Worried about your finances? When it comes to money, does it seem like one day you have it, and the next day it’s gone? To overcome this issue, you need to manage your finances better, and here is a one week plan to help do that. Spending around 30 minutes every day for one week will help you to be in a better financial shape than before. Following are the essential steps of the plan to put you into a proper financial state:
1. Check your credit:
Using www.annualcreditreport.com, pull your own credit reports. Review the reports, and take notes of any derogatory items e.g. any late payments you have made. Not only do late payments rack up fees, when they appear on your credit report, they also cause you to pay higher rates of interest. Manage your payments to be on time, and you’ll save yourself a ton of money.
2. Review your credit card usage:
The next thing you need to do is review your credit card usage. If you are using more than 30 percent of your credit card limit, it can be bad for your credit score. Create a plan in which you will pay down any high balances, and make minimum use of your available credit. Include a limit in the plan, and try not to cross that boundary. Moreover, look for any credit card rewards that are still unused. If you can use points to save on necessary expenditures, like fuel or food, you will have more cash to pay down your credit cards.
3. Consider a low-cost cell phone plan:
Cell phones are one of the essentials of life. Everyone needs a cell phone, but it typically costs a lot to have one. Although the big-name carriers (like Verizon or AT&T) have a lot more name recognition and sometimes better coverage nationally, there are many lessor known carriers that cost half as much, and sometimes use the exact same network. If you can switch to a lower cost brand that provides coverage in your area, it will put you into a better financial position without you losing anything on functionality.
4. Get rid of subscriptions:
There are a lot of subscriptions that we do not use, or don’t need. Get rid of magazines, papers, and any monthly delivery clubs (like wine or clothes), to further improve your monthly cash flow.
5. Create a monthly budget:
If you are worried about your finances, this means you do not have a budget plan that suits your financial condition. Create a list of all of your necessary expenditures, alloting them the amount they need, and eliminate everything else. What are some examples of the things that can be eliminated? Cable TV, daily Starbucks, dining out frequently, are all things that are wants, not needs, and count as wasteful spending. Once you’ve paid down any high credit card balances with the extra money you’ll have, you can then start saving more for your investing activities.
6. Securely store important documents:
The list of important documents includes property paperwork (closing statements, mortgage and insurance documents, etc.), your car title, passport, tax returns, bank statements, and other personal documents like these. All of these documents must be saved at a place from where they can’t get lost or damaged. Moreover, you can also take pictures of the most critical documents, and save them to your computer. The better organized you are, the easier it will be when you’re ready to get a loan for your next investment property.
7. Reevaluate your retirement plan:
You need to have a proper plan for your retirement, one that can help you now and in the long run. Utilizing employer matching on a 401k plan is a no-brainer, but Rental property is also a good option to be part of your retirement planning as well. Not only does it increase your net worth over time, but it can also provide an income stream now. Save that new income to invest in your next property, and so on.
After following the above mentioned plan, you will begin to see the difference in your financial state right away. And, the handling of your finances will only become much easier as you get in the habit of using this new financial discipline. Give it a try!