Every now and then, we all run into a stroke of bad luck, and our personal finances get thrown haphazardly into the air. This can be an extremely daunting time, and will send most people into a sudden, catatonic panic that can be hard to get out of. While you may not be able to control the ups and downs of the economy, there are certainly steps you can take to see yourself through rough financial times. Here are a few smart moves you should consider.
First of all, try to eliminate any of the non-essential things you’d usually spend your money on. One of the most common bad habits people have when it comes to their personal finances is spending on auto-pilot. This takes the form of impulse-buying, Amazon binges, and various other knee-jerk buys. While this doesn’t matter so much when you’re in a comfortable financial position, it’s certainly not something I can condone when you’re trying to dig yourself out of a rut! Pay closer attention to your spending habits, and try to cut out anything that isn’t 100% necessary. It won’t be comfortable to make the transition. However, it’s nothing you can’t get used to, and will help you a lot in the long run. It’s also a great time to teach your kids about how wants differ from needs! You can read more about cutting down on impulse buying at thesimpledollar.com.
Your next step is to pin down a go-to emergency cash reserve. Every year, most families have to come up with thousands of dollars’ worth of unexpected bills. If you’re already straining your home budget when these things pop up, it can be the catalyst for some serious long-term financial issues. Obviously, there’s no way you can plan what your money issues will be, or when they’re going to occur. However, what you can do is plan in advance by finding a reliable source of income to see you through. Right now, try setting out a plan for saving up a year’s worth of living expenses in a range of different, flexible vessels. Regular bank accounts, CDs, and money marketing accounts are among some of the best ways to store up your capital. Sure, quick-fix loan services like personalmoneystore.com can be very helpful in a tight spot. However, it’s always better to have your own capital to lean on.
Next, make sure you’re safeguarding your career prospects. Hopefully, you haven’t come to this post because you’ve been laid off in a rough patch for the company. If you still have your job, then this is your main safety net which will save you from even worse financial issues. Don’t let it slip through your fingers! When you go to work, make sure you’re remaining enthusiastic, productive and engaged. You may also be able to help yourself through this hard financial period by making a point to network with other professionals at the office. Make sure that you’re standing out from your peers, and that everyone’s aware that you want to be a part of the team. When you establish yourself as an indispensable member of the workforce, you won’t have to worry about losing your job, and your financial situation becoming even worse. You can start this off by analyzing how much you’re worth to the company; what you contribute to projects, or how much money you save them. Then, think about any areas where your skills might be lacking, and work on them. Start reading industry blogs and journals, and staying up-to-date on the latest developments. By bringing these up when you’re within earshot of your higher-ups, you’ll make yourself stand out amongst your more apathetic peers. You may also want to consider joining a local professional’s organization. The networking you do here will secure your current job and make things easier when you need another one.
Finally, do a quick review of your insurance. It’s a massive financial blunder to let yourself become under or over-insured. You need to make sure that your policies are somewhere in the middle, providing all the cover you could need for the lowest possible price. Shop around for new policies, and bump up your deductibles to the highest possible amount. This will make it a little more comfortable for you to pay out of your pocket, if and when you need to. You also need to make sure you’re getting credit for anything relevant. This can include having a good record as a driver, air bags, car alarms and so on.