We here at Taconnet Federal Credit Union are determined to help our members achieve their financial goals. We know that each of our members are in different stages of their financial lives, but there are certain personal financing tips and trick that we find are helpful no matter what your situation is. Here are a few that we choose to live by, and hope you do too!
Set a Specific Goal
We've found that if you don't set yourself a specific goal, you're less likely to succeed. For instance, you may want to set aside more money this year in savings. Be specific when you're setting a goal for the amount of money you want to put aside. It will ensure that you have a number that you're looking to put aside. Sure, you could say something like,
"I want to set aside a lot more money this year,"
You might succeed...but how will you actually track how successful you are? If you say something more like,
"I really want to set aside (x number of dollars),"
You'll feel more accomplished when you've reached your goals!
Wants vs. Needs
Remind yourself that there is a difference between wants and needs. You may need a new pair of shoes. You want a specific pair, but realistically, you can find a similar pair that's less expensive. You need a new car...but you want a brand new BMW Z3...sometimes we have to understand that in certain stages of life sacrifices have to be made. It may mean purchasing something that's not as flashy, but still provides the same amount of reliability. Now, that's not to say that you shouldn't "Treat Yo' Self" once in a while, but know your limits!
Prepare for the Unexpected Expenses
You'll be hard pressed live an extended period of time before a bill comes up that you weren't expecting to pay. It could be a medical bill. It could be an auto repair or home repair. It could be (we hope not) having to be bailed out of jail. It could be lots of things, but the reality is that this year you'll more than likely be paying off a bill that you didn't have at the beginning of the year. PREPARE FOR IT! Set aside money for an emergency fund so when something like that arises, you won't be left scraping to make ends meet because you were blindsided with a bill.
Refinancing Your Loan can Save you Money
You might not realize this, but if you have debt in other areas, you should consider refinancing with your local financial institution. In many cases, your high debt loans can be refinanced for a lower interest rate, and lower monthly payment. As a credit union, we're always looking for ways to serve our members better, and refinancing is one of the many ways we're able to offer help!
How do you keep your finances in check? We'd love to hear from you!
-The Taconnet Team