Own Your Financial Future
IGNORANCE IS EXPENSIVE.
If we learn what happened in the past, we can understand what’s happening now, and we will be able to predict the future. That way we have a choice on whether we want to do something about it.
Did you know that 61% of Americans are $400 dollars away from a financial hardship?
This means most can’t cover an unexpected expense like car trouble, major appliance break down, or unexpected doctor’s visit with the cash they have saved. This should alarm us all, considering that America is the richest country in the world. Before we talk about investing and growth, we must first consider financial stability. America is built on commerce. If you have money to spend, there is not a shortage of places to take it from you. The question isn’t always can I spend it but SHOULD I spend it? Is this a wise use of my money at this time? Is there a way to make this money make more money for me? These are the questions that I often consider. Below are a few basic money practices that I believe every person should be striving towards to be financially stable.
MAKE A BUDGET
How many times have you swiped your card and said “this may not have been the best decision”? Often times we don’t see the improvement in our finances that we desire because of a lack of planning. Does planning cure everything…no but it can help us asses our current situation and strategize on how to make the necessary improvements we need to progress. Have you ever heard of the 50/30/20 rule? This rule suggests that your after tax income should be allocated to 50% needs, 30% wants, and 20% savings and debts.
EMERGENCY SAVINGS FUND
We all know that life happens. Unexpected things come up all the time. In order to have a greater chance of enduring those unexpected financial issues, we must create a safety net. This is called an emergency fund. Financial planners suggest that you should have at least three to six months worth of expenses tucked away for things like a loss of a job, repairs, or unexpected medical expenses. An excellent way to start off your emergency fund is banking your tax refund along with saving 20% of the money you earn each week.
PAY OFF ALL CONSUMER DEBT
I remember during my freshman year of college, credit card companies would pitch a tent and offer struggling college students free pizza if they applied for one of their cards. Fast forward to today, some of my friends are still trying to pay off large credit card bills incurred during that time. Debt can be one of the most crippling adversaries to financial peace. There’s tons of resources out there but the main two that have been personally impactful to me and my friends are Brass Knuckle Finance by Jarim Person-Lynn and Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey. Lastly, remember your best ally in getting out of debt is Strategy, Sacrifice, & Self Control.
Many of us understand compound interest but in the reverse way. We are often on the receiving end of a bill that is constant ballooning out of control and we are paying for it. Why not be the investor who is loaning their money and receiving interest as opposed to paying interest to someone else?! There are tons of people who will pay you for using your money. Roth-IRA’s, Money Market Accounts, or even basic savings accounts yield interest. Those are the most basic & low risk ways to earn money with your money. Next is stocks, real estate, and other business. There are so many different ways to grow your money but even more ways to lose it. When it’s all said and done, it’s your decision as to which financial path that you choose!
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