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6 Ways To Improve Your Financial Stability In 2015

6 Ways To Improve Your Financial Stability In 2015

Financial stability isn’t built in a day – it requires a lot of work and formation of correct habits. But before you can even start doing this work, you have to make some decisions and take action – and what time can be better for it than the beginning of a new year?

1. Eliminate Debts

If you have credit card, unpaid student loans and similar debt, you should try and get rid of them as fast as possible and avoid getting into further debt. Although sometimes getting credit may be beneficial (if you want to use it to make an investment), you should never ever, under any circumstances, get credit for consumption. If you can’t afford something pleasant right away, you shouldn’t buy it – it is as simple as that.

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    2. Create an Emergency Fund

    Think about how much you spend on average every month. Then make it your first priority to put aside enough money to support you for at least 3-6 months in case you lose your primary source of income tomorrow. When you find out how hard it is to make it work, you will probably understand how dependent you are on your employer, which will serve as an additional motivation to work on financial stability.

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      3. Think about Auto Insurance

      Is your car insured? If not, it is high time to get to it. You may say to yourself that you are a cautious driver, that you haven’t had a single accident throughout your life, or that you can’t afford it. But the truth is, you are not alone on the road. And while you can try to be the safest driver in the world, it doesn’t cancel the existence of all of the kinds of irresponsible drivers around – and all you have to do to get into trouble is to meet one. So study auto insurance quotes and make sure you’ve protected yourself against all eventualities.

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      Hand with money and toy car

        4. Buy into gold IRAs

        Gold is probably the only commodity that steadfastly withstood all the crises, recessions and perturbations the world sent our way – for the entire duration of the known history. If it is stability that you are after, then you have no better choice than gold IRAs – because in their case, you may be completely sure you are not going to lose your investments. Just make sure to steer clear of suspicious organizations, and you are going to be alright.

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          5. Save with your 401k

          Many young people today put off the planning of their retirements until the last possible moment – which is the wrong choice, no matter how old you are. Moreover, if you start putting money away in your 20s, you will be amazed how much you will be able to save by the time you retire. So start immediately, and your best bet is probably your 401(k). Try to increase it to the maximum of what your company is ready to match – even if you have to live frugally right now, it will pay itself off in time. Do your research, protect your future.

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            6. Think about Your Family

            However unpleasant the thought is, all of us are mortal, and sometimes that is evident in a more sudden and tragic way. If there are people who depend on you – your spouse, children, parents – you have to think about their financial stability in case something happens to you. Insure your life and health – write a will and don’t put it off.

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              You may think that in your life everything is alright and nothing can go wrong, that you have plenty of time to put off thinking about your financial stability. However, things happen – and you will do yourself a world of good if you start this year with making some hard and unpleasant, but totally beneficial, decisions.

              Featured photo credit: Money/401(K) 2012 via flickr.com

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              Melissa Burns

              Entrepreneur

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              Last Updated on April 3, 2019

              How to Nix Your Credit Card Debt in Less Than 3 Years

              How to Nix Your Credit Card Debt in Less Than 3 Years

              Debt is never a fun thing to be in. But, there are many actions that you can take that will help you rid yourself of the burden of debt once and for all.

              By coming up with a set plan, eliminating your debt can feel much easier than constantly thinking about it.

              This post will provide some tips on how you can do this to help you nix your credit card debt in less than 3 years.

              Hint: there are ways that are easier than you think.

              1. Consider Consolidating Multiple Credit Cards If Possible

              This may not be applicable to you, but if you have multiple cards – it is something to consider. Keeping up with multiple bills is time consuming.

              It will depend on the balance you have on each. Consolidate ones you can but do not do it to the point that you get too close to the maximum limit. Also, it is ideal to pick the card with the lower interest rate.

              Consider if there are any fees or alternatively, rewards, with transferring a balance to another card. Watch out for fees. Note that some cards offer rewards for transferring a balance to them. This is extra cash that can help go towards paying off your debt.

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              Having one or two cards can make nixing your debt much simpler than keeping up with the balance of a bunch of cards. Keeping track of paying the minimum towards a bunch of cards is time consuming. Spend the time to consolidate instead to make the overall process simpler going forward.

              My tip: Have one main credit card. Have a second one that you use for necessities – such as groceries or gas – that offers rewards for those purchases (a lot of cards do) and set the second one on auto-pay. You should be able to pay off a smaller amount on auto-pay if it is a necessity. If you think you cannot, then you may need to cut down a lot on expenses.

              Why do I suggest doing this? Having one thing set to auto-pay is one less thing to think about. One less thing to waste time on. Same idea with consolidating to one main card. Tracking down too many is a hassle.

              2. Try to Pay the Full Balance You Spent Each Month at the Very Least

              You need to pay off the amount you are spending each month when that bill comes in. This is the amount you spent THAT month.

              Do not let the debt keep accruing while you work on paying any unpaid debt that has accrued. It will become a never-ending battle. Try as best as you can to be current on paying for each month’s expenses when that month’s bill comes out.

              If this is a strain, consider why. You may need to cut expenses. Or you may need to consider other cards. Or look at where this money is going.

              3. Pay Extra When You Can – Every Small Amount Counts

              This cannot be emphasized enough. If you are looking at a lot of credit card debt, it can look daunting, but each extra amount that you can put towards the debt will really add up – no matter how small it is.

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              It does not just reduce the principal amount that you have left to pay off, but it reduces the amount that is collecting interest. You will always save money with that reduced interest.

              4. Create a Plan on How to Pay Extra

              Back to the main point, having this plan is giving you one less thing to think about.

              This plan should be a plan that works for you. If it does not work for you, your spending habits, and your views on debt, then it will not be an effective plan.

              For instance, if a set plan of an extra $50 (or another amount that you know you can afford) works for you, then do that. Set that aside every month and pay that extra amount. Treat it like a bill. Choose an amount that works for you and pay it like clockwork as though it was a bill you had to pay each month.

              Little amounts will not nix it entirely, but they will help tackle it and having a set plan can make it less of a chore. Creating a new plan of how much to put towards it each month is an unnecessary added stress.

              5. Cut out Costs for Services You Do Not Use

              If you are signed up for subscriptions that you do not use because of some free trial or for some other reason, cut it out. Your overall financial position will look better.

              In turn, that will make cutting your credit card debt easier. Look at your statements to find these expenses. If you do not use them, you may forget you are paying some unnecessary amount each month. Cutting it out can really add up in savings that you can put towards other needed expenses.

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              6. Get Aggressive About It

              Consider these points:

              Depending on the interest and the level of debt, you may need to give up a few indulgences. For example, instead of ordering delivery or going out to eat, cook at home. Everything adds up.

              Other things may be more of a sacrifice. It may be a trip you wanted to go on, or a daily latte habit you’ve picked up. In these instances, consider how important it is to you and if it’s worth the sacrifice. And if it is a costly expense, think whether you can wait to indulge.

              Cutting an extravagant expense can really help make a dent in your overall debt. Try not to add to debt when you are trying to pay it off. It will be a never-ending battle. Make it less of a battle with these tips and it will feel easier.

              Bottom line: Do what you can to make this process easier for you. Implement steps that do this. It takes time now, but will help overall. Also, keep track of your spending and paying down of your debts. Which is the next point.

              7. Reevaluate Your Progress at Set Intervals

              Doing a regular check-in can help you see your efforts pay off or maybe indicate that you need to give this a bit more effort. If you check every 3-6 months, it will not feel so much like a chore or feel so daunting.

              By doing this, you will be able to better understand your progress and perhaps readjust your plan. Bonus: if you see it pay off, it will feel great to do this check-in. You will get there.

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              Finally (and most importantly)…

              8. Keep Trying

              Do not get discouraged. Pushing it off will make it worse. Just keep trying.

              Once your debt becomes lower, each monthly payment will reduce the balance more. Why? You are paying less towards interest. It will be a snowball effect eventually and it will become much easier to manage. Just get to that point. And know once you do, it will feel easier and motivating.

              Start Knocking out Your Debt Today

              The best way to eliminate debt is to get started right away. Begin by implementing the above steps and watch your debt just melt away. Try out some of the above strategies and see what works best for you. Soon you’ll be on your way to a debt free life.

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              Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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