How to Plan Your Financial Goals for 2022 and Beyond
Every year we make our goals or wishes, including some financial ones. However, we tend to forget them and keep doing the same old things. As a result, we don’t make much progress year to year.
So, let’s remind ourselves of the five steps we should take in 2022!
Pay Our Bills on Time
It seems so simple, but it is a missed opportunity for many of us to get control of our finances, save tons of interest expense, and improve our credit scores.
We all know we should pay bills on a timely basis, but it may not always be easy. The biggest reason is we do not budget or plan our spending. There are many free online tools you can get to set up a budget and plan your spending. You will also learn how much money you waste on items you do not even think about.
Unexpected expenses happen, so we take care of those urgent issues and forget about the daily, weekly, and monthly ones. You can set up your monthly payments on your bank account, so you do not have to remember them as a first step forward.
Create and Follow Your Budget
Oh, that word ‘budget.’ It may seem like a daunting task, but it isn’t. And the benefits you derive from having one are much greater than you may think.
A budget will help you manage your money better. It gives you a chance at organizing your monthly income around your bills, so you begin to make smarter decisions about your money.
Budgets are just a way for you to track your incoming and outgoing cash. Once you get in the habit of reviewing your budget, you will gain control over it.
Start Spending Less
Almost all of us spend money on things we can do without, even if it is temporary, so it’s important to gain control of our financial life and stop spending on non-useful items.
The overused example of those quick trips to the coffee shop is still blatantly true. At $5 a day for even 20 days ends at $100 a month. There are many examples of how little expenses can add up. Check your subscriptions! Everyone has monthly subscriptions like premium TV channels that they never watch or forget about.
You can even save big on food expenses. Most people and families have at least $1-200 a month eating out that can be cut in half, if not more. You can also shop smarter and save big.
Reduce Credit Card Debt
Start by paying off debts with the highest interest rates first, so you succeed. Do not close the account, as the open credit helps your credit scores. Benefits of lowering credit card debt include:
- Decreasing your interest charges, this is more money than you think
- Easing your financial anxieties, a big stress reliever
- Lowering your credit utilization rate, i.e., increasing your scores
Make more than a minimum payment each month. Your interest expense will go down, and you will get out of debt faster. You may have to take on a temp job to add income to do it, but it will pay off in the long run.
Create an Emergency Fund
An emergency fund is just money you set aside to help you when that unexpected medical bill happens or your auto breaks down. You know, the things that happen to all of us. Put $10 or $20 in the account each month, whatever you can squeeze out. Try to save enough to have several months of expenses covered in case of an emergency which will eventually happen.
If you are short a little cash, you might consider an online or emergency loan.
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