Making the Most of Your Money Part 6- Spend

There are five principles, which we will call building blocks, you need to know to make the most of your money.  The blocks represent the key principles to keep in mind as you make day-to-day decisions and plan your financial goals.  In this post, I will review the fifth block, Spend.  1  2

Spend

The fundamental concept of Spend is: make a budget or a plan for using your money wisely. It is helpful to set short and long-term financial goals and manage your money to meet them.

Actions You Can Take

  • Live within your means.
  • Be a smart shopper, and compare prices and quality.
  • Track your spending habits and develop a budget or spending plan.
  • Plan for short-term and long-term financial goals.

Hints and Tips

  • A good way to take control of your spending is to set the maximum amounts you plan to spend each week or each month. Once you have set the maximum, stick with your plan.
  • It is helpful to track your spending over a few weeks or months to get a handle on how you are using your dollars and cents. Look into using online systems or phone apps for keeping track of your spending – you will be amazed at what you will learn about your habits!
  • Be careful not to let a sale or discount coupon persuade you to purchase something you do not need, and that is not in your spending plan.
  • When planning a big purchase, take the time to comparison shop and check prices at a few different stores, by phone or online.

Summary

This blog post ends the series entitled Making the Most of Your Money. The five building blocks (principles) can give you the ability to gain control over day-to-day, month-to-month finances and ultimately leads to your financial well-being. These principles will help you make well-informed financial decisions and achieve your financial goals.  LifeCrafter strives to increase the understanding of the day-to-day money management challenges that all consumers face every single day.

For more information and educational materials on Crafting Wealth and Self, return to the home page for details.


Spotlight Resources

 

###Larry Marvin
LifeCrafter – Money $ense

  1. ©2017 Larry Marvin, Image Credit:9677861633_e8819dd5d5_o.jpg
  2. My Money Five, https://www.mymoney.gov/mymoneyfive/Pages/mymoneyfive.aspxThe Five Principles

Making the Most of Your Money Part 5- Borrow

There are five principles, which we will call building blocks, you need to know to make the most of your money.  The blocks represent the key principles to keep in mind as you make day-to-day decisions and plan your financial goals.  In this post, I will review the fourth block, Borrow.  1  2

Borrow

Sometimes it is necessary to borrow for major purchases like an education, a car, a house, or maybe even to meet unexpected expenses. Your ability to get a loan depends on your credit history, and that depends largely on your track record at repaying what you have borrowed in the past and paying your bills on time.  So, be careful to keep your credit history strong.

Actions You Can Take

  • Track your borrowing habits.
  • Pay your bills on time.
  • When you need to borrow, be sure to plan, understand and shop around for a loan with a low Annual Percentage Rate (APR).
  • Learn about credit and how to use it effectively.
  • Pay attention to your credit history, as reflected by your credit score and on your credit report.

Hints and Tips

  • Borrowing money is a way to purchase something now and pay for it over time. However, you usually pay “interest” when you borrow money. The longer you take to pay back the money you borrowed, the more you will pay in interest.
  • It pays to shop around to get the best deal on a loan. Compare loan terms from several lenders, and it is okay to negotiate the terms.
  • When repaying a loan, it may be better to pay more than the minimum amount due each month, so you will have to pay less in interest over the life of the loan.
  • One of your most important aids when shopping for a loan is the APR – the Annual Percentage Rate. This is the total cost, including interest charges and fees, described as a yearly rate.
  • Paying your bills on time will help increase your credit score. Even if you fell into trouble with borrowing in the past, you can get on solid footing and rebuild your credit history by making regular payments as agreed.
  • You are entitled to a free copy of your credit report every 12 months from each of the three nationwide credit bureaus. Go to AnnualCreditReport.com or call toll-free 1-877-322-8228 to order the free reports. Beware of imposter sites.

The next building block is “Spend.”  Don’t wait, go to the blog post now.


Spotlight Resources

Consumer Information: Credit and Loans

Free Credit Reports

Consumer’s Guide to Credit Cards

 

 

###Larry Marvin
LifeCrafter – Money $ense

  1. ©2017 Larry Marvin, Image Credit:15948082584_c91d1c8d13_k.jpg
  2. My Money Five, https://www.mymoney.gov/mymoneyfive/Pages/mymoneyfive.aspxThe Five Principles