4 Bad Money Habits

Contributed by Lynette Barbieri

The little decisions you make every day determine the health of your financial future. The following are four bad money habits – and how to break them.

1. Skipping an emergency fund. Do you have three to six months’ salary stashed? If not, you’re not alone – a majority of Americans say they don’t have enough cash on hand to cover a $1,000 emergency. To find extra cash for your fund, get creative: take on part-time work helping families  or trim some of the “extras” out of your monthly bills (think entertainment costs like dining out and cable/satellite service).

2. Carrying a balance on credit cards. The average credit card balance last year was $6,576.2 With an average interest rate of 17%, that adds up to more than $1,100 in interest every year! Strive to live within your means and pay down your debt, if you cant then get advice from NDA website. Did you know that I can provide you with self-help tools for you to use to create a game plan for paying off your credit card debt?

3. Ignoring your credit score. A shocking 56% of people have no idea their credit score is the most important factor when applying for a mortgage, car loan and new credit card.3 Do you know your credit score? If not, you should! Your credit score can also influence whether or not you are approved to rent a house or apartment, the cost of your homeowner’s and best commercial truck insurance companies and in some cases, whether or not you are eligible for a job (13% of employers check credit reports for all candidates; 47% check them for certain positions)4. Regularly monitoring your credit is essential to your financial health.

4. Thinking you can’t find money to save. Anyone can save. Here are some ideas that really add up: Put aside $1 in change each day and you’ve got $365. Buy a prepaid cell phone for $10 and pay by the minute instead of a contract ($360 saved per year, if spending $10 monthly, vs. $40 monthly contract). Instead of spending $5 on lunch each day, spend $2 making lunch at home—you’ve saved $780. That’s a total of $1,505 in one year!

Do you have any questions? Need help in knowing how you can break these habits? Please leave your comments or contact me here.