Have you ever felt like everyone you know has more money than you? Like you’re constantly the “broke friend” without money to go out to eat or go shopping? If you feel this way, chances are you’re missing a crucial piece of financial information that could change your entire outlook on your finances. Consider the following reasons why you may feel like everyone has more money than you, and what you can do to change it.
You’re Not Saving Money
If you’re living paycheck to paycheck, chances are your savings account is looking a bit slim. People from San Jose all the way to New York are struggling to save enough money each month. Having a savings account can provide you with extra money in case of emergencies, extra spending cash, and an overall sense of security about your financial situation. If you’re not saving money, you’re probably feeling like you’re falling behind.
CNBC claims that only 35 percent of all US adults have anything in savings, and about 34 percent have nothing at all. Another 15% of Americans have $10,000 or more saved up. This alarming statistic paints a true picture of just how difficult it can be to save money.
Even if you’re living on a budget, there are ways to save money without sacrificing the few creature comforts you’re accustomed to. You should be saving money as often as possible, but you don’t want to make yourself miserable to do it. There’s a difference between necessary sacrifice for the cause and needless punishment.
Research pricing options for things like cable and TV service, and even your electricity provider. Create homemade meals rather than eating out, and focus your efforts on any debts that are holding you back from financial freedom. Debt-free is the new wealthy!
You’re Buried in Debt
Being buried in debt can leave you struggling to pay your bills and feeling like you don’t have a penny to your name. Debt is a problem for millions of Americans, with the average American under 35 holding around $67,000 in personal debt, excluding mortgages. Debt can leave you feeling smothered, which is why it’s so important to pay off debts as soon as possible.
This is where you may need to make some sacrifices. If not eating out for a few months and turning off your Cable TV means paying off a debt, you’ll have the entirety of your debt’s monthly payments to save or invest elsewhere.
While it’s certainly easier to pay off debts when you have more income to move around, paying off debt on a budget is also possible. You can work with creditors to make your monthly payments more affordable, or opt for a consolidation loan to lump all of your debt together in one simple loan.
Money Management Isn’t Your Strong Suit
Money management isn’t a strong suit for a lot of people, and if you’re not great at it, it can leave you feeling left in the dark about something as impactful as your personal financial standing. Money management isn’t a mystery, however, and there are plenty of resources available out there to help you get the information you need.
Besides thousands of websites dedicated to assisting people just like you with getting their finances together, there are also expert advisors and financial planners available for hire to help you create a working plan to tackle debt and reduce expenses.
If you’re in need of help with investments or money management, you can compare the 5 best financial advisors on the Careful Cents site. This will allow you to find the right expert to meet your personal needs and get your money back on track.
You’ve Got Too Many Open Lines of Credit
If you’ve got more than three lines of open credit, you’re probably finding it quite difficult to not only keep track of your credit limits and what you owe, but also to keep up with more than three monthly payments. Chances are, you’re only paying the minimum for each card at the end of the month; leaving yourself with a deficit that could take years to pull yourself out of.
Here are the cold, hard facts: credit cards don’t do you any good if you can’t keep up with the payments. While lines of credit extend your access to certain goods and opportunities, they also serve as a temptation to make purchases when we don’t have the money to do so. Controlling your credit card limits, spending, and pay-back habits is an important, if not vital part of reclaiming your finances.
Always keep your credit cards paid down, and never maximize them. Remember that every month comes with an extra payment due to your APR, so every time you spend money with a credit card, interest is added to the purchase. Most people forget to factor in this important fact, making purchases with credit cards all the more expensive.
Ignorance is not bliss. Be sure you know your APR, the terms of your card’s usage, and any other information related to the card and its balance. Being in the dark about your credit cards in incredibly dangerous, and a major contributing factor to why Americans have over $1 trillion in credit card debt as of March of 2019.
No one wants to feel like everyone around them has more money. By making savings goals, working with experts, and educating yourself on your financial situation, you make smarter financial decisions overall and begin the journey to financial freedom.