Many Americans are living paycheck-to-paycheck because they are insufficiently educated about their personal finances and have not established, or maintained healthy financial habits.
Financial Literacy Month provides us with an opportunity to focus on financial education, whether it’s the ability to manage personal finance, make decisions about saving and investing, large purchases and/or loans, or retirement and tax planning.
Often, it is the lack of financial preparedness that leaves many in debt, without savings, and any sort of retirement plan. But it’s not easy. Many face flat real wages, student debt, high tax burden, and higher healthcare costs, which makes it extremely hard to find extra income to save at the end of the month.
If you want to get a grip on your finances take it one day at a time. Start in small ways by reading articles and blogs, like this one, using mobile budgeting apps, or signing up for personal finance classes. The next step is to reduce your budget for the month and automatically save the difference. Even if you are only able to save a little, it is ok to start small and grow into a larger savings plan over time. You can also look at ways of consolidating your debt and reducing your interest payments. And, it’s never too late to start thinking about saving for retirement. The key is to start right away; the quicker you get your finances under control the sooner you’ll be able to enjoy the now, and more importantly, plan for the future.