Developing a habit typically takes 30 or more days of practice. To develop better money habits, it can help to challenge yourself with new methods for personal financial success. There are a lot of good ways to do better financially but it’s up to you to remain committed to the ones that work for you.
Click through for 7 financial challenges that you should try today to improve your financial stability…
7 Financial Challenges That Will Change You Forever 1 of 8
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Make Extra Mortgage Payments 2 of 8
Typically your mortgage is the largest monthly expense you have. You can pay off your mortgage faster by adding extra money to each of your mortgage payments. How much you can put towards the extra payment will depend on your budget but the more you pay, the faster the mortgage will be paid off. Commit to paying an extra $50-100 a month for six months.
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No Shopping Promise 3 of 8
For 30 days, commit to not shop for anything outside of essentials such as groceries. Forgo clothing, fast food runs, and Internet browsing for an entire month. Keep putting your â€˜leftover' budget money into a savings account. After the 30 days, evaluate your process and see how much you were able to save.
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Room Purge 4 of 8
Spend one month going through each room of your home with several boxes. One box is for donations and one box is for resale. Clear out the closets, cabinets, basement, and attic of things you no longer have a use for in your home. Find new ways to use â€˜old' things in your home rather than buying new to reorganize your entire home. Sell what you have through online resources, have a garage sale, or stop by a consignment store. Any money made from the sale of your stuff should be immediately deposited into a savings account earmarked for emergencies.
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Emergency Back Up 5 of 8
If you opt for a room purge and make some extra income, establish an emergency savings account with that money right away. Then set a $3000 goal for this fund and commit to funding it regularly to reach your goal in a year's time. That equals a deposit of $250 a month for 12 months (or $62.50 a week). This money should never be touched except for true emergencies (medical, home repair, car repair) and should continue to grow towards at least 6 months of living expenses.
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Snowball Your Debts 6 of 8
To become debt free is a great goal to have and now is a great time to commit to the right technique for eliminating your debts. The snowball method involves paying the minimum on all your bills and making one large payment towards one of the debts. Continue until the debt is paid off then take that payment plus the minimum payment you've been making towards the next bill on the list.
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Track Your Spending for One Month 7 of 8
Keep a notebook and a pen with you at all times (or use your cell phone) to track every single penny spent for 30 days. When the 30 days is up, review and categorize where your money went. Sometimes this is just the reality check you will need to do better with managing your finances.
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Reduce Your Monthly Bills 8 of 8
Take a good hard look at the amount of money you spend every month based on your expense tracking. Use that information to reduce the amount you spend on a monthly basis so you can save the cash instead. Reducing monthly bills may require some unpleasant choices such as cutting off the cable box but it can certainly put you back on financially stable ground.
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