Now that the long weekend is behind us, besides the chocolate and food overload on our waistlines, many people could be feeling the financial effects of unintentionally over spending during the long weekend.
The good news is it is never too late to get back on track. We all have the right to make our own decisions about money but following these five tips from African Bank could make all the difference.
5 tips to help steer you towards better financial health:
1. Ask for help
If you are unsure where to start ask a trusted friend or family member you trust about how you can start getting your finances back on track. There are also many online money management tools they can use. Most of the banks also have useful hints and tips on their websites you can refer to.
2. Keep a record
It is difficult to manage your money without keeping records to help track income and spending. This includes receipts, payments, and financial statements. Set up a simple system for dealing with accounts and statements and ensure you have a system for sorting and organising receipts and paperwork. Identity fraud is increasing, so tear up or shred unwanted financial correspondence — do not simply put these in the bin.
3. Set goals
Small achievable goals are important as you can’t always change your money habits overnight. Savings, debt, and retirement planning should be factored into your goals.
4. Plan for an emergency
Many financial experts recommend having three to six months’ worth of living expenses in a high-interest-bearing savings or investment account. This financial nest egg can help you avoid credit card debt in an emergency, which only perpetuates the debt cycle. If that is just too much then start with a smaller amount you can add to every month.
5. Don’t feel discouraged
It takes a little while for a new habit to become entrenched, but once you are able pay your bills on time, and save money too, you will start to appreciate the benefits of sound money management. It is important to stay focused and reward yourself when you reach different stages of your end goal.
We all make mistakes with money but learning from these and always getting back on track will pay dividends in the end.