Providing a sound financial future for your family can seem like a game of Monopoly. Just as you think you’re getting ahead, you experience a financial setback that has you tightening your belt. Too frequently it can sometimes feel like an endless battle for economic freedom. However, while the road is bumpy and seemingly endless, these five lifestyle changes below can keep your financial woes to a minimum and help you achieve financial independence:
If you find yourself short until payday, or an emergency situation has arisen, don’t choose the first loan provider you see. Look for a safe alternative to payday loans that won’t have you locked into in endless repayments, hidden fees, high interest and strict repayment criteria. It’s all too seductive to choose what appears to be easy, fast money. However, the reality is that not all loan providers have your best interests at heart. Choose one that does.
Does your family know what money is coming in, and how much of it is going out? If you’re not in charge of your bank balance, it’s easy to get into strife. Know what’s coming in, what’s going out, and where you can cut costs.
For example, 20% of Americans dine out at least once per week. If you fall into this category, you could be saving your family thousands of dollars by staying in and sparing the restaurant tabs for special occasions. Having your finger well and truly on the pulse of your finances allows you to know where you can cut spending for the sake of your bottom line.
It seems like a given – only spend as much as you have – but as close to 40 percent of American households have credit card debt, it’s clear to see some families are pulling the plastic out a little too frequently. Understanding your monthly budget and bank balance gives you a guideline of the maximum you have to spend and put you in a better position to ensure that there is a little left over when each month comes to an end to gradually build up savings that can serve as a financial buffer.
Get a Second Job
If you can’t seem to help your family stay out of financial trouble, it might be time to get a second job. While you certainly don’t want to stretch yourself too thin, the digital age has opened a plethora of opportunities to earn extra cash from home, in your spare time. Over 7.6 million workers juggle multiple roles, so it’s not uncommon to wear two hats for the sake of your family’s financial future.
Food is growing more expensive by the year, often faster than the overall inflation rate. Therefore, it’s crucial to always be on the lookout for ways in which to cut that grocery bill back. You can do this by making a meal planner to ensure you buy nothing unnecessary and choose low-cost, filling food items your family will love. Look for new recipes that give a fresh take to staples like pasta and rice, or try your hand at baking rather than buying pre-made bakery goods? There are plenty of smart ways you can save your family money.
While tightening the purse strings might seem like a great sacrifice for the sake of your family’s financial freedom, it pays dividends over time. Work to reduce your debt, choose your loan providers wisely, and before long; you’ll find the future is already looking brighter.