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If You Want To Be Wealthy, You Should Avoid These 7 Money Mistakes

If You Want To Be Wealthy, You Should Avoid These 7 Money Mistakes

Who does not dream of becoming wealthy? If you ask people around you about their goal in life, many of them would say that it is being rich or wealthy. The reasons why people want to be wealthy vary from person to person.

Whatever your ulterior motive is, if you want to be wealthy, there are tried and tested money mistakes – yes, money mistakes, that you must avoid. Here, we bring to you a list of seven money mistakes that all of us should shun.

1. Spending more than you earn:

It sounds like common sense but it is not. If this money mistake was simple enough to avoid, nobody would be in a financial crisis. This is a deadly habit and can ultimately lead to total financial distress. To make matters worse, we now have credit cards and other facilities that make us spend more than our financial means.  To curb the urge to spend more than what you earn, maintain a budget and then track it closely.

“Before you spend, earn.” ~–William A. Ward

2. Buying things you do not need:

All of us want to show-off our success but remember, wealthy people do not have to show if off. It shows itself but if you are on your path to being wealthy, don’t commit this money mistake. You should definitely spend on things of your interest but do not buy things solely for the purpose of impressing others, who are sometimes, even those people that you do not like at all.

“If you buy things you don’t need, soon you will have to sell things you need.” ~ Warren Buffet

3. Not facing your financial situation

You might ask me how making this mistake is even possible but this is our defense mechanism. When we are obese and don’t want to do any effort to lose weight, we start avoiding the mirror.

Similarly, when we know that our money matters are in bad shape and we are not ready to make an effort to fix them, we avoid looking at the exact figures and that makes matters even worse! We should put the figures on a paper or on an excel sheet and look at them very carefully. That’s the first step towards dealing with your money troubles.

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 4. Not having a plan

Just like it is required for anything else, planning is an absolute must for your financial goals. Your financial goals can and must include your retirement plans, planning to pay your debt as soon as possible and creating investments no matter if your income is high or low.

“Make sure you have a plan of your life in your hand, and that includes the financial plan and your mission.” ~ Manoj Arora

5. Relying on one income stream

Many of us live depend on a single income stream and we are quite happy to get a pay cheque on a fixed date. Even those of us, who run their own business or are self-employed, usually rely on one channel of income. This can lead to an absolute disaster. No matter how steady or great that income is, if it runs dry due to any problem, it can create huge financial issues.

6. Not trying to increase your income

If somebody asks you today to save more, do you automatically start thinking about expenses that you can cut down?

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Wrong approach.

The better approach is to try to increase your income. Let’s assume that a person saves 25% of their income, if the income increases, savings too will automatically increase. However, always trying to cut down on your expenses is not a very fruitful and long-term strategy. If you leave too many things, it will make you frustrated and you will not be able to achieve your goal of being wealthy.

7. Prioritizing spending over saving

When we have a pressing need at present, we tend to feel that we should fulfill that need and savings can always be done later. This later won’t ever come because your needs never end. Research chemist Neil McCarthy started investing in the stock market at a very young age. Today he has a net worth of about $2.1 million. According to him what made all the difference is this:

“If you wait to save out of what’s left over from your salary, it’s not going to happen. Pay yourself first.”

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If you want to be wealthy, there’s no easy route. Just focus on your goals and face the current problems in a realistic manner. Make sure you avoid these money mistakes on your path to being wealthy and success would be yours!!

 

Featured photo credit: Money – Savings by 401(K) 2012 via flickr.com

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Lianne Martha Maiquez Laroya

Lianne is a licensed financial advisor, Registered Financial Planner, entrepreneur and book author.

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Last Updated on June 1, 2020

How to Pay off Debt Fast Using the Stack Method (A Step-By-Step Guide)

How to Pay off Debt Fast Using the Stack Method (A Step-By-Step Guide)

Whether it’s consumer debt on credit cards, student loans[1], or a mortgage, most people find themselves weighed down by debt at some point in their lives. This can keep us working jobs we hate just to pay the bills and keep our heads above water. By learning how to pay off debt fast, you can release this burden and remove some of the stress from your life.

The Stack Method is one way to do this. Once you understand it, you too can learn how to pay off debt fast.

What Is the Stack Method?

The Stack Method, often referred to as “debt stacking,” requires making a list of all your sources of debt, starting with the debts that incur the highest interest. Then, you make the minimum payments for each source of debt, but when any extra money comes your way, you throw it at the debt at the top of the list. This way, you eliminate the debts with the most interest first, dropping extra costs to a manageable level in a fairly short amount of time.

To get started with the Stack Method, go through these steps and overcome those mountains of debt today.

1. Stop Creating New Debt

Most people do not receive training in handling money and how to live within their means. If you’re in debt, then you’re probably one of these people, and it’s time to bite the reality bullet.

It’s going to be impossible to get out of debt unless you retrain your financial habits right now.

You must make a stand against all the marketers trying to take your hard earned money or offering easy finance. You don’t need more stuff to make you happy. What you need is financial peace of mind.

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So cut up your credit cards or freeze them. I mean this literally. Put them in a container of water and stash them in your freezer. Then, when there’s an opportunity to spend, you have time to thaw out (you and the credit cards) and really decide if you need that purchase.

2. Rank Your Debt by Interest Rate

Make a list of all your debt with amounts and the interest rate. The highest interest rate should be at the top as this is what you’ll pay off first.

Paying off your high interest debt is the key to the Stack Method.

Interest is a powerful weapon, and right now the bank or other financial institutions are using it against you. Interest significantly increases the amount you need to pay back, and often we’re completely unaware of how much that is.

For example, if you have a $10,000 credit card debt at 20% interest where you pay a minimum payment of $200 a month, you will end up taking 9 years and 8 months to pay off the actual amount of $21,680 including $11,680 in interest!

3. Lower Your Interest Rates

You can often lower your credit card interest rates by doing a balance transfer. This means moving your credit card to another bank, where they will lower the interest rate to get your business[2].

Shop around and try to get the lowest interest rate for the longest duration (preferably until it’s paid off completely). Just make sure you’re reading the terms and conditions carefully so you don’t get stung by the new bank in other ways.

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Once you’ve done this, you can order your list of debt again if interest rates have shifted.

4. Create a Strategic Spending Plan

This is where we improve your financial control from Step 1. Take a piece of paper and write down your income after tax and all the expenses that you have. This will include the minimum payments on all your debt.

Look at your expenses, and then rank them in order of importance to you. Look at the items on the bottom of your list and decide whether you’d rather have them or be financially stable. The objective is to create a spending  plan where your expenses are lower than your income.

You also decide how much you are willing to spend on each area of your life. You can allocate amounts for rent, groceries, eating out, buying clothes, and other activities. However, realize that once you’ve spent your allocated money, there’s no dipping into other areas[3].

It also helps to have a “Fun Account” that you can spend on what you like, and an “Emergencies Account” in case your car breaks down or other unfortunate incidents come up.

You also want to include the extra amount you’re going to use to pay off debt in your spending plan.

Can you afford $20 a week? $50? $100? $200 or more? It’s important that you get a realistic number that you can commit to each week without fail, and this is your Stack Repayment.

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5. Create a Payment Schedule

The first part of the Stack Method is to cover the minimum payment on every single debt you have. Any time you miss a payment, you incur fees, and these add up quickly. This also includes making the minimum payment on the debt with the highest interest rate.

Then for the debt with the highest interest rate (your Target Debt), you’re going to add the Stack Repayment from your strategic spending plan. You apply this Stack Repayment and the minimum payment until that debt is paid off in full.

As your official minimum payment decreases, you add that extra amount to your Stack Repayment. So, as your minimum repayment drops, your Stack Repayment increases equally. This will compound how fast you pay off the Target Debt by adding even more to the payments you’re making.

6. Reward Your Progress

You want to track your Target Debt so you can see your progress along the way. You can also decide on milestones that you’re going to celebrate and reward yourself for.

A reward doesn’t have to cost money, but if it does then it comes from your previously allocated spending plan.

This is an important step as it will keep your motivation going when you feel your willpower fading.

Just like you’ve trained yourself to brush your teeth and shower, you can train yourself to manage your money. Feel great that you’re now entering the 10-20% of people who are actually responsible with money.

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7. Compound Your Results

Once you pay off your Target Debt, have a huge celebration and congratulate yourself. Then, you move the Stack Repayment (which includes the previous minimum payment now) to the next debt with the highest interest rate.

This becomes the new Target Debt, and you are using your Stack Repayment amount plus the minimum payment for the new debt.

This is why the Stack Method is so powerful. As you decrease a debt, you actually increase your Stack Repayment amount. This means the second debt will get paid off even faster, the third even faster than that, and so on and so on until you are completely debt free.

8. Be Kind to Yourself

During this process, your resolve is going to be tested multiple times. Maybe you’ll have an emergency like your car breaking down or the need to travel for a sick relative. The important thing is to not throw up your hands in despair and slipping back into your old habits.

Life will test your commitment to your new responsible money attitude, and it’s up to you how you respond. When things go wrong (and I guarantee they will), you need to shrug it off and get back on track.

Show compassion when you accidentally go over your target spending amount and decide to do better next week.

The Bottom Line

The Stack Method is a powerful tool, but it’s up to you whether you use it effectively. If you really want results, then bookmark this article immediately and start working through the steps.

It’s only by the decision you make right now that you will enjoy a debt-free future and live a financially responsible life.

More Tips on How to Pay off Debt Fast

Featured photo credit: NeONBRAND via unsplash.com

Reference

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