Personal finances are a stress for just about everyone regardless of age, gender, race, or even what job they work. Money makes the world go round…and not having enough can lead to all kinds of problems.
Of course, problems can come in the expected variety like not being able to pay the rent or not having enough food in the refrigerator…And then there are the unexpected kind…Like a large medical bill or pet that needs to go to the veterinary clinic! Expected and unexpected financial issues can compound and your bank account can appear like a horrorshow pretty fast.
Now, there is nothing you can do about unexpected financial issues but have a well-funded emergency fund. Here are some tips on how to make that happen.
But, you can deal with some of the more common pain points with a little forethought and planning, let’s dive into them now!
Paying Your Rent or Mortgage
Rent (or the mortgage) and your utilities should be one of your top priorities every month.
Sure, your student loan bill and car payment are important, and those two should be important priorities, but having a roof over your head with the lights on and the water running, well, that is top of the list.
Now, if you can’t pay your rent easily, a solution may be to find a roommate.
Finding roommates is a great way to lower how much you’re paying a month for rent, especially if you have the living space to spare. Do you have some friends looking to move? Ask around. Having roommates isn’t for everyone though, so seriously consider if this is the best option for you.
Now, what if you’re paying a mortgage and you are worried about foreclosure? Well, refinancing is always a solution. If your current mortgage rate is higher than rates in your area, or you want to pay off your loan faster over a shorter time, that could be a good reason to consider refinancing. You might be able to lower your monthly payment through refinancing, but you should talk to your lender and get a quote.
A repayment plan is another potential option, but again this depends on how many payments you’re behind and whether you’d be able to make the added amount onto your current payment each month. If you’re just not making enough a month, consider possibly renting out a room or two in your home through Airbnb or another similar service.
This is a far more common issue for college students, recent graduates, and those with less income. But, without a doubt, spending less on your groceries can benefit everyone in the short and long-term.
Groceries are expensive, but that doesn’t mean you have to spend hundreds or even thousands of dollars a month to feed yourself and your family. So, what is the solution? It may sound like common sense, but clip coupons and buy on-sale items!
Yes, there’s nothing wrong with clipping coupons, especially when it saves you a noticeable amount of money. And yes, those Starbucks K-cups may be cheaper per cup than going to the actual Starbucks down the street, but the store brand K-cups are even cheaper than those. A little flavored creamer and sugar (also store brand!) can make them taste just as good, or even better, for a fraction of the cost!
Also, some companies have switched to smart coupons. This process can be simple but may require downloading an app. Do your research before heading to the market.
Check out even more grocery money-saving tips at:
Saving for Retirement
While retiring is something everyone dreams about, it’s something that more and more people think is out of their reach.
Thankfully, there are a few ways to pad your retirement fund.
- Start saving early! A $100 tucked away now will be worth a lot more ten years from now—compound interest, baby!
- Contribute to a 401k. Plus, if your employer matches your contribution, make sure you take advantage. This could quite literally be free money from your employer, and you should be taking advantage of it!
Your Credit Score
Your credit score is the magical number between 350 and 850 that can impact whether or not you get that new credit card, apartment, or even a house. Your credit score informs nearly all the major financial decisions you make, and building it up can be a difficult task to manage.
Unfortunately, there’s no quick and easy way to get a high credit score. It takes years to do and is mostly done by making on-time payments and keeping your credit balance low or non-existent.
While it’s difficult to build, it is easy to ruin your credit score. Missing payments, paying late, and filing for bankruptcy can all hurt your credit score.
The easiest solution for this particular pain point is to work with an agency that specializes in credit recuperation or to set up a strict monthly budget. This way you can manage on-time payments.
Personal finances are a stressful point for most people, but that doesn’t mean they have to stay stressful.
The points listed in this article can help you reduce that stress and save a little more money each month, just in case.