It's time to get educated about what's in your pocket! The month of April is Financial Literacy month. Here are some tips to follow on your journey to financial wellness!
Gather the information
In order to obtain financial security, you must know what your financial state is. Start off by gathering all of the necessary information about your finances, such as a copy of your credit report. Sites like annualcreditreport.com allow you to obtain a credit report from the three major credit bureaus; Transunion, Equifax, and Experian. It is important to check your credit reports every so often in case of fraud. For more information on cleaning up your credit report read about how to dispute consumer credit reporting errors and fix your credit report
Set a budget
Creating a budget is vital to financial security. Plan out your monthly expenses by putting the needs first, luxuries last. Also be sure to budget emergency money to avoid any major setbacks. If you have any debt, try to budget money each month to work towards getting it paid off. You could work towards paying the smaller debt first, or begin with the debt that has the highest interest rate. This debt calculator can help you determine exactly how long it will take you to pay off your debt. Stay on track and commit to your budget.
Know your resources
Financialliteracymonth.com offers several tips on organizing your finances. They have provided a list of websites to guide you on your journey to financial wellness. Here are some of our favorites:
Free Webinars - Online seminars made to assist you in all the details that come along with budgeting your money.
Income Worksheet - Subtract things such as taxes from your income so you can see what money is actually available to you.
Debt Load Worksheet - Find out your total debt.
Financial Priorities Worksheet - Make a list of expenses by prioritizing your needs first and wants last.
Financial Goal Worksheet - Set your own financial goals. Where do you want your money to go? Short term? Long term?
Record of Daily Expenditures - Keep track of the money you spend and whether or not you should be spending it there.
Tips for Change eBook - Helpful tips from smart spenders.