MONEY MISTAKES TO AVOID PART 2
Like we mentioned in part one, learning now to navigate the pitfalls of money management can be difficult. Here is the second part of money mistakes to avoid to secure your financial future!
According to CNN Money, 60% of Americans don’t have enough in savings to cover a surprise bill of $500 to $1000. This is a bit alarming. Emergency funds make your life better by keeping you prepared and giving peace of mind. They also keep you out of the credit-debt payoff-rack up credit again-spin cycle. Emergency funds make you feel more secure and financially empowered. Get an emergency fund. Even if it is just $1k to start, it will go a long way.
CREDIT CARDS DEBT
Even if you have a small emergency fund, it can be hard to resist the siren call of lucrative credit card reward points, travel points, and cash back. Many begin trying to leverage these cards without really knowing how to use them effectively. Only a handful of Americans have never battled credit card debt, which can be scary given that many also contend with many other types of debt especially student loans. Common habits are overspending, going on luxurious vacations, or using the card to fund an emergency. Research your cards, talk to a financial advisor and if nothing else, make sure to make all payments on time.
The hardest battle to fight is lifestyle inflation. You shouldn’t have to eat cereal and steal toilet paper from work forever. But it gets very exciting, very quickly when your standard of living goes up. Don’t give in too much. Lest you could wind up living paycheck to paycheck. Create a budget and try to live within your means.
EMOTIONAL MONEY DECISIONS
Of all the mistakes on the list, this is arguably one of the hardest to avoid because money is inherently emotional. And even if you’re normally great with money, nobody is perfect. Whether you move in with someone you won’t wind up with for the long haul, follow a significant other to a new city, go back to school, take a job that pays less because you think it will land you someplace better: these are all emotional money decisions. Risks. Sometimes these payoff, and sometimes they don’t. But these emotional money decisions are often the ones that teach us most about who we are, where we want to go, and what kind of life we want to lead. This in and of itself can be really beautiful, so live prudently when you can, but also go with your heart sometimes. Money be damned.