PLANNING FOR LIFE STAGES Your financial goals and priorities change as you age and during different phases of your life or circumstances. Regardless of where you are in life, you can find advice that pertains to your situation in personal finances, college and career planning, marriage, business and retirement.
What are the steps to getting your finances under control?
- Understand what makes us happy and how money fits into that view.
- Control debt and save.
- Set up a budget you can live with.
- Set goals and priorities.
- Budget and plan to reach them.
- Control credit card use.
- Examine WHY you spend & WHERE you spend
- Reduce interest that’s non-tax deductible
- No running credit balances
Setting Up A Budget
- Enter your monthly income
- Gather ALL your bills and check stubs and start entering how much you spent in each month
- Enter this under actual.
- Add the total and adjust the figures to reach your budget goal
- DON’T FORGET SAVINGS!!!
Saving Money – Pennies Count
The biggest mistake I run into is people who look only for the BIG savings. See what lowering your credit card interest can save. Chip away at other monthly budget items. If looked at individually it doesn’t seem like much, but added up, invested and compounded over many years you’ll see how much it adds up.
How to Avoid Budget Busters
- Keep your budget under control.
- Recognize and avoid items that are ego soothers.
- Do your homework once and save for life.
- Recognize and avoid impulse items.
- Try not to shop when hungry or rushed.
Remember, A Balanced Budget Is A Happy Budget
- Don’t be overwhelmed.
- Take it step by step.
- Be as accurate as possible.
- Don’t be discouraged. It will take several months to find a workable budget you can live with.
- It’s just like a diet, if it’s too painful you will quickly lose interest.
- Allow yourself some leeway for fun but work towards being reasonably debt free ASAP.
What Are The First Steps Toward Taking Action?
- Don’t panic!
- Don’t rush . . . seek wise counsel
- Be realistic about your expectations
- Put your plan into action one step at a time