Possibly the most popular failed new year’s resolution is to spend less and save more. This happens because the goals are mostly too fantastic to be realized in a financial year. Often the much required first step is small but finite, like spending less on alcohol or home delivery food and paying health insurance premiums regularly. In the era of technology and AI, do not shy away from taking help of your phone and updated software applications to manage your finances. Today we are here to discuss the 6 key steps which will take you to the epitome of efficient financial management solution this very year.
Pull your credit card reports regularly-
Make it a steady habit to revisit your purchases and check your credit card reports regularly. According to some credit card companies like Equifax, Experian and TransUnion you can pull one report every four months for free. This is a prudent way to check for inaccurate calculations and late payments. This is also a very good way of ensuring that you have not been made a victim of credit card frauds and identity thefts. Also in case you spot errors do not let them go; even small amounts can make a huge difference when the financial year ends.
Track your expenses-
You can either use a smart app which will integrate all your expenses, savings and premiums right though your phone or laptop. Or you can do this manually using an excel spreadsheet or by keeping a simple journal like the oldies. This is a habit that needs to be inducted in your regular scope of events. All you need to do is keep updating all the transactions made from your credit card, debit card and wallet transparently on this expense journal. At the end of a month you can revisit the expenses and decide which were superfluous and which can be modulated to tone down your monthly budget.
What are your financial priorities?
This is a dilemma which most young people face every day. Sometimes choosing between your electricity bill and a pair of Jimmy Choos for sale can be a real doozy. However in these situations you need to assess what you really need and what you simply want. Analyzing such situations with logic and reason will keep you from making wrong financial decisions and also help you save every day. In fact this is one of the most important steps towards spending less and saving more.
Pocket-sized financial advisor-
Many software applications have developed which can integrate your bank accounts, credit and debit card expenses etc to one interface. This makes it possible for you to get a comprehensive view of all your incomes and expenses on one screen. You can directly print the reports according to weeks or months for your convenience. You can also set alerts for the times you may be indulging a bit. Also the fun with automation is the one-time settings, once you have set your budget, spending limits etc. you are good to go for the rest of this financial year.
Save for a retirement fund-
For people working with established companies, a certain amount is debited regularly from their accounts and deposited in their retirement accounts. However most freelancers do not have any active retirement plans. Hence they should take the active initiative to save up from their very first job. They should designate at least 10% of their paychecks as retirement fund. Having a retirement fund is especially beneficial when you face emergencies. During such emergency situations you can make use of your retirement fund to get you out of troubled waters.
Of course ask for professional help-
You should not hesitate while asking for professional help simply because you are a freelancer or a menial earner. Every person requires financial advice at some point of his or her life, whether it’s the critical question of converting structured settlements into lump sum cash, or changing one’s mortgage structure. The earlier you seek financial help the better it is for your financial health. Professionals can help you decide which expenses are absolutely unnecessary and which products have economical alternatives. They can also help you invest in rewarding stocks and funds which will secure your financial future.