Your Future is Bright: Is Your Financial Plan?
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If you have a good job with future growth prospects, you might not be worried about your finances. But for a comprehensive view of your financial standing, check your credit rating and savings or investments. If it could be better, then don’t wait to start making improvements. You can take several small steps now to raise your credit score and build a solid financial future.
Eliminate Consumer Debt
Even with a steady paycheck, be cautious about taking on too much debt. While a house payment and a car payment are fairly common for many people to manage in all income brackets, charging large amounts of debt by credit cards that may tack on high interest rates can be risky at best. Missing a payment or frequent late payments can damage your credit score. Experts advise charging items that are truly needed or that can be paid for within a thirty-day period to avoid paying interest.
Pay Bills on Time
For a bright financial future, pay all your bills on time. This includes utilities, mortgage, and car payments. Not only will this keep your credit rating in good standing, but it will also enable you to apply for other types of credit if needed.
If you are having trouble keeping up with credit card payments and find yourself making the minimum monthly payment, only to turn around and charge more purchases so that the balance remains constant, you may want to consider an installment loan to improve credit score ratings. By repackaging a credit card balance into an installment loan, you may be eligible for a lower interest rate, more affordable monthly payments, and avoid adding new charges to the account while you pay it off.
Start a Savings Plan
If you don’t already have a savings account, or if it pays low interest, shop around for a better deal. You may want to consider making a low-risk investment in order to slowly grow your earnings. Consult a financial planner for details on how you can make the best use of even a small amount of discretionary income each month, along with occasional raises or cash gifts received. Then you will have a financial cushion to fall back on in case of an emergency.
Plan for the Future
Not only is it important to organize your finances for your current lifestyle, but you should also give some thought to the future when you send the kids to college, take a dream vacation, or retire. Work to become debt-free by a certain date. At the same time, start building your savings or investments so that they multiply for future use.
Your money is a valuable resource that should not be taken for granted. Plan now to meet your needs responsibly as well as plan for a prosperous future.
Anita Ginsberg is a freelance writer from Denver, CO. She studied at Colorado State University, and now writes articles about health, business, family and finance. A mother of two, she enjoys traveling with her family whenever she isn’t writing. You can follow her on Twitter @anitaginsburg
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