Economic uncertainty brings on its own set of challenges when it comes to navigating everyday life. Keeping your finances in order on top of that presents its own obstacles. Maintaining control of your money and tracking your spending are crucial at times like these.
As the economy fluctuates, you want to ensure your money is exactly where you need it to be, so you can weather potential storms. While it may seem like a daunting task, it’s completely doable with the right tools and tactics on-hand.
We’re breaking down the simple ways to take control of your finances during economically precarious times.
Hit the Cancel Button
Sometimes it can feel overwhelming to think about our bills and expenses all at once. If you can break it down and focus on the smaller charges, you may find it easier to narrow down any unnecessary spending. This strategy is often referred to as snowballing and is commonly used to tackle credit card debt, but it can also be applied to your overall budget. The idea is to go through your credit card and bank statements, looking for those small and recurring charges that you can get by without. Perhaps it means cancelling a subscription, or a rewards card with an annual fee.
Keep Your Budget Mobile
Budgeting apps are taking over the world of personal finance and for good reason — the collection of apps available is reflective of the unique experiences we face when it comes to fiscal responsibility. Whether you prefer to sync your banking information or input your number manually, utilizing a budget app will keep your finances organized and as mobile as you are. As the economy fluctuates, having a budget that is amenable will keep you ahead of the game and help avoid falling into any financial trouble.
Dealing with debt not only impacts your finances, but it can take its toll on your mental health. Having a looming balance will only add more stress to your situation — if you can pay it down with the resources at your disposal, you’ll be in a much healthier position both mentally and fiscally.
Paying off your highest-interest debts first is a popular tactic for saving money, as the highest rates often have the most impact on your budget. You may wish to research credit card balance transfers or look into debt consolidation loans — though you’ll want to have a complete understanding of the short-term and long-term impacts, and whether or not you’ll have to worry about balloon payments. Regardless of your strategy, keep up with your minimum payments to avoid any penalties or fees.
Find Support as Needed
It’s not uncommon to find yourself with irregular cash shortages, especially when the economy is reflecting these uncertain times. Look into your options — including installment lending — to help keep you on your feet while you look to secure your finances. Traditional lenders are now facing competition with payday loans — these alternative avenues are often faster, more efficient options for anyone in need of short-term financial support.
You’ll know you’ve found the right lender when you’re able to secure the funds quickly and without any red tape — you’ll only need to provide basic information, including banking information and employment history.
Plan for Emergencies
Oftentimes, we’re focused on our short-term finances and we neglect to think about the future. No matter where you are in your budgeting plans, establishing or growing your emergency fund is an essential money move. The general rule of thumb is to have three to six months of your expenses set aside — this will keep you ahead of the game should an unexpected financial hurdle attempt to derail your plans.
It’s important to stay alert and vigilant when it comes to managing your money. Taking the necessary precautions and utilizing the budget tools available will keep you in a safe financial position — leaving you with everything you need to weather any economical storm.