Personal finance basics to tackle TODAY

Sun, Jun 19, 2011

Financial Advice

If you are like many of us, you probably visit several websites and read financial literature frequently. Many of us are really reading these articles to kill time, even though they often have useful advice. Reading is a form of entertainment, after all… but reading won’t do you any good if you don’t take action. Here are eight basic personal finance tasks you really ought to do in addition to reading.

Get back to work.

There’s a better than 50/50 chance that you are reading this during your work hours. What are you doing? Don’t you want to show your boss that you deserve the pay you are getting? The good news is that since many of your coworkers are probably slacking off, it’s probably not too tough to look awesome in comparison. This can only help you during annual review and salary increase considerations.

Clip coupons.

While extreme couponing is probably not for any of us, there are advantages of clipping coupons. Whether it’s combing through the pages of an online coupons site or reading the terms and conditions of every coupon that comes through the mail, coupons are well worth the time.

Make sure your bills are paid.

A no-brainer right? Yet billions and billions of dollars are spent on late fees every year in America alone.

Figure out how to contribute more to your retirement accounts.

Max out your retirement accounts. When you are done, try to reach the limit earlier in the year so you have more money to add to your taxable investment accounts.

Plan your retirement.

How many of you have planned for retirement yet? Do you know how much you will need? If you don’t, how do you know how much you should save?

Start a budget.

I know, the process to track your spending sucks, but it gets easier. And without one, it’s almost impossible to guess at how much you need to spend. You might even be able to save more money so you can spend on things you truly care about.

Make an effort to build a good relationship with your family and friends.

This takes time to build, so start early and be generous. Being helpful doesn’t cost you money per se, but you can choose to have much more free time if you have money, and being generous with money goes a long way in your relationships.

Make more money.

If you’ve completed all the basics, why not try to find more ways to make money? Do it for yourself, your family, your children, or charity. We know that money is only a tool, but it is, after all, a very useful one.


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