Most people realize that the key to a secure, peaceful future is to make consistently wise decisions in the realm of personal finance. Perhaps the best way to accomplish this task is to make sure you possess as much knowledge as possible on the topic. Study the tips that follow and you will be well on your way to mastering your financial future.
If you have lost a prior home to foreclosure, this does not mean that you are out of home owning altogether. You should be able to get a government-backed mortgage through Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the FHA, in as little as three years after your previous home has foreclosed.
You can save money by tweaking your air travel schedule in the small scale as well as by shifting trips by days or over seasons. Flights in the early morning or the late night are often significantly cheaper than mid-day trips. As long as you can arrange your other travel requirements to fit off-hour flying you can save a pretty penny.
Don’t bother with store credit cards. Store cards have a bad cost/benefit calculation. If you pay on time, it won’t help your credit all that much, but if a store account goes to collections, it will impact your credit history just as much as any other default. Get a major credit card for credit repair instead.
When it comes to personal finances, pay yourself first. When you get paid, put at least ten percent of your pre-tax income into savings before you use your pay check to do other things. If you get in the habit of doing this you will never miss that money and you will be building your savings account.
Make sure that you are collecting all of the tax credits to which you are entitled. Look out for the following tax credits: Child Care Credit, Child Tax Credit, Lifetime Learning Credit, Earned Income Credit and Hope Scholarship Credit. Visit the IRS’s website for a complete list of tax credits that you may be eligible for.
Set up your bank account to transfer a predetermined sum of money from your checking to your savings once a month. You will forget you even have this money or see it as a bill, just like any other expense. Your savings can add up quickly by doing this.
Feel free to take advantage of paperless billing and paperless bank statements, but be careful not to become senseless on personal finance matters. The pitfall lurking in paperless finance lies in how easy it becomes to ignore your month-to-month finances. Banks, billers, or even thieves, can take advantage of this willful ignorance, so force yourself to review your online finances regularly.
If you have more than one student loan, consider consolidating them. Consolidated loans can be locked in at a low interest rate, often lower than the interest rates on your original loans. You also have the option of extending your loan payoff period if need be. Contact the agency that holds your student loans to see if you qualify.
Read the terms and conditions from your bank, but most debit cards can be used to get cash back at the point-of-sale at most major grocery stores without any additional fees. This is a much more appealing and responsible option that over time can spare you the hassle and irritation of ATM fees.
When it comes to paying off your loans and credit card balances, always try to pay as much over the monthly minimum as is possible. While this may decrease your amount of free cash every month, it will ultimately result in significant increases in savings over a period of many months or a year.
Cut down on impulse purchases and frivolous spending by converting your cash to gift cards that can be used at your preferred grocery store. This gives you less money to waste on unnecessary items, yet ensures that you still have the financial resources to purchase necessities like groceries. Grocery stores with gas stations often offer fuel discounts on purchases made with gift cards.
Solid grounding when it comes to personal finance is often the keystone of a happy life. The best way to prepare is to make the right types of decisions when it comes to money is to make a real study of the topic in a comprehensive manner. Read and revisit the concepts in the preceding article and you will have the foundation you need to meet your financial goals.