When you think about improving your financial situation, you probably imagine things that take years to achieve. While you have several significant, long-term objectives, your finances are also made up of many smaller goals, choices, and actions. It's easy to dismiss them because they're small, but the truth is they enable you to achieve your larger financial goals. Check out the 6 unique actions in this article that you can start doing right now to improve your finances and achieve your greater objectives.
1. Don’t Eat Out Today
When it comes to eating out at restaurants, little charges may mount up quickly. Minor modifications, on the other hand, can have a significant effect. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average American home spends roughly $3,000 per year dining out. Keep in mind that one individual spending just on themselves qualifies as a household. Don't think you’re spending that much? Let's take another look. Let's say you eat lunch every day from Monday through Friday for a year and pay $10 for each meal. This amounts to $50 every week or $2,500 per year, close to the national average. Keep in mind that's only the calculation for lunch expenses.
2. Reduce Your Credit Card Interest
While it's best to avoid putting things on credit cards altogether, sometimes that's just not realistic for everyone's financial situation. However, one thing you may be able to change is the interest rate you’re charged on your credit card. If you're paying excessive interest on your that money can add up. Try calling your credit card company today and politely asking for a lower rate. If you're a loyal client, you may be able to negotiate a lower fee. Furthermore, if you have many credit cards, it's a good idea to seek reduced rates on all of them. However, start by prioritizing the issuer with whom you've held a card the longest. Especially if you pay your credit card account on time consistently since that track record should offer you some weight. If the first representative is unable to assist you, request a supervisor.
3. Look Through Your Expenses & Make Some Decisions
Have some free time today? Sit down and comb through your monthly expenses to see where your money really goes. Ensure you cover all your expenses, whether subscriptions, utilities, insurance, food, or whatever else. When doing your inspections, ask yourself:
Am I getting the best deal on this?
Do I use this enough to justify the cost?
Am I getting my money’s worth from this?
If the answer is no to any of these questions, it may be time to shop for cheaper alternatives or eliminate them.
4. Contribute More to Your 401(k)
If you have a 401(k), now is the time to start contributing to it. Increase your annual contributions to your 401(k) or other retirement plans by logging in to your account online today. Don't worry if you can't afford to increase it a lot. Start by just raising it by 1%. Even an extra 1% can add up to a significant amount of money saved over time, and it's small enough that you probably won’t even notice the money is gone when you get your next paycheck. Any increase is better than nothing, and it's even better if your company matches your contributions.
5. Make A List & Find Coupons For Your Next Shopping Trip
According to Bureau of Labor Statistics statistics from 2019, the average cost of food at home for American households was $4,643 per year or $386.92 per month. Wouldn't it be great if you could set aside part of that cash for something else? Well, the reality is that you can with just a little effort today. Make a list of the items you need by going through your refrigerator, pantry, or cupboard. While making your list, also take note of the things that have or will be thrown out and consider whether you should repurchase those things. The only thing left to do is take your list with you on your next shopping trip. According to studies, taking a shopping list with you might help you save 25-30% on your food costs. I
If you want to increase those savings, even more, consider finding coupons for the items on your list. If you're not sure where to start, check out some of the following sites:
6. Request and Review Your Credit Reports
Your credit history is a critical piece of information for your overall financial health. For example, along with many other pieces of information, potential lenders and creditors may use your credit history to help make lending decisions. These businesses want to know if you're likely to repay the money you've borrowed on time. As a result, it's critical to monitor your credit report frequently as it may influence the conditions of your future loans or lines of credit.
Schedule A Consultation with an Experienced Financial Advisor
One last thing you can do today to improve your financial future is schedule a consultation with an experienced financial advisor. A good financial advisor will help you identify your financial goals and create a plan to help you reach them. Here at Fourth Avenue Financial, our first priority is your overall financial success. We want to help you develop, implement, and monitor a strategy designed to address your individual situation to ensure all your investments are setting you up for a path of financial success. If you are ready to start planning for your financial future, we are here to help. Contact us today at (304) 746 7977 to schedule a meeting with one of our experienced financial advisors or schedule online: https://bit.ly/3oOPajf
Securities offered through J.W. Cole Financial, Inc. (JWC) Member FINRA / SIPC. Advisory Services offered through J.W. Cole Advisors, Inc. (JWCA). Fourth Avenue Financial and JWC/ JWCA are unaffiliated entities.