Celebrating America’s freedom on the 4th of July reminds us that we have a chance to improve on the financial opportunities that affect our everyday lives. Kick start your Independence Day festivities this year by conducting a thorough review of your finances. Keep these tips in mind so that you can move closer to your own financial freedom.
Don’t spend more than what you bring in. This may seem obvious, but when you spend more than you make, you fall into debt and end up paying your credit institutions instead of yourself. Pay off all your debts. Use credit cards that pay you in rewards, cash back rebates, or airline miles. Pay off the entire credit card balance monthly and do not carry balances from month to month.
Think outside of the debt box. There’s an ongoing myth that debt is just part of life. Some adults believe that, “Part of being an adult is financing a car and having a monthly car payment.” This isn’t true at all.The key to financial success is having the right attitude. Accepting debt as part of life is a lender’s way of keeping you in the debt box. Think outside of the debt box and only purchase things when you have the money to pay for them.
Save your money. Pay yourself before doing anything else with your paycheck. Have a part of your paycheck direct deposited into a separate savings account that you can’t access without plenty of waiting time. Use the remainder of your paycheck to calculate your spending budget and leave the separate savings account alone.
Showing off isn’t about what you bought, it’s what you saved. We all have that neighbor who buys every trendy gadget, accessory, car, new home addition, or furniture set when it first comes out and loves to claim bragging rights. Refuse to compete. Buy only what you need.
The Little Things Add Up. Monthly subscription services can take a big chunk of your money, especially because they are so easy to forget to count as expenses when making your budget. Think about it: The streaming music service costs $10, the gym membership costs $30, the magazine subscriptions cost $15, online video subscription services cost $10, and you recently racked up $40 in online gaming. That’s $105 a month! Find out what you can do without, cut it out, factor these entertainment expenses into your budget, and save yourself some money.