The number one enemy of personal finance is procrastination. Therefore live by the philosophy of MTHN (make things happen now) and take control of your personal finances – let money be your servant, and not the other way around.
Business Coach, Izak Strauss, from Contego Investment Solutions shares the following 5 practical tips on stretching your paycheck:
- Analyse your spending pattern. Keep receipts of all your purchases made for the month such as credit card bills, utilities and literally everything you spend money on. At the end of the month add them all up and ascertain where your money went. Once unnecessary costs are cut, develop a spending plan that is in line with your values and financial goals.
- Reduce your credit card debt. One credit card is more than enough to cover emergencies and unexpected costs. Take a month’s worth of credit card bills, add the interest you’re paying up and multiple that by 12. You’ll be shocked at what you are wasting every year by using your card instead of cash. Once your debt is settled, you can start investing in your future.
- Know your personal budget busters. For instance, you can’t walk into a bookstore without buying a new book, even if you have 10 unread books piled on your shelf. Ascertain what your number 1 impulse purchase is and withhold yourself from buying a new book until you’ve finished reading your “inventory”.
- Negotiate your way; in business, as in life, you don’t get what you deserve; you get what you negotiate. Everything in life is negotiable!! There is absolutely nothing wrong with it – you don’t have to pay face value for something if it’s not necessary. You may as well not get a lower price, but you will surely never get a discount if you don’t ask for it. This is especially true when you are dealing with contractors, furniture stores, and carpet stores.
- Save your raise or annual bonus. It’s essential to have an emergency fund and invest for your future. If your pre-raise salary covers the bills, put your extra cash towards a savings, retirement, or varsity savings account for later use. When investing for the long term, your “raise” is doing double duty by actually making you more money through investment earnings and gains. Investing in a well-rounded portfolio is an excellent way to seriously stretch your paycheck.