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Is it time to get financially fit?

If you are not happy with your current financial situation, maybe it’s time to take action and start getting fit financially.  There are a few ways to get your financial situation in shape and it starts with realizing you might not be where you want to be financially.
What are signs of being financially out of shape?
There are several signs…paying minimum payments on credit bills, paying loans 30 days late or more, not having an emergency fund, not saving for retirement. These are just a few of the signs and it is important to be honest with yourself and recognize these signs early.  Early detection and correction is the best strategy to avoid painful financial setbacks.
Where do we start if we want to get financially fit?
Just like when we want to be more healthy, you have to know a few vital signs to get the right exercise routine.  To get the right financial routine means starting with a financial checkup which should include a complete spending report, review of your credit report and also totaling the amount of debt and savings including 401k plans.  From these “vital” financial numbers you can build a plan to get your finances in shape.
Once we know our financial health, what’s next?
This is truly the hard part but it starts with setting a budget based on the spending report that was completed. If you need to pay off debt or want to save more, both require hard decisions on where you are going to reduce your spending to get the money to save or pay extra to your debt.  If you credit is not above 700, then work on a plan to build your credit through smart use of new and existing credit cards and loans.
Is there any other advice after we start living on a budget?
Yes, just like when we are trying to get healthy we set objectives and have a regular checkin on our progress.  A financial check in requires reviewing your financial vital signs to make sure we are staying on budget, paying down debt and reaching our savings goals.  Getting financially fit is about changing your financial habits and isn’t just a one or two year event.
And it’s not all about the budget. It requires changing life habits that get you off budget. The biggest issue is conquering the needs versus want issue. If we only buy what we need instead of what we want, we all have a much better chance of staying financially fit our whole life.

Posted: 10/6/2014 with 0 comments

Categories: Budgeting, Finances, Money Matters

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