Every day brings you many financial decisions. What amount should you spend on lunch each day? Is your health insurance at the lowest rate? Can you afford a vacation? It’s impossible to live a simple life.
You can make your life easier by being more aware of your finances. Your bank account is only one part of your financial picture. Take a look at your financial statements and make these nine financial decisions. You’ll feel more confident in your financial situation once you’re done.
You get the freedom to drive anywhere you want. However, this can also mean that you could face countless headaches or thousands of dollars in repair costs.
If you purchase a used car or your manufacturer’s warranty ends, an extended warranty could save your bacon.
Modern cars have sophisticated software that is capable of malfunctioning. With an extended warranty, however, you can rest assured that your future high-dollar costs will be covered.
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Your extended warranty covers major expenses, but you should still save money for routine maintenance. For the schedule, consult your owner’s manual. Ask your dealer for information about general costs. You won’t be short of money if you set aside money every month to cover these expenses.
This same approach can be used for personal care and pets. You can make sure these expenses are covered so you have discretionary funds in case of unforeseen circumstances.
You often have the option to negotiate an extended warranty on your home. Ask if the seller does not offer it.
Home warranties are available to cover your primary mechanical components, such as your HVAC system and appliances. These items are usually not covered by homeowners insurance. They can be costly to replace or fix. Most policies last for one year but can be renewed at a reasonable rate.
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Your credit score is a key part of your financial position and could be a deal-breaker in your life’s financial prospects. Find out what factors contribute to your credit score and how you can improve.
Each of the major credit reporting agencies is allowed to give you one credit report free of charge each year. Develop a plan to improve your score if it is low. You should start with the things that are most damaging to your scores, such as late payments and high credit utilization.
You can take steps to correct them (e.g. set up auto-pay or pay down a balance) and you will see improvement in a few weeks.
Open enrollment is only available once per year. It may be tempting to only sign up for the essential benefits. However, you should not skip the life insurance coverage.
Your employer may offer you the lowest rates for vital coverage such as life and disability insurance. You can typically get coverage worth thousands of dollars for a few dollars a paycheck. This simple decision will ensure that your family is taken care of and your obligations are protected.
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You will eventually become disabled, regardless of whether you like it or not. Make sure you save now for your retirement and take advantage of the power of compound interest. You should save at least the amount offered by your employer for your 401K plan.
Take the time to review your options and focus on pre-packaged target-date funds. These funds eliminate the guesswork from investing and allow you to adjust your portfolio as you approach retirement.
Although debt is an inevitable evil, it’s important to learn how to manage it. Keep track of all your debt obligations to help you prioritize your repayment strategy.
Auto-pay can help you make timely payments, as we mentioned earlier. Auto-pay can also be used to pay off the principal balance of one of your debts. Your debt payment strategy can be automated to ensure that you stay on track no matter how busy your life becomes.
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Emergencies can strike when we least expect it — that’s why they are called emergencies. Plan and save three months for your essential expenses, including housing, utility bills, food, and transport.
Refrain from using all your annual salary increase to pay for the things you enjoy. Instead, set up an automatic savings account to redirect that money towards your emergency fund. Once you have saved three months worth of expenses, reward yourself with a well-done job.
Even if your job is satisfactory, it’s important to keep track of the current rate for the work that you do. Compare your salary to what is reported on Glassdoor. Next, track your annual performance review as well as merit increases the same way you track your work deliverables.
Your career should be treated as a business enterprise. Advocate for your promotion in title and salary. Discuss your situation with your supervisor to determine if you are being underpaid and negotiate a fair rate.
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It takes time and thought to make financial decisions. To take an example: Should you rent or purchase? You can either stay at your job or follow your entrepreneurial dreams. Invest in stocks, bonds, or tangible assets such as real estate. These choices require extensive research and consideration.
Certain financial decisions are so simple they are almost no-brainers. Take advantage of the low-hanging fruits in the financial world. You’ll feel more at ease once you have made these nine decisions.
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