With so many investment banks and fund managers around, personal financial management seems to have become a job for the professionals. However, with these simple personal finance tips, you can ensure you meet your expenses while putting aside a reasonable amount for savings and investments.
1) Start Saving Now:
Don’t wait until you get another raise or until you pay off that loan to start investing in a retirement or other savings account. Make sure you invest that first dollar today even if it’s only to build financial discipline.
2) Owed versus Owned:
The biggest companies follow metrics-based personal finance tips and keep track of their financial health by monitoring their debt-asset ratio, i.e. comparing how much they owe to how much they own. Your assets should be slightly more than your debts, although some prefer to maintain them at twice the level of their debt.
3) Lead a Cash-Based Life:
Despite its minor inconveniences, cash is really one of the simpler things in life. By moving to a cash-based lifestyle you can check yourself from spending heavy amounts when you really shouldn’t. You’ll also avoid taking on credit card debt that could end up being more than what you intended to spend.
4) Prioritize your Loans and Investments:
Few of us go through life without taking at least one major loan or making one significant investment. They key is to balance the different loans and investments wisely by following priority-based personal finance tips. The interest rate is an ideal marker for prioritizing which loans to pay off first which investments to go for. The higher the interest rate, the more you should work towards paying off that debt or getting investments into that area.
5) Don’t Forget the Tax Breaks:
It is surprising how many people forget about or ignore the tax breaks they are eligible for. Maybe because these don’t seem to be very significant amounts or people just don’t know about it. Get a good tax consultant to help you get all the tax benefits for you. You can invest those savings in your portfolio.
6) Choose Mortgage Payments Wisely:
A mortgage is the biggest loan you would take in your lifetime. Don’t get carried away by the claims made by the mortgage seller. Different personal finance tips suggest avoiding taking any mortgage with interest rates in excess of 25% to 30% of your monthly earnings.
7) Buy Insurance:
Having an insurance plan can be an excellent hedge against unexpected expenses or losses. You never know when you might need one if your car or house gets damaged. Insurance can save you significant amounts and allow you to focus on other aspects of your personal finances.
8) Start Small, Dream Big:
One of the best personal finance tips is to take small steps towards achievable targets. If you have several loans to pay off, start with the smallest one. This will build your financial credibility and will give you the confidence to work towards repaying bigger loans.
9) Monitor Your Credit Score:
In addition to the credit report, monitoring your credit score regularly can show you your personal finances level. Whenever you apply for a loan, this is one of the first things the lender will look at. Monitoring your credit score regularly will help you move towards your ideal credit score easily.
10) Compare the Cost per Use:
Some personal finance tips are so simple that they take only seconds. When buying things like groceries of even a car or clothes, compare different items based on how much you will use them and dividing the price by that number. Comparing the cost per use of a purchase instead of the list price is a logical approach to evaluating any expenditure.
11) Prioritize Emergencies:
Just as it is important to prioritize savings and investments, it is important to prioritize emergencies. Health emergencies are the most important, but ask yourself if digging into your savings is the best option for it? Does your family member have other options such as medical support? The key is to know that every emergency does not have to be met from your savings.
12) Build an Investment Portfolio:
Some personal finance tips never go out of fashion. If you have never had an investment portfolio before, then you should go for it now. If the 2008 economic crisis has taught us anything, it is that having all your eggs in one basket can be disastrous. Get a good investment banker to invest your savings in a diversified stock portfolio.
13) Avoid Shopping in Groups:
Shopping in groups creates peer pressure to but things that you really don’t need or can’t afford. When shopping for groceries as well as high-value items, shopping by yourself is the most sensible option since it helps you avoid buying things only to keep up appearances.
14) Avoid Instant Solutions:
When starting out with your investments, it is easy to forget all financial wisdom and personal finance tips for fly-by-night investment plans that aren’t worth the paper they are advertised on. Avoid investing your money in a plan that guarantees a quicker return than other similar plans; there is no way they could beat the market.
15) Make it a Family Thing:
Don’t assume the entire burden of managing your personal finances. Sharing personal finance tips with family members has several benefits. You have someone you can keep you on track if you begin to slip. Also, you can educate your children about financial management so that they become sensible spenders.
These personal finance tips are not everything that you need to know to get the best return on your investments and get out of debt. But, these tips help you get started on your way to managing your finances towards specific goals instead of fumbling around in the dark. Over time, as you develop a sense of the financial markets and greater appetite for risk, you can balance conventional wisdom with your own approach to managing your personal finances.