Regularly examining your finances is a good habit to ensure an improved financial future. These tips can help you get your finances to a better spot to live a better life.
- Start a budget (and stick to it!) The first step to having a better financial future is making and sticking to a budget. There are plenty of free tools to help you get started. After figuring out your budget, you will be able to make sure your money is going where you want it to go and where it benefits you the most.
- Pay off your credit cards each month
Making an effort to pay off your credit cards each month can have a tremendous impact on your financial well-being. One positive of paying off your credit card each month is that you will pay less interest to the credit card company. This means more money in your bank account to save or use for other items. Another plus: it can improve your credit score.
- Research any investment opportunity before investing
Before investing your hard-earned money in any financial product, do some research. It is important to know about risks, possible rewards, fees and more. Know what questions to ask and how to research the investments you are considering. This research extends to insurance products. Ask your independent agent questions to make sure you are getting the coverage you need to protect your family and your belongings.
- Start your emergency fund now
Whether you need it for larger or smaller emergencies – everything from losing your job to unexpectedly replacing the transmission in your car – an emergency fund is critical to your financial well-being. The amount of money you need in your emergency fund will be up to you, but many advisers recommend that you reserve enough to pay living expenses for three to six months. Your emergency fund helps keep you out of future debt and on the financial path you want.
- Reduce your auto expenses
Having reliable transportation is important, but having a car with all the bells and whistles that puts you deep in debt might not be worth it. An older, but dependable, car with a lower monthly payment can free you to put your money toward other important things, such as retirement, a college fund or your emergency fund.
- Hire a knowledgeable financial adviser
Managing and investing your money can be time-consuming and confusing. Having a financial adviser who fits well with your family and understands your goals can put you on a path to better financial outcomes. Choosing a financial adviser can seem daunting, but doing a little research can benefit your family for years to come.
- Plan for the future with your insurance policies
Making sure you have all of your insurance policies in place can protect your family if something unexpected or tragic happens. Another policy to consider is a personal umbrella policy, which works with existing insurance policies to expand and add extra layers of protection you may need. Consider, too, disability insurance to protect your lifestyle. With this coverage, the person affected can focus on their recovery while receiving a monthly benefit payment. Talk with your independent agent about getting the policies that are right for you.
- Plan for retirement now
Whether retirement seems like a long way off or right around the corner, it is important to start saving now. Every person’s savings goal will be different, but the longer you save, the more money you can count on for retirement. Even small amounts put away each paycheck can add up after many years. The Securities and Exchange Commission also has a savings goal calculator.
- Talk finances with your spouse
If you are married, talk over your finances with your spouse. Being aligned and in agreement with each other can reduce fights and lead to a healthier marriage.
- Examine your recurring expenses
Getting control of your recurring expenses can make a huge difference in your budget and financial well-being. Examine these expenses and lower them when you can. Every little bit adds up and can give you more financial freedom.
Neither The Cincinnati Insurance Company nor its affiliates or representatives offer tax, financial planning or legal advice. Consult with your financial adviser or attorney about your specific situation. For policy service and additional information, speak to an independent agent representing The Cincinnati Insurance Companies. Not all coverages are available in all states.