Creating a plan for your finances is an ongoing process, but keep in mind these Top 9 Life Planning Tips to help you have a successful financial future:
1) Have financial goals. What are your goals? Would you like to own a house? Pay down debt? Create a list of goals like reducing your debt, increasing your investments, saving more money and planning for large purchases.
2) Follow a budget. Take a good look at your net monthly income and your set and variable expenses. If there are areas you need to cut back, creating a budget will help.
3) Build credit. Credit cards can be a blessing or a curse. If you are building your credit, remember to make an effort to pay off your balance each month, shop around for the best interest rate and rewards program and never, NEVER miss a payment.
4) Save money. Whether you’re clipping coupons, searching for discounts or cutting back on your morning coffee—put money aside for emergencies. Studies suggest you should have at least six months of expenses available in the event you lose your job or cannot work.
5) Protect yourself. Insurance policies for your home, health, automobiles and personal or professional assets are designed specifically to protect you in case of an emergency.
6) Plan for your future. Aside from putting money into your savings account for emergencies or big purchases, you also need to remember to save for retirement. If your employer has a retirement plan, make sure you are contributing and that your money is being invested properly.
7) Own your home. Home ownership is a long-term investment that over time will leave you with a high-value asset. Experts suggest staying in a home for at least five years. Consider taking the leap if you plan on staying put, have money saved for a down payment and a steady income.
8) Draft a will. Although it may be an uncomfortable conversation, it is important to ensure your family and financial goals are met after you’re gone. Unfortunately, a study reveals the majority of Americans, 64 percent, do not have an estate plan in place.
9) Pay off debt. Debt comes in different forms—from student loans and credit cards to mortgage and hospital bills. Making your payments on time, paying more than the minimum balance and paying off the more expensive debt first are among popular tips to consider when paying off debt.
Busey is committed to helping our customers handle their hard-earned money responsibly. Visit any Busey location or call 1.800.67Busey to get started on securing your financial future today!