Every twelve months we are here again, the crossroads of what we did last year, and what we want to do and accomplish this year, and it would seem that most of us will be here again, financially next year asking the same questions and failing at the same resolutions. The reason most fail is not the desire to succeed; they lack the information and tools necessary to succeed. Following some or all of these tips will allow you to make other resolutions next year, like finally getting to the gym! But that is a whole other article!!
[Read: Ways to Stick to Your Budget]
Factors to Consider
- Long Term Goals
This seems to be driven hard into use at every turn, by everyone who has an opinion, and in this regard, they are right, you need to have and stick to a realistic budget, if you do not have a budget you have absolutely no idea what you are spending your money on and how much you have going out, all that you know is that you are out of money at the end of the month and you need more of it to do it all over again the next month. A good solid budget will reign in those unknown and unwarranted expenses that are causing you to fail at your long term plans and make your resolutions fail.
There are ways to reduce your spending and one tip is to get rid of some luxuries that you do not need, such as cable or satellite television. Lets face it, you do not need to watch that much television do you, and 90% of the channels you do not even watch, think about it. This is one example.
SAVE SOME MONEY
Only once you have created and maintained a solid realistic budget and cut out all the unnecessary expenses can you begin to save money, there are a few things that you need to consider here, such as an emergency fund, long term plans such as children and big purchases and some money for yourself, because if all you do is work and save and not enjoy some of life’s fun stuff, what fun would that be?
One way to save money is to be a better shopper, gain in savings when you buy smart. Bulk warehouses are a great place to get staples that you use and need daily, and when you look at the unit prices in comparison to the “convenient” stores around the corner you will see that your savings will add up over time despite the larger outlay of money in the initial purchase. Also, cut out on frivolous purchases, if you drink coffee, for example, make it at home and take it with you, that will save you tons of money.
SAVE FOR THE LONG TERM
What is all this for, for the future of course. If you have a long term goal, such as early retirement, a home purchase, world travel. All of these need immidiate planning for the long term goal. You must identify what it is that you want to accomplish and what you want to do. You may not know for sure, but chances are you have an idea of what you want to do, for example buy a house, start a family. Or work, rent, and travel at every chance you can get. These are all admirable and achievable goals if you plan accordingly and set out those goals. But you must too plan for the unknown, such as a loss of work, illness or injury that could derail your best laid out plans, you may need to plan for long term health care and health insurance so be sure to add that into your plans when thinking about the future and where you want to be.
GET RID OF DEBT
Lastly, you will want to get rid of your debt, or as much debt as you can, as quick as you can, this can be achieved too by a well thought out budget that you will stick to, good future goals and plans and a thrifty way of life. You will never be completely debt free, and understanding that is a crucial point in being happy and content. Just keep moving towards the lower point of debt.
Seems like a lot to cover and a lot to do, but really in small chunks you can get your New Years finances in order and create good habits that will stick out through the year. Regaining or starting anew with your finances is not a hard task, just a persistent one that can be achieved if you know the fine points and follow them in a consistent and thoughtful manner.