Getting Your Ducks in a Row: Maintain Your Personal Finances

It can be tough to keep up with your personal finances, especially if you own a house, car and have other monthly obligations that require allocation of funds. That’s pretty much most of the adult population.

As such, it’s critical to have a solid personal finance plan in place so you can easily manage your finances, which can encompass anything from checking and savings accounts to loans and stock market investments. But it’s much more than that – add estate planning, credit cards, 401k plans, insurance policies and social security benefits into the mix and you have yourself a big task ahead of you.

Get Help

If you’re savvy with computers and spreadsheets, you can come up with a budget yourself and manage it from month to month fairly easily. But if you’d rather poke your eye out with a stick than sit down with a budget, fret no more.

You can enlist the help of a financial planner who will help you allocate funds and make sure you’re saving just as much – if not more – than you’re spending. It’s important to have a sound financial services plan, particularly if you are the household’s sole provider. Having such a plan in place can help you with anything from wealth management to investment securities, but you need to know where to start.

You’ll first need to figure out what your net worth is by adding up all of your assets and calculating all debts. The difference you come up with? That’s your net worth. Next up is creating a budget to make sure a system of checks and balances is in place so you stay steady on the course. Once you determine your monthly expenses, it’s time to start paying attention to the small stuff.

Save Money Where you Can

Beyond the tried and true advice of cutting out the morning latte – which we’ve all heard time and again (mostly because it’s true!) – you’ll have to dig deeper to save even more money. Spend a month or two writing down all your expenses – we mean ALL of them – from the doughnut on the way to work to your kids’ back-to-school shopping to your monthly gym membership. Set up your savings and checking account to start saving today.

Anything that goes out the door should be recorded. Only then can you see where it’s possible to cut. One big way to save is by buying refurbished phones. According to Cheap Phones, not only will the environment benefit from the recycling of phones but you will save more cash buying a phone at an affordable price – in fact, you can save up to 50 percent off the retail price.

Performing a cost/benefit analysis on all financial decisions like this will benefit you in the long run. More people would experience more financial success if they simply approached management of home economics as if they were running their own small business. Whether you want to prepare a budget the old school way with paper and pen or with a fancy computer software system, get to work improving your personal finances today.

Posted in: Finance

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