It can be hard to tell if you're making the most of your money when there's so much to consider. Creating a budget, managing debt or just working on your financial big picture? Make sure you've got a game plan.
You already know you can’t make progress with your financial planning until you can see how the board is set. So make sure your current budgeting format really works for you – it could be anything from a pen and paper to a smartphone app. And don’t forget to check in on your budget as your needs change.
Seek out opportunities for small savings – they really add up. Check out a less-expensive grocery store, bring your lunch to work or trade your gym membership for an outdoor workout. Once you’re spending less, press your advantage by consigning those clothes you don’t wear anymore or organizing a garage sale to clear out clutter around the house.
You’re probably already using a method to pay down your debt based on your balances and interest rates. Protect those efforts by paying attention to new terms and conditions that may include changes to your card’s annual percentage rate (APR).
Even if your savings plan allows you to deal with the occasional unexpected issue, don’t leave yourself vulnerable by ignoring your emergency fund. It should have enough for at least six months to a year of expenses and cover costs like debt repayment and health care.
Wondering if you’ll have enough in retirement can cause anxiety, and making sacrifices now sounds tedious. But in the long term, you can make more of your money by thinking a few moves ahead. According to Merrill Edge®, focusing on starting today and contributing to your 401(k) are just the first steps toward boosting your retirement savings at any age. Learn more Merrill Edge® insights, including eight additional steps you can take.
While you’re making a game plan for the future, remember that you should also be teaching your kids about the value of a dollar. Are they ready for their own bank accounts? Do they understand paychecks? Show them how it’s done by brushing up on your budgeting basics (like you are now!) and leading by example. Learn more tips to teach your kids about managing their finances from Merrill Edge®.
Make staying in the know part of your winning financial strategy. Take advantage of facts, tips and strategies that are available to you through BankofAmerica.com, or schedule an appointment with a personal banker to go over your financial needs. And for questions about retirement, planning for college or other investment topics, set up time to speak with a Merrill Edge Financial Solutions Advisor™.