Financial Tips for Life 101

Wherever you are in life, these tips may help you get on solid financial ground and help you stay there.

Get specific with your goals. There’s an old expression: “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will lead you there.” When it comes to your money, you need to have specific goals.

A goal can be as simple as: “Put aside $500 a month for a down payment on a new home until we have $20,000”, or “Pay off credit card debt in one year with a $300 a month minimum payment.”

Focus on needs, not wants. Wish lists can be wonderful things to have – as long as you don’t use your credit card to turn every wish into immediate gratification. Understand the difference between “needs” and “wants”, and be willing to forego what you don’t really need.

Keep it simple. Often we get too complex in our planning. Result? Plans turn into burdens and are quickly abandoned. Don’t try to become an investment banker overnight. Just focus on what’s most important to you. Is it having enough money for retirement, financial security for loved ones, college? You decide and then take simple, straightforward action.

Know your weak points. Understand your own personal psychology and avoid triggers that will tempt you to spend more and save less. For example, if you know you’re undisciplined, try to have money taken out automatically for saving or investing.

Be realistic. If you’ve never saved a penny in your life, you’re not going to magically put aside thousands of dollars a month. Start small. Savings success relies on consistency.

Be prepared. Life is about change. Life events occur and can affect your financial planning. Be ready. Planning for the unexpected can make seemingly disastrous events like a job layoff, house fire, or a long-term illness far less devastating than they might otherwise be.

Know when you need advice and how to get it. Get help when you need it: a banker for a mortgage, a lawyer for your will, a CPA (Certified Public Accountant) Financial Planner for more complex financial planning needs.

Copper Leaf Financial

Copper Leaf Financials’ team of CPAs and experienced financial planners have worked with clients for more than 15 years to help them achieve their short and long-term financial objectives – mindful of the need to adjust strategies as life circumstances evolve.

See also 10 Easy Tips for Saving Money