5 Tips to Help You Manage Your Finances Better

As inflation continues to ease across the country, the hope is that prices will start to come down and provide people with some relief. With that said, households are continuing to feel the pinch, and many are going through tight financial times. What may have been seen as a good income pre-pandemic suddenly doesn’t cut it during high inflationary times. If this sounds familiar and your finances have you feeling stressed out, there are some steps you can take to relieve that pressure.

Here’s a look at five tips to help you manage your finances better so that you don’t have to spend your days and nights worrying about money.

A Budget Is a Necessity

Manage your finances

For anyone looking to manage their finances better, the first step needs to be creating a budget. A budget doesn’t just show you where your money is going; it can also help you track your disposable income to ensure that you’re not overspending. It can also point out areas for potential savings.

If you’re new to using a budget, try downloading a free personal budgeting app on your smartphone. Look for one that allows for expense tracking and customizable features. It should also be user-friendly so that, even as a newbie, you can figure it out with ease.

A few personal budgeting apps to look into include:

  • Mint
  • Fudget
  • YNAB
  • EveryDollar
  • Goodbudget
  • Honeydue (ideal for a couple to use together)
  • PocketGuard

Cut Expenses Where Possible

The next tip is to cut expenses where possible. This is a great way to give your budget a little wiggle room and ensure you have money left over each month. Don’t be discouraged if you can only cut little amounts in each area/category of spending, as it all adds up. A few dollars saved here and there can amount to hundreds saved by the end of the year.

Some of the most popular categories to cut expenses in include:

  • Dining out
  • Grocery shopping (sticking to the necessities)
  • Streaming services
  • Cable service plan
  • Smartphone plan
  • Entertainment/going out
  • Clothing shopping

The list goes on and on, but it comes down to how much money you want to be able to save.

Set Up a Rainy Day Fund

Rainy day fund

Speaking of saving, it’s also important to set up a rainy-day fund. Creating a savings account means you’ll have funds to draw upon in case of emergencies and big expenses. Don’t feel pressured into having to save large amounts at a time, as even a few dollars a week can make a positive difference. As your finances improve, you can save more money.

Don’t Miss Bill Payments

This may seem like a simplistic tip, but it’s amazing how big of an impact it has. Missing bill payments will result in late fees, so you might as well just be throwing your money away at that point. It can also hurt your credit rating, which can negatively affect you down the road.

Is Investing in the Stock Market Right for You?

Stock market

Financial experts always suggest “diversifying your portfolio”, which means spreading out how and where you invest your money. For you, that could mean dipping your toes into the stock market. Investing in the NYSE can be a smart financial move; just be sure you feel confident in the investment, meaning you pick the right companies to invest in. Also, it needs to be extra money rather than money that is supposed to be going towards paying bills.

With these tips, you can turn your finances around and get better control over them. Just remember, it’s an ongoing battle, so you must always stay on top of your finances.

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