This is often the time of year that we take stock of our personal finances and find opportunities for improvement. Consider some of these important tips to help you manage your money wisely and save money for healthier household finances. Managing money wisely starts with a basic plan, discipline, and saving money where you can. These tips for managing personal finances will help you save more and spend less so that you can meet your financial goals.
This post is brought to you by SingleCare, which offers savings on prescriptions, dental, vision, and on-demand virtual doctor visits.
Managing Personal Finances Made Simple:
We’ve all had to make tough financial decisions. From deciding on the purchase of a car or house, to taking out college loans, to choosing the right bank; each decision is an important step down our individual financial paths. Whether you are just beginning to think about finances on your own, or have spent years under financial strain and are looking for a way to get back on track, the following financial tips could help lead you in the right direction. Check out these essential tips for handling your money!
Start a Budget and Stick to It
Start making a budget by writing down all your monthly expenses and then by listing all of the money that you have coming in monthly. Make sure that you have enough money to cover your expenses. If you don’t, cut expenses until you do. While this can be a painful and frustrating procedure, it is far better than constantly finding yourself running over in terms of expenses every month. Make sure that you keep money earmarked for your expenses.
Save Money Now So You Can Save For Your Future
Saving money for the future is one of the hardest hurdles people face in managing personal finances. Cutting expenses can be hard but here are a few ideas to help you along so you can start saving for your future.
1. One of the biggest places where people lose money is eating out. Not only is most of the food at restaurants more expensive than what you would get for the same amount of cash at the grocery store, it also tends to be less good for you. Save your money and eat in.
2. Save money on prescriptions, dental, vision, and on-demand virtual doctor visits with a free SingleCare membership. SingleCare isn’t insurance but with a SingleCare membership, you can get exclusive pricing for prescriptions with the pharmacies they partner with and this usually means big savings. They empower consumers to compare pricing for health services so customers know what they will owe before they go. I think that is really great because I certainly don’t like to get services until I know how much it will cost me. I also like that you don’t have to call around and compare. SingleCare has all the choices and prices right on your computer or smartphone screen. My family of four doesn’t have dental insurance so getting discounted services saves us a lot of money.
3. Gas is another big expense for most people, and unless you live in a place with a good public transportation system, you may feel quite stuck. This is where improved fuel economy and carpooling can come in. Carpooling can save time and is good for the environment too.
Use Credit Wisely
There are definitely places where you should be using credit and places where you should not be. Ideally, credit is for convenience instead of being a way for you to fill in the gaps. Dave Ramsey advises against credit cards completely. If you use credit cards, make sure that you find the best credit offers available, ones that offer low APR as well as a healthy rewards programs. Most credit cards have huge late fees and the interest rate adds up more quickly than you can imagine. You don’t want to end up paying $25 for a $5 coffee because of fees so try not to use a credit card if you can’t pay it off in full each month.
Student loans, mortgages, credit cards, car payments… it’s all debt, and it all needs to be managed effectively. Much of the time, debt is unavoidable, but when handled properly it doesn’t have to be a source of stress. Try paying more than the minimum on high interest loans and you’ll avoid adding to your debt and pay it down much faster.
If you already have debt, begin paying it down by paying off the debt with the highest interest rates first. Paying off debt as quickly as your are able, instead of just minimum amounts due, will save you tons of money in interest.
Start Saving For Retirement
Hopefully you succeeded in making your budget so that you have some money that you can begin saving. Your first savings goal should be to create a cushion savings account that holds at least 3 months worth of expenses just in case you have an unforeseen event, like loss of job, or major car repairs. Once you manage that, you can set up retirement savings (make sure you take advantage of any job matching) and investment strategies.
It is never too late, or too early, to plan for retirement. Set up a 401(k) account and add to it every month, and you’ll be well on your way to being financially secure later in life. Maximize your employer’s retirement match.
Making these small changes can have a dramatic impact on your finances over time. I hope you find these five tips helpful in managing personal finances. It is possible to straighten out your household debts, so consider where you can go from here! Which tips to manage money were your favorite?
More About SingleCare:
SingleCare offers savings on prescriptions, dental, vision, and on-demand virtual doctor visits. Whether it’s a life-saving drug or a routine dental cleaning, they believe consumers should be able to compare costs for healthcare services and get care without worrying about networks, coverage limitations or deductibles. This service is completely free for all Americans.
SingleCare is free to join and members save money when they fill a prescription using their SingleCare card or when they visit a SingleCare dentist, optometrist, or have an online doctor visit. The SingleCare pharmacy savings card is accepted nationwide at over 35,000 pharmacies, including Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, Rite Aid, and Kroger’s. Prescription savings vary by prescription and by pharmacy, and may reach up to 80% off cash price.
I was very impressed with how quickly I could find an eye exam appointment in my area for the best price. Since there is no cost to join, it is easy to explore and find providers in your area and prices for services you and your family may need with just a few click or swipes and no commitment. Then you can make the appointment that saves you the most or get the prescription filled that saves you the most.
For more information on SingleCare, please visit SingleCare.