Achieving financial success is a great part of the American dream, but it’s not easy to do if you aren’t focused on the goal. Real financial security doesn’t come about by accident. These careful steps for financial success will help you build a solid financial future.
Know Where You Stand
The average American household has $15,263 in credit card debt, $147,591 in mortgage debt, and $31,646 in student loan debt as of August 2013, according to NerdWallet. If these numbers seem big, either you’re managing your money better than the average citizen or you’re blissfully unaware of your financial state.
It’s easy to disregard the real figures and simply pay the minimum on your debt each month. If you don’t currently know how much debt you have and how much interest you’re paying on it, you need to find out immediately.
Take Advantage of Money Management Tools
With apps, online tools, and computer programs widely available, there’s no excuse for mismanaging your money. However, a CreditDonkey.com survey found that only 27 percent of people take advantage of a mobile app for money management. Forty-four percent reported using a website, but that’s still less than half.
Don’t rely on a paper ledger or your own mental math to help you get by. Track your income and spending carefully so you’re always confident that the money you’re bringing in far exceeds what’s going out.
Address Your Attitude Toward Money
Most people can easily identify as either spenders or savers. If you’re a spender, it’s helpful to recognize this tendency so you can put more effort toward saving money for your future. The environment that you grew up in impacts your spending and saving tendencies as well.
In a bizarre phenomenon, it’s been observed that people who grew up poor will spend more during a financial crisis than those raised in wealthy homes. Facing your habits head on is the best way to thwart them if they’re not leading you toward financial success.