Money management is important for everyone. Having control over your spending really can influence every aspect of your life as most of your decisions depend on money. If you manage your money well, you will have an independent life. You can start saving for your future and you will not have to work for money, you will make it work for you.
Do you find money management complicated and difficult? Although it might seem hard to start at first, once you get used to the process, money managing can be much easier. Try these simple tips to start improving your finances:
1. Set up a budget
In order to be your own financial manager, the first step you need to take is to set up a budget. You need to note down all the money you receive and what you spend them on. You need to decide on how much you would spend for each category such as:
- Living costs
- Household bills
- Financial products (insurances…)
- Giving (donations, gifts for family and friends…)
- Leisure (vacation, fancy dinner,..)
Or if you need advice on how much you should spend and how much you have to save, try reading The jars system money management of T.Harv Eker. After having control over the money you spend, you will find out the area you can cut off for a saving. Now you can think about your summer vacation, a new car or a new iPhone since you have a saving for yourself.
Note: You can use Money Lover to set up budgets and manage them better
2. Keep track on your spending
Having a budget might be simple but keeping track on it is a little bit more difficult:
- If you spend more than what you have, now you need to cut back. For example, in order to reduce your spending, you should get used to preparing lunch from home, selling the stuff you do not need anymore.
- Do not throw away all your receipts, you can scan your receipts with Money Lover to keep track and manage your expenses easier.
- Although your expenses might not be the same from month to month, having a budget will help you keep track on those changes. You might realize that you have spent money on unnecessary things. Changing your spending habit is a process, take time to observe and learn.
When you have a pay rise, do not rush to spend more. Think about saving more or checking if any of your household cost/living cost has increased.
3. Manage all your debts
Some of us might have sleepless nights because of debts. Paying off debts might not be as easy as it sounds. You should remember to pay off the debts which have highest rate of interest first. It is also important to make sure you do not break any terms of any of your agreements. Do not forget to pay your monthly required payments on time.
Only by paying off all debts you can start living independently. You should consider cancelling some of your spending until you are totally debt free.
Note: you can use Money Lover to manage your debts and loans better.
If you are not planning on your spending, you might end up in debts as well. One thing to bear in mind is that always spend what you have, not what you hope to make. Unless there is an emergency, you shoud never borrow money to spend on things.
4. Build a saving plan
Saving is more important than spending. The more money you can hold, the more money you have. Even if your budget is small, try to save at least 10% of your salary.
- Have some emergency savings: save money for the unexpected circumstances. What if your car breaks down and you have to pay for a thousand dollars bill?
- Set a saving goal: get 3 to 6 months expenses to an account in order to have a vacation, buy a car or even more for a house. You can start you plan with Money Lover's saving feature.
- Once your savings start to grow, you can consider putting more money into your pension or making an investment plan based on your own goals.
5. Make investments
Investing is the only way if you want to earn more money by spending. Investing is one step of successful money management.
- You should think about all the investments options you have. You need to have knowledge before deciding to invest your money. Investing in stock or bond is to share profit (or loss) of a company. In order to prevent risks, you have to be clear how investing works, the company or bond you whant to invest in. Try talking to several trusted financial advisors.
- Consider investing long-term, it means you will invest your money for 10, 20 or 30 years or more. Hold on to investments for years, avoid buying and selling quickly.
- Invest in insurance. You should expect the unxepected and have a plan when they occur. It is hard to know when you will need money for an emergency. Think about different kinds of insurance: life insurance when there is unexpected death, health insurance for doctor bills, disaster insurance in case of tornadoes...
Financial issues do not come from how much money you have but they are the consequences of not knowing how to manage your money. Once you become your own budget manager, you will make the most of everything you have and you will never have to spend a day work for money, it will always work for you.