Whether you’re hoping to move this year or just looking to have a little more in the bank, here are five quick tips to make sure that 2020 is the year when you meet your next big financial goals.
- Figure out exactly how much you make. To truly know where your finances stand, you need to sit down and calculate how much you earn after taxes and benefits are taken out. Make a chart to outline how much you take home per year, per month and per paycheck. With a clear view of the amount of income you have, this chart will be a foundation for your budget planning.
- Budget, budget, budget! Now this step may be tedious, but it’s incredibly important if you’re serious about saving money. Be ‘old fashioned’ and use an Excel sheet or download helpful apps like “You Need a Budget” or “Mint.” One of the most successful techniques is the “50/30/20 budget,” where 50% of your paycheck is for fixed expenses like mortgage or rent, 20% is for savings and the remaining 30% can be used for going out to dinner and other variable expenses.
- Hands off your savings. It can be hard, but your savings are there for a reason – try your best to make sure those funds stay there. While dipping into savings occasionally to help pay off an unexpected medical bill or other emergencies is understandable, tapping into your savings to purchase a new outfit or other impulse buys will only hurt your longer-term goals.
- Commit to a savings plan. If your focus for 2020 is on saving money for a big expense like a vacation or a new house, you need to stick to a savings plan throughout the year. Start by figuring out when you want to make this big purchase, and then calculate exactly how much you need to save per paycheck to have the money you need in time. Make sure it's an attainable amount – there's no use in setting a goal you can't achieve. From there, make a plan to take a certain amount from each paycheck. If you don’t trust yourself, you can set up your online banking to automatically pull money out of checking and move it into savings for you.
- Think about your spending habits. Avoiding looking at your spending breakdown may help with buyer’s remorse, but it is needed to make a change! Check out what your most frequent purchases are and evaluate if there are any small changes you can make – think about how much you could save in a month by skipping that $5 coffee each morning! For those who love to shop online, impose a 24-hour limit on impulse purchases. Taking this time may help you find a cheaper option online or realize that you don’t truly need another pair of black heels.
We hope these tips will help you reach your goals this year – happy saving!
Getting closer to saving for that down payment? Or maybe you’re not exactly sure how much you need just yet. Let us help you figure that out! Connect with us today and a New Home Consultant can help you find your new neighborhood and get your financing questions answered.
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