We all have certain financial habits. Some are good and others are just plain bad.
When you make the decision to focus on your financial health, you have to take a good look at your financial habits.
This focus allows you to eliminate bad habits and consciously adopt new financial habits that will help you increase your wealth.
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Financial Habits of Successful Woman
When you study the financial habits of successful women you will find a lot of similarities. Here are 7 financial habits that you should adopt in 2019 to help you stop wasting money and find success on your financial journey.
#1 Have a Budget
The first step to managing your personal finances is to set up a realistic budget for where you are right now.
There are multiple tools available to help you create and manage your budget. You can use a printable budget worksheet, an app, or a simple spreadsheet to create your budget.
Some banks also have budgeting features built into their online banking applications.
Popular Budgeting Apps
Choose the tool that is the easiest for you. For some, this might be keeping a budget notebook. The tool you use isn’t important. The steps to developing a budget are essentially the same no matter the method.
Related Content: Why You Need a Household Budget
#2 Track Your Spending
Learn how you spend your money. The best way to do this is by writing down everything you spend money on – whether it’s cash, credit, or a debit card. It doesn’t matter if it’s 1 buck or 100 bucks; you need to track it and categorize it.
List all your fixed expenses first. These are items that cannot be adjusted like your rent, mortgage, car payment, utilities and so forth.
Then make a separate list with variable spendings such as eating out, entertainment, groceries, and gas. If you want to do this fast, you can look at your past records on your bank statements and credit card accounts to organize it all.
Related Content: 15 Free Finance Printables to Keep You on Track
#3 Save Money
Saving money is essential to your financial stability. Saving money consists of having an emergency fund and regular savings.
One of the best defenses against job loss, illness, and other problems is an emergency fund. An emergency fund is money set aside that is in a normal bank account that you can access quickly.
For example, if your car breaks down, that is when you’ll use your emergency fund.
Related Content: 50 Ways for Women to Save Money
#4 Eliminate Debt
One of the biggest factors in financial issues people face is debt. People from all income brackets tend to have too much debt.
Even if you’re a six-figure earner, you may have debt that is causing you to feel broke. It’s important to limit the amount and type of debt you take on.
The most popular method of debt repayment is to organize your debts from highest interest rate to lowest interest rate.
You begin by paying off those debts with the highest interest rates because you will save more money on interest over time.
As you pay off one high interest debt, you move to the next debt on the list.
It is also a good idea to pay off any small debts that you can take care of quickly. These are considered low hanging fruit.
You can easily pay them and get them off of your list. Getting rid of items on your list can be very motivating.
#5 Plan for Retirement
One thing you shouldn’t overlook is planning and saving for your retirement. It’s very easy to say when you’re young that you won’t ever retire, but you may need to.
Your job may be killed off due to technology, you may develop illnesses and be unable to work, or you may change your mind and decide you’d rather spend your golden years traveling than working.
At the very least, start saving now for retirement so that you have a choice.
Tips for saving for retirement:
Maximize Your Employer Contributions – If you have a job with a retirement savings plan, invest the maximum amount that the company matches. If they match up to 5% of your income, you should donate 5% of your income.
Open Your Own IRA – You can easily open your own IRA through your credit union or via another method. Donate the maximum amount you’re allowed by law.
You may want to talk to a financial planner to help you with this. Most credit unions offer some financial planning free with your account.
Set Up Direct Deposit – Don’t make yourself think about it too much. Once you’ve set your intentions and budget for your retirement savings, do it automatically so that you never think about it again.
Just set it up and forget it. Don’t micromanage it or try to figure it out.
You can also contribute to bonds, CDs, and other investments but if you do nothing else, use your employer’s system and an individual retirement account via your credit union based on the year you want to retire, and your projected needs based on your budget and your credit union’s recommendations.
#6 Live Frugally
Frugal living is not going without or buying cheap. Living the frugal lifestyle simple means spending less by being resourceful and not wasteful.
You can live a frugal life without depriving yourself of the things that make you happy. Living frugally allows you to spend less to create a life that makes you and your family happy.
#7 Start Investing
Investing your money allows your money to work for you. If you want to truly become financial savvy, investing is the way to go.
Statistically, women are less likely to invest then men. Investing will allow you to reach financial equality, achieve your financial goals, and ensure you are ready for retirement.
Simply saving money is not enough.
Related Content: Top 5 Ways for Women to Start Investing
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