We can talk about income, spending, budgeting, planning, mortgage, retirement, etc. all day every day! But what if you really just need to learn how to stop wasting money? Here are 3 things you should already be doing before you step up your finance game.
1. Have cash
Everyone loves the easy money access a debit card offers. Some people enjoy racking up reward points by using credit. Both debit and credit cards are great resources. Many people cite increased security as a reason to use cards -- if your card gets stolen or lost, you can cancel it right away. However, a major con of using cards exclusively is also security. If someone hacks your information and spends your money, getting that money back can be quite a task. Because of this, having cash on hand is important. Whether it’s a change jar with a few extra bills in it or a secret shoe box with more than a few extra bills, having cash around is always a good idea. It can be especially useful in case of an emergency.
2. Cut your spending
Who are you giving your money to? If we were to look at your accounts, would it seem as if you should own stock in Chipotle or Foot Locker? Be realistic with your spending and limit yourself. Every week you should look at your accounts and have a financial plan for the week. By cutting your spending and staying aware of your finances, you will end up saving way more money!
3. Get Direct Deposit
Stop using those check cashing shops to get your money – get direct deposit. Though holding a few hundred bucks in your hands can be gratifying, having the entirety of your check is way better! When you use a check cashing shop to get your money, they charge you a pretty hefty fee. This is much worse than a maintenance fee that a financial institution might charge you because the maintenance fee is only once a month, not every time you deposit money. You can usually get out of a maintenance fee by getting direct deposit!
If you can do these three things on a regular basis, congratulations – you’ve taken the first steps to solid money management. Now, you can move on to a more detailed budget plan to start making your money work for you!
Keeping it Fresh, Young & Free,