Saturday, October 17, 2009

Looking after the Pennies...

Looking after the Pennies...Times are pretty hard at present, price rises and unemployment are forever occupying the headlines and so its quite natural most of us are concerned about our money. Never has there been a better time to give your finances a complete service and save a little cash in the process.

Monitor your Spends.

The first thing you should do is analyze exactly what you spend your money on. The best way to do this is by creating a spending diary which you can update at the end of the day with exactly what you bought and what it cost. After about a month, sit down and review your months spending and identify areas savings can be made. Believe me, this simple little exercise will throw up some surprising results and may save you a fortune on its own.

Review your Subscriptions

Okay, you’ve decided to keep your gym membership as you do go once or maybe twice a week but make sure you’re getting value for money. I visit the gym once a week and so a membership is wasted on me as I pay per visit. Work out if paying per visit is better for you and don’t just consider the gym you are at, look at all of them.

Perhaps you have a contract cell phone with 1000 free minutes but only use 300. Question all your outgoings with “am I getting value for money?”

Keep a Close Eye on Your Accounts

This doesn’t mean check them every waking hour, you just need to know how much you have at any given time. If you know this, you are more likely to make better spending decisions instead of throwing caution to the wind. You will also be less likely to use unwanted credit which will be very expensive.

Get Saving

Even if you have nothing in mind to save for, get some money in the bank every time you get a paycheck. Life has a funny habit of throwing up some unpleasant little surprises every now and then and when it does, you will be much better prepared with savings to fall back on. You don’t have to put hundreds a month away, just whatever you can manage.

Spend a Little

This may seem to be going against the whole post but you have to allow yourself a little time to unwind. If you restrict your spending too much, you run the risk of not sticking to your plan, so be realistic and have a night out.

A lot personal finance problems arise when people neglect their money and spending. By spending just an hour a week organizing your cash flow, you are likely to save a fortune in the long run.

More Financial Information and Resources:
Think Money
Debt Consolidation Care

photo credit, r-z

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