Personal finances are exactly that: personal.
People aren’t always willing to discuss finances, so it’s tough to know what you need for your own personal financial health.
There’s a bit more to it than income and savings. You should feel like you’re in control of your finances. You should be prepared for life’s little financial surprises, like a car repair or emergency room visit. You should be on track to meet your financial goals for retirement. You should also have the freedom to make decisions that can make your life more enjoyable.
The first savings goal to make is one month of your expenses. You can't predict disaster, so it's smart to have enough set aside for your living expenses if disaster strikes. Savings benchmarks extend to three, six, nine and twelve months of living expenses.
Be sure to pay attention to your spending. Watch your money. Wealthy people stay wealthy by having control of their money. Spend less than you earn and invest the rest. Investing doesn't mean buying a bigger television or a new car. Your investments can be stocks, bonds, property or yourself. Reinvest in yourself so you have more marketable skills, can get a raise or a better job that gives you even more money.
Before you make a purchase consider how many hours you have to work to pay it off. That may help you curb your spending and determine if the purchase is really worth it for you. Don't buy something just because you can put it on your credit card.
Aim to save 20% of your income after taxes. If 20% seems impossible, start by saving something.
Check on your investment accounts once a quarter because the market fluxuates daily. Check your bank accounts daily.
Listen in as financial expert Eric McWhinnie discusses what you need to do to improve your personal financial health.