Money worries are one of the most common sources of stress among US adults. With many people currently in a state of flux due to the Covid-19 crisis, it’s more important than ever before to try and manage your money and plan for the future as best you can. Here are some tips to help you figure out your finances.

Take stock of your current situation

If somebody asked you how much money you have in your checking account, how much you owe in loans or mortgage payments or how much you have spent on your credit cards, would you be able to provide accurate estimates? Many of us are guilty of burying our heads in the sand when it comes to our finances. If you don’t check your balance frequently and you ignore statements that come through the mail, now is the time to take stock of your current situation. Write down how much and who you owe, and start using a budget to manage spending and reduce expenses. If you do have debts that don’t include a mortgage or a loan you’re on track to pay off, start trying to clear them. If you use a credit card on a regular basis, for example, you could find yourself in a situation where you struggle to make a dent in the balance due to high interest fees. 

Think about the future

You might have a stable income now, but will you be financially secure and comfortable when you retire? If you’re planning to work for the next 20, 30, or 40 years, you might not think that you need to worry about retirement planning now, but it’s always beneficial to prepare in advance. You want to make sure that you have sufficient funds to ensure that money worries don’t affect you in later life. If you don’t already have plans in place, there are various measures and initiatives you can look into to save for your retirement. For those who already pay into a plan, it’s critical to understand how it works and how much they stand to earn. You may need to factor in additional considerations such as deferred compensation and fluctuations in rates that may affect your income later in life. Retirement planning and taxation can be complex, so it’s best to seek advice if you’re unsure whether you’re taking the right steps, or you need help with setting up or growing a retirement fund. 

Make sure you have a plan B

In an ideal world, nobody would need a plan B, but life doesn’t always pan out as you hoped or expected. The pandemic highlights the fact that none of us know what is around the corner. While we all hope that plan A will work, it’s beneficial to be prepared for the worst. If you were to lose your job, your pet needed an operation, or you had to pay medical bills unexpectedly, could you cope financially? You can protect yourself and your family by investing in insurance and putting money aside for emergencies. 

Money is a subject on many peoples’ minds at the moment. If you’re looking to plan for the future and stabilize spending, hopefully, these pointers will come in handy. 

By Erica Buteau

Change Agent. Daydream Believer. Maker. Creative. Likes love, peace and Jeeping. Dislikes winter, paper cuts and war. She/Her/Hers.

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