The idea of feeling good financially, for some, is the proverbial pipe dream.
It’s unattainable for a number of reasons, whether that means you don’t have a workable budget or you have so much credit card debt, or debt in general, that you feel as though you’ll never dig yourself out of that hole you’ve created with bad spending decisions or overall just being poor with money in general.
But having money become a forgotten issue and delivering the kind of financial freedom you want isn’t impossible. Instead, it takes smart choices, the ability to save thanks to a checks and balances system that accounts for expenses and income and doesn’t deviate from that aforementioned budget.
The first thing to tackle is your credit card debt, and paying it down. Interest rates and other factors (whether the debt is secured or unsecured) play a big role in credit card debt and getting rid of it. Now if you have plenty of it, you need to develop a system to prioritize what you pay off first and foremost. For starters, forget about the secured debt, the car, the house, the student loan (very low interest rate), and focus on higher rates specifically.
You want to take the lowest account balance you have and work on paying it off, while making the minimum payments on everything else that you have from a credit card standpoint.
Of course, in addition to paying off debt, you want to focus on saving money, and the general rule of thumb is that saving money should be about 15 percent of your income each month. This can be done by having a budget that essentially is set up to pay yourself when you get paid, and have that money go into a savings account. In addition, you want to make sure you are contributing the max to your retirement fund.
You may be asking yourself how you’re going to save all this money if you don’t have the income to support it. That is where the budgeting process and cutting expenses comes into play on a regular basis. You can cut things like cable television, high cell phone bills or shopping for clothes, vacations and other things you don’t need to be able to have the ability to save for the future, have that nest egg or retire as planned.
When it comes to money, feeling good is few and far between for most. That is, until you start thinking smarter.
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