Spending time on your finances can pay big dividends

4 Your Money

We all lead a very busy life. Balancing work, kids and fun activities might leave little time to focus on an area that is extremely important, your financial matters. Our money expert Andy Mattingly is with us to explain why spending time on our financial situation might be the most beneficial task you perform each week.

How much time should we allocate on a weekly basis to financial matters?

Really successful people across all income levels will spend 15 to 30 minutes each week reviewing their financial situation looking for opportunities to make changes in various aspects of their financial life from the balances in their accounts to upcoming renewals.

What areas matter most to a person’s financial situation?

It really comes down to five key matters: income, spending rate, savings rate, housing costs and transportation costs. These five areas have biggest impact on a person’s financial situation regardless of the economic environment.

How can spending time on your finances payoff?

Regular reviews of your situation help identify areas that need your attention or opportunities to improve your situation. Without regular reviews you could miss ways to improve your situation or not recognizes critical issues soon enough to make a difference. The payoff is that most will see immediate improvements in their monthly cash flow.

What are important moves for those struggling financially?

If you have loans make sure you are reaching out to your lender early so that they can help you devise a plan. Early action often gives the lender more options to help than waiting until you are severely past due. It is also time to review spending decisions and make changes in that area especially if your income is diminished.

What are opportunities for those who aren’t experiencing difficulties?

Consider refinancing your home if you haven’t in the last 6 months. Rates are lower than they ever have been and this might be the time to lock in a great low rate with a lower payment. This allows you to either increase your savings or build equity faster.

Are there areas everyone should review regularly regardless of their financial situation?

Always review any insurance renewals including auto, renters and/or homeowners insurance. If you carry a balance on a credit card, always look to lower your rate by moving your balances. All of these moves can provide funds to achieve other goals especially related to savings efforts.

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