Stop Struggling To Pay Bills, Get On Track!
by Andie Petoskey | on February 23, 2012
The application of the principles of finance to an individual’s or family unit’s monetary decisions is called personal finance. There are many aspects to personal finance, and they include but are not limited to checking and savings accounts, credit cards, consumer loans (car loans, mortgage), market investments, retirement plans, and insurance policies.
Knowledge is one of the more essential components to understanding where you are and what must be done to establish your goals. Realize that over time, your expenses are bound to go up and plan. Maintaining this understanding, will reduce stress and put you in a better situation, financially.
Know the price of the car you want before going into the dealership. Just knowing this one piece of information makes it much more difficult for dealers to inflate the amount of money you pay using smoke and mirrors. If you can obtain bank financing, all the better, as dealers can’t try to trick you with poor financing terms when your loan comes from an external source.
If you rely on credit cards to make most of your purchases, or for multiple high-dollar expenditures, consider having the balance transferred to a credit card with lower interest rates. This is especially helpful for those who plan to continue using their cards for a considerable period of time in the future.
Cut out that unused land line. If you don’t talk on the phone much, a paid in advance cell phone could be significantly cheaper in the long run. Some mobile cell companies offer 1000 minutes of prepaid time for $100. This can last some people a year. For comparison, most land lines would cost $300 or more for that same year of service.
To truly take advantage of an emergency fund, keep it close but not too close. Three to six months pay should be sitting in an account somewhere so that an unexpected expense is not the end of the world. However, it should be money in an easily accessible interest bearing account, but not in your primary checking account where you can kill it with your debit card in one day.
Put money in a separate account to save for big purchases. When you set your sights on that flat-screen t.v., an expensive pair of shoes or a much-needed purchase such as a new refrigerator, using credit to buy it is always tempting. In the current economy, though, racking up more debt is something to avoid at all costs. Set up a new bank account, preferably one that is harder to get money out of, and have a set amount automatically transferred into it each month.
Drink water when you are eating out! Some restaurants charge almost $3.00 for a soda or glass of tea! When you’re trying to manage your personal finances you just can’t afford that! Order water instead. You’ll still be able to eat out on occasion but over the long run you’ll save a bundle in the cost of drinks alone!
Creating a budget for one and even their family will assure that they have control over their personal finances. A budget will keep one from overspending or taking a loan that will be outside their ability to repay. To maintain ones person finances responsibly they need to take action to do so.
To save on college costs, strongly consider enrollment at a local community college for the first two years and then transfer to a four-year institution for your last two years. With annual tuition cost savings of 50% or more over traditional four-year universities, going to a community college for your first two years can make a whole lot of sense. Many community colleges have direct transfer programs to four-year institutions that ensure the relevance of the credits you have earned towards your degree. You will get the exact same diploma and credentials at the end of the four years, as your classmates who attended the four-year university straight-through, but your costs (and possible debt) will be so much less.
Personal finance is a way to address the various uses of monetary resources allocated to an individual or family unit. It takes into account the ways in which the monetary resources are obtained, budgeted, saved, or spent over time and also encompasses the various financial risks and possible future events.
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