Once your financial situation has gone wonky, it can feel almost impossible to start getting money under control. However, there are always ways to dig yourself out of a hole, and the following tips will start getting you there in a reasonable fashion.
Five pieces of advice to get you thinking straight include buttoning down your car payments, choosing access over ownership, using budgeting software in daily activities, selling and minimizing your belongings, and adjusting your habits slowly rather than trying to take on everything at the same time.
Button Down Car Payments
After you’ve gotten your car financed, you’re faced with different sets of decisions regarding how quickly you can pay off your debts. There are a few smart ways to approach this. Either you can do the math and figure out the longest time you can stretch out payment, thus earning money in the meantime, or you can try to pay it off as quickly as possible, thereby reducing the money paid on interest. Both methods are totally fine, but the more quickly you focus on one or the other, the straighter your financial path will be.
Choose Access Over Ownership
Do you buy music CDs? They’re expensive, but it’s worth it to hear your tunes, right? Except, if you listen to a lot of music, you can buy a music subscription, thereby getting access to the world’s library, for the price of about a dozen CDs per year. And you can do that with all kinds of services now, from music to books, and even physical products that come in boxes every month that you save tons of cash on because of its regularity.
Use Budgeting Software
One of the easiest ways to take control of your financial situation is to install some financial budgeting software and then look at it every day. Make it part of your routine. Every day, find out what you spend money on, and how much you have left in your savings. You’ll be amazed at how quickly you adapt to smarter spending habits.
Sell and Minimize
More than likely, you have more stuff than you need. Sell it. Throw it away. Get money, and get peace of mind, by only having the things that you need. Sometimes it feels hard to let things go, but the feeling of relief that you get later is absolutely amazing.
Adjust Habits Slowly
If you try to change too many things at the same time, you’ll end up going back to old, bad financial habits. So, if you want to get long-term results, start changing small things at first. Then, as your grow accustomed to them, keep adding on more and smarter spending possibilities.