Tackling the personal finances of procrastinators | The Bronx Daily

Getting your financial situation in order can seem overwhelming. Even when you know what you need to do (not go into debt and save money), but how do you do it? How do you prioritize? If you’re the type of person who tends to get bogged down by these choices, then rather than trying to optimize how you organize your finances, choose one or more of the things below to work on.

Pay off the debt

If you are not in debt, stay out of it, except for to buy a house and get an education. If you are in debt, you should try to pay it back. Doing so aggressively, if possible, is usually best, but you can also strive to pay off debt while pursuing other financial goals. First, make sure your payments are high enough to account for interest rates.

Invest

There are many different facets to investing. Some might not specifically view the retirement account they have through their employer as an investment, even though that is precisely what it is. Retirement funds can be a great way to get tax benefits, and you can use a self-directed IRA to invest in alternative assets. These are great choices for a retirement account because investing in real estate can increase in value over the long term with these generally existing accounts. You can see online how savvy investors can get the most out of real estate investments using a self-directed IRA.

Build your emergency fund

You need an emergency fund of at least three to six months to cover unexpected expenses ranging from vet or car repair bills to long periods of unemployment, medical bills, etc. Should you build your emergency fund before investing? Yes probably. Are you struggling to get there because you’re more enthusiastic about investing? If you are facing this type of mental block, start by building up your emergency fund to just $500 and work your way up slowly from there. Regardless of the rate at which you make this fund, it should be available to you in an easily liquidable form, such as a savings or money market account.

have a budget

It’s not the most exciting part of organize your finances, but it is one of the most important. However, like emergency saving, this also tends to be a step people get stuck with. A budget is a great place to start being responsible for your finances, but if it’s so unappealing that it’s holding you back from making progress, skip it and do it later. Chances are that once you start paying off debt, saving, and investing, you’ll start wanting a clearer picture of your spending and how to save money anyway.

Live below your means

Along with investing your money wisely, living below your means is one of the pillars of good personal finance behavior. Basically, you should be able to pay all your bills, do fun things, and have some money to put away. If not, you need to look for ways to reduce your outgoings and outgoings, increase your income, or both.

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