Few topics have the sort of impact on the lives of individuals and their families as that of personal finance. Education is essential if you wish to make the right financial moves to ensure a secure future. By using the tips contained in the article that follows, you can prepare yourself to take the necessary next steps.
Never use a credit card for cash advances. The interest rate on a cash advance can be almost double the interest rate on a purchase. The interest on cash advances is also calculated from the moment you withdrawal the cash, so you will still be charged some interest even if you pay off your credit card in full at the end of the month.
Buy in Bulk. Stores like Costco and Sams Club are popular for a reason. A single person may not be able to use six cans of peanut butter in a reasonable time, but non perishable items like toilet paper may last you for a year! Buy in bulk what makes sense for you and add up the savings.
Avoid using the mall to meet your entertainment needs. This often leads to spending money you don’t have and charging things that you don’t really need. Try to shop only when you have a specific item to buy and a specific amount to spend. This will help you to stay on budget.
Always buy used cars over new and save yourself money. The biggest depreciation in car value happens during the first 10,000 miles it is driven. After that the depreciation becomes much slower. Buy a car that has those first miles on it to get a much better deal for just as good a car.
Take advantage of student or senior discounts wherever you can. Certain stores offer the discounts every day, while others limit them to specific days of the week or one day per month. It does take a little work to find out the details of the discounts, but if you can save on the things you would buy anyway it is worth the effort.
Try to refrain from keeping a lot of money in your checking account. Typically, you will not need to have more than a thousand dollars to pay your bills and expenses. Instead, invest your money so that you can build on the money that you already have in your account.
Don’t ever cosign on a loan for a friend or family member unless you are financially able and emotionally willing to take on the entire amount of the debt. Being a co-signer does not mean you are vouching for the trustworthiness of the other borrower; it means you are taking on responsibility for the loan if the other party fails to pay.
Sign up as many of your bills for automatic payment as possible. This saves you a considerable amount of time. While you should still review your monthly activity, this will go much faster by checking your bank account online than by reviewing a checkbook ledger or your bills themselves. The extra time you get from automatic bill payment can be invested profitably in many other areas.
Shop thrift stores to accumulate a professional wardrobe. Business clothing can be expensive. It is something we all need, however, if we are to convey the appropriate image at work. Thrift stores offer an affordable option for all of our wardrobe needs. You don’t have to tell anyone where you bought it or how much you paid!
Personal finance is something that has been the source of great frustration and failure for many, especially in the mist of the challenging economic circumstances of recent years. Information is a key factor, if you want to take the reins of your own financial life. Apply the ideas in the preceding piece and you will begin to assume a greater degree of control over your own future.