After spending years, even decades trying to develop a healthy relationship with your money, it can come as a surprise when it finally happens! There are so many articles and posts about how to be better than money, but what comes next after the end result?
Getting your finances under control is a huge achievement and one you should celebrate. But there are things you need to be mindful of to help you stop sinking back into bad habits.
So what should you do when you’re finally in control of your finances? Here are some ideas to help you stay that way.
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Enjoy a fresh start
Saying goodbye to your debts and problem spending gives you the chance to enjoy a fresh start, something you could’ve been wishing and hoping for for a very long time. You can start by getting rid of any accounts that you don’t need, such as any outstanding bank accounts, credit cards, store cards, etc. While you should retain one card with a low-interest rate to help you keep your credit rating up, it’s not worth the temptation of keeping these accounts open.
You should also think about streamlining your finances to help make sure your in the best financial position possible, and to help you keep better track of your money. Many people find having an accountant to be beneficial for helping to juggle different income and outgoings.
Learn to manage credit wisely
While having too much debt through credit is a bad thing, there are ways you can learn to manage credit responsibly. Some simple tips include:
- Thinking and preparing for big purchases by factoring the repayments into your budget, and repaying early where possible.
- Be disciplined by not choosing to put things on your credit card simply because you can – keep it for emergencies.
- Learn to carry cash or leave your wallet at home so that you’re not tempted into any impulse buying.
- Don’t be tempted by different offers and promotions that could tempt you into using your cards – most of the time they’ll lure you into making purchases you wouldn’t have made in the first place.
With some willpower and a bit of forward planning, you should be able to manage your credit responsibly and avoid racking up debts in the future.
Put some savings goals in place
Having savings goals in place is important – it helps to keep you on track with your budget and gives you an incentive to save. Your savings could be for anything, such as a vacation, a car or even to buy a luxury item you’ve had your eye on – but knowing that you’re saving for something will make you work much harder to put money aside.
In addition to your typical savings goals, you should have figures in mind to help you save for a rainy day fund, and even an emergency income fund should you be unable to work for a period of time. With some willpower, you can hit your savings goals and keep setting new ones to help keep you and your family financially comfortable and secure.
Use a budgeting app to keep track of your spending
Budgeting isn’t just something that you should do if you’re bad with money. In fact, budgeting can help ensure you always know what’s going on with your money, and help you develop some better habits going forward. The best budgeting apps can help you manage your day-to-day spending, and even connect with your bank accounts to make sure you’re not going to go over on any of your allowances. Your budget should be flexible to account for any changes to your circumstances, allowing you to adjust easily where you need to.
Having a budget means you can make enjoy yourself too. From having an allowance for clothing each month to an eating out budget, you’ll have more control over where your money goes and can enjoy it worry-free.
With additional savings in place and no debts to worry about, you can start thinking about investing. Investing isn’t just something for a certain type of person; it’s a way of growing your assets and helping you plan for your future. You could stand to make a lot of money over time if you choose the right investments.
For first-time investors, you’ll find a range of resources covering investing for beginners. From stocks and bonds to properties, you could soon be on your way to developing a healthy investment portfolio which will benefit you both now and in the future.
Protect your assets
Once you’ve got your finances in order, you need to think about protecting them. From your property to your ability to earn a living, you need to protect your assets from unexpected events. Insurance is a worthwhile investment, and with a broker like https://jeffreybernard.com/, you can make sure you get the right products for your needs. Leaving your assets unprotected is a big risk, so make sure you’re covered against anything the future might bring.
Treat yourself once in a while
Now that you’re in a better position financially, you can afford to treat yourself once in a while. After spending a long time bringing your spending under control and making sure your debts are paid off, it can be difficult to let yourself have nice things. But setting aside some money each month for treats or a big purchase can help make a nice reward for your efforts, as well as treating yourself for working hard day after day. It’s important to be able to enjoy yourself now and then, so long as you can live within your means.
Make a plan to pursue what you love…
With your debts clear and a better ability to save money, you can start thinking about your future and where you’d like to end up. Money can hold you back from doing a lot of things, such as returning to education or traveling, but if you put a plan in place, you can make these things a reality. Saving up to subsidize your income, or even being able to take a career break could be possible if you want to make it happen.
It’s never too late to change your career or pursue something you love, so instead of dreaming about it – make it happen!
…or decide to retire early
Early retirement sounds unrealistic, but there are more and more young people making it a reality. Planning for early retirement takes some work, and can mean a lot of sacrifices, but if you’re willing to make it happen, you could find yourself retiring in your 50s, 40s and even your 30s. Being able to pay off your mortgage quicker and having enough savings in place will help make your future secure, helping you leave the working world behind to enjoy yourself instead!
Even if you don’t end up retiring much earlier than planned, you can still make plans for your finances post-retirement to allow you to make the most of your post-working years.
Draw up a will
If you haven’t already, you should think about creating a will. A will helps to record all of your assets and helps ensure that things are taken care of after you die. You should nominate a next of kin and an executor of your estate to make sure your financial wishes are all carried out. The thought of drawing up a will can seem daunting, but once it’s done, you won’t have to think about it again.
Review your finances regularly
Your financial situation will change over time, which is why it’s important to review things regularly. From making annual comparisons on your utilities, your insurance and scrutinizing your spending, you can continue to make some wise decisions about your money. Keep an eye out for anything suspicious, and be sure to report it to your bank if you do notice something that isn’t right.
Keep making savings
Even if your budget isn’t as tight as it used to be, you can still continue to make savings on your everyday spending. There are all kinds of ways to save money every day, from cutting your grocery spend to making your home greener. Any extra savings you make can be put towards your larger savings pots, or you can put them aside to treat yourself. Forming good money habits for life can change your approach to spending, making sure you always feel in control of your finances.
It can take a long time to feel in control of your finances, but the relief you feel when it finally happens will be incredible. Knowing how hard it was to achieve can give you the push you need to stay on top of things, helping to make sure you’re always in control of your money. Make plans for your future to help you stay financially secure and so that you can enjoy your next exciting chapter.