Finances are tricky to get on with, and everyone has their own kind of trouble with them. It’s one of the main sources of worry for the population of the world, seeing as we call those with millions and billions in their accounts the 1%. But it’s important to remember you’re not alone in your struggles, and that there are plenty of methods to bring your finances back up and keep them lifted.
As we stated, handling your money carefully and cleverly is something everyone needs to do in their own way; we all have our own experiences, our own opportunities, our own jobs and salaries from them, our own backgrounds etc. But when it comes to making sure you’re on top of your finances, and they’re not dropping away as you’re clinging to them for stability, there’s some general rules we can apply. So here’s some tips and tricks to use in your day to day life to look after the pennies.
Calculate Costs By Year
We always need to look at the big picture when it comes to looking after our finances, and that can be hard to do when you don’t track what you bring in and what you spend on an annual basis. We mostly calculate our profit and loss by week or month, and that can be dangerous if you’ve got a volatile job or varying rates of pay, or if you’re often strapped for cash and have little ability to plan ahead as a result.
So all in all, it’s very good practice to start budgeting by the year. This allows you to oversee every facet of your financial life, and then to plan accordingly. If you’ve got a holiday coming up at the end of the year, you can budget for it from the beginning of the year, making it a lot easier to have some souvenir money to spend whilst you’re there. If you’re worried about the amount of money you’re spending on food each week, you can easily find out just how much of your yearly income goes towards filling the fridge. If the number shocks you, now you can cut back a few dollars every month, which can go towards savings or that new 52 inch flat screen TV you’ve had your eye on for a while.
Budgeting by year is a much easier way of forming a plan of attack, so try it out now. Thankfully, there’s a lot of budgeting apps out there that can help you, and there’s always some spreadsheets you can sketch out yourself to better personalise your budget to your household.
Take a Look at Your Habits
We all have money habits, both good and bad. We can only ever pay for food at the takeaway with our card, simply because it’s easier to use, instead of rifling through our wallet for the correct change. When you’ve already got the money there, why do you dip your bank account even lower and risk your budget’s health? Because it’s a habit, and we need to change it.
Habits are hard to spot when you don’t have any clue you’re doing them, which is why we need to be hypervigilant with ourselves. Leave your frustration with your inability to stop biting your nails at the door and turn your attention to your financial habits; are you someone who forgets to sock away some income into your savings every paycheck? Have you made a bad investment in the past that never paid off? Are you known for impulse buying whenever the fancy takes you? No matter what it is that you feel is harming your bank account, take stock of it now.
For example, when you see a sale, don’t head in unless the shop is offering something you actually need. Similarly, sometimes there’s a lot of deals on the supermarket shelves that just entice you to buy more, even when you had no intention of buying from the particular aisle in the first place. Always remember that just because there’s a reduced sticker on an item doesn’t mean it’s going to be good for your household!
Don’t Be Afraid of Credit Options
Finances make the world go round, and they make it spin the fastest for those who have money to lend out to people and accumulate interest on. Even taking out a secured credit card feels very dangerous! But even though we often think of credit options as being last resorts and deep, dark pits to fall into, there’s a good side to them to. They’re worth taking a look at at least, especially if you’ve got a credit score to build!
There’s a lot of credit options for you to look into these days, and no longer do you have to rely on your bank and your bank alone (whilst avoiding the loan shark in the alley). Now you can turn to the internet for sites such as Bonsai Finance and plenty of other options with just a quick Google search. And that just makes the entire premise easier, and with little effort, apart from being able to thoroughly comb through a credit agreement.
Your Finances aren’t as Bad as You Think!
When it comes to reviewing our own finances, we’re always going to be harsher than we need to be. Because of this we make judgements we often don’t need to, so before you start off with your financial planning, make sure you’re aware of the norm. Know your place in the financial world and you’re never going to overreach or sell yourself short.
All in all, if you feel your bank account is on a downward spiral, make sure you’re aware of it and putting a plan in action. And with the tips above, you might just stop the tide before it overflows you. But there’s always more information available, so make sure you’re doing your own research as well.