There are a number of ways you can improve your financial wellbeing. Following these tips will help you to create a sustainable financial future for yourself.
Careful credit use
Sensible credit use has a lot of benefits. It can help you to pay for things that might just have been out of reach and successful credit payments help to boost your credit score. A healthier credit score opens up more doors when it comes to borrowing.
Linking back to the last previous point, over-borrowing can lead to problems. The more money you borrow, the more money you have to pay back. Failure to pay back credit will go against your credit score and that can badly affect your ability to borrow in the future.
We used the 50:30:20 model, founded by Elizabeth Warren, as an effective way to manage your cash. 20% of your total income should be going towards future savings of some kind. This could be to go towards a house deposit, a new car, or simply just for a rainy day. Do check out our piece on the budgeting model for more information.
A lot of us use our card or our phone to buy things. It can be easy to lose track of how much we are actually spending when that money is being transferred virtually. It’s a good idea to keep up-to-date by checking your transactions online. Online banking and phone banking makes it so much easier to check and follow what you are spending.
If you prefer to spend with cash, you can have a better visualisation of how much money you are spending. However, you will have to remember where you are spending that cash yourself because you will not have a list of where that money has been sent to.
This comes under the need to properly budget. If you realise that your way of living is simply not sustainable then you will have to make some spending adjustments. Lavish nights out and excessive club memberships might have to be put under review. It would make sense to see how your money is being spent before making a visual map of what is important and what is not.
We made a four-way grid that could be used to help you manage your money better (below).
If you want a particular product or service that is widely available then you should look for the cheapest price on the market. It sounds obvious but many people will simply jump at the first price that they see without doing any research on the product or service.
You should take into account delivery fees and added costs. A product that appears cheaper with an online service might have big delivery costs as well.
If you are close to a particular retailer then you might want to pick up the product in-store to cut postage-and-packaging costs.
The more carefully you manage your money, the more resolve you will have in the face of financial adversity. Taking on a lot of the measures that we have just discussed will help to build that resolve. Everybody will make mistakes with their money but some people will be less affected than others.
Some people have a lot more money than others but that isn’t something that can be controlled. However, you can control how efficient you are with the money that you have. More efficiency leads to more wriggle room if things start to go wrong financially.
Planning to retire
This is the next big one. State pensions will no longer be enough to supplement people who retire. There is a big emphasis on private pensions and savings now because the state pension amount cannot solely provide a content retirement for people.
It’s important to keep putting a small amount of money in your private pension pot because that figure has to be matched by your employer and you are also entitled to tax relief. The removal of tax highlights suggests that the government wants people to focus on individually building their pension amount.
Moving on to new goals
Setting yourself weekly, monthly and yearly goals can be a great way to consistently stay on top of what you are doing. Making new goals on top of existing goals is always a healthy thing to do. It keeps your mind focused and on its toes.
With a healthy financial situation, people who are close to retiring can start to plan for their futures. This is the accumulation of carefully financially planning for a sustained period of time. Following this guide can help you push towards a happy retirement.