Being silly with your money might seem like a lot of fun when you’re having great banter with your mates in the pub every night, driving expensive vehicles and travelling your way around the world, but there will come a time when you wish you’d been a bit more careful with your cash, and actually being smart with your money doesn’t mean that the good times have to stop rolling.
If you’ve decided now is the time to be smarter with your money, here are some simple steps to take:
Work Out Why You Spend
If you want to use your money well, it’s a really good idea to first work out why you spend. Do you buy flash cars to impress your mates? Do you spend lots on travel because you value the experience? Do you booze too much because you’re otherwise bored in life? Knowing why you spend will help you to work out which costs you can cut down on and which are worth keeping or even spending more money on (being smart with your money doesn’t mean you can’t spend it). Once you know what you want to keep and where you want to make savings, you can create a sensible budget that truly works for you.
Being organised will help you to deal with your finances more effectively. If you know how much is coming in and going out each month, you’ll be able to plan accordingly. Apps like Monzo are great for getting organised as they allow you to set up different pots of money for different things, so you can have one pot for general savings, one for your holiday fund, one for car payments and so on. It’s a really good way to sort your finances effectively.
Buying used is a great way to avoid depreciation costs and get the most value for your money, particularly when it comes to cars. Companies like Trade Price Cars offer great finance deals on used cars, which makes them very attractive, for example. However, it’s not just cars that you’re better off buying used everything from clothing to electronics can be bought second-hand, and providing you buy things in good condition, you could save a fortune without experiencing any problems and put your money to better use elsewhere.
Don’t Use Credit Cards
Unless it’s for a mortgage and maybe a car if that’s necessary, or it means the difference between eating and paying the essential bills or not, avoid using credit. Unless you have an interest free offer, you’ll be charged a premium for using your credit card, which means everything you buy will cost you more. It’s an obvious point, but one that many people ignore.
An exception to this rule might be if you have a credit card that offers cash back or other perks such as air miles. Doing all of your spendings on them is a smart move PROVIDING you pay the balance off in full at the end of every month, thus avoiding any interest.
Be smart, have a better financial future!