from getting into trouble with money and ensuring you’re set for the future.