Be safe, and not sorry.
- Don’t ignore the obvious signs: A storm doesn’t just hit you, sinking your financial boat. There are signs. When you are having trouble paying for your housing (mortgage or rent), when you start paying for gas in increments instead of filling up the whole tank, when you find yourself borrowing from friends often, when your credit card becomes your income extender instead of a emergency payment option and when you ar unable to pay your credit card’s total balance due. These are signs, signs you need to pay attention towards, to avoid a surprise.
- Open a savings account: If you don’t have it already, you need to go down to your bank today. Make saving a habit and stick to your goals. You can also set yourself up with automatic paycheck deductions so that a part of your monthly salary goes into your savings account every month without you having to put it the extra efforts of convincing yourself to save. Aim at saving at least 10% of your gross income. Savings grow over time, so if you are thinking you will that for later, you would be left with chaos trying to catch up in the last few years of retirement.
- Understand the difference between assets and liabilities: Liabilities include things like loans, mortgages, income taxes and property taxes etc while assets comprises things like cash, real estate, stocks and bonds so on and so forth. It is always important to understand where your money is being spent. Adopt the habit of writing down spendings, and to keep an account of your financial records.
- Pay off your debts in time: Even though car loans, house loans, etc. are long-term, you should always clear your credit card dues on time. If you have a habit of overspending, it is advisable to close your credit card accounts. You may consider putting them into purses or wallets, just in the case of an emergency, but not even having that option is actually going to help you lose the urge completely.
- Get Insured: Lack of insurance is a fiscal burden for them and their families. You don’t know how the worst times may hit you- inflation, expensive medical procedures, and inadequate funds at the time of unforeseen extreme medical emergencies.
- Have a Budget: Understand your spending habits– how much do you earn, how much are you spending on the necessities, how much are you saving and how much are you left with in the end. In the start of the month, figure out your most likely spendings and divide your money accordingly. If you have some big investments to make this month, you may want to push other allocations. A budget will help you organize your savings and spendings, and get control over your money in a systematic manner.