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Harris-Courage & Grady, PLLC July 22, 2016

Habits are the things we do regularly, often without thinking about them. Think about the habits you have about spending your money. If you have any of these six damaging money habits, it’s time to change them.

  1. Spending without a budget. A budget is the number one financial tool to take control of your money, keep you out of debt, and help you reach your financial goals. If you don’t have a budget, take some time today to create one. There are many free budgeting apps, or you can sit down with a pencil and paper. Your budget will make sure you never spend more than you earn, and tell your money where you want it to go.

  2. Carrying credit card balances. Credit cards have very high interest rates and the longer you take to repay them, the more they cost you. If you pay late, then you add on fees and put yourself even deeper in the hole. If you have more credit card debt than you feel you can repay, filing bankruptcy can erase your debt and offer you a chance for a fresh start. Give our office a call today.

  3. Spending before you save. If you don’t make saving your first financial priority, there will never be enough money at the end of the month left to save. When you create your budget, decide on an amount to save every month. Even saving as little as $10 will add up and make a difference. Take your savings out first, and then use the rest of your money to pay your expenses.

  4. Neglecting your IRA. Someday you will want to retire. What will you live on? The sooner you start an IRA, the more interest you will earn and the more comfortable your retirement can be. If you don’t have an IRA, contact a financial advisor and set one up as soon as you can. If you have one, make sure you are contributing to it regularly. Small, consistent contributions will add up.

  5. Buying new. If you need to make a major purchase, such as a car, appliance, or furniture, look into buying something that is lightly used. You can save as much as half the price by buying something that is in like-new condition. Don’t waste your money buying new when you could get something equally good for half the price.

  6. Overdoing small purchases. A dollar here, five dollars there, can add up to a lot at the end of the month. How much are you spending on small impulse purchases? This includes things like coffee, candy, sodas, and magazines. Individually they don’t cost a lot, but if you buy them frequently they can be like a hole in your pocket. Make sure your small spending doesn’t turn into a large category for your budget.

Are any of those bad money habits familiar to you? You can change them! Decide today to improve your financial life. If you’d like to talk to a professional about ways to improve your money habits and overcome your financial problems, give our office a call.